Star Wars: Return of the Jedi

RCA Victor
BMG Classics (0090266877423)
BMG Japan (4988017069905)
Movie | Released: 1997 | Format: CD, Download

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# Track   Duration
1.20th Century Fox Fanfare (Alfred Newman, 1954)0:22
2.Main Title/Approaching The Death Star/Tatooine Rendezvous9:21
3.The Droids Are Captured1:17
4.Bounty for a Wookiee2:50
5.Han Solo Returns4:01
6.Luke Confronts Jabba/Den Of The Rancor/Sarlacc Sentence8:51
7.The Pit of Carkoon/Sail Barge Assault6:02
8.The Emperor Arrives/The Death of Yoda/Obi-Wan's Revelation10:58
9.Alliance Assembly2:13
10.Shuttle Tydirium Approaches Endor4:09
11.Speeder Bike Chase/Land of the Ewoks9:38
12.The Levitation/Threepio's Bedtime Story2:46
13.Jabba's Baroque Recital3:09
14.Jedi Rocks2:42
15.Sail Barge Assault (alternate)5:04
# Track   Duration
1.Parade of the Ewoks3:28
2.Luke and Leia4:46
3.Brother and Sister/Father and Son/The Fleet Enters Hyperspace/Heroic Ewok10:40
4.Emperor's Throne Room3:26
5.THE BATTLE OF ENDOR I (Into the Trap/Forest Ambush/Scout Walker Scramble/Prime Weapon Fires)11:50
6.The Lightsaber/The Ewok Battle4:31
7.THE BATTLE OF ENDOR II (Leia Is Wounded/The Duel Begins/Overtaking the Bunker/The Dark Side Beckons/The Emperor's Death)10:03
8.THE BATTLE OF ENDOR III (Superstructure Chase/Darth Vader's Death/The Main Reactor)6:04
9.Leia's News/Light of the Force3:24
10.Victory Celebration/End Title8:34
11.Ewok Feast/Part of the Tribe4:02
12.The Forest Battle (concert suite)4:05
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Star Wars: Return of the Jedi - 10/10 - Review of Tom Daish, submitted at
This is now here and I must say that some of the expanded bits don't do it any good. The problem is, there are many parts, especially in the Jabba parts where the music is slow and not a lot happens. This means that the opening disc is a little tedious in places. There are some outstanding parts though. The Rancor Fight and Return of the Jedi are both exciting and outstanding action cues. The opening, Approaching the Death Star has to be my favourite of all three Star Wars openings. Opinions on the new Victory Celebration have been mixed. I think that like a lot of people, I was hoping for something more like the ending to Star Wars. However, it is an excellent piece anyway and certainly a lot better than the Ewok Celebration.

Some consider Return of the Jedi to be the weakest of the trilogy, the Ewoks being a particular moan. The music, however, is as good as ever most of the time and certainly has more themes in it than any other soundtrack I can think of. To the original mix of themes, Williams adds The Parade of the Ewoks a wonderful march with some fun percussion and some amazing harmony. Luke and Leia is a subtle piece for the brother and sister relationship that develops through the end of the film after Luke tells Leia how they are related. Jabba the Hut's theme is not perhaps the best, but serves to underlines the gangster's great bulk, although I never really notice when watching the film.

The Emperor's theme is a very sinister and brooding theme for lower instruments and male choir. It is not martial like Vader's theme, but perhaps a couple of shades darker. The action is excellent, although there is perhaps too much of it near the end and while this is fine in the film, perhaps gets too much on CD. However, the arrangement of the music on the Special Edition may rectify things to some extent. Some of the music underscoring the scenes with Luke and Vadar towards the end are excellent, in particular the music for when Luke finally overpowers Vadar. On the Special Edition, I think this is The Dark Side Beckons, but whatever it is called, it is an amazing track and has a very religious quality to it is very emotional indeed. If you have the Anthology, this is the only one I would be a little unsure about buying as most of the good parts are on the Anthology. However, you do get the Victory Celebration and Jedi Rocks. Jedi Rocks is much, much better than Lapti Nek and is a sort of bluesy jazz type thing, better description would be appreciated.

The only thing is that some of the tracks have surprisingly poor sound quality, Superstructure Chase is rather muffled and the brass is not nearly as bright as it should be. It is easy to compare as this cue uses parts from Star Wars, Tie Fighter Attack and the Battle of Yavin. Overall, more of a mixed bag than the other two really, but I'm sure most Star Wars and John Williams fans won't want to miss this chance to hear the entire score. I really couldn't put my hand on my heart and say that Jedi was as good as the other two and so it doesn't get the Gold award I'm afraid. Perhaps the over enthusiastic completeness rather tarnishes the stunning parts with slightly more run of the mill material.
Oscars: Best Original Score (Nominee)

Soundtracks from the collection: Star Wars

John Williams Conducts Music From Star Wars Saga (1997)
Star Wars: The Corellian Edition (2007)
Star Wars: Music from the Six Films (2008)
Music Of Star Wars, The (2007)
Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1997)
Story of Star Wars: The Return of the Jedi, The (1983)
Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (2004)
Star Wars The Ewoks: Caravan of Courage / The Battle for Endor (1999)
Music from the Star Wars Saga (2004)
Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

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