Here we are, finally arrived at the promised land, the review of The Empire Strikes Back. The creme de la creme of Star Wars Movies. This film is truly something that can’t be beaten. This film is by far my favorite and the best Star Wars Movie.
This film was the first sequel that actually spent more money than the original and the payback was well worth it, this film was released in 1980 and it still holds up today, maybe not every special effects wise but in every other regard. We start the film, with the whole gang from A New Hope in the Rebel Base on Hoth. The Rebels need to figure out a way to destroy the Empire, it looks almost as though blowing up the Death Star did very little to the Empire.
Luke is out on patrol and ends up getting taken by a Wampa to be eaten later, at the same time we get development with Han and Leia, they are getting closer and closer, romance is blossoming. We see that Luke has improved in his skills with the Force, he is able to pull his lightsaber towards him and he cuts the hand off the Wampa, he escapes the Wampa’s cave and collapses outside but not before he sees Ben Kenobi was a Force Ghost. He tells Luke that he must go and learn the ways of a Jedi from Master Yoda. Meanwhile Han has been out looking for Luke and he eventually finds him and cuts open his Taun taun and places Luke in there to keep him from dying of the cold.
Eventually Han and Luke are found and are taken back to Echo Base, we also see that Darth Vader is looking for the Rebels and in particular Luke Skywalker. The Empire send Probe Droids to lots of different Planets and one lands on Hoth. Luke is healing back at Echo Base and everyone comes to visit him and Han as always is being his normal self, showing off and to prove a point that Leia likes him, so she kisses Luke, which turns out to be much more awkward after Return of the Jedi, but we do get a great line, here which I love saying “why, you stuck up, half witted, scruffy looking, Nerf Herder” and in a way that only Han could reply he says “Who’s scruffy looking.”
Han and Chewy both go out to check what has just crashed on the Planet, little do they know it is the Probe Droid, they go and destroy the Probe Droid. The Imperials don’t think much of the Probe Droid blowing up but Lord Vader knows that it is the Rebel Base. The Empire make their way to Hoth and the Rebels are getting ready for an evacuation, they are too late and Empire have arrived. Here we see for the first time the AT-AT, we get the battle the spawned a million levels and games the battle of Hoth. The Rebels more or less escape, Luke gets in his own X-Wing with R2 and the rest of the Gang get into the Millennium Falcon and attempt to escape, they get chased by the Empire but they end up losing them in a Asteroid Field.
There is a meeting where Lord Vader gets some of the biggest badasses in the Galaxy to hunt down the Falcon, people there like, Dengar, IG-88, Bossk but the one who everyone remembers and it seems like everyone loves Boba Fett.
Eventually Luke crash lands on Dagobah and his X-Wing is stuck in the swamp and it is too big for Luke to lift with the Force. He meets a small creature who is rummaging through his stuff and eating his food, this little creature seems less than important and it starts to rain so they make their way into his hut. If this puppet hadn’t worked then the whole film would have failed, props to Mark Hamill to pull off acting with this puppet. While inside of the hut, Luke starts to say that he is wasting his time. Then this little creature starts to talk and suddenly he becomes more serious, we see he is talking to Ben and Ben is attempting to convince him to teach Luke, Luke is mind blown that this little pointless creature is the great Jedi Master Yoda, as Yoda puts it later on, “Judge me by my size, do you?”
Han and the gang have escaped the Empire by sticking to the back of a Star Destroyer but while we are still happy about how genius Han is we see that Boba Fett has out smarted him and starts to follow Han. The whole gang are going to Bespin, Cloud City, Han knows the ‘owner’ there. Meanwhile back on Dagobah Luke has been getting trained by Yoda and Yoda asked Luke if he will lift the X-Wing out of the swamp. Luke tries to lift it, he tries and tries but he is unable and actually he makes it in a worse situation. Then comes one of my favorite scenes in any Star Wars movie, it is just Yoda with one hand lifting the X-Wing out of swamp and placing it perfectly on the ground, Luke says to him “I don’t believe it” and Yoda Replies with “that is why you fail.”
