“You have only begun to discover your power. Join me, and I will complete your training. With our combined strength, we can end this destructive conflict and bring order to the galaxy.”
So the stars seemed to have aligned and although I wasn't on planning another collection based on a theme, it seems to have turned out that way! So for the next week and leading up to the new Kenobi series its all thing Star Wars.
In my opinion, the best of the series is certainly the one I’ve rewatched the most. Empire builds on the original Star Wars explores a larger galaxy and introduces a whole gaggle of new aliens.
Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), Han Solo (Harrison Ford), Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) and Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew) face attack by the Imperial forces and its AT-AT walkers on the ice planet Hoth. While Han and Leia escape in the Millennium Falcon, Luke travels to Dagobah in search of Yoda (we will be seeing more of him later in the week). Only with the Jedi master's help will Luke survive when the dark side of the Force beckons him into the ultimate duel with Darth Vader (David Prowse).
Released in 1980, directed by Irvin Kershner is darker in tone and the danger more threatening. In this sequel, the risks and danger feel real and you are not quite sure that all the main characters will escape in one piece. Empire is choc-full of quotes and you can see the influence Lawrence Kasdan had on polishing up the script (he had co-written Raiders Of The Lost Ark) the characters are now more rounded and the relationships developed.
Roger Ebert cited it as such, saying Empire Strikes Back is more “thought-provoking” and noting “it is because of the emotions stirred in ‘Empire’ that the entire series takes on a mythic quality that resonates back to the first and ahead to the third. This is the heart.”
It takes the Good vs Evil narrative and turns it on its head, it makes Vader the clearly evil but one-dimensional antagonist from Star Wars and humanises him with direct association with the series hero Luke Skywalker. All done with four simple words, “I am your…..”
One of the biggest twists in cinema history pops up towards the end and the filmmakers confident on the back of the phenomenon of the first film take a bold choice for a family movie with a rather downbeat ending and the Empire really strikes back.
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featured image: Lucasfilm/Disney