• ivo-cobra823 April 2016
    10/10
    A classics, phenomenal and arguably the best sci-fi flick masterpiece!
    Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) is a classic phenomenal arguably the best sci-fi film in trilogy away, the one that started all and arguably changed the face of cinema forever. I love this film is actually my number 1 favorite film in the franchise and it is George Lucas masterpiece - the man who make this film happening. He wrote and Directed him self, I love this film to death! I love everything that is in A New Hope. Before I go in to this movie I want to say after watching the new awful horrible movie Episode VII The Force Awakens, I decide to re watch the original Star Wars Trilogy and I have always loved A New Hope and I always will. This was the first film in the trilogy that I have saw as a kid and that I remember. Star Wars are starring Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher.

    The plot is actually more about Rebel Alliance, led by Princess Leia (Fisher), and its attempt to destroy the Galactic Empire's space station, the Death Star. It is a mission returning the plans of Death Star to the Rebel Alliance, while Galactic Empire want's them back and it is lead by Darth Vader (David Prowse). This movie is what it is, a perfect 10, because it takes the vision of one of the most imaginative directors on Earth, and realizes them almost perfectly with all the tools that fit the task -- actors, stunts, puppetry, models, and Special Effects.

    Star Wars is a film that I have watch it now and I will always watch it , because how much I really, really enjoy this film. This fun, pure joy, entertaining and truly a great film is like a classic, I recommend this film to any fan of the Star Wars trilogy, my favorite will always be A New Hope. This was the film that I have saw the first time as a kid and it grow on me. I love introduction when C-3PO and R2-D2 are walking trough the desert on planet Tatooine and are captured by Jawa traders, who sell them to moisture farmers Owen and Beru Lars and their nephew, Luke Skywalker. Here is the first time we met the character Luke Skywalker. This is the scene where C-3PO is walking trough the desert him self and than he saw someone far away and yells for help. I love this scene and it is the scene I remember from childhood.

    Which is your favorite character? My favorite character of all time is Luke Skywalker and I really love him so much. My second favorite character will be Han Solo but Luke Skywalker will be the ultimate hero of the galaxy for me.

    I love this flick, I love the end battle on Death Star, Luke joins the Rebel assault squadron and Luke becomes one of the few surviving pilots. Vader leads a squad of TIE fighters and prepares to attack Luke's X-wing fighter, but Han returns and fires on the Imperials, sending Vader spiraling away. Helped by guidance from Obi-Wan's spirit, Luke uses the Force and successfully destroys the Death Star seconds before it can fire on the Rebel base. I love that scene.

    I love John Williams score for Star wars which is the best score ever! It is an excellent score makes an actions scenes more exciting and more intense. George Lucas directed this movie well and did an excellent job been a writer as the same time been the director, the pacing is excellent the actors does an awesome job. I also love and I have enjoyed the character Darth Vader and I also love this film because it has a happy ending. Harrison Ford , Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher did all a great joy playing their characters.

    Carrie Fisher is really gorgeous in this film and for the 70's film it had great pacing and great imaginary story that dose not gives you only a snippet of the backstory. The fight scene between Darth Vader and Obi-Wan "Ben" Kenobi was excellent and the death scene of Obi-Wan was a honorable death. Alec Guinness did a perfect job as Obi-Wan "Ben" Kenobi he is excellent.

    Overall: I have said everything about this film that I love I forgot to mention I love Han Solo, Princess Leia, Luke Skywalker (I love to death), Chewbacca, C-3PO and R2-D2. This flick get's a perfect 10 because it is the best beloved science fiction film.

    R.I.P. Carrie Fisher (1956 - 2016) she was the perfect Princess Leia and she is very missed.
  • Elswet26 October 2003
    10/10
    One of the most successful movies of all time (and I'm not talking about the Box Office take)
    What made this the hugely successful triumph it was? Was it casting, music, imagination, ingenuity, or luck?

    I remember opening day at the theaters. I was old enough to remember every scene, every character, every nuance of this film; having committed it to memory forever, as if I would never again be able to see this beloved, instantly loved masterpiece.

    I also remember that the HIT factor of this movie was so unexpected that you had to wait literal MONTHS to get the action figures promised on the cereal boxes. The pieces were still in the manufacturing process and we had to settle for coupons promising our toys in a few months. I wound up seeing this in the theaters a grand total of 36 times; much to my mother's dismay. She loved the movie as I did, but felt I was obsessed. Today, thirty years later, sitting here writing this review, I realize how right she was. I'm still obsessed with this movie, and with the subsequent movies which followed. I wait in great anticipation for Episode 3. I'm a fan, and I don't care what other people say about Episodes 1 & 2. I don't even mind the "prequel" factor, as the situation at the time, dictated to Lucas which movies he would do first.

    See, I remember the studios saying to him that he had to choose from the three central climactic books, and trash the rest, or just trash the whole idea. He didn't exactly "sell out," he did what he had to do to get his movie...his vision...out there for us to see and experience. I admired his decision then, and I admire it now. Episodes 1-3 are being filmed now, because Lucas had the clout, the money, and the patience to give us his vision...his complete vision and not just the three center books of a 9-book series. I realize that now, there are dozens of books, but at the time, there were nine. And while most of us were happy with Episodes 4-6 and would not have missed 1-3 and 7-9, I personally am so very glad he has taken it upon himself to give us his full vision. I have enjoyed each and every installment with the same sense of awe and joy as I did this one.

    The casting was the first triumph for this cinematic milestone. Ford is a charismatic and magnetic personality and portrayed Han with a professionalism that you'd expect from more seasoned actors. Sir Alec Guiness is an absolute joy as Obi Wan. His casting was precise and excellent in that part. Carrie Fisher portrayed Leia in a way that, up until then, had never been experienced. Most "princess" types before her were whining, whimpering, little snots who were incapable of anything beyond tripping and twisting their ankle in times of peril, while Fisher portrayed her character as a bold, brazen, yet sophisticated and educated woman who was aware of her surroundings and capable of defending herself and her realm with the utmost authority.

