Star Wars Redux


“These aren’t the droids you’re looking for.”
Obi-Wan Kenobi, Star Wars:  A New Hope



Seeing The Last Jedi tomorrow with my bride and kids.  I have been dutifully trooping to see the Star Wars franchise for four decades now, and I sometimes wonder why since the story lines are usually variants of what was portrayed in the initial Star Wars movie.  Inertia I assume, and the fact that the bride and kids always wish to see the latest film.  Having said that, I will never forget the immense impact of the initial Star Wars.  In the days of the anti-hero it was a return to good guys and bad guys.  The swashbuckling aspect seemed like an old Errol Flynn movie brought forward to the seventies and placed in space.  Alec Guinness, who regarded the movie as “fairy tale rubbish”, was superb in his role and added a badly needed element of good acting.   (The film made Guinness very, very wealthy, he having shrewdly negotiated for 2.25% of the gross.  The cash he raked in made him no fonder of the film.  He would toss Star Wars fan mail away unread, worried about the impact of the film on young fans who repeatedly watched it and regarded the more fanatical Star Wars fans as barking mad.) The special effects, which now seem embarrassingly dated, were rightly considered revolutionary at the time.  Sigh.  You can never step into the same river twice, and the freshness of Star Wars is only a memory for me.





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  1. I’ve often said that the original Star Wars was The Beatles of 20th Century cinema. It had a cultural and cinematic impact like no other. And that’s including some big, hyped films over the years. I tell my boys that Star Wars mania wasn’t over at the end of 77. For the next several years, Star Wars was everywhere, even before DVDs or VCRs. Our local theater couldn’t obtain it until the following summer due to its popularity a year later. It was so big it even survived the Star Wars Holiday Special. I’m sure there are reasons why it was as big as it was, but I’ve not seen anything like it.

    Oh, and RE: Dated special effects. All special effects are doomed to be dated. It’s like visual inflation, compare them to their contemporaries, or you’ll always be disappointed. With that in mind, most modern CGI effects are nowhere near the effects in the original King Kong, much less the original Star Wars. And that includes the recent Star Wars films’ SE.

  2. Dave ain’t wrong. 😉 And yes the SW holiday special is covered in SFDebris look at the sequels (it seems the reaction to it may have actually led to ESB being so good).

    That’s partially why I’m a little annoyed by some circles I’m running in saying that we need to replace star wars or it needs to die. (foxfier will probably know some of the folks I’m thinking of, I know we run in similar orbits) Not that it’s great right now, but as the saying goes, “there is no such thing as a new old-friend.” SW was a unique moment in a unique piece of time and nothing will probably ever have quite that same impact again. That makes it worth preserving and making it the best it can be.

  3. The Last Jedi was a fabulous movie. Better than all the rest, yes, even Empire. The chemistry between the characters, their emotional depth, the utter humanity in their vices and virtues, it was heartbreakingly real and beautiful.

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