No change this week

Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

PG  |   |  Action, Adventure, Fantasy  |  20 June 1980 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.8/10 from 733,936 users   Metascore: 79/100
Reviews: 831 user | 198 critic | 16 from Metacritic.com

After the rebels have been brutally overpowered by the Empire on their newly established base, Luke Skywalker takes advanced Jedi training with Master Yoda, while his friends are pursued by Darth Vader as part of his plan to capture Luke.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
0Check in

Watch Now

From $19.99 on Amazon Video

Top Rated Movies #12 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 15 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

Luke Skywalker joins forces with a Jedi Knight, a cocky pilot, a wookiee and two droids to save the universe from the Empire's world-destroying battle-station, while also attempting to rescue Princess Leia from the evil Darth Vader.

Director: George Lucas
Stars: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

After rescuing Han Solo from the palace of Jabba the Hutt, the rebels attempt to destroy the second Death Star, while Luke struggles to make Vader return from the dark side of the Force.

Director: Richard Marquand
Stars: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Three years after the onset of the Clone Wars; the noble Jedi Knights are spread out across the galaxy leading a massive clone army in the war against the Separatists. After Chancellor ... See full summary »

Director: George Lucas
Stars: Hayden Christensen, Natalie Portman, Ewan McGregor
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Ten years after initially meeting, Anakin Skywalker shares a forbidden romance with Padmé, while Obi-Wan investigates an assassination attempt on the Senator and discovers a secret clone army crafted for the Jedi.

Director: George Lucas
Stars: Hayden Christensen, Natalie Portman, Ewan McGregor
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Two Jedi Knights escape a hostile blockade to find allies and come across a young boy who may bring balance to the Force, but the long dormant Sith resurface to reclaim their old glory.

Director: George Lucas
Stars: Ewan McGregor, Liam Neeson, Natalie Portman
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Archaeologist and adventurer Indiana Jones is hired by the US government to find the Ark of the Covenant before the Nazis.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Harrison Ford, Karen Allen, Paul Freeman
Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

While Frodo and Sam edge closer to Mordor with the help of the shifty Gollum, the divided fellowship makes a stand against Sauron's new ally, Saruman, and his hordes of Isengard.

Director: Peter Jackson
Stars: Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Viggo Mortensen
Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

A meek Hobbit and eight companions set out on a journey to destroy the One Ring and the Dark Lord Sauron.

Director: Peter Jackson
Stars: Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Orlando Bloom
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

When Dr. Henry Jones Sr. suddenly goes missing while pursuing the Holy Grail, eminent archaeologist Indiana Jones must follow in his father's footsteps and stop the Nazis.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Harrison Ford, Sean Connery, Alison Doody
Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.9/10 X  

Gandalf and Aragorn lead the World of Men against Sauron's army to draw his gaze from Frodo and Sam as they approach Mount Doom with the One Ring.

Director: Peter Jackson
Stars: Elijah Wood, Viggo Mortensen, Ian McKellen
Action | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A cyborg, identical to the one who failed to kill Sarah Connor, must now protect her young son, John Connor, from a more advanced cyborg, made out of liquid metal.

Director: James Cameron
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Edward Furlong
Adventure | Comedy | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A young man is accidentally sent 30 years into the past in a time-traveling DeLorean invented by his friend, Dr. Emmett Brown, and must make sure his high-school-age parents unite in order to save his own existence.

Director: Robert Zemeckis
Stars: Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson


Cast overview, first billed only:
Yoda (voice)
John Hollis ...
Des Webb ...
Emperor (voice)


After the Rebel base on the icy planet Hoth is taken over by the empire, Han, Leia, Chewbacca, and C-3PO flee across the galaxy from the Empire. Luke travels to the forgotten planet of Dagobah to receive training from the Jedi master Yoda, while Vader endlessly pursues him.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The Star Wars saga continues See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for sci-fi action violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

| |  »



Release Date:

20 June 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

ITL 609,584,000 (Italy) (11 April 1997)


$290,158,751 (USA) (9 May 1997)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (special edition)

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When Mark Hamill was having trouble with the Dagobah scenes with Yoda, Frank Oz brought in Miss Piggy to make him laugh. See more »


Shortly after the Millennium Falcon's escape from Bespin, when it is flying alongside the Executor, several shots strike it. However, these shots make no noise of any kind. See more »


[first lines]
Luke: Echo Three to Echo Seven. Han, old buddy, do you read me?
Han Solo: Loud and clear, kid. What's up?
Luke: Well, I finished my circle. I don't pick up any life readings.
Han Solo: There isn't enough life on this ice cube to fill a space cruiser. Sensors are placed. I'm going back.
Luke: Right. I'll see you shortly. There's a meteorite that hit the ground near here. I want to check it out. It won't take long.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the alternate DVD version, the Emperor is still credited as being voiced by Clive Revill, despite his performance being replaced by Ian McDiarmid. See more »


Referenced in The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien: Episode #1.112 (2009) See more »


Jedi Master Revealed/Mynock Cave (Medley)
Written by John Williams
Performed by London Symphony Orchestra
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

All the fun of the original with a much better, darker plot
27 June 2002 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The Rebellion has struck an important blow to the power of the Empire by destroying it's Death Star, however the power of the Dark Side of the Force remains strong and continues to hunt the rebellion. While the Rebellion base on Hoth is under treat, Luke has gone to a distant swamp planet to receive further Jedi training from Master Yoda. However the power of the dark side should not be underestimated and many dark truths are revealed as the threat of the Empire looms large.

Following Star Wars was never going to be easy but this is actually better. Empire retains the same characters and the same sense of fun that the first had – the battle on Hoth is just one of THE moments of the series. However what gets added to that is a much darker strand. The Empire is not beaten by the destruction of one ship – it's power is barely dented in fact. This sees some startling revelations (I won't spoil it in case you've been living under a rock!) but also sees significant blows to the rebellion. In fact the ending of this film could not be more different from the end of Star Wars.

Like the recent episode two this follows two strands – the more pedestrian scenes with Luke and Yoda and the more action based scenes with Han and company. The scenes with Yoda add depth to the film and hint at the truth. Meanwhile the other half is a lot more action orientated and has comedy and good new characters such as Bobba Fett. The two work well together and come together well for a great finale. The addition of a dark strand to the film makes it all the better as it can be enjoyed as a story and not just a fun sci-fi film with good effects.

The characters are better here than the first. The strong characters from the first (Han, C3P0 et al) are all still good here. However we also get a much more interesting version of Luke as he continues his journey into becoming a full Jedi. Yoda is a good addition (despite sounding like Fozzie Bear!) and Darth Vader becomes a lot more than just a good villain – we learn his past, a revelation then, but a thing of common knowledge now.

Overall this is as good as Star Wars at it's heart, but the darker nature of the film makes it much better. Where the first one was a victorious uprising this is, as the title suggests, the time in history where the Empire strikes back against the uprising. All the music, characters and things that make Star Wars Star Wars are here and it's simply one of the best of the series to date.

132 of 157 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Vador/Emporer Scene rocknroll8484
If this didn't "wow" me, should I give up on Star Wars? cartesianthought
I had no choice. They arrived right before you did. I'm sorry... McGannahanSkjellyfetti
Han Solo and Jesus Christ McGannahanSkjellyfetti
Lando's Balls JediMasterMisu
Is Harry Potter more successful than Star Wars? sarahsavideos

Contribute to This Page