    And Mark Hamil. He was perfectly cast as the whining little boy who wanted more, but was afraid to reach for it. He grows up quite well on film in these three installments, and endears himself to the audience so much the more for it. But a cast member who is almost always left out of these reviews is Peter Mayhew. Chewbacca. His character, as a supporting character to Han's, was exemplary. It's not easy portraying a walking carpet, yet holding the attention, admiration, and love of virtual millions. I am VERY happy about his being cast as Chewy in Episode 3. Couldn't happen to a more deserving...or capable...fellow. Bravo! And James Earl Jones's voice being used as the voice of Darth Vader, was pure genius. His commanding voice haunted the dreams of countless thousands of star-struck children for generations to come. I also have to say that this movie would not have had the charm it does had it not been for Anthony Daniels' C3P0. He is a gift and a joy.

    The musical score by John Williams featured in this masterpiece was one of the contributing factors. But honestly, this movie's success was such a total surprise to everyone, including Lucas, that nothing could prepare the world for the aftermath of having witnessed this bona fide legend, first hand.

    The story itself; replete with sub-plot after sub-plot, rich in dialog and detail, was beyond anyone's greatest expectations. Everyone, including Lucas, expected this movie to fail. It is a timeless classic, which I will not repeat here. There are too many movie reviews giving full details of the plot, and I won't be redundant beyond what I have already said.

    However, that being said, there are a few points I would like to make concerning the symbolism of this endeavor. The Force is a metaphor for the psychic abilities with which we are all born. It was also a metaphor for hope and faith, dedication and commitment to the greater state of being. The Empire is said to have been a metaphor for the Germanic Nazi "storm troopers." While the Rebellion is said to have been symbolic of (what would later become) the NATO forces who defeated them.

    And then there are the effects. The effects were, in 1977, so awesome; so creative; so ahead of their time, as to ensure this movie's vast success for the next forty years. George Lucas enjoys an almost god-like status among sci-fi/fantasy fans worldwide.

    This movie does not rate a rating. Usually, when I say that, it is because the movie is so bad, or disappointing that I don't have the heart to rate it.

    But in this case, it far surpasses any 10/10 rating I could give it.

    The Fiend :.
  • davidsarah12 December 2004
    10/10
    The film that changed the world
    Star wars made epic fantasy real. For a generation of people it has defined what the cinema experience is meant to be. Today it is probable that pc games will offer a deeper and more satisfying entertainment solution, but for pure visual and aural pleasure, mixed with basic emotional manipulation, there has never and will never be a better example of cinema than when star wars appeared over 25 years ago. When you think of star wars, you must remember what else was happening at the time. In America, the war in Vietnam had been lost. In the U.K economic disaster was occurring(a 3 day working week, and the army collecting rubbish). It was almost like the two most technically advanced countries in the world were going backwards. Star wars let everybody escape from that reality and reach for a future that was uncertain but ultimately good.
  • Sfpsycho41522 October 2003
    10/10
    Where It All Began-----10/10
    I can never pick a favorite movie because different movies have different effects. Goodfellas is my favorite drama. Face/Off is my favorite actioner. But when it comes to pure amazement, nothing beats Star Wars. We are introduced to a whole other universe with different creatures, different lifestyles, and different history. We are dropped in the middle of an intergalactic war between an empire and a rebellion that has raged for years and left the universe in ruin. It was the most fascinating thing to see when i was eleven, but to this day i am still a Star Wars nerd.

    The cast of characters includes some of the coolest, funniest, and most tragic in film, and the actors who play them fit seamlessly into this new universe. Alec Guiness is flawless as Obi-Wan Kenobi, a Jedi on the run from the evil Empire. Harrison Ford is awesome as Han Solo, a smuggler and thief who helps the gang rescue the princess. But the my favorite character of all time is Darth Vader. Not only is he the coolest bad guy, but we learn in later films why he is evil and start to feel sympathetic for him. Not to mention that badass booming voice that can make ordering a pizza sound threatening.

    This was not only the beginning of the best movie series ever, but it was the beginning of my love for movies. George Lucas is a genius for being able to come up with a great story and an incredible backdrop for what was supposed to be a flop, but turned into one of the best films ever.

    10/10
  • hmorales3 December 1998
    A kid's fantasy. An Adult's memory
    In respect to the many kids of the seventies. I rated this movie as one of the greatest movies ever made. I was thirteen and enjoyed this fantasy getaway more than I could count. Like many other kids of the seventies you left reality before walking into the theatre and escaped into the adventure once the reels begin rolling. It provided the special effects and excitement a kid was looking for. Even today when I watch this movie on VHS I recall those times. Whenever I get the chance to watch it I feel like that eager thirteen year old over and over again. I hope the new movies will meet the same expectations of kids of this decade and the next.
  • Laz751 February 2000
    10/10
    No words to say
    There's not much to say about this movie this is *THE* movie that changed it all.

    It's my favourite movie, and not only among the quadrilogy, among all movies; it has everything that can be great in a movie, great characters, great story, great sights, great special effects (they don't show 23 years) and a mythological background that made us dream for decades now, and that'll keep us dreaming for a long, long time. Maybe the characters I liked most in this one are Old Obi-Wan Kenobi, wonderfully portrayed by Alec Guinness, and Han Solo, Harrison Ford's first important role, they're both great.

