Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

IRVIN KERSHNER

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBBB.  USA, 1980Lucasfilm.  Story by , Screenplay by .  Cinematography by .  Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  Academy Awards 1980Golden Globe Awards 1980.  

The best of all the Star Wars movies is this rip-roaring adventure that continues the drama from the 1977 original and improves on the action and character subtext. Having defeated the Empire in the first round, the galactic forces of good are devastated to find out that the evil Darth Vader has begun rebuilding a new Death Star weapon. This means that heroic Luke Skywalker () must leave his rebel friends at their secret stronghold on the icy planet of Hoth and travel across planets to find wise Jedi master Yoda and be taught the ways of the ‘force’, the only power that could destroy the evil that stands between the galaxy and its survival. Gorgeous sets and breathtaking visual effects are compounded with magnificent performances (well, let’s just say that ‘s smirking was never more appropriate) to create a science-fiction classic like no other. The City In Clouds sequence is a wonder of science-fiction production design that was never again repeated in any of the Lucas productions to follow.

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