Star Wars

Year of release: 1977.
MPAA rating: PG.
Run time: 105 minutes.

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      "STAR WARS, George Lucas's stunning sci-fi masterpiece, is arguably one of the most inventive and entertaining films ever made, garnering generations of loyal fans who are forever imprinted with the memory of its characters and dialogue.

      As the adventure begins, Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), an impulsive but goodhearted young man who lives on the dusty planet of Tatooine with his aunt and uncle, longs for the exciting life of a Rebel soldier.

      The Rebels, led by the headstrong Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher), are fighting against the evil Empire, which has set about destroying planets inhabited by innocent citizens with the Death Star, a fearsome planetlike craft commanded by Grand Moff Tarkin (Peter Cushing) and the eternally frightful Darth Vader (David Prowse, with the voice of James Earl Jones).

      When Luke's aunt and uncle are murdered by the Empire’s imperial stormtroopers and he mysteriously finds a distress message from Princess Leia in one of his androids, R2-D2 (Kenny Baker), he must set out to find Obi-Wan Kenobi (Alec Guinness), a mysterious old hermit with incredible powers.

      On his journey, Luke is aided by the roguish, sarcastic mercenary Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and his towering furry sidekick Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew) as they run into a host of perilous situations while trying to rescue the princess -- and the entire galaxy.

      Magnificently referencing everything from Akira Kurosawa’s SEVEN SAMURAI and THE HIDDEN FORTRESS to THE WIZARD OF OZ to John Ford Westerns and Joseph Campbell philosophies, STAR WARS revolutionized the cinematic world with its epic storytelling and amazing special effects.

      In addition to film veterans Guinness and Cushing, the movie also features an unforgettable performance from the young Ford, who would, of course, go on to become one of the biggest stars of the silver screen.  Even today, Lucas's astonishing film leaves viewers wanting to see it again and again."

      I was ten years old when this movie came out and my friends and I saw it 3 times.  The first time was at a drive-in and was incredible.  I admit that, at the time, I don't think I understood the whole movie but I was definitely awed by the special effects.  As I grew older and watched this movie again over the years I came to see how terrific this movie was for many other reasons: great story, excellent cast, superb music, etc.  I never became a fan of the other movies in the Star Wars series; in fact, I have only seen portions of "The Empire Strikes Back" and "Return Of The Jedi" and nothing at all of the last (first?) three films.  But although the whole series never hooked me, this first movie remains, in my humble opinion, one of the greatest movies ever made.  It will always be one of my favorites!


Mark Hamill -- Luke Skywalker

Harrison Ford -- Han Solo

Alec Guiness -- Ben (Obi-Wan) Kenobi

Anthony Daniels -- C-3PO

Peter Cushing -- Grand Moff Tarkin

Carrie Fisher -- Princess Leia Organa

Peter Mayhew -- Chewbacca

David Prowse -- Darth Vader
(Voice by James Earl Jones)

Kenny Baker -- R2-D2

Distributed by: Twentieth Century Fox
Director: George Lucas
Producer: Gary Kurtz
Screenwriter: George Lucas
Art Director: Leslie Dilley
Cinematographer: Gilbert Taylor
Composer: John Williams
Costume Designer: John Mollo & Ron Beck
Director of Animation: Adam Beckett
Editor: Paul Hirsch, Marcia Lucas & Richard Chew
Production Designer: John Barry, Norman Reynolds & Leslie Dilley
Sound Design: Ben Burtt
Special Effects: Rick Baker & John Dykstra
Voice: James Earl Jones


Academy Awards - 1977
Best Art Direction - Jonathan Barry, Norman Reynolds,
Roger Christian & Leslie Dilley
Best Costume Design - John Mollo
Best Editing - Paul Hirsch, Marcia Lucas
Best Sound - Don MacDougall
Best Visual Effects - John Stears, Robert Blalack,
Grant McCune, Richard Edlund & John Dykstra
Best Sound - Derek Ball, Bob Minkler, Ray West
Special Achievement - Benjamin Jr. Burtt
Best Score - John Williams
Best Editing - Richard Chew
Best Picture (Nominated)
Best Supporting Actor - Alec Guinness (Nominated)
Best Original Screenplay - George Lucas (Nominated)
Best Director - George Lucas (Nominated)

British Academy Awards - 1978
Anthony Asquith Award for Original Film Music - John Williams
Best Soundtrack - Don MacDougall, Bob Minkler, Derek Ball & Ray West
Best Film - George Lucas (Nominated)

LA Film Critics Association - 1977
Best Film

National Board of Review of Motion Pictures - 1977
One of Year's 10 Best Films (Nominated)

American Film Institute - 1998
Chosen as one of the 100 Greatest American Movies

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