    Not to mention John Williams' wonderful score, without of it, the movie wouldn't have been this great it's a perfect mix, that's what it is!
  • Bogmeister25 December 2005
    9/10
    The Best of Sci-Fi Times,the Worst of sf Times
    Though now known as "Episode IV-A New Hope," for many of us, namely those of us who first saw this exhilarating entertainment in theaters back in '77, this will always be the first "Star Wars." We will always think of it as just "Star Wars" - plain & simple, no pretensions, no aspirations to deep film-making or high art. This is where we first met them all: Luke, Han Solo, Princess Leia, Obi-Wan Kenobi (old 'Ben'), Chewbacca, the 2 robots C3PO & R2D2 and, of course, Darth Vader. They were instant pop culture icons; you got the sense you'd seen them before somewhere, but were sure this wasn't possible. But they'd been there before in our minds. We'd read about them constantly in science fiction novels and short stories - tales of outer space civilizations, of spaceships zooming through asteroid belts, of exotic-looking aliens hanging around space ports. We'd dream about them at night and try to imagine ourselves in their midst; up until then, we could only imagine such things - there were no projected images to realize such dreams. "Forbidden Planet" from 1956 came close, and then there were the "Star Trek" and "Lost in Space" TV series, both hampered by dime store budgets and cheesy sets. We ate 'em up since there was nothing else. Then Lucas made it real.

    I remember when I first got wind of the upcoming movie, to open in May of 1977, I think. I saw the first publicized poster and bought the novel adaptation. On the poster, a young man stood with some light sword raised, a princess at his feet, numerous spaceships flying all over the place. I was in my mid-teens and felt the first pulse of building excitement as I realized all those fantastic tales I'd been reading the past few years were going to come alive on the big screen for me. It didn't disappoint. Luke Skywalker, who stood in for all the boys pretending to be on a galactic adventure, gets swept away from his mundane desert home smack dab into the middle of an honest-to-gosh galaxy-wide civil war! The strength of the narrative is / was amazing. There are no slow spots and you can't wait for the next scene during the entire experience; and, experience is the better description for it, rather than just 'movie.' You can't wait, for example, for the moment when Luke actually meets the princess; what will happen then? It's a textbook case of an exciting narrative and what I believe makes this superior to all the sequels (knowing that many feel "The Empire Strikes Back" is superior - I must disagree).

    The one character you really can't wait to see again is the ominous Vader, naturally. The instant he steps into view during the first few minutes of the story, you just know this is the ultimate villain. This is the baddest of the bad, the coolest of the cool, the supreme uber-evildoer of the entire galaxy. You just know it by his stance, by his attitude, and by the electric chill that runs through your frail form as he steps down the corridor, moving into the annals of film history with one fell swoop. You can't wait to see what he does next, what nefarious action will send someone or some planet to its doom. Sure, he seems under the control of Tarkin (Cushing) here and later, the Emperor, but you just know he's simply biding his time until he takes over the whole damn universe. There is no precedent for Vader, and nothing close to him after. He's at his best here where there's still much mystery attached to his dark frightful form, a minion of Satan and Nazi stormtroopers all rolled into one.

    This was also the movie-experience which catapulted Harrison Ford (Solo) into superstardom. He seems almost childish here, not really straining to create a character, and it's this flip charm that makes it work, against all odds. He really does appear to have stepped out of the pages of some juvenile space opera, laser guns blazing, all snide remarks and foolhardy bravado. But he also becomes the older brother figure to Luke, who cannot carry the story by himself. Hamill, whose movie career began & ended with Luke, epitomizes the center of destiny for a galaxy. Both humble and arrogant, he's perfect in the role. Fisher's main surprise is that she's not all sugar and sweet as one would expect of a princess. These three characters evolved in the next two films, but they were always at their best here, icons given life for a short period - but also forever in film. The same could be said for Alec Guinness as Kenobi, a first class act all the way. You almost believe this elderly warrior could topple an empire, given enough time. Unless he runs into Vader...
  • budmassey25 April 2005
    10/10
    The greatest cinematic epic of all time begins here.
    Here begins the greatest cinematic epic of all time, and arguably one of the greatest stories ever told. Originally conceived as a serialized popcorn movie in the manner of the old action movies that Lucas grew up with, Star Wars surpassed even George's keen and bombastic imagination to become a central part of movie history.

    There are countless tales of the making of this movie; how Lucas never believed he would get the chance to complete the series, how it spawned an industry and made the name of nearly everyone who touched it a household word. But what that does not reveal, nor do the much diminished prequels, is the sheer joy and excitement these movies generated.

    It was a once in a lifetime experience. You could feel it from opening day, earlier if you paid attention to such things. We had never seen anything like it, and we are not likely to again.

    This episode finds young Luke Skywalker yearning to leave the agrarian life he has with his aunt and uncle, and chase after adventure as his friends before him have already done. And what adventure there is. The galaxy is in the grip of a massive rebellion against a tyrannical and oppressive empire, but on Luke's home planet, it's something you only dare speak of in a whisper.

    Along come two robots, "Droids" for short, who inadvertently involve Luke in a stellar attempt to contact an old wizard named Ben Kenobi, who lives in the caves near Luke's home.

    The rest is history, and there isn't a person alive in the civilized world who doesn't have at least some awareness of the epic story that unfolds. Luke's rise from adolescent obscurity on Tatooine to a leading role in the greatest struggle of all time is told with humor, action, adventure, and always a sense of story that is unmatched on the screen or on the page.

    With the completion of the prequel trilogy, these films are enjoying a renewed popularity among a generation that never saw the films on the big screen, and the theatric revivals are almost guaranteed. Go. Get some popcorn. And may the Force be with you.
  • mweller28 October 1998
    9/10
    My favourite movie
    Star Wars is a movie that has had great social impact, a fact that has often gone unnoticed. A harbinger of a changing mood within the United States, Star Wars was one of the few movies rated General that was released in 1977. Where movies had for a decade been depicting ever more dark topics (Taxi Driver, The Exorcist) Star Wars was a lighthearted adventure. While some may decry the move back to swashbuckling from social comment, I for one celebrate the fact that Star Wars made it possible for families to go to movies together once again.
  • TheUnknown837-114 April 2007
    7/10
    a film that opened new doors
    It is a shame that not any other of George Lucas's films were as fun and inspiring as his unforgettable epic "Star Wars: A New Hope". It was a film that has since been spoofed and ripped-off in many forms of media. It has five sequels, and has many branch-off television series. And it is undeniably one of the most financially successful and definitely one of the better science-fiction films of this or any other age.

