Continuing my Five Favorite Things about the Star Wars movies, here’s my entry on Return of the Jedi.
Luke with Leia on Endor. I loved this intimate scene where Luke tells Leia that they’re siblings, and that he must leave to face their father, Darth Vader. It brings their relationship to a new level, as well as helps her understand what he needs to do and why. It’s also the most emotional and upset we’ve seen Leia onscreen, and reminds us that even though she’s tough as nails, she can also be vulnerable.
Luke vs. Vader on the Death Star 2. All the films in the Original Trilogy showcase just one major lightsaber duel, and in ROTJ, this is it. And it’s wonderful and glorious and fraught with tremendous emotional weight, as father and son duel it out in front of the Emperor, who naturally cackles with evil delight. The stakes couldn’t be higher: Luke fights not only for the fate of the Rebellion and his friends, but for his very soul–and his father’s soul, as well. We see that he comes perilously close to the dark side as he gives in to his anger and slams away at Vader, nearly defeating him–but he realizes the cost and steps away. Which leads to….
When Luke steps away from battle with his father and declares these words to the Emperor, then throws his lightsaber away, he shows us his true character: committed to the Light, to good, to the kind of man his father was before he was corrupted by the dark side. This is Luke’s pivotal moment, his most glorious hour. I love it.
Han Solo quippery. Of course.
Most Impactful Character
Darth Vader. Darth Vader’s return to the light and saving his son from the Emperor is clearly the most satisfying event in the movie, at least to me. The moment he picks up the Emperor, who is killing his son with Force lightning, and throws him down that shaft, is the most thrilling scene of the movie, the trilogy, perhaps the entire saga. With his sacrifice, Vader–or perhaps we should call him Anakin here–saves his son, and fulfills his destiny as the Chosen One, bringing balance back to the Force. It’s electrifying (if you’ll pardon the pun), deeply moving, and the perfect end to the trilogy.
2 thoughts on “My Five Favorite Things About Return of the Jedi”
Favourite part of ROTJ? All of the above….plus one more event I’d like to mention as it was the moment that cemented my interest and love of Star Wars. The Green Lightsaber reveal! Seeing that green blade after Artoo shoots it out over the desert sand (which was a cool trick already) was amazing and unexpected. It was such a change from red or blue. Anyway, it was Christmas time and I was sat watching the festive shows on TV and eating some wrapped candies when it happened. Out of the corner of my eye something glinted and caught my attention. One of the candies had a transparent green wrapper around it, and after unwrapping it I found that it was approximately 1-2 inches square when flattened out. I had a bright idea…I took my basic flashlight saber with a white blade and took it apart. I then carefully stretched the wrapper over the metal reflective bowl holding the bulb to form a filter. I then screwed everything together and turned off the room’s lighting….then….hit the saber’s activation button….and I had a green blade!
I was invited to a friend’s Star Wars themed birthday party in the new year and he had all the toys, figures, blasters…everything including stuff from the USA. He also had a saber, we all did, and we gathered in his house and turned out the lights ready to give him a lightsaber salute. His mother gave us all a countdown and everyone on the count of 3 lit their sabers and started to say “Happ….eee….” They all just stopped mid-word as they saw my green blade among all the plain white ones. I had everybody wanting to know how I had a green saber and trying to grab hold of it so they could swing it around. I kinda feel bad for upstaging my friend whose birthday it was but I didn’t intend to…I didn’t realise how popular my hilt was going to be.
However that set me on the road to designing/customising sabers I guess!
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That’s a great story, FT! Amazing how Star Wars can start us on these interesting journeys in our lives. Thanks for reading!
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