November 18, 2010

The Empire Strikes Back

The Top 63 Marathon, part 55 (#9)

Title: Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back
Year: 1980
Length: 124 minutes [original version]
Director: Irvin Kershner
Writers: Leigh Brackett & Lawrence Kasdan; story by George Lucas
Starring: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams, Anthony Daniels, Frank Oz
Music: John Williams
Distinctions: Oscar for Best Sound; special Academy Award for visual effects; Oscar nominations for Best Score and Best Art Direction/Set Decoration; currently #11 on the IMDb's Top 250

My reaction
Synopsis: rebels run away from the evil Space Empire
How I saw it: on video many times (have on DVD), most recently yesterday
Concept: Indifferent.
Story: Good.
Characters: Good.
Dialog: Indifferent.
Pacing: Great.
Cinematography: Good.
Special effects/design: Great.
Acting: Indifferent.  Frank Oz bumps it up a notch.
Music: Good.
Subjective Rating: 9/10 (One of my favorites). Much more fast-paced and exciting than Star Wars, but I like the original better anyway. The cliff-hanger ending is kind of half assed and pointless. I mean, they spent this movie repeatedly escaping from the full forces of the Empire, led by Darth Vader himself, and now we're supposed to worry about whether they can rescue Han from a single bounty hunter? Maybe if Jedi wasn't forced to spend its first half cleaning up Empire's loose ends, it could have had room for a story of its own.
Objective Rating: 3.0/4 (Good) 3.1/4 (Very good)


  1. Yeah I take your points about this movie but you only have to watch any of the 3 SW prequels to appreciate how good the 3 originals are. CGI does not make up for character and plot! Enjoying your reviews.

  2. Oh, don't get me wrong, all three of the original trilogy are among my favorite movies. I was just nit-picking.