    "Star Wars" has one of the most brilliantly constructed and detailed alternative reality settings ever. Literally everything in it makes the "galaxy" seem like a real place. Not only is there civilizations of humans, but civilizations of other creatures, and there are livestock and other creatures like in our world. Names such as droids, banthas, and wookiees work out. But I do feel that the "sandpeople" could've had a more compelling name. The concept of blasters and lightsabers were pure genius and the effects used on these weapons were state-of-the-art for their time. The props and CGI used for the other creatures, such as Chewbacca, may not be acceptable if "Star Wars" came out today, but were great for back then. Costume design was magnificent, especially the great details put into the villainous character of Darth Vader, who is perhaps the most memorable movie villain ever. Although he wouldn't really make his terror so profound and complete until the first sequel "The Empire Strikes Back." The concept of the Death Star is also a fine one.

    But while "Star Wars" most certainly looks great in terms of detail and special effects, and even moreso on the entertainment level, there are some details that I have a really hard time accepting. Mostly, it's concerned with the screenplay. George Lucas is truly a great screenwriter when it comes to developing story, but when it comes to dialogue, he's not the best there is. Some of the dialogue in the film, mostly the lines spoken by Princess Leia, make me wince. For example her quote "I should have known it was you holding Vader's lease. I smelled your foul stench when I was brought onboard." What sensible person would even think of saying a line that dumb? I also personally felt that Luke Skywalker asked WAY too many questions and too many times. In the Tatooine part of the movie, he asks "Do you know what he's talking about?" numerous times, more than necessary. And all of the lines featuring the word "sandpeople" just seemed weakening to the script. The "sandpeople" were suppose to sound frightening, but they just sound pathetic.

    Basically, the one and only thing that I have wrong with "Star Wars" is its dialogue sequences. And that is because George Lucas's weakness at writing is dialogue, which he freely admits to. But that does not make "Star Wars" a bad movie. Perhaps I was disappointed with it, but it's still a great movie to watch.
  • Nazi_Fighter_David30 November 2008
    9/10
    An adventure story, replacing six-shooters or swords with laser guns and horses with rockers…
    The film turn on the endlessly renewed battle between good and evil, the former represented by the Jedi knights and the mystical Force which they are in touch with, and the latter by the Galactic Empire with its Nazi-like storm-troopers…

    Luke Skywalker's simple farming life on a remote planet is dramatically changed when he intercepts a distress call from rebel leader Princess Leia Organa… The message leads him to Ben Obi-Wan Kenobi and with the two droids C3PO and R2D2, and later Chewbacca and Han Solo, their journey to release the princess from the evil Empire begins…

    Now a quarter of a century old, Lucas' project has benefited from improvements in special effects technology, but his vision has remained the same: a naive, even childlike belief in absolute good and evil, a preference for action over character and spectacle over everything…
  • gregmovies1 September 2008
    7/10
    A fun film
    Filled with great characters and a fun story, Star Wars is well deserving of its reputation as a classic. John Williams score alone makes this a film worth seeing. The characters are unforgettable and the special effects impressive for its time, but very outdated now. The different alien species are one of the best things about the film. The Cantina scene showing an array of Lucas' creations is particularly fun.

    I give this film a 7/10. Looking at it subjectively, it isn't a really good film. A lot of clichés, bad dialogue, cracker jack philosophy, and unimpressive acting. Yet, for some reason, I find it hard to say anything bad about this movie. My favorite film as a child, and one I still enjoy, mostly for nostalgia.
  • tom-darwin22 April 2006
    8/10
    Excellent Excess
    The very first note of John Williams's horn-blaring score as the film's title in thousand-foot-high block letters flashes on screen is the very moment when American film-making turned inexorably to big-budget, grand-themed audiovisual extravaganza strung together with simple stories, snappy catchphrases & cutesy jokes. But if George Lucas decided to follow Henry Ford rather than John Ford, he built a Shelby Cobra & left Pinto-making to his many, many imitators. Ironically, he himself remade one of the finest works of film master Akira Kurosawa, the Western-themed "Hidden Fortress," with one scene (the fight in the bar) lifted from "Yojimbo." As a result, "Star Wars" has a bit of the jittery discomfort of characters trying to fit into a story that wasn't quite made for them, like people with past life experiences that intrude into the present. Kurosawa's hero is split not into two but THREE heroes in "Star Wars" (four if you include the princess, who has a more prominent role in "Star Wars"). Hamill's Luke is often overshadowed by Kenobi (Guinness, whose skill had aged better than any fine wine) and Solo (Ford, in the role that deservedly made him a star), though he often holds his own as the clueless but determined farmboy-turned-hero. In less than five minutes, "Star Wars" sets the standard of outer-space audiovisual special effects that the industry was bound to follow from then on, forever sweeping away the earnest, toylike realism that Gerry Anderson was then giving us in "Space: 1999" in favor of exhausting but beautiful orgies of fast, violent, sweeping movement culminating in explosions of bright color & blaring sound. No wonder there's never any sex. "Star Wars" is science fiction only because it's set in outer space, by which standard "Dirty Harry" is a detective story & "Last Tango in Paris" a romance. Little attempt is made to explain the technological wonders depicted (we never find out why light sabers never have to be recharged or get even a cursory explanation of the Death Star). What little science there is can't be counted on, as when Solo extols the drag-racing abilities of the Millennium Falcon in parsecs, which are units of distance, not elapsed time. But Lucas never means to educate, only to entertain. Solo is a smuggler, not a science officer, while the others are not doctors or engineers but warriors, royalty or villains. Lucas's hammerhanded excess works because it never lets up & never goes for the cheap & easy. Though the heroes are unconvincing, "Star Wars" creates an array of badguys in the Galactic Empire that remain unsurpassed in cinema, headed by Darth Vader, who makes the Wicked Witch of the West look like Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle. In another irony, the most memorable scene in "Star Wars" is the motionless roundtable conference chaired by Tarkin (Cushing, in the greatest role of his long career) which yielded phrases long & gleefully repeated by a delighted America ("This station is now the ultimate power in the universe!" "This bickering is pointless!" "I find your lack of faith disturbing"). Perhaps, with the space program petering out & the hard realities of nuclear energy coming home to us, our fascination with scientific exploration was wearing thin. In the 1960s it enabled the cast of "Star Trek" to bring the writings of sci-fi geniuses to life with cardboard & aluminum foil. Never again. What better honor, or infamy if you like, could there be to "Star Wars" than that the "Star Trek" movies of the 1980s followed the simple themes, cuteness & spectacular effects of "Star Wars," turning their backs on their own heritage of awed exploration? Perhaps that first detractors and then supporters of Ronald Reagan's Strategic Defense Initiative nicknamed it "Star Wars" so convincingly that the original name was quickly forgotten. The film might be a bit dated with its holistic, New Age mysticism (feel the force FLOWING through you!) which likely owes more to Jack Kerouac than Musashi Miyamoto & which became more difficult to depict with a straight face the farther the sequels & prequels went. Nevertheless, it was a worthy successor to the Code of the West, especially in contrasting Darth Vader with Luke & Kenobi. "Star Wars" can't really be judged by the standards of other films, partly because it reset the standards & partly because it became, most unusually, the fourth in a series of six! But there's no doubt that it's a heroic sensory extravaganza that will leave the viewer at once exhausted & exhilarated--and will do it over & over again, without offending, condescending or making one think too hard. If you just want to escape to a galaxy far, far away, jettison all skepticism, lower your shields & prepare to make the jump to hyperspace.
  • sharky_5525 November 2015
    9/10
    A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…
    Warning: Spoilers
    Star Wars begins not with opening credits, as the guild would enforce in those days, but with a scrawl that has become legendary. Back then, it was a few lines of yellow text scrolling across a lengthy screen that would be photographed on the backdrop of an infinite star- field, losing itself in a vanishing point far, far away. A modest effect, yet those words instantly paint a picture so incredibly vivid that it would kick-start a hugely popular and successful franchise. And it is nothing without its iconic fanfare by John Williams. Take a listen to Holst's Mars movement and see how Williams transforms all the heroism, all the grandiosity and glory into one of the most recognisable themes of all time. And then we pan down and observe a little ship being pursued by a gigantic one, something so immediately identifiable, and we already are entranced.

