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Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope
Year:
1977
Country:
USA
Genre:
Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Sci-Fi
IMDB rating:
8.7
Director:
George Lucas
Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker
Harrison Ford as Han Solo
Carrie Fisher as Princess Lea
Peter Cushing as Governor Tarkin
Alec Guinness as Obi-Wan Kenobi
Kenny Baker as R2-D2
Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca
David Prowse as Darth Vader
James Earl Jones as Darth Vader
Phil Brown as Uncle Owen
Shelagh Fraser as Aunt Beru
Jack Purvis as Chief Jawa
Alex McCrindle as General Dodonna
Eddie Byrne as General Willard
Drewe Henley as Red Leader (as Drewe Hemley)
Storyline: The Imperial Forces, under orders from cruel Darth Vader, hold Princess Leia hostage in their efforts to quell the rebellion against the Galactic Empire. Luke Skywalker and Han Solo, captain of the Millennium Falcon, work together with the companionable droid duo R2-D2 and C-3PO to rescue the beautiful princess, help the Rebel Alliance and restore freedom and justice to the Galaxy.
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Reviews
The best film ever made.
This is quite simply a masterpiece.

By far the film that has progressed the film industry the farthest. This is the breakthrough in films. This film set raised the benchmark for standard of films that is still not being reached by many films today, almost 30 years on.

This introduces us to our characters and sets the story for out trilogy. A little slow to get started i grant you. An exciting opening scene is followed by what to my mind is a little too much of Threepio and Artoo traipsing through the dunes of Tatooine. After that though it is a non stop ride of action, adventure, drama and comedy. The excitement of learning about the force will never be surpassed and never has an idea been so gripping.

Watch this film if you only watch one film in your life. Of course if you are only going to watch one film in your like then after seeing this i am afraid that will drastically be changed into only watching 6 films in your life!!!
2004-06-02
This will be a day long remembered - a review 33 years in the making
A long time ago in a galaxy far far away a young farm boy named Luke Skywalker encounters two eccentric droids, gets attacked by sand people and is then saved by an old wizard by the name of Ben Kenobi. After a brief chat the farm boy discovers that Ben and Luke's father used to protect the universe as Jedi Knights until his father was killed by the evil Darth Vader. After his aunt and uncle are killed Luke realises his destiny has been chosen for him and he and Ben are going to have to take on the empire, and from this point movie history will never be the same again.

Much has been said about this movie and it almost feels redundant to discuss it, but, as it was the first film I saw at the pictures I feel almost duty bound to add my two penneth to the mix and so I will. This film was groundbreaking in terms of effects, but what we have learnt since Star Wars is that all the good effects in the world can't save a poor movie. The thing that makes this movie as damned good as it is, is the mixture of urgent direction, wonderful performances, a damned good script, that often gets blasted as being terrible, (If it was the film would also be terrible ...it isn't, ergo sum ...), a pioneering use of sound effects that really reinforce the more alien characters with a real sense of emotion (specifically Chewbacca and R2-D2) but of course the last big star of the movie is John Williams sweeping epic score, which even today is probably one of the greatest pieces of movie music ever.

These days I understand why a film like "Casablanca" and "Citizen Kane" cannot be appreciated by a modern audience because they are so hailed for their enormity on their first appearance that it often cannot be re-experienced by viewers after that. The first time we watch Star Wars we don't actually know that there is anything but Jawas on Tatooine, or that Obi-Wan Kenobi (That wizard's just a crazy old man) is a secret bad-@ss or that Han Solo, good for nothing mercenary, is seen right through by Jedi Knight Ben Kenobi. We who experienced it the first time will always feel it again, but the modern audience, who know so much about the film, cannot.

The film is full of classic moments, from Ben Kenobi's reveal, R2-D2's fall, Luke switching off his targeting computer, Han's constant irreverent humour, Ben's "that's no moon", and a dozen more, but even after all these years my favourite moment is that knowing look that Ben gives Luke at the end of his duel with Vader. His wry smile and the blend of music and performance by both Hamill and Guiness is sensational and still gives me goose bumps now. Amazing.

