- Audio CD (2 May 2005)
- Number of Discs: 2
- Format: CD+DVD
- Label: Sony Classical
- ASIN: B00082IJ0I
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Vinyl | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 44,067 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge of the Sith (Episode 3) CD+DVD
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Since the first film in the Star Wars series was released in 1977, Star Wars has become the most popular film series in history. John Williams' soundtracks for the series have been--and will continue to be one of the most important parts of the phenomenon. Star Wars: Episode III--Revenge of the Sith is the last instalment of the worldwide epic phenomena. The sixth album, newly composed and conducted by the five-time Oscar winner John Williams, is a celebration of one of the most artistic collaborations ever created. George Lucas understands the enormous impact that music has had on his films, and John Williams has been part of his enterprise since the very beginning.
The bonus DVD, Star Wars: A Musical Journey, will feature film excerpts and music from all six Star Wars soundtracks. Chronologically, it will take the viewer through the entire saga in 16 glorious movements. This is the first time that a bonus DVD has been offered with a Star Wars soundtrack.
Pity John Williams writing his umpteenth Star Wars score.Although with all those royalties rolling in, pity is perhaps not quite the right word. Consider at least the tedium of it. No one asked Wagner for a prequel to the Ring Cycle, did they?
Burdened with a legacy of his own making, Williams' technique for the three prequel scores has been to embroider the films' existing musical mythology, retro-fitting familiar motifs from the older scores while attempting to devise distinctive new themes.
So, much of this soundtrack is a case of deja ecoute, a self-referential riffing on nostalgic sequences. "Luke and Leia", "The Imperial March", the "Force" theme and "Duel of the Fates" from Episode One - they're all here in sundry disguises for Williams and Lucas stalwarts eager to sniff out the cues.
And you can't deny how canonical they sound. The opening and closing medleys areas statley as aGalactic galleon, as festive as the Last Night of the Proms.
The fresh material is more patchy. The most significant new theme is "Battle of the Heroes". Buzzing with stressed-out strings, hyperactive brass and a suicidal choir, this is as mesmeric as anything Williams has written. Sony must think so - it's set for release as the first ever Star Wars single.
Other new material is less memorable. "General Grievous" and "Anakin vs. Obi-Wan" are merely adequate adventure anthems. And, anticipating the defection of the supposed hero to the dark side, there is a preponderance of broodily low-key numbers. "Padmes Ruminations and Palpatines Teachings" are atonal, syncopated fillers, disappointingly portentous.
Issued two weeks in advance of the film release on 19 May, this disc is flagrant titillation, fanning those fans already queuing outside Hollywood's Chinese Theatre into greater paroxysms of anticipation. Heavens, there are folks who are not even reading the soundtrack titles in case they spoil the plot!
Will they be disappointed? Of course not. In Sith, the Empire strikes back with all the familiar notes. They just don't sound quite as startling any more. --Morag Reavley
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Top Customer Reviews
John Williams' score is a far more sombre affair this time. Of course, there are still the rousing battle themes such as 'The Revenge of the Sith' and 'Grievous and the Droids', but the majority of the material here is shot through with a mixture of overwhelming evil and tragic despair. The main new theme, 'Battle of the Heroes', is a perfect example; menacing and exciting, but with more than a hint of sadness running through it. For those like me who love 'Duel of the Fates' from Episode I, there's plenty of the same spine-chilling choral work, and the emotive 'Across the Stars' also appears in some of the more melancholy moments. As this film forms the link to the original Star Wars trilogy, it's good to see some old favourites making a reappearance, most notably 'The Force Theme' and the 'Imperial March'. The End Credits piece also raises a nostalgic tear to the eye with excerpts from 'Leia's Theme' and 'The Throne Room' (although surely not all this will be heard on screen - the credits can't last for more than eleven minutes, can they...?)
Far from 'dropping the ball', John Williams has produced a work which easily exceeds the other two Prequel soundtracks, although it cannot match 'The Empire Strikes Back' - surely the finest soundtrack ever produced. As for plagurising elements from a lesser composer's work on a lesser film, the idea is risible. It's a marvellous album, and promises a thrilling, emotional journey come May 19th.
My only complaint is.. why only a selection from the film? Whay not the full, double-CD treatment?Read more ›
One of the highlights is 'Anakin's Betrayal', a track similar to 'You are the Pan' from 'Hook' that is full of tragedy and endlessly playable. There is plenty of sorrow in this soundtrack such as 'Anakin's Dream', 'The Immolation Scene' and 'Padme's Destiny' and it really does give you the sense that things are looking bleak. The CD then ends full circle with a welcome return of themes from 'A New Hope'.
Overall, the CD is okay but suffers a little from the bad editing that plagued the original release of 'The Phantom Menace' and it's obvious that a lot of the tracks were just not intended to be presented this way. It does have fortune of growing on you after a few listens and it gets a lot of bonus points for a superb extra DVD that revisits all the great themes from the saga. As a two-disc set, it's a great buy.
The DVD is also exceptional with Ian McDiarmid presenting some the best combinations of music and excerpts from the saga in 70 minutes of musical and visual delight and if you haven't already seen the 'A Hero Falls' music video on Star Wars.com it will give you some more insight into the film its self without totally spoiling it such as 'Duel of the Fates' did.
However, I will begin this review by discussing the negatives first. The main problem I have with the CD is that it is not presented chronologically and this is something that irritated me very quickly. For example, 'Battle of the Heroes' is the third track on the album while 'Anakin's Betrayal' is fourth, but 'Anakin's Betrayal' occurs earlier in the film. Similarly, the track 'Palpatine's Teachings' is the sixth track on the album and that definitely appears earlier than 'Anakin's Betrayal' or 'Battle of the Heroes'. While this may not bother most of you, those of you who know your Star Wars films and scores well will be a little disappointed by this. Secondly, this goes without saying, but surely John has more in his locker? What I mean is this is not the full score. Instead, you get a one disc album with a kind of best of compilation from the film. One final flaw would be that some of the tracks sound too familiar, even identical at times to each other, but with John Williams scores, that is par of the course, so it's not really a big deal.
On a more positive note, the highlights to this soundtrack are absolutely excellent. What I really enjoy is just how dark this score actually is. We were promised this, and Williams very much so delivered it. Most to all of the tracks on the album have a very ambiguous, brooding feel to them.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
My 4 year old loves star wars, this is great value for money as it includes a DVD with clips from the different movies.Published 8 months ago by Paul
why isn't it in order to the film. battle of heroes was when Anakin and obi-wan are fighting. not track 3.Published 16 months ago by Craig T Stratton
A must for all star wars fans, you have a CD of the film score plus; Star Wars a musical journey, a DVD of the whole Star Wars story, musically told accompanied with live action... Read morePublished on 22 April 2015 by Karlie co co pops