    It is a film that is at once lifted and tainted by Lucas' love for it. We see an entire world envisioned, and the production design so effortlessly ushering us into this aged future. When we crash land in the desert planet Tatooine, we recognise the arid setting, before just a hint of alien and droid life instantly transports our minds to millions of stars and galaxies away. Something so simple as adding an extra sun bathes the horizon for miles and miles with an air of mystery and other worldliness. When we encounter civilisation of sorts, Lucas gently pushes in an intergalactic band, a sleazy bar, aliens and creatures of all sizes - the usual alcoholic suspects. And when we need to take to the skies, the matte painted backgrounds do much of the work; hordes of stormtrooper minions, a grimy and worn Millennium Falcon, the great big grey walls of the Death Star buzzing with machinery and lights. Lucas would later insert his own little (or not so) CGI creations not because of any real need, but because the technology was now available, but this only highlights how perfect the world-building was in the first place. The new digitally rendered beasts look impressive yet noticeable shiny and over- expressive in the worn and dusty Mos Eisley, and sometimes the camera will linger unnecessarily as if to say "Look at what we can do now!" But we had been long immersed before that.

    The story is of course a familiar one. It has roots in Joseph Campbell's Hero and Flash Gordon and even Kurosawa's Hidden Fortress; a story with mythic origins. And there are tell-tale signs of Lucas own American Graffiti a few years back. But Star Wars has evolved beyond those and becomes a treasure in its own right. The original created a world beyond the imaginable scope of that time, a sci-fi universe so living and breathing that people flocked again and again to experience it in theatres. Little details and mistakes become cultish and infamous themselves; the stormtrooper who bumps his head on the roof, Solo's comment about his ship's speed, and when a character's characterisation is marred, fans respond; Han shot first.

    Looking back on it years gone by, it is inescapable to notice the ageing special effects. That is simply a fact of changing technologies. Yet I still marvel on how impeccably and competently Star Wars is crafted. The sound design is alien and fantastically so; simple acts of pulling on steel cable and microphone interference create these iconic noises, and of course the bright and noisy hum of the lightsabers. Years on we had incoherent and frenetically choreographed battles that seem more like acrobatic dance recitals, and the blades of light flashed at a hundred miles an hour, but here we have Guinness characterised in these simple but powerful strokes, the intent on his face, the recognition of an old pupil, the concentration of a chess match as they probe for a weakness. The space-fight scenes are edited like a dogfight from WW2 with precision by Marcia Lucas (a remarkable presence you don't notice until her absence), and the simply act of placing these fighter pilots on the backdrop of a whizzing and laser filled backdrop is thrilling. As the motion control photography soars through the space and trenches of the death star, these miniatures and models looks immense and engaging.

    A gigantic bear-like creature and a small white droid speak not a word, but become fan favourites anyway. There is Darth Vader, who becomes even more menacing when comparing the original voice before the iconic wheezing of James Earl Jones was brought in. There is the plucky young hero, who's fate is only hinted at here, and it takes another two films for the story to become more mature, and his circle to complete. The roguish Han Solo is likewise expanded further in the sequels, as is his relationship with the Princess Leia as they continue to bicker. But is is here in this special film that it all began. The magic of Star Wars is that it takes place in a galaxy so far, far away, but it has become so close over the years, and so familiar.
  • bob the moo30 June 2002
    Classic bit of fun sci-fi – a space western!
    The Republic has fallen and the Empire rules the galaxy as a dictatorship, seeking to destroy dissenting voices. The Empire's ultimate weapon, the Death Star, is fully on line and capable of destroying whole systems. The Jedi have been destroyed, save a few living in hiding, unable to compete with the force of the Empire. However Princess Leia has the plans showing a weakness within the Death Star. Before she is captured by Darth Vader she gives them to droids C3PO and R2D2 and they escape. When they land on a nearby planet they find Luke Skywalker and set out to find the owner of the droids Obi Wan Kenobi, or Old Ben Kenobi. Obi Wan begins to train Luke in the way of the force as they try to get the information to the Rebellion before the Death Star can be used at full power.

