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Reviews & Ratings for
Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope More at IMDbPro »Star Wars (original title)

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

I'll tell you why this movie is so great...

10/10
Author: pavo6503 from Albany, NY
8 April 2005

I was four years old when I saw this movie and I remembered the whole thing, from beginning to end. It was summer and my family was spending a month at our camp. One day my sister (2 years old at the time) and I had been fighting all day. My parents sent us off to bed for a nap before dinner and I grudgingly complied. I was awoken by my father, he was asking me if I wanted to go see a movie. "It has spaceships, and robots, and lasers, you'll love it!" I looked at him through swollen eyes and asked, "does Jenna get to go to?" When I heard him say no, I knew I was in for a HUGE treat. We arrived at a nearly empty theater, and took our seats. When the first jarring chord of the theme hit me, and my father began reading the opening story, I was captivated. It was the happiest day of my life. To hell with all your nitpicking. When something makes that great an impression on a four year old, you know it has to be something truly special. By the way, I'm wearing the Boba Fett t-shirt my son's mother gave me as a gift. And no, I'm not some greasy, Star Wars obsessed dork. Well, not any more...

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

It never ceases to entertain me.

10/10
Author: AppleBlossom from Australia
25 March 2005

George Lucus stunned audiences with this outer space saga when it was released and deservingly so. It was a film quite like nothing anyone had seen before a truly visual and cinematic achievement. The story begins on Chapter IV and takes us on an action packed journey filled with aliens, intrigue and adventure. The success of Star Wars is ultimately due to the wonderful imagination of its director and of course to the extremely well orchestrated cast. I think George Lucas was riding high with his previous film success 'American Graffiti, but this is far removed from Star Wars, no similarities at all. I was simply captivated the first time I saw this film in the cinema's back in '77 and still am…although the big screen does give it more of an impact. Everything about Star Wars will definitely appeal to a vast audience from children to adults alike….it's a 'must see film' in my opinion. Then when you're finished watching Star Wars, just think; you have only 5 more chapters to go. 10/10

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Amazing

10/10
Author: johnboy121 from United States
20 February 2005

This was quite possibly the greatest film of all time, I agree the acting was somewhat lacking, but the effects were beyond amazing, you got to remember, this was 1977. Lucas' vision was realized to its full potential and William's score carried the film to being the most successful film ever made, behind the hunk of crap titanic. The story was one the most original I've ever come across and the movie itself sparked the career of Harrison Ford, quite possibly one of the biggest actors in the 1980's and 90's. Although this was the first and last original Star Wars film to be directed by Lucas, it was quite possibly the best film to hit the market in the 1970's.

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Different things to like about this

10/10
Author: antialias11 from Bonn, Germany
3 October 2004

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).

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Gives me the chills!

10/10
Author: nataliep325 from new york
29 September 2004

This movie came out a few years before i was even born, but somehow one of my first memories was seeing this movie. Every kid I knew loved star wars boy and girl. So basically if i had to sum up my childhood in two words it would be star wars. From the cantina scene to the death star first rate special effects. The opening crawl probably still brings a tear to my eye. Han solo just rocked and Luke skywalker was just adorable. I love the scene in the garbage chute, but my all time favorite scene is when Luke goes outside and looks out to the horizon (the famous shot of the two suns) and the classic music cues up. Oh my god it gives me the chills. awesome!

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

This is what classics are

10/10
Author: sprogers from Maryland, US
29 May 2004

I first saw this movie (or at least as far as I can remember) when i was about 4. It wasn't until I was about 8 that I really got into the whole saga. I have to say #4 isn't my favorite of the films, but it is the one that started the greatest sci fi epic ever. I think for it's time the special effects were magnificent. And the acting was done by REAL actors from back in the day. Now a days all I seem to see coming up in the thespian ranks are pretty boys and girls with fake boobs. What happened. Anyways, i think everyone should watch this movie at least once. If your not "enlightened" by it you'll at least be entertained by a few good humor spots.