Since then the impact of the original three may have been watered down by the prequels, but as much as you can't polish a turd, you also cannot dim the brightest star. Which is why the term "May the force be with you" will always mean so much to so many.
2011-02-17
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.
2004-12-12
For Starters!!
This was the introductory fanaticism of laser works, as well as a bevy of special sound effects, and elaborate sci-fi costuming, which started a whole new revelation in the cinema world. Steven Spielberg mastered the art of galactic warfare through a limitless use of creative weaponry!! The enormous popularity of this film opened the floodgates for copious movies about space battle in the ensuing years ahead!! Initially intrigued by the hit television show "Star Trek", the American public took to the movie "Star Wars" because it pinpointed a sort of personification of a video arcade wonderland, as a result, "Star Wars" utterly fascinated the movie audience!! Harrison Ford is one of the all time box office legends in Hollywood, his big break was with the movie "Star Wars",,, Later, of course, he captivated millions with his stellar performance in "Raiders of the Lost Ark"!! Movies like "Star Wars" do not come along very often, when they do, they set a precedent in the film industry!! I found the film "Star Wars" to be way ahead of it's time with regard to the optical gimmickry that they so superbly effectuated!! The music to "Star Wars" is classic in it's charismatic demeanor, and, by and large, it is understandable that the most prominent critics in the film industry rank "Star Wars" as one of the greatest movies ever made!! "Star Wars" is always chosen as one of the top twenty films in the American movie market by the esoteric and discriminating critics of AFI!! Endless accolades go out to "Star Wars" and the incredible ingenuity it possesses to entertain the American movie goer!! WITHOUT QUESTION!! FIVE STARS!!!!
2007-12-15
Different things to like about this
Well, I just re-watched this on DVD. I first saw it when I was 10 in 1981, and I still love this move (one of my all time favorites), but I guess I love it for some reasons different than most other people:

1) The movie has no love story to speak of. This is such a huge bonus that it cannot be stressed enough. For kids a love story is sheer boredom - and there are unfortunately very few films without one. For adults the love story is usually pure BS (as the over romanticizing that goes on in Hollywood movies make any love story a nauseous experience. Episodes V and VI scrape the line of how much love story a movie can take before being totally corny. Lets not talk about how much the love story ruins episodes I and II (and will probably kill episode III also))

2) There are no lengths in the movie. It dumps you right in the middle of the conflict after the opening (no opening credits to bore your pants off! This is almost unique amongst films). It practically grabs you before you have gotten comfortable in your seat. The DVD does add some lengths with gratuitous CGI which actually hurt the film more than they help (the ride into Mos Eisley and the Falcon approaching Yavin seem interminable compared to the fast paced cuts of the original version. These scenes break the rhythm of the movie badly, they add neither story nor depth nor information - luckily they are far enough apart not to hurt it too much)

3) The special effects are still spectacular after all these years. Not in what they look like but how they are shot, the dynamics of it and the ideas for cool POVs (taking old aerial battle films as scripts was a stroke of genius)

4) Detail. This thing is all about attention to detail. There is nothing out of place here. Nothing glossed over by large plastic sheeting. everything has structure and depth and looks used. The world it portrays becomes believable. economies are worked out. This has the look of a good role playing adventure.

5) The plot isn't explained by the characters. Characters involved in such a plot for some time are supposed to know what the background is without having to talk to each other about it (nobody needs to be told that the empire is evil, this is common knowledge with these people as they have lived under it for decades). Putting things into the scroller at the beginning which could not be said by the characters because it would be akin to them holding up neon signs displaying "For the audiences' information" was a stroke of genius. I cringe at other movies that insert 'let me explain what is happening' scenes.

Overall I can see nothing wrong with this movie. The soundtrack and the sound effects are amazing. Some scenes seem to be re-recorded with different sound standards and thus stand out uncomfortably, but this isn't much of a problem. The actors do their jobs well (especially Harrison Ford when he flashes that roguish grin - he is practically the archetype of the lovable, charismatic scoundrel). This DVD is definitely a keeper (10/10).
2004-10-03
Star Wars felt big even before it was
In the early 1990s when I was about 8 or 10, I had a VHS copy of "Star Wars: A New Hope" that I watched repeatedly. It was a recording from a television broadcast and was missing the first few minutes, so the opening shots were of C-3PO and R2-D2 walking over the dunes of Tatooine. That planet is not, of course, named in the movie; strange as it is to think, there must have been a brief span of time when I knew the movie pretty well but didn't know the colossal amount of trivial information that I permanently internalized during my teen years. For a while I had no idea there were sequels. But the details and backstories that books and games and movies and TV shows have filled in over the decades were in a way already present, at least implicitly, at the outset. It is well-known that George Lucas was inspired by old sci- fi/adventure serials, and that he tried to give this "episode" of Star Wars the feel of belonging to a far grander saga whose beginning and end were far off. It was an audacious, brilliant move, and it worked on my younger self exactly as intended. I was able to conjure images of Luke's heroic father, supposedly killed in the off-handedly mentioned Clone Wars, and I was able to get a sense of what those conflicts were like from the way that Alec Guinness looked and sounded when he talked about the past. I could feel the long history of Obi-Wan and Vader's relationship in the way they appraised each other during their showdown. I could imagine, vaguely, the previous ups and downs of the rebel alliance and the off-screen machinations of Imperial Senate. That these things were planted in my imagination made the movie feel big and epic, though it is probably the "smallest" installment in the Star Wars franchise in terms of the size and number of sets, the number of characters with speaking roles, and other metrics. The series has not always benefited from trying to depict on-screen the people and events that were at first only evocative allusions. I sometimes wish I could forget everything I've learned from the ever-expanding Star Wars universe (and that, believe me, is a lot) in order to feel again the way I felt when all I had to go on was "A New Hope," and it was more than enough.
2013-11-28
My first favorite movie...
This movie was the first (and only) movie I ever obsessed about. I was 11-years old and it is still the greatest movie experience I ever had. Nothing has come close. It was the first cast I ever memorized and I still know the soundtrack like the back of my hand. I can't explain why.

