Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back
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Star Wars Month #2: An Dark, Interesting, and Outstanding Sequel

Author: Theflyace from United States
14 January 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

After Star Wars was a smash hit in 1977, a sequel was put into the works. The Empire Strikes Back is one of those sequels that is equal to the original, while still being its own film. While I can't personally say it's the best film of the Saga, it comes pretty darn close.

As with any second film in a trilogy, we begin after an unspecified amount of time following the Battle of Yavin. The rebels are discovered on the ice planet Hoth, and are promptly defeated by the Imperial Walkers. Our main group is split up into separate teams. Luke, following advice from the force ghost of Obi Wan, seeks out the wise teacher Yoda (a puppet played in a stunningly real performance by puppeteer Frank Oz) who teaches him the true power and meaning of the Force. Leia and Han, along with Chewie, Threepio and R2, are pursued by the Empire for use as bait in a trap by Darth Vader.

For a film that has no real beginning or end story-wise, this film has more emotion and character study, exactly what George Lucas and director Irvin Kershner wanted. During his experiences with Yoda, Luke develops an inner conflict about Darth Vader and the Dark Side, and that he must confront this evil in a duel. We as an audience also learn the power of the Force, which is further strengthened as a religious idea, such as Yoda's line, "You must FEEL the force AROUND you." Such material is what makes Empire great, is that we move deeper and deeper into darker and more thoughtful thematic material. The real interesting part of this film is the big reveal in the third act, where Vader reveals Luke's true parentage. It is simply one of the greatest scenes to ever grace the movie screens, and such an emotional pull that we still get lost in the moment even though we all know who he is now.

On the opposite side, the stuff on Leia and Han's side of the film is good, but not great. Let me explain. The love story is actually very well done. There's not a lot of smooching and sappy sentiment, but it happens very naturally, along with some banter. Harrison Ford also delivers one of the best improvised lines when Leia says "I Love You." he simply says, "I know." Those are actors who really know their characters. But the rest it seems just to be "funny" or unnecessary annoyance. Chewie and Threepio fit into this category, though Threepio is far more interesting than Chewie so... I guess I give him a pass.

The rest of the movie is pretty good. The effects are unbelievable, the music is perfect, with John Williams giving us the universally loved "Imperial March," and the terrifying lightsaber duel between Vader and Luke being the highlight of the entire film.

Its one of the best of the Saga. I say "one of the best" because, for me, this ties with two of the other films, Episodes VI and III. All three of these films are on the top of the game and great films to watch.

Onto the first in the sort of "lackluster films the fans love to rip to shreds...

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The No. 1 when it comes to Star Wars. Best of all six.

Author: The_Riddler_1948
13 January 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Having seen all Star Wars films numerous times, knowing them word-by- word and having grown up with them, I can clearly and confidently say, this is the greatest of all Six films. The prequels were nothing compared to the Originals and the other two of the OT (Original Trilogy) are nothing compared to this one. The Empire Strikes back really spoke to me as a young kid, and having grown up with it I have seen it loads of times. Somewhere between 45-60 times. Let me tell you, it doesn't get old.

The marvellous directing and the acting is top-notch, the scenery is perfected near enough and the scenes are, well put it this way, they're a lot better and more interesting *not to mention Luke is best in the scenes of this film, rather than IV, in which he wasn't*. He has matured and progressed in this film. This film sees Luke travel to the Dagobah system, in search for the legendary, powerful Jedi Master 'Yoda'. Throughout the film, it's filled with interesting Science Fiction, brilliant acting, well thought-out scenery, spectacular lighting and the creation of the new characters are above all else. I love the fact that, in this film, Luke wants to progress more and do further training in the thoughts of becoming a Jedi. This film also sees the best dual between him and his father *Anakin Skywalker, now the Evil Sith Lord, Darth Vader* out of any times they dual. What makes this film even more incredible is it's various and different uses of Worlds. Some places in the film such as Cloud City, Hoth and of course, the Dagobah system are certainly extraordinary and different, but in good ways. The ideas thought out for the film are superb and they're the best of most films. Thankfully, this film was created just to be, well so great as it is and nothing else. It's the perfect film out of all six, and as good as the other originals are, it's still far greater and explains a good bit about the backgrounds of Luke's father, Vader himself, especially the ending to the film, or near ending.

I'd rate this film a perfect and complete rating of 10/10. No less. Never less for this film. Millions of Star Wars fans across the world, like me, will agree this is the best. Some say IV, some say VI...but the vast majority of them agree it's V. So, yes, 10/10. Excellent and well-made Sci-Fi film and the best of all six.

