International Writers Magazine: Review
But why? What is it
about Star Wars and the Star Wars universe that has some many people wanting
to be involved? The fan fictions written for Star Wars must take a life
time to read. The scripts, movies and pastiches made lovingly in the name
of never letting this experience die are innumerable. Something about
this film, and the others, has touched something very deep, and very powerful
in a great number of men, women and children around the world.
Wars: A New Hope
Dir. George Lucas
1977 was a good
year to be a geek. If there were a moment in time I would travel
back to, this would be it. I'm sure watching Martin Luther King
speak would be amazing, seeing the Berlin wall fall would be life
changing and listening to all the fantastic music at Woodstock would
be awe inspiring, but I would choose to stand in line for days and
be there at the beginning, at the emergence of what would be an
almost thirty year wait to it's completion.
The story is a classic adventure story, and applies almost all of Props
basic characters and character traits. A young hero is sent on a quest
to quell an evil empire, discover the truth about his families past and,
of course, rescue the girl. There just happens to be spaceships, laser
swords and aliens in there as well. And the girl turns out to be his sister.
A New Hope is the classic Star Wars. Far from the excellence of The
Empire Strikes Back, nowhere near as visually stunning as Attack
of the Clones and doesnt even touch the catharsis of Revenge
of the Sith, Episode four encapsulates everything that a good adventure
film should. Lucas is renowned for his excellence in the field of adventure
with the Indiana Jones series or the fantastic Willow, but this
is where it all began.
With the development of the high concept film, the cinema of spectacle,
Star Wars was a ground breaking, record breaking hit. The common
misconception that Star Wars is just for geeks seems to forget
that it is still the second biggest grossing movie of all time. Either
geeks went to the cinema a hell of a lot more in the 70s or some
other people may have crept in the back with hats on and collars up to
have a sneaky peek at what all the fuss is about. Out of the six star
wars films, three are in the top ten grossing films of all time. Spiderman
produces a healthy two, but Star Wars holds the record.
But what is it that makes people keep going back for more? 29 years later
and what was to be only three films has become six, with two childrens
adventures, comic books, sing-a-longs, action figures, a television series
(soon to come), novels, games etc, etc. People seem to be absorbed into
this universe of lightsabers and parsecs, and is it just purely for a
sense of escapism? Or is it a good example of how the old stories told
in different ways across time are always the best ones. Star Wars
is literally an adventure yarn that changed cinema forever. Star Wars
is now culturally imbedded in almost everything. From the knowing nods
of Sci Fi writers and directors make in their products to advertising
that uses the music, or characters to sell what ever they need to.
So what is the relevance now? A film made almost three decades ago, with
cheesy effects, confused brother/sister relationships and insults such
as nerf herder and golden rod. People are still
clamoring now about Star Wars. Degrees are earned on the basis
of study into why these films have affected so many people so much. Star
Wars has all the basic human needs in a story. It has a score that
turned classical music back on in the minds of children everywhere. It
has good intentions, morals and beliefs combined with corruption, betrayal
and loss. The emotional attachment the audience feels towards the Jedi
is astounding. Especially Anakin Skywalker, whos story Lucas tells
across the six films. Anakin is a little twerp in the first, an angsty
brat in the second, and a nutter in the third. But all the characters
are just about likable as characters go, arrogant and on a pedestal so
high you can barely see there bad haircuts. But I have watched a forty
year old man cry at the death of characters not even named in the film.
But he knows their names. And that is the true power of the force. May
it be with you. Always.
© Robert Hillum December 2007
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