This week I am looking at my sentimental favorite Star Wars movie: Return of the Jedi. I think I was at the perfect age when I first saw this movie such that it was indelibly cemented in my consciousness forever. Many of my all-time favorite Star Wars scenes are in this movie. Nostalgia has rose-colored glasses on this one, however, so let's take a look at some of the positives and negatives.
A few thoughts:
-I fully recognize that this movie is the weakest in the original trilogy. The Death Star as a plot device again, and the questionable strength of the Ewoks against the Empire are both weaknesses in this film.
-The introduction of Luke at Jabba's Palace is my favorite character intro of all the Star Wars movies. His look and actions when he first appears on screen are ambiguous about his siding with the Light or Dark. Force choking has only been committed by Vader up until this point. Even though the lightsaber building deleted scene released several years ago is cool, I love this ambiguous character intro and the delay of the green lightsaber until the Sarlacc pit.
-The Jabba the Hutt puppet is amazing and was a true shock when I first saw it. I still think it holds up better than the CG Jabba in the special edition of A New Hope.
-Endor is the only new planet introduced, which is a bummer in hindsight, but I still am a huge fan. All of the speeder bike chase scenes, while somewhat dated effects, have great tension and portray speed well.
-I am indifferent about the Ewoks. As a kid, I was totally cool with them and kind of fascinated, so as an adult I have no issue with them. I understand the intended message behind indigenous people driving out oppressors, and it works fine, if a bit cheesy.
A few memories:
-I already mentioned that this movie is my sentimental favorite, and I will stand by that statement until the end. There are so many parts of this movie that take me back to the early days of my fandom.
-The toys from Return of the Jedi have some very fond memories for me. My cousins had the Ewok village toy, which I was very envious of and could never find. It took a while to find one, but I finally obtained the Jabba on his throne toy that had a pit that could open underneath him. That was one of my favorite toys and perfect for punishing all of the bad characters.
-Speeder bikes are awesome and need to be a real thing. I was determined that I was going to invent one and change the world. Still hasn't happened...
-I enjoy spending time in forested areas, which I partly attribute to the planet Endor. I was so fascinated by the tall trees that it transferred to real life.
It has been a pleasure revisiting the original trilogy movies (let's be honest, this happens frequently anyway), and I am especially looking forward to how elements of Return of the Jedi will play out in Rise of Skywalker. On to the new era of Star Wars with The Force Awakens next!
I love my family and this is the place to find all of the adventures we experience.