    It's not a brilliant piece of filmmaking – lets be honest, Lucas isn't the Shakespeare of our generation. However what it is, is a good story of good v's evil, a western of goodies v baddies set in space. The story is simple but contains clear characters. The thing that sets it apart is the fun – the sense of wonder for kids but also the enjoyment it brings to adult. The story is good for a sci-fi with a lot of history and back-story clearly set out up front. The action scenes are mostly great – not dry effects but with a real sense of action and excitement too.

    This may be the 4th part but it's also our first chapter, it is light and enjoyable but hints that this is only part of an ongoing battle. The way it relates to kids and adults is obvious as it broke records and everyone of a certain age knows about Star Wars! The effects still look good today – in many ways the model work looks better than all digital effects simply because they are `real' and don't just exist within a computer. Sound effects, comedy, music – it's all pitch perfect and sets up the rest of the series really well.

    Hamil is ok as Skywalker (`Blonde hair, blue eyes' – Chasing Amy!). He is suitable for a kids film and he does well with his role. However like part 1 has Anakin at his least interesting, part 4 has Luke yet to develop into darker areas. Ford is perfect as Han Solo – he adds character and flair to some dry performances. Alec Guinness adds maturity to the whole film and is so good is Obi Wan that even Ewan McGregor just does an impression rather than recreate the role. Darth Vader is just the right side of silly camp villain, Jones' voice is a perfect fit and he has real menace and power. Bits players such as Chewie, C3PO, R2D2 etc all add comedy in spades.

    Overall this film is even better now that we know how it all fits together in Star Wars `history'. But even without all the hype this is a really fun sci-fi that is enjoyable, simple and really good fun to watch if you're in the mood. Having a deeper perspective on it just makes it all the better.
  • SmileysWorld13 March 2005
    9/10
    Though not as fresh and eye opening today,it's still a great film.
    This film came along at just the right time for me.Upon it's initial release in 1977,I was 12 years old,which is the perfect age to see something this eye opening and different.I remember sitting and watching with just as much awe and amazement as perhaps 12 year olds from past generations seeing their first cowboy movie.I remember the thrills as though I saw it fresh yesterday.Upon seeing it again recently for the first time in many years,now well into my adulthood,I find,unfortunately,that the thrill that came with my first viewing did not come with me across the years.Despite this fact,I still saw a great film,one worthy of any home library.It's suspenseful,thrilling,and contains a great story line and interesting characters that we care about.It was great looking back on Harrison Ford when his hair wasn't quite so gray,Mark Hamill,whom we all thought would go on to be a great film star,though he has done little beyond this trilogy,Carrie Fisher, and,at least in voice,James Earl Jones(Darth Vader).Though the initial childhood thrill is gone,this is still a great film.
  • 6/10
    A great movie - for its time
    Warning: Spoilers
    "Star Wars" is a 2-hour science fiction movie from almost 30 years ago written and directed by George Lucas. There really needs nothing to be said about how good this is for a 1970s movie, especially in terms of technical aspects. The Academy certainly got it right by giving them all these Oscars for it. However, it lacks in certain other areas unfortunately. First of all, the acting isn't too great. That is not really a problem of the characters though, but rather of the way they were written, which simply offered no room for outstanding performances. And Peter Cushing's character was downright forgettable despite being the main antagonist. Instead people remember Darth Vader obviously. Why? Because this film is all about the way the characters look and not what they do or say. A bit style over substance. Apart from that, I am quite surprised Alec Guinness scored an Academy Award nomination for his turn here.

    The script is not the greatest achievement in general. It's the usual black-and-white characterization with good vs evil and the characters have no real shades, no facets. This was made up again by the strong work in other departments as it's not too memorable what they say and do, but what they look like, especially the non-human characters who are all somewhat considered legendary today. I am not saying the characters are written badly. Not at all. But it's just other contributions that made them what they are today. Not the script. And while I enjoyed most of the film, I cannot see it as an epic or a cult classic as so many people do to this date. "Star Wars" is bound to rise again with the new film coming out soon and featuring the original cast again. It should be interesting what they make out of it. Until then, feel free to watch the old films like this one, but not too many. The very first Star Wars film here is not a great achievement in terms of story, only in terms of all visual and audible aspects.
  • MovieGuy25 May 2005
    10/10
    The opening installment of the greatest trilogy in cinematic history...
    Warning: Spoilers
    Truly a landmark film. When it came out, there had never been anything like it before, and it truly caused quite a stir. I would contend that it is not as good as its sequel, Empire Strikes Back; but it is still a great movie. There is humor, action, and some heartfelt moments. It is also our introduction to some great characters that people will never forget - Chewbacca, Han Solo, Princess Leia, Luke Skywalker, Obi Wan Kenobi...and of course everyone's favorite villain, Darth Vader. Alec Guinness really is outstanding in this movie. His role as Luke's first mentor is understated and believable...his somewhat tired attitude in retrospect seems very understandable after watching the prequels - after all he's been through, it is very believable when he tells Luke, "I'm getting to old for this sort of thing." The visual effects are not only groundbreaking, but they still hold up very well even in this CGI-effects laden era. I would contend that ILM's use of modeling and lighting in the old films actually lends a more believable look to the action scenes than the prequels' use of video-game style battles and sensory overload. There is great chemistry between the actor's - and while Luke is a bit annoying, the back and forth of Han and Chewbacca, and C-3PO and R2-D2, as well as Leia's chemistry with Han and Luke, make this movie extremely entertaining on an emotional level - it also makes you care about the characters. Let us compare the lightsaber duel of this movie with that from Phantom Menace. Although the acrobatics and sheer fury of the duel just are not there in A New Hope, we actually feel something when Obi-Wan allows Vader to strike him down. Conversely, when Qui-Gon Jinn is slain, there is not the same (if any) feeling after it is done. Well, I'm rambling now. But this movie has it all. Space battles, lightsaber duels (a la Samurai flicks), chase sequences, thinly veiled references to the Western genre in the Canteen on Tatooine. A Truly great adventure that, as it ended, was really just beginning.
  • TheLittleSongbird22 November 2009
    10/10
    A milestone in film-making- a superlative sci-fi movie
    I couldn't have asked for anything more. Star Wars: A New Hope had it all. If I had to sum it up in one word, superlative would be my answer. I saw the film for the first time three months ago and loved it, and since then I have watched all the Star Wars movies. I was disappointed with the prequels (Attack of the Clones was my least favourite), but this, Return of the Jedi and Empire Strikes Back were perfection.