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My Favorite Movie

Author: leomirelesortiz
31 December 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is it my favorite movie of all time, now I'm not saying it's the best, because that honor belongs to The Godfather, this is more my opinion than anything else. So why do I like it so much, well nostalgia is a key factor, I was 8 when this came out, and it was even better than the first one, the stakes were higher, it was darker, and it had one of the greatest twists ever (beaten only by The Usual Suspects, and The Sixth Sense). It was just great, like the first one, while adding great new things to the tables. It is my favorite movie of all time, and it is without a doubt a timeless classic.

it is a 10/10.

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If we could keep only one sci-fi movie. *personal TOP 10*

Author: West_Saxon from United Kingdom
29 December 2013

So, in 1980, the sequel to end all sequels - the movie that made a certain generation of us never quite take our parentage for granted again - was with us. Where to start with this masterclass of story-telling and galactic imagination? Well, at the beginning perhaps...

After all these years, I still feel the same sense of wonder at the ice world of Hoth as I did as an impressionable 13-year-old, so vivid and *realistic* was the setting. As in the first film, special effects take a back seat to story, and we're introduced to the intimacy of the rebel base and its characters on this frozen world. Into this is injected the menace of the Imperial presence, as scouting droids zoom down from space and splash down in the snow (real snow). Immediately - but not frenetically - the crisis is set in motion, with a tapestry of captivating sub-plots from Skywalker's peril in the cave of the ice-bear to Vader's increasing 'grip' on his subordinates. Both characters, now very much the central ones, have grown. Skywalker is now a leader with awakening Jedi powers, not so much the whiny little Luke now. Vader is now 2nd only to the Emperor, and will stop at nothing to bring the rebels to heel, but he especially wants 'Skywalker' - the personal conflict is intense.

The story is inherently simple: the wretched but dignified lot of them are running and pursued to all corners of the galaxy. The places this takes us are unforgettable, the two stand-out ones being the swamp-world of Dagobah and Cloud City on Bespin. At this point it could almost be two separate stories - the training of Luke by Yoda, and the perils faced by Han Solo and Leia - yet they are tied together powerfully. As in all great drama, a final confrontation seems necessary as well as inevitable. That Luke is 'not ready to face Vader alone', unless his training is completed, adds power to it. Uncommonly in a film aimed to include kids in its market, we feel a real sense of dread, and doubt whether all this is going to turn out well. In fact, we wonder how the hell it is going to turn out, period. How it actually does was truly beyond the ability of most of us to predict and, let's say, 'not entirely happy' for the good guys in various ways.

To divulge who lives or dies, especially the twist in the tail, would of course be spoiling. Yet folk who have grown up with the first 3 episodes will already have that knowledge, which reduces the impact (although they may still find it the best, and don't worry there's plenty of action). This leads me to suggest that any newcomer to the entire franchise should be advised to watch episodes IV, V, VI first, then follow it straight through from I to VI.

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The Continuation of a Wonderful Trilogy

Author: Michael Kelley from United States
16 December 2013

When it comes to sequels, I strongly believe that everyone gets an empty feeling in their stomach. There can always be a misfire when it comes to the next chapter of a saga, and this one was one of those films that worried many, many fans. At the same time, however, it was very anticipated. "Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back" ranks as my second favorite "Star Wars" film, following closely behind "Star Wars: Return of the Jedi". Most fans would disagree with my arrangement of favorites, yet I don't believe any would disagree with this film getting an outrageous score. That's right. "Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back" is--simply put--phenomenal. Everything from the scale of the film to the sets to the acting to the writing has improved from the original film.

The rebel alliance, at the beginning of this film, are relocated in an icy planet called Hoth. As they wait for Luke to return from his scouting, Han Solo goes on the rescue to save Luke, whom was captured and nearly eaten by a polar bear-like monstrosity. After they return to the rebel base, the Empire locates the rebels with a droid sent to Hoth, and then they invade the area, attempting to find Luke Skywalker and his friends. The base is destroyed, but now Luke must go to Dagoba, in search for Jedi Master Yoda so that he may begin his Jedi training.

Once again, Mark Hammill, Harrison Ford, and Carrie Fisher (along with every single actor from the original film) make a return for this enormously exciting sequel. However, their performances have taken a huge step upward, crafting one of the best character-based films ever created. This time around, you can practically cut the tension in the air with a lightsaber because of these stupendous performances. It seems like every actor became one with their character even moreso than in the original phenomenon.

Another huge step forward was the writing. George Lucas may have created the prequel films in later years, but there is no denying that his writing was extravagant in this particular film. "Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back" has a deep message along with a--what I consider, at least--better storyline, along with better character arcs. Lucas outdid himself with this screenplay. This film also included one of the most shocking plot twists in film history, and it changed "Star Wars" fans forever. This particular scene also became the most quoted line in cinema history, seeing as how revolutionary it had become.