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5 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Luke Skywalker, a boy with an unlikely encounter with two droids from the rebel alliance will initiate a line of events that will change Luke's life forever

10/10
Author: Justin Copeland from United States
18 November 2013

There are only a handful of movies I've given a perfect 10 out of 10, and Star Wars is in my opinion one of the best movie of all time. It is a movie with non stop excitement that will make you want to watch it over and over. The original Star Wars is an instant classic. If you haven't seen this movie, you have to go find some one who has it, and watch it. The amazing space story has original ideas and now in days I can relate a lot of action scenes back to Star Wars. Remember the opening scene of Man of Steel, when Jor-El was fleeing from General Zod's army. It looked like something straight out of Star Wars. I loved Man of Steel as much as the next person, but Star Wars is that original sci-fi adventure that you will love for ever. This first part of the original trilogy will set up two more movies that will lead to one of the greatest trilogies of all time. Please take my word for it and if you haven't seen it already go watch this movie as soon as possible. For the sake of your movication (yes I'm quoting Pitch Perfect) please watch Star Wars you will not be disappointed

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5 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

For Starters!!

10/10
Author: dataconflossmoor from United States
15 December 2007

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!!!!

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6 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

I get all choked up just thinking about it.

10/10
Author: BA_Harrison from Hampshire, England
25 February 2007

There was no way my review of this classic slab of pulp sci-fi was ever going to be anything but glowing; as a nine year old I saw George Lucas' space opera on its original release and instantly became one of a legion of fans who spent the next twenty years worshipping at the altar of the great turkey-necked director (until The Phantom Menace shattered all of my illusions).

Thirty years on, and I'm revisiting Star Wars with my two children, hoping that they will fall in love with it as much as I did, way back when all that seemed important was having a bag-full of marbles and a decent sized pile of comics to read.

I'm not going to describe the plot (surely you know that!), nor am I going to go into great detail about how Lucas borrowed elements from the movies he loved to bring us his epic about a farm boy who becomes a legendary warrior; all I can say is that the film has lost none of its ability to astound and my kids sat entranced (despite not being able to follow the story without the benefit of some additional info from their sci-fi geek dad). My son (who is only three and a half ) might not understand what a 'rebellion' is, and my daughter (nearly six) may struggle with the concept of 'the force', but both got a kick from witnessing the whole Star Wars universe for the very first time.

Chewbacca was an instant hit with my boy, whereas my girl identified with Leia, the gutsy princess. Both of them loved the brilliantly realised landscapes, aliens, robots and spaceships that have wowed film-fans for three decades (and who can blame them—the attention to detail and sheer creativity in design, costume, and make-up is staggering).

It has since become evident that old George ain't always the greatest writer or director in the world (the last three Star Wars movies are proof of that); however, when he does get it right, he works miracles (he wrote Raiders of the Lost Ark too—another solid gold movie).

Star Wars is perfect family entertainment that delivers amazing spectacle, unforgettable characters and enough movie magic to last a lifetime. In fact, why not do yourself a favour: get off the internet and go watch it right now (even if you have seen it hundreds of times before).

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6 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

A heroic dynamic rush of pure adrenaline.

10/10
Author: sdillon-1 from UK
25 July 2003

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

CONTAINS POSSIBLE SPOILERS

What can be said about Star Wars that hasn't already been said elsewhere?

For a start, on its arrival in 1977, it was light years ahead of its time. It is a film from which cinema history can literally be divided into two epochs, kind of like BC and AD. Pre-Star Wars cinema was a very different medium. Post Star Wars, studios became ever more reliant on big blockbusters to remain afloat. This has led to some truly brain dead films and, as Peter Bogdanovitch described the `juvenilisation' of cinema. The success of Star Wars was a two-edged sword. Its fair to say without it there would have been no Alien, Raiders of the Lost Ark, ET, Terminator, Jurassic Park, Matrix and Lord of the Rings films. On the other hand there would also have been no Judge Dredd, Lost in Space, Planet of the Apes remake and other assorted drivel that turns up every summer clogging up the multiplexes.

Star Wars (or if you're going to be a purist, Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope although the subtitle was only added in the 1981 reissue) thankfully, belongs firmly in the former category. If its legacy means we have to suffer second rate imitators from time to time, I believe it's a small price to pay for such a magnificent film. Star Wars is an unmitigated thrill ride - a heroic, dynamic rush of pure adrenaline that has been known to make grown adults degenerate into thrill-happy eight year olds.

