The Nooooo Heard Around the World

Ash Lee September 8, 2011 8

Last week when it was leaked that the Blu-Ray edition of Return of the Jedi would contain changes including Darth Vader yelling “Nooooo!” as The Emperor strikes Luke Skywalker with force lightning, sent several fans into an outrage and created quite a buzz.  Washington City Paper released an article on September 1st titled “The Stages of Star Wars Grief” containing the following image.  You can read the full article here http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/blogs/artsdesk/film/2011/09/01/the-stages-of-star-wars-grief/.

You can also see another take on why George Lucas made this change in the article by clubjade.net here http://clubjade.net/?p=30219.

I personally am okay with certain changes.  I’m okay with cleaning up some of the old film and making it look more modern, like updating the lightsaber effects.  I was even okay with some of the CGI that they input into the DVD editions.  However, I don’t like changing the film.  I didn’t like that Hayden Christensen replaced Sebastian Shaw as the ghost of Anakin Skywalker at the end of Return of the Jedi.  My theory is, if it ain’t broke, don’t try to fix it.  The original films were great, just leave them alone.  I could care less if the Ewoks blink or not and most people won’t even notice that, nor will they remember if the original Ewoks blinked or not.  That’s a very minor detail.  But adding dialogue to a crucial scene or making Greedo shoot first instead of Han Solo; changes like that change the film and change those scenes dramatically.  I know, I know, most people won’t even care and to be honest, I’ll fork over more money and purchase the Blu-Ray either way.  I just had to whine with the rest of the fanboys. 

What is your take on these changes?  Leave us a comment and let us know.


8 Comments »

  1. Rob Richardson September 8, 2011 at 3:53 pm -

    Cheers Ash. I completely agree.
    I’ve heard the one about “Well it’s Lucas’ idea, he has the right to change it as he sees fit.” What some fail to realize is that Star Wars is more than just a series of movies. It embedded itself in the cultural consciousness and means a lot of different things to a lot of different people.
    Making changes to something, while maybe not profound but significant, is cheating people out of their memories.
    Imagine how I’d feel if they updated Halo for it’s 10th anniversary? Oh hang on a minute…

  2. Ash Lee September 8, 2011 at 4:14 pm -

    Haha. My thoughts exactly Rob. I guess I can always watch the originals any time I want but I just don’t understand some of the changes. I do realize it is Lucas’s creation, but show some respect to the fans that got you to where you are. Like I said, I’m not opposed to adding a few things here and there or polishing things up, but don’t change the movie. I’m not going to go add more paint to the Mona Lisa or the Sistine Chapel, just appreciate them for what they are. I can also understand changing things up to keep a franchise fresh and keep it going, but that’s not the case here.

  3. Joshua Done September 8, 2011 at 6:12 pm -

    My only response to the change: NOOOOOOO!

  4. Ash Lee September 8, 2011 at 6:13 pm -

    I hear that loud and clear Josh.

  5. Bean Mills September 9, 2011 at 12:12 am -

    I like the silent Darth Vader; unapproachable, frightening. Far removed from human emotions and feelings, delightfully evil…this is my Darth Vader. I took a breath as he took his first in RotS, but then choked when he screamed ‘Noooo…’
    Lucas might be trying to weave a closer tie between the movies, he maybe wants the flow from movie to movie to be seamless, but there’s really no need. Star Wars is steadfast in our culture, change is unnecessary.
    Regardless, in the future I’ll simply reminisce fondly about the good old days and tell my kids, ‘In the original version, Darth Vader was a lot more scary.’ And they’ll listen for a brief second before continuing their light saber fight with the plunger and the broom, while wearing sheets around their necks.

  6. Joshua Done September 9, 2011 at 1:46 am -

    I don’t think they’d listen bud… those sort of statements are just ‘old man talk’ that is a part of growing up. ‘When I was little we walked up hill to school both ways in the snow’ sort of thing. “Parents are weird.” – now I feel old

  7. Sean Mahoney September 14, 2011 at 9:45 am -

    The only counter point I feel is with the Hayden Christensen / Sebastian Shaw ghost thing. (Warning: heavy nerd over-thinking ahead). With Shaw there as the Force ghost the supposition was that Anakin appeared as he would have been at that age of death if he hadn’t been cooked. Which doesn’t make sense, the Force is all about will power. How would he be able to take that form?

    Putting in Hayden Christensen means that the way one appears as a Force ghost would be how they envision themselves when they die. The last time Anakin saw himself in a mirror or something before he was a cyborg was Christensen. So replacing Shaw there actually makes sense if you think about in-universe.

  8. Ash Lee September 15, 2011 at 8:12 pm -

    Trust me Sean, I’ve had the same thoughts and conversation. I get why they did it and I agree that it does make sense in the Star Wars universe. Good point. Thanks for sharing.

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