    I have to say that the film looks absolutely amazing even after thirty plus years, with highly imaginative sets and dazzling special effects. And the action sequences were superbly choreographed and brisk, the Death Star climax was a knockout. The music by John Williams is absolutely outstanding, by far one of his more exciting and rousing scores. The story is fast-paced, intelligent and has an essence of sophistication, and the screenplay is sharp and decisive.

    And the performances were flawless. In the prequels I had problems relating to some of the performers, namely Hayden Christensen as Anakin. Here, all the actors played their parts with superlative skill. Alec Guiness, one fine actor and will be sorely missed was a standout, likewise with Peter Cushing and Harrison Ford(hilarious here). Carrie Fisher was a fine Princess Leia, spunky, beautiful and sexy, and Mark Hamill was a completely likable Luke. And the villain Darth Vader, without doubt one of the best and in-depth villains in cinematic history, and James Earl Jones's deep booming voice was perfect for the character.

    All in all, a definite sci-fi classic, that blew me away. 10/10 Bethany Cox
  • Steven Smith29 May 2005
    10/10
    The Movie that changed the way we make and look at movies
    Warning: Spoilers
    This has been by far the greatest movie of all time. The special effects are very fantastic especially when the movie was made before I was even born, even Return of the Jedi was made 7 years before I was born, or should I say it was completed 7 years before I was born. It's like George Lucas who's the Director for all the Star Wars movies including Episode III- Revenge of the Sith, it's like he went back in time a long time ago and he traveled to a galaxy far, far away. I must say George Lucas, I am very impressed. This probably did all happen a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. I just can't believe it, I mean how did he do it, this film is just ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE. George Lucas can make any kind of movie he wants. He can even make a movie about what happens far before Star Wars Episode I- The Phantom Menace and he can even make a movie about what happens far after Star Wars Episode VI- Return of the Jedi. So George Lucas I have been a huge fan of Star Wars since I saw Episode IV when I was 5 and I'll be honest, I didn't really understand the storyline because I was only 5. But I was just amazed on the Special Effects, it was incredible for it's time, 1977. And when I turned 7 my mother bought the Star Wars Trilogy Special Edition and it was even better with all new Advanced Digital Technology and I started to understand the storyline a lot better. And when I turned 14 I bought the Star Wars Trilogy on DVD and it got much better with one of the best pictures I have ever seen in a movie. But the Number 1 thing I hated about the DVD was that in Return of the Jedi at the very end of the movie you see the ghosts of Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda and Anakin Skywalker. I hated the fact that in the DVD you replaced Anakin Skywalker's ghost with the Anakin Skywalker from Episode II and Episode III. You shouldn't have done that George. It's great you re-modified the Trilogy and all with new technology but don't destroy the plot, because not even Luke Skywalker is going to have no idea who that person is, and you didn't make Obi-Wan Kenobi look like Ewan McGregor so I don't see why you did that. George try to re-modify Return of the Jedi that way it was before, the face that Luke Skywalker saw him as when he took off that black mask and helmet that Anakin Skywalker needs to live. Alright. That's all I have to say.
  • mentalcritic31 March 2003
    The original version was brilliant...
    I was actually born about a year after this film first premiered, but being a member of a family that was the first on the block to get such things as the VCR and the proper Hi-Fi system allowed me to catch this film in a number of different formats in the years ranging from 1982 to 1997. I think it is safe to say that without this film, I would have had no idea how truly evil a thing Pan And Scan is, or why multi-channel audio is such a damned important thing to have in the home theatre environment.

    Of course, I also knew that the film wasn't perfect. I could see a number of small problems where Lucas' budget just didn't quite go far enough, or where there just wasn't enough time to accomplish what was wanted. So when the announcement was made that in 1997, each film would be presented with improved special effects and footage that could not be integrated in the original cut for reasons of budget or practicality, I was excited.

    For the most part, I was overjoyed to see the new footage or effects. Mos Eisley now looks like a real city or port of commerce, without the viewer's sense of disbelief at the seemingly deserted streets needing to be suspended. The flight of the X-Wings towards the Death Star in its original form was very good, a marvel of its time, but when George finally got to show it the way he wanted to, it was almost the equivalent of watching the helicopters of Apocalypse Now decimating the village to the tune of Ride Of The Valkyries. The wonderfully composed tracking shots especially made the battle look almost as if it really happened and Lucas was just there to take pictures. And Jabba? Well, he doesn't look all that real, granted, but it was just nice to have that one piece of footage in order to make the appearance of Boba Fett in Episode V and the entire prologue of Episode VI make a bit more sense, especially to dullards.

    Unfortunately, there are a number of times when Lucas just goes too far in his quest to improve his work. Sometimes you can only do so much to anything before it starts to look overdone. Of course, I am talking about the scene between Han and Greedo in the cantina. In the original version, we are led to believe Han is a scoundrel who only cares about himself, giving us one of the best character arcs in the whole trilogy. It is also a great tribute to Sergio Leone, a nice reference to when Tuco shoots a potential assassin from his bathtub and tells the corpse "When you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk!". Modifying this scene so it looks like Greedo shot first is an insult on a few levels. It insults Greedo as a character, making him look like one of the most incompetent bounty hunters in the galaxy. It insults the audience, who even at the age of six should no that you'd have to be blind, drunk, brain-damaged, or all three, to miss from that distance. Lastly, it insults the character of Han Solo by destroying a vital piece of said character arc. Watching Han go from scum to a leader of men, a space-age version of King Aragorn even, was one of the best things about the original Star Wars trilogy.

