The Empire Strikes Back – A Review From 1980

SLN recently had to move its archives out from its parent’s basement, and rediscovered this review of Star Wars sequel The Empire Strikes Back from 1980.  Enjoy.

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The Empire Strikes Crap More Like

This past weekend, I went down to my local movie theatre to sit back and bask in George Lucas’ follow up to his highly successful film of 1977, Star Wars.  This one is ominously called “The Empire Strikes Back”, presumably at the struggling Rebel Alliance for the destruction of their Death Star in the first film.

Well, I have to say that I was extremely disappointed in this film, and I do NOT recommend going to see it.

First of all, with a title like that, you would expect the film to be building to a huge battle at the end of the film.  But sadly no, the Empire does it’s Striking Back in the first hour.  At which point, Han and Leia are off almost making out in an asteroid field and Luke flees to a swamp to be trained by an aged Kermit the Frog doing an impression of Fozzie Bear.

Fans of the novelization will be particularly disappointed in the portrayal of Venerable Jedi Master Yoda who has been switched from his trademark blue colour to a bizarre pale green.

The battle scene at the start of the film seems like a blatant attempt to sell toys to children, and a visit to a local toy store confirmed that both the All Terrain Armored Transport (ATAT) Walker and snow speeders from that battle are readily available.

Eventually, Han & Leia leave Almost Make Out Point Asteroid, and make their way to a flying city, no doubt an ‘homage’ to Laputa, the flying island in Gulliver’sTravels.  There they are captured by Darth Vader, and a mysterious bounty hunter named Boba Fett.  By the way, keep an eye on this Boba Fett character.  If they make a third film, I predict that he will have a major role.  He’ll probably be the key to the whole rebellion succeeding.

Luke then senses that his friends are in danger and leaves Yoda the frog behind to attempt to save them.

Here is where it gets particularly confusing.  Fans of the first film will remember that Darth Vader studied under Obi-Wan “Ben” Kenobi, before betraying and murdering Luke’s father, Anakin Skywalker.  It was all made very clear, and there was no confusion about it. Darth Vader murdered Anakin Skywalker, and then murdered Obi-Wan Kenobi on the Death Star during their final confrontation.

Only now, Lucas has decided to mess that very clear sequene of events up and completely ruins the movie with his ‘big reveal’.  I’m not going to ruin that for you, the movie will do that.

In recap.  This is a terrible movie, and one that I think that fans of the franchise will attempt to forget about completely in the coming years.  The brilliant work done by the holiday special is undone in this film.  The only thing that could possibly make a worse film is if, I don’t know, if there was a conversation about the various textures of sand and the personal preference thereof between two key characters.  I guess that, in that case, that would be a worse Star Wars film.  Probably THE worst.  But come on, how realistic is it that that would ever happen?  Not in this reviewers lifetime.

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