It was a combination of the old, Peter Cushing, James Earl Jones, and Alec Guiness; and the new, Harrison Ford, Mark Hamil, Carrie Fisher. The special effects are STILL awesome. The story is timeless and fresh some 27 years later.

It's just such a great movie to get lost in...still.
2004-03-16
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.
1998-10-28
A long time ago in a childhood not too far away......
Princess Leia is captured and held hostage by the Imperial Army as it seeks to rule the Galactic Empire. An old Jedi Knight by the name of Ben "Obi-Wan" Kenobi may just be her's, and the rebels only hope. Teaming up with farm boy Luke Skywalker, scoundrel Captain Han Solo, and a couple of quirky droids, Kenobi sets off on a mission that could well shape the destiny of the Galaxy, and all who dwell within it.

Back in 1977 I was but a wee 11 year old boy, weened on films from all genres by my movie loving parents, I had no idea that Star Wars was to have the same impact on me as Jaws had two summers previously, where yet again I found myself queueing around the block for two whole hours to see a film in a one screen theatre. My love of cinema firmly cemented, Star Wars was the start of a love affair that lasts to this very day.

As the years have rolled by and my love of cinema has taken on more in-depth and serious tones, I have come to realise that Star Wars proves to be a far from flawless picture. Certainly its detractors do point to some frayed acting and call the plot structure a jazzed up good versus evil axis, while the charge of George Lucas referencing many prior pictures most assuredly stands, but really do those things matter? No they do not, because Star Wars opened up a new world of cinema, something of a portal to youngsters such as I, it got people talking and debating about the merits of model work in films (which is of an extraordinary high standard here), it nudged film makers to explore being bigger and bolder in their approach, and crucially, above all else, it got film goers hungry again, a hankering for more please if you may. Now it has to be said that all that followed 20th Century Fox's historic blockbuster didn't run with the baton, in fact most pale into comparison on impact value, but for better or worse (depending on the discerning viewers peccadilloes), Star Wars stands as a bastion of adventure laden entertainment.

It is by definition one of the most successful films in history, George Lucas perhaps didn't know it at the time, but in what was to become an almost operatic anthology, he didn't just make a movie, he created a whole new world seeping with style and rich texture. Almost as amazing as the success of the series, is how it has become part of modern day pop culture, anything from religion to everyday speak has at some time or another referenced Lucas' baby. Ultimately, though, it's one single thing that made (and still does make) Star Wars so great, it's that it has the ability to lift the audience into a rousing united feel good cheer; and that is something that few films can ever lay claim too. In 1977 it was an awe inspiring event to watch in the theatre, now here in my middle age it's an event that is like hugging a dear old friend, a friend that I know will never ever let me down no matter how many times I turn to it. 10/10
2009-03-29
Magical and unique experience
What else can there be said about this galactic masterpiece which has not already been said? Now in times where the saga is (hopefully) complete, "Star Wars" still stands out as one of the most important movies of the film history.

Even though some dialogs may be silly (but memorable nevertheless) and in spite of several logical mistakes, George Lucas' Science-Fiction-film can easily be considered as one of the most entertaining works ever. The spectator is introduced in a universe full of fantastic concepts and locations and meets there some archetypal characters, such as the beautiful and innocent princess, the keen, naive hero, the dark, evil villain, the wise, old man, etc. The mixture of fairy tale and western elements is extremely fascinating and seems almost perfect. Lucas' direction is so skillful that even the above mentioned drawbacks eventually appear as positive characteristics of this space odyssey.

No matter its meantime rather bad reputation, "Star Wars" is and will always remain one of the most magical cinematic experiences you can make. It is one of those movies you would like to talk about hours and hours, but which after all cannot be taken into words.

Rating: 96

MarSco
2005-05-19
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