    The story itself is the stuff of classics in that it shows the most unlikely of heroes doing things that everyone else claims to be impossible. What Lucas got right in terms of pacing and plot here is exactly where he went wrong in the prequels, in that he makes the jump from location to location seem important to the plot and totally natural, rather than forced and choppy. The story and sense of adventure makes one forget that there are really only three major locations other than the inside of a space ship.

    Overall, the original Star Wars rates an eight out of ten. If Lucas had applied some common sense in conjunction with his rampant desire for revisionism, I would give it a ten, but as one critic who is famous for his negativity once said about Episode II, when was the last time anyone told George Lucas no? Still, this is a classic that should be shown to future generations as an example of how an imagination and enough literacy to realise it will open doors for you when nothing else will.
  • Tomius J. Barnard26 May 2005
    10/10
    A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away.... was the greatest movie of all time.
    Star Wars is the God of all movies. It is the greatest film to have ever been made, bar none. Nothing can be compared to it, nor should it be. It is definitive to our world, our society. It changed the way movies were made: for the better.

    In the 1970s, there was little unknown director named George Lucas. Little did he know (dispite a nightmarish shoot), that his galactic space opera would literally change the way people lived, worked, played and thought. The secret behind his success? His imagination.

    The script, the characters, the events, the locations, the humour, the opening, the ending... all perfect.

    Of course, it's not the most well-shot movie of all time, but there's no denying that nobody actually cares. Star Wars has become a cult and a religion, and earned it's place in my heart as the greatest film to have ever been made...

    ...Millions will agree.

    Whatever I say cannot reach the real truth behind Star Wars: just watch it and you'll know exactly what I mean.

    The force will be with us, always.

    Overall: A definitive masterpiece. Will never be forgotten, and will remain in the hearts of young and old for generations. Perfect. (10/10)
  • Stefan Ellison5 July 2007
    10/10
    The ultimate space adventure!
    I don't think there's any denying that Star Wars changed cinema history and deservedly so. At the time of its release, science-fiction was considered a dead genre with the only major films from Hollywood's recent cannon being the work from Stanley Kubrick and cheesy, yet still fun flicks like Logan's Run. Yet, no other futuristic movie wowed more than George Lucas's space opera. From that infamous opening scroll, featuring that amazing heart-pumping score, to the end credits, people were gripped and hoping their heroes that had grown to know those two previous hours could come out alive. While, George Lucas did give his Jedi knights more adventures, I don't think any of those sequels and certainly not the prequels have managed to come close to the original Star Wars that practically defined the baby boom generation. Watching the film again recently, I am still impressed by the awesome power of the movie and the fact that even after thirty years after its release, it gets me more excited than the latest Hollywood blockbuster. Sorry, Michael Bay, but you're no George Lucas, that's for certain.

    After two droids crash-land on the desert planet of Tatooine, they are immediately captured and sold to a young farm boy called Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), who desperately wants to leave the rock he lives on with his aunt and uncle. While fixing one of the droids, he finds a message from Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher), requesting the help of Obi-Wan Kenobi (Alec Guiness). Luke finds Kenobi, a hermit living in the mountains, who tells Luke of his family history. His father was a Jedi knight, killed by the evil Darth Vader and now Kenobi decides it is time to teach him the way of the Force. After Luke finds his family's home destroyed by stormtroopers looking for the two droids, they decide to find their way to another planet. They enlist the help of space pirate Han Solo (Harrison Ford), who decides to give them a lift. On the way, they find the Death Star, a giant space station run by Darth Vader, with the ability to destroy any planet of the solar system. Now, they must enter the Death Star, find and rescue the Princess and destroy the station before it produces anymore harm.

    George Lucas has been criticised for his so-called lack of direction and screen writing abilities, but I don't think most people can deny that Star Wars packs a mean punch in terms of solid entertainment. While Star Wars is playing, all eyes are on the screen savouring every delicious moment, whether it be a fantastic lightsaber duel or a quiet scene between Luke and Obi-Wan. The visual effects (including those in the special editions) are seriously some of the best in motion picture history as they manage to make the viewer believe they're in space, surrounded by various creatures and flying ships. Lucas has gotten a lot of negative criticism for the fact that he believes that the updated version of Star Wars is the ultimate way to see the film, but I don't mind. The special effects are better and they certainly do add to the experience. Greedo shooting first? It's such a quick, minor scene that goes by at such a fast rate, that I don't really mind. I understand where the die-hard fans are coming from, but for the casual viewer, it's practically nothing. Adding to the impressive technical delight of Star Wars as well is John Williams's magnificent score, the best in any Hollywood film. I seriously don't think the film would be as highly regarded as it is, if it wasn't for the fantastic music. I seriously would probably enjoy the film even less without it.

    Yet, I think the lasting appeal of Star Wars has to be the characters. Every child growing up wants to be like Luke Skywalker, the young Jedi who just wants to save the universe from possible destruction. Meanwhile, the older folks in the audience have the wise Obi-Wan Kenobi to relate and as Yoda shows in the other five films, that old age does not remove one of their abilities. Han Solo represents the coolness of Star Wars and Harrison Ford plays him with enough spunk and gusto to warrant what might be a minor character as a personal favourite of mine. And then, there's Darth Vader, the most famous character and the most chilling villain of the 20th century. James Earl Jones will always be connected with with this constantly breathing menace with a past of many hidden secrets. Even the stormtroopers tremble in his wake, for fear that he will force-choke them to death. With thrilling action, impressive visuals, lovable and both frightening characters and a world full of fascination and adventure, it's hard to go wrong with Star Wars, the epic journey of our hearts and inner wants.
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