As I have argued many times, Star Wars is not science fiction in the purest sense of the word. It is much better described by writer/director George Lucas as `space fantasy'. It borrows elements from fairy tales ranging from The Wizard of Oz to The Lord of the Rings. It also is very derivative of classic westerns (such as The Searchers) as well as Samurai films like Kurosawa's The Hidden Fortress. What George Lucas did was take these elements and stick them in outer space in a way no one had done since the Flash Gordon serials of the 1930s. He then threw in the most groundbreaking special effects revolution of all time and this is what he ended up with.

The story is comparatively simple. Young farm boy Luke Skywalker lives with his boring Uncle and Aunt on the desert planet Tatooine longing to follow in his dead father's heroic footsteps. He gets the opportunity when two droids show up carrying a message from a Princess who has been imprisoned by the evil Darth Vader. Luke teams up with space pirate Han Solo, his `walking carpet' sidekick Chewbacca, and his mentor Ben Kenobi (who is a former Jedi knight guided by the mysterious `Force') to rescue her.

The much-maligned acting of Mark Hamill as Luke is actually often so bad its good, particularly in the Death Star scenes. He makes a very appealing naïve hero. Harrison Ford's career was launched on the back of his performance as dashing rogue Han Solo, and Carrie Fisher's witty performance as Princess Leia portrays her as anything but a damsel in distress. Elsewhere the droids C3PO and R2 D2 provide superb comic relief. The banter between all the heroes is extremely funny, a factor largely (but not entirely) lacking from the current, more sombre prequels. Gravitas is added with the scenes between Ben Kenobi (the superb Alec Guinness) and the mysterious and evil Darth Vader (wonderfully voiced by James Earl Jones). Vader is, in my opinion, the single best screen villain in cinema history. His frightening and dark presence (helped by his menacing breathing and mask) gave children everywhere nightmares. Vader's character is not developed a huge amount in this film, but in the subsequent installments he proves the most interesting character in the entire Star Wars saga. The other villain worthy of special mention is Peter Cushings' brilliantly nasty Grand Moff Tarkin, the arrogant governor of the Death Star.

The special effects, as I've already mentioned, were light years ahead of their time in 1977. In my opinion nothing equalled Star Wars effects wise until 1993's Jurassic Park. Even now, the effects still look fantastic. From the unforgettable opening shot to the final exhilarating space battle, the film is a triumph. The Death Star battle remains the best space dogfight ever put on film. Even though we've all seen it hundreds of times, as the pilots are picked off one by one until only Luke remains we get closer and closer to the edge of our seats. As, the odds are piled up against our hero, Han Solo's last minute intervention and Luke's triumph is, in my opinion, the second most exhilarating scene in cinema history (after the flying bike scene in ET).

The production design, costumes and look of the film are terrific (with Imperial greys, whites and blacks contrasting nicely to our more colourful heroes). The outfits spawned millions of nerds wanting to buy full Stormtrooper regalia for ludicrous prices. Also, the editing and ground breaking sound effects are all nothing short of landmark cinema (eg, the breathless space battles and the lightsabres respectively). Also, John Williams' thundering music score is magnificent. The staggeringly epic main theme, the Luke Skywalker theme, the Leia theme and many others have all become touchstones for other composers to imitate.

The special edition released in 1997 made some changes to effects shots (which were OK changes on the whole) and added a new, unnecessary scene with Jabba the Hutt. Nevertheless, it doesn't really matter which version you see, the effect is the same.

The spiritual overtones in Star Wars are fascinating. From the Christ allegory of Kenobi to Luke's choosing to have faith in `the Force' rather than trust his computer, this film is chock full of interesting interpretations about God, the Universe, and the triumph of faith, love and courage over faceless technology. Star Wars is a reassuring film. That more than anything I believe accounts for its success. People may be cynical, but underneath they desperately want to believe in absolute good and absolute evil.

That's why it's as timeless today as it was in 1977.

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