Han and the gang make it to Cloud City, the Falcon needs some repairs and as they land out comes the most smooth talking scoundrel in the Galaxy, Lando Calrissian. He breaks Hans balls and says what have you done to my ship and Han says that he won it fair and square. Lando takes them all on a little stroll through the City and he leads them into a room and says I have just secured a deal, that will ensure that there will be no Empire interference. As they walk through the door there is Lord Vader and he stop the blaster fire with his hands and asks them all to take a seat, then out come Boba Fett, so Boba was the one who caught them.
While Luke is training, Yoda tells him to go into a cave and he goes in. He see Lord Vader and they have a small fight, ultimately Luke takes off Vader’s head but when the helmet blows up, it is Luke’s head in the mask. Lord Vader tortures Han but asks him no questions, it turns out he does this to make Luke have a vision of his friends being hurt and he wants to go help, Vader doesn’t care at all about Han and the rest he wants Skywalker. Luke is going to leave, Yoda and Ben both attempt to stop him by saying that if he goes he will be beaten. Luke leaves and Ben says that boy is our last hope and Yoda says no there is another, hinting again towards the Return of the Jedi.
Lord Vader wants to take Luke Skywalker alive, and to do that he must first freeze him in carbonite but it could go wrong so he wants to test it on someone, who better than Han Solo. Han is about to get frozen in carbonite and Boba says what if he dies, he is worth a lot to me alive and Vader says that if Han dies then he will be more than compensated by the Empire. Before Han is about to be frozen, Leia kisses him and says I love you and one of the best lines in any of the films and a famous film lines Han replies with I know. Han gets frozen and is still alive.
Luke lands on Cloud City and he just catches Boba Fett taking Han and the rest of them. Luke ends up in the same room as Han just got frozen in and meanwhile Boba takes Han in his ship and escapes while Leia, Chewy, R2, C3P0, and Lando are all now leaving together, they get to the Falcon.
We are finally to the part that I have been waiting for, even as I type this up, I have this whole scene open in another tab. It is the greatest lightsaber duel in any Star Wars film, Darth Vader vs Luke Skywalker. I love this fight, the emotion behind it is amazing. It is a dark room and all we see are the silhouette of Luke and Vader and the one source of light is their lightsabers. They fight and Vader thinks he has the fight finished straight away, he knocks Luke into the Carbon Freezer and turns around to turn the machine on but Luke Force Jumps out of it and escapes and I love what Vader says next, “Impressive, most impressive.”
The fight continues in another room and we see again Vader is beating Luke every way, and at one point Vader decides that he doesn’t need to use a lightsaber and just starts throwing objects at Luke using the Force. Luke gets knocked out of a window, they end up fighting again on a platform/balcony. Luke is hanging off the edge, holding on for death life and Vader cuts off Luke’s hand, bye bye hand and lightsaber. Then we get Vader attemping to turn Luke and we get the line “No I am your father” one of the most miss quoted film lines ever. With the distraught of finding out that Vader is his father he jumps down the chasm, a lot of chasms in Star Wars.
Luke lands on an antenna of sorts, some space antenna and he calls out to Leia. Leia and the gang turn the Falcon around to get Luke, Lando brings Luke on board of Falcon. They take Luke to a medical facility and get him a new hand. They look out into vast Galaxy as Chewy and Lando leave in the Falcon, for some strange reason Lando is now wearing Han’s vest, I never understood why. That is all until the next film and the film that we thought was the end of the saga until it was announced we would get more Star Wars.
I love this film and it is easily my favorite Star Wars film and it is in my top favorite films of all time. I would give this film a 9/10, it does just about everything right, the story, to the characters. It ends on such a down note as well, making the audience wait 3 more years until its sequel. I hope you have enjoyed this review, please tell me what you think of the film, Tweet me, go to my Facebook or comment below, thanks. I will see you all next week for my final review of the Star Wars saga, Star Wars Episode VI The Return of the Jedi and then we will have The Force Awakens to bask in.