One more surprise with this film is that the special effects have gotten ten times better than the original. Everything about this film is perfect, to a tee, when it comes to the special effects. We even get a real lightsaber fight this time around, clocking in at about fifteen minutes long. I wasn't near being born when this film came out, but everyone tells me that this lightsaber battle was so intense that they couldn't control themselves at the the theatres. Even the space scenes look real. The detailing of the scale models used for spaceships were extensive and edgy.

"Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back" is just too perfect. The film was way beyond its time of release, and that is an absolute mouthful.

My rating for "The Empire Strikes Back" is a complete, well-deserved ten-out-of-ten stars.

I recommend this movie to anyone and everyone.

May the force be with you! God bless, and Merry Christmas!

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Excellent movie!

Author: themadyjones
4 December 2013

This is my favorite out of the original Star Wars movies, and for good reason. There's action, there's drama, and there's Yoda (because who doesn't love the little green guy?). Not to mention the fact that Harrison Ford is in it, and he's a brilliant actor. Mark Hamill does a great job playing Luke Skywalker, and Carrie Fischer is a convincing Leia as well. I'm personally not a fan of Lando, but he's not terrible. The special effects aren't perfect, but it IS an older movie, so it's forgivable. Lightsabers: I really wish they were real. Also, it shouldn't be a surprise to know, but the stormtroopers still can't hit anything. I love all six of the movies, but this one is truly spectacular.

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Star Wars doesn't get any better than this.

Author: Mr-Fusion from United States
1 December 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

You've gotta admire George Lucas' moxie. It was bold enough that he sought out to self-finance "The Empire Strikes Back", but the movie has to be a downer on top of it. Make matters worse, he ends on one humdinger of a cliffhanger that people had to wait 3 years for resolution. That's sheer balls.

But what a terrific movie it is. For one, it surpasses the original, which is rare in the sequel department. But it also takes its time to let the story unfold, characters get fleshed out, and the whole thing's a stirring mix of humor, drama and action.

Yoda's scenes are some of my favorite of the trilogy. Frank Oz was able to lend that puppet such a personality that it simply becomes a wizened old Jedi master and not a special effect.

And Darth Vader's presence in this movie makes him one of the all0time great movie villains. He's unhinged, choking out underlings left and right, and pursuing Luke with reckless abandon. Badass seems kind of trite, but it fits here.

"The Empires Strikes Back" is a movie that just fires on every last cylinder. Great dialogue, suspense, set pieces and production values. For my money, it's John Williams' finest score, and the movie continues to be one of my absolute favorites (not to mention the best of the trilogy).


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"Named Best Conclusion"

Author: davorinlonac from Australia
22 November 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Empire Strikes Back is said to be the best Star Wars film and many would be correct. For me it isn't but it doesn't mean I don't love it. This film starts off in Planet Hoth, the Ice planet where I wish I could live. This film I think I have only seen twice, and both times I seemingly enjoyed it. For a film made in 1980, a not so famous year this film is Excellent. Many fans of A New Hope came to see this and were stunned greatly. The sheer greatness of this film is nothing any other film can compete with. Though this isn't about greatness, its about placing out how good it really is. I'd rate it a 8.3 probably because 8.8 is a little too much. Attack of the Clones is better for me, and I know you readers might not like that but hey! We all gotta have an opinion.

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Great Film

Author: vinnyvincoli
15 November 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The fifth installment to one of the greatest film franchises on the planet. Not only just an all around great movie but home to one of the greatest moments in film history when Darth Vader, after battling Luke, informs him that he is his father. The film has many classic moments people know by heart some who haven't even seen the full saga. It's amazing how certain moments are known by people worldwide without even seeing the full movie. Just another look at George Lucas's brilliance in film making. Although he is no longer in the making of the next few films set to come out over the next few years, after seeing the great remakes of star trek i'm confident J.J. Abrams will do a good job in keeping not only the classic feeling there but also adding more to an already fantastic franchise.

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Best Star Wars Film

Author: Kaan Ozbilen from Istanbul, Turkey
14 November 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I think this movie is the best Star Wars movie ever.The story of the movie and character selection is very good.The effects of the movie is good for this years.There are some errors in the film, but they can be ignored.

The musics in the movie is great.I think Imperial March is the best movie music.It reflects dark side very well.Also I love the sound of light-saber.

Need to be tied to violate the laws of physics in order to facilitate expression. Because the planet of the Star Wars like The Arabian Nights tale. Lucas doesn't conform to the realities of his own creation universe, but it is sinking me this moments.

You absolutely watch this film.

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