3,508 of 3,787 people found the following review helpful
on June 1, 2010
It's real simple, George. The vast majority of people who will buy the Blu-Ray versions are middle-aged nostalgia hounds. These people will NOT pony up more of their hard-earned dough for CGI "enhancements." They WILL, however, whip out their credit cards for the ORIGINAL THEATRICAL RELEASES faster than Han Solo's draw-down on Greedo.
Find your best exant print each film of the original trilogy. Have the ILM lab boys scan in every frame @ 4k. Do the LEAST amount of color correction and dust/scratch removal--only in a restoration sense, not "improving color" or anything like that. Approach it like archivists.
Use your technical advancements to do the finest BR encoding of those individual frames. I want to see film grain, dude. Matte lines. Pancake makeup. Absolutely naked and unvarnished. The final result should be a monument to the format, really.
Do the same with the audio.
If your ego won't let you "let go" of your CGI meddling, then make every feature a two-BR set--your best "improved" version + the original theatrical release. You can charge more that way, have your final vision, and still satisfy the fans who want the '77, '80. and '83 prints. And line your pockets with more filthy lucre as you sell the same product to us for the umteenth time.
Call it a "Special Edition Archivist Series" or something like that.
132 of 150 people found the following review helpful
on June 18, 2009
This box contains the previously released "limited edition" 2-disc sets, now in 3 slim-line cases, which means you get STAR WARS, THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, and RETURN OF THE JEDI in both the original theatrical versions (for the first time on DVD!) and the re-worked "special editions" from the mid 90's.
I purchased these mainly for the original theatrical versions and my comments relate to those versions only.
The Original Theatrical versions are in their original 2.35:1 Widescreen aspect, letterboxed within a 3x4 screen format - not anamorphic - which is clearly indicated on the packaging. You can view this "full-size" on your 16x9 TV by setting your DVD player's HDMI output to 3x4/pillar-box if necessary, and then setting your TV to "zoom" so that the screen is filled side to side with the picture. There will be slim black bars on the top and bottom, just as there are on anamorphic DVD's with a 2.35:1 aspect ratio.
Even with the zoom in effect, the picture is crystal clear and the color great. I'm using an upconvert DVD player with HDMI output (1080p), and a 50-inch plasma HD television. Some have said in reviews that the picture quality is poor, even "VHS quality", but that's totally false. I've read that the originals here were taken from the laser-disc masters done in the early 90's; well, they look great however they were sourced. The sound is Dolby 2.0 Stereo (as indicated on the package) and sounds excellent. I get some center-channel and sub-woofer action as well as the stereo music and sound-effects on my system.
If a blu-ray/HD version is ever issued, that will be great and an improvement; but this is the only way to get the original films on DVD at this time, and they look great, so this set is essential for fans who saw these movies in theatres when they were released between 1977 and 1983 and want to see them once again in their original glory.
197 of 227 people found the following review helpful
on November 5, 2008
I see this box set is getting a lot of bad reviews so I thought I'd chime in.
Most people giving it one star are just mad that there is another boxset release. This doesn't bother me at all. I never bought the other boxsets because of all the CG that was added, those aren't the movies I love.
People are also upset that the originals aren't in anamorphic widescreen and are poor transfers. Yeah an anamorphic version would have been nice and maybe they could have been retransfered, but these movies look a lot better than my old VHS set. Most likely these movies look better now than they did in the crappy theatar I saw them in.
In conclusion, this is a very affordable way to get all the original versions of the original trilogy, plus you get all the touched up versions.
35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on April 28, 2013
I haven't purchased the trilogy yet, I was investigating the versions. I read the one review that helps to clarify which boxed set contains the original release versus the special edition. I still wasn't absolutely sure which one to get though so I went digging around and I found this comparison chart on Amazon that I thought might be helpful to others, so posting it here. I didn't want to bring down the rating of this boxed set so I gave it 5 stars just so I could post this. Hope it's helpful to anyone else who isn't quite sure which set to get.
