#2 on the list?
STAR WARS (1977).
I first remember becoming aware of STAR WARS by looking through a book my older brother had.
I didn’t know how to read at the time, but there were a ton of cool pictures that I spent a lot of time looking at. Anything that had robots and spaceships would have grabbed my attention back then.
I saw the movie for the first time during a 1979 re-release. (In the days before home video, it was common for popular movies to be re-released in theaters.)
And I was hooked for life! Outstanding action, suspense, and comedy all the way through! I remember coming back from the theater totally hyper and bouncing off the walls, determined to reenact every moment from the film – haha!
It grabbed my attention like nothing ever had right from the beginning.
I distinctly remember being so scared the first time I saw it when the Jawas sneak up on R2-D2 – haha! (And if I was scared of the Jawas, imagine how terrified I was of the Sand People and Darth Vader.)
So much great stuff!
The interaction between Han, Luke, and Leia in STAR WARS is more fun than in any of the other SW films.
The first lightsaber fight ever filmed! Yes, it’s not as good as lightsaber duels to come, but still, for the time, it was great!
“Sometimes I amaze even myself.” Hahahaha!!
And STAR WARS actually has my favorite spaceship battle out of the entire series so far. Not a popular thing to say, I know, but hear me out!
Of course RETURN OF THE JEDI and ROGUE ONE have waaaay better spaceship fighting choreography and special effects than what we get here, but I have my reasons for liking this one the best. (And I don’t mean to take anything away from the outstanding improvements to spaceship battles that ILM made in just a few years – what they pulled off in RETURN OF THE JEDI is truly jaw dropping.)
But again, I do like this one the best. And not just because Porkins is in it.
It’s from a story/character angle that I think this spaceship battle outshines the others.
We have the main character up against the main villain, which we don’t get in any of the other SW space battles. Story-wise, this aspect alone creates greater drama.
And it’s such a huge character moment for Luke when the odds are all against him. He lost R2-D2, Vader is on his tail, the Death Star is seconds away from destroying the Rebel base, and it’s an incredibly small target he has to hit. But then the music turns calm and he hears the spirit of Obi-Wan telling him to use the Force and turn off his targeting computer. And in that dire moment, with everything at stake, Luke has to choose whether to trust the Force or not. No other SW spaceship battle quite captures the storytelling magic of this moment, despite having better effects.
I could go on forever about this movie, praising every detail in every frame.
Is there anything I would change about STAR WARS?
Not a single thing.
There’s never been another movie that introduces so many of my all-time favorite fictional characters. Han, Luke, Leia, Obi-Wan, C3P0, R2D2, Chewbacca, Darth Vader, Tarkin.
The introduction of X-Wings and Tie Fighters!
The introduction of Stormtroopers!
The introduction of the Force and Jedi Knights.
The introduction of my all-time favorite fictional place – the SW galaxy!
#2 Star Wars
#3 Raiders of the Lost Ark
#4 Return of the Jedi
#5 The Last Crusade
#6 The Force Awakens
#7 The Temple of Doom
#8 Revenge of the Sith
#9 Rogue One
#11 The Phantom Menace
#12 The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
#13 The Last Jedi
#14 Attack of the Clones
NEXT: We talk EMPIRE!