Saturday, September 25, 2004

The STAR WARS Trilogy

OK, so I bought the set of "original" trilogy on DVD this week. I may never watch the movies, but I figured no house should be without the set.

I hear that there's a lot of whining about George Lucas having made some minor changes in the movies. I may not approve, but so what? They're his movies. Stuff like that happens all the time.

You English majors probably thought immediately of Henry James, whose thrilling novels you first came to know and love in their serial form. Or maybe their first book form. And then old Henry rewrote nearly every single one of them for the "New York" edition. He didn't make just minor changes. He went through and completely rewrote them. So now we have different thrilling versions to enjoy, and what's wrong with that? Works the same way with the Star Wars movies, right? We still have our old VHS tapes of the originals, and we can copy them to DVD if we want to.

I'll be the first to admit that I didn't approve when John D. MacDonald updated his pulp stories for inclusion on The Good Old Stuff and More Good Old Stuff, but they were his stories. If he wanted to rewrite them, he had a perfect right to do it.

I don't approve of colorizing movies, either. Seems to me that's most often done by someone other than the original director, so it's clearly different, and clearly evil.


Mystery Dawg said...

I have both versions too. I think my concern on the new version is that I remember all the hoopla of shipping classes to stand in line all day in Westwood to see the first midnight showing of each of the movies. In this way the event and the movies are connected and nostalgic in my mind.

AS to what Lucas has done, you're right. The're his movies and he can do what he wants. I'm willing to give the second version a try and will place them in the bookcase just as I do with ARCs and First Editions and the few manuscripts that I have.

Ivan G Shreve Jr said...

I wouldn't have a problem with Lucas' continual tinkering of his Star Wars trilogy if the films--in their original form--were also available on DVD. As such, I will be the only person in the continental United States who hasn't purchased the trilogy on DVD, so look for me at your nearest carnival freakshow soon. (In Lucas' defense, he's not the first person to do this--Charlie Chaplin and Harold Lloyd often had difficulty refraining from fine-tuning their classic works.)

I do, however, agree wholeheartedly with you on the issue of colorization. Family and friends know not to bring up the subject around me, as it tends to turn ugly--kind of like how a fight will break out in a bar in some movie Western.