Go to this link for the blu-ray version then scroll down to find the comparison chart:
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on January 2, 2011
These discs are the "THX" remastering of the original versions of the movie. The same version was converted to VHS but has much lower quality due to the format. The DVD/BR releases have both the special edition versions and non-remastered versions of the originals. This version is MUCH better quality than the non-remastered originals and doesn't have all of the annoying changes of the special edition. If you happen to have an LD player.. I'd pick this up.
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on June 4, 2010
The box it comes in, is really cool. Better than the 95' and 97' editions. The videos are also in a video holder thing, which i think is ok. But i do like the art work on both the box and video hholder. The video cases them selfs have some cool art work as well. This is a collection in my star wars collection. So I'd get it right away before they are gone!!
47 of 56 people found the following review helpful
on August 15, 2000
How is it possible that I have now bought the exact same (well, almost) movies on video tape for now the FOURTH TIME? Yes, I'm one of those people who own the original letterbox release, the letterbox THX release, and the letterbox Special Edition box set. Now, as soon as Mr. Lucas announces yet another marketing of the Holy Trilogy, I'm there with my credit card on Amazon.com! Heck, I don't even BUY video cassettes anymore, I have a DVD player! Why do I keep shelling out hard earned dollars for the same movies?
Well, if you really need to ask that question, you're obviously not a Star Wars fan. Without a doubt, there movies have become immortal for one reason: they have ressurected the myth genre. While the Greeks and Romans had their famous mythologies, Aesop had his fables, and the Britsh had King Arthur, the last generation of the 20th Century has Star Wars.
We were raised on Star Wars. Dreams of becoming a Jedi were as common as future proffessions such as doctor or policeman back at my grade school. I doubt a day went by between my fourth and tenth years of life where the accolades of Luke, Leia, Han, Chewie, R2 and 3PO weren't acted out in my daily play with my friends. We didn't play "Cowboys and Indians." We played "Rebels and Imperials." We didn't have gun fights, we battled each other with whatever could substitute for a lightsaber.
In retrospect, now that I'm all grwon up, I'm thankful for Lucas for what he gave me. These movies laid of a simple play of good versus evil. In the end, the quest for virtue will always triumph over the greed of evil. They also taught me that if you believe in yourself and have faith a higher power, you can accomplish anything. For this, you will see me ordering this trilogy every time it is released. Not just for the "Episode II Behind-The-Scenes" stuff, but basically to give the well-worn copies I already own a break. Thank you, Mr. Lucas. You've brought great joy into my life and helped to teach me the values I have today. Though I don't have children yet, I'm sure that when they come along, they will be living out the same fantasies I did a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...
P.S. Where's the DVDs?
202 of 254 people found the following review helpful
on September 4, 2008
I vaguely recall a very controversial interview with Lucas from years past, when he said he would not release the original trilogy ever again UNTIL the technology which he desired was finally available. Of course, he never really described such-mentioned technology.
Well we all have heard that the apparent reason why he 'tinkered' with the original releases in the first place was because some of the 'technology' he needed to make those 'added' scenes was non-existant back in the 70's (CGI). Apparently those added scenes were in his notes, and just not do-able back then. Again, this is all arguable.
But my point here is.....okay Lucas, you added your 'beloved' extra scenes as soon as you were able to. So what about the re-release of the originals? What more could you want from the 'technology' then BLU RAY? It's won the HD war. It is arguably, the future. Do what you said you would do... release the ORIGINALS on blu. And soon! This is finally a format large enough to include everything and anything everyone could possibly want all in 1 place. Satisfy us all by releasing a single blu-ray for each movie that includes every version ever released (they did it for T2!)....and every extra ever released. That would be a SINGLE SET OF 6-7 BLUs (perhaps 1 seperate disk for all of the extras). Not 10 seperate regular dvd sets (and lets not forget those old vhs sets some of us are still hanging on to). The double, triple, and ten-touple dipping has got to stop! Imagine that; product for the people. Your patient fans await!
So Lucas has announced in Celebration V that all of the episodes will be released on Blu in fall of 2011. Part of me is overjoyed. Part of me is not so sure. Time will tell with what is included. All we know is that it will most definitley be the 'ammended' versions. And, of course, he'll pull footage out of his vault that we've never seen before in the extras. So much for my idea of housing a majority of the previous extras all in one set. :( However, one of Lucas' comments left a bad taste in my mouth and I thought I would share it here. He is quoted for saying at Celebration V that "We've been wanting to do it as soon as we possibly could, but we just wanted to do it when enough people would be able to buy it and see it." What exactly is that supposed to mean? Hmmm? My euphemism-detector is about to explode! So in other words "I didn't wanna do it until the opportune amount of people have jumped on the blu-ray bandwagon, so that I may make the most amount of money possible during it's first weeks of sale, therefore making my efforts worth while." Really???? Say it ain't so George!
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on December 27, 2001
Two hours in a darkened movie theater in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1977 were enough to change the life of a then eight-year-old kid forever. For anyone out there who enjoys adventure, science fiction, special effects, or just good storytelling, there is no denying that the original Star Wars trilogy is a monumental achievement in modern American cinema. The cultural influence of these movies cannot be overstated enough. The first film and its two sequels have grabbed a place in American culture right up there next to Gone With The Wind. 99% of movies out in the last few decades will eventually fade and be forgotten, but these films will be around forever. I myself now have two young kids, and you can bet that I will sit down and watch these movies with them many times.
These three films, together with their three "prequels", tell a basic, simple story. It's the story of the corruption of good from within, the seeming hopeless descent into evil, and the eventual redemption and victory of good. Once you get past all the special effects and sci-fi elements, it's actually a very powerful theme, an one I think everyone can benefit from. The message is wrapped up in a LOT of good storytelling, including awesome space battles, unforgettable characters, and more than a little comedy.
As far as the new effects and added scenes for the Special Edition versions, I thought they were kind of a mixed bag. In the first film, for example, I really liked the shots of the Millenium Falcon on approach to Yavin, and I also liked the shots of the X-Wings and Y-Wings as they round the curve of the red gas giant on their way to do battle for the Death Star. There were several EXCELLENT new shots on Tatooine, especially Obi-Wan Kenobi's house and the "new" version of Mos Eisley. On the other hand, I could have done without some of the changes to the dogfighting scenes, and also I think the movie was better off without the scene between Han and Jabba. I also never quite understood why they added in one scene with Biggs at the rebel base, but not the scenes between Luke and Biggs on Tatooine. As it stands, the addition of Biggs is jarring and doesn't seem to make any sense. It makes sense if you've read the original book, but one shouldn't have to read the book to understand the movie. I also thought the change to the scene with Han and Greedo was a mistake. As for Empire and Jedi, those changes didn't make much difference to me.
I own both the original and "special" editions of the trilogy on VHS, so I get to pick and choose which ones I like the most. I know that Lucas is going to release these movies on DVD at some point. Perhaps it will be set up in a way that will allow fans to "choose" which version of each scene they want to see. Now THAT would be something!
If you are one of the few out there who haven't seen or are familiar with these films, I'm not going to spoil the plot for you. I will just say this - you OWE it to yourself to see these movies. They are classics, now and forever.
20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on September 19, 2009
As far as I'm concerned, this is the ONLY edition of the Star Wars trilogy worth buying because only here will you get the original 70s & 80s versions of the classic films - the movies that defined a genre and the movies we fell in love with. (Mind you, these are the bonus discs. I guess you can use the other three for sun-catchers or coasters for your coffee table.) Gone are the awkward juxtapositions of the original special effects (based on painstakingly hand-crafted models) with nasty-looking CGI short-cuts. Other benefits:
- No silly scenes in the Tatooine hanger with a much less feared & respected Jabba
- Han shoots first!
- Hear the Ewok celebration song in its entirety!
- No bizarre appearance of the ghost of Hayden Christensen at the end of Return of the Jedi!
- The plant from Little Shop of Horrors no longer caught in the throat of the great Sarlacc!
- Original nude slave wrestling scene returned to scene in Jabba's palace!
Ok, I think I may have dreamt that last one, but STILL! This is all cinematic history, and Lucas was wrong to mess with it. Cheers!