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Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977)

Star Wars (original title)
Trailer
2:02 | Trailer
Luke Skywalker joins forces with a Jedi Knight, a cocky pilot, a Wookiee and two droids to save the galaxy from the Empire's world-destroying battle station, while also attempting to rescue Princess Leia from the mysterious Darth Vader.

Director:

George Lucas

Writer:

George Lucas
Popularity
125 ( 15)
Top Rated Movies #25 | Won 6 Oscars. Another 52 wins & 29 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mark Hamill ... Luke Skywalker
Harrison Ford ... Han Solo
Carrie Fisher ... Princess Leia Organa
Peter Cushing ... Grand Moff Tarkin
Alec Guinness ... Ben Obi-Wan Kenobi
Anthony Daniels ... C-3PO
Kenny Baker ... R2-D2
Peter Mayhew ... Chewbacca
David Prowse ... Darth Vader
Phil Brown ... Uncle Owen
Shelagh Fraser ... Aunt Beru
Jack Purvis ... Chief Jawa
Alex McCrindle ... General Dodonna
Eddie Byrne ... General Willard
Drewe Henley ... Red Leader (as Drewe Hemley)

Here's Your Cheat Sheet for the 'Star Wars' Saga

With the release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, this is the perfect opportunity to recap the epic space opera audiences have enjoyed for over 40 years.

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Storyline

The Imperial Forces, under orders from cruel Darth Vader, hold Princess Leia hostage in their efforts to quell the rebellion against the Galactic Empire. Luke Skywalker and Han Solo, captain of the Millennium Falcon, work together with the companionable droid duo R2-D2 and C-3PO to rescue the beautiful princess, help the Rebel Alliance and restore freedom and justice to the Galaxy. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away... See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for sci-fi violence and brief mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ranked #2 on the American Film Institute's list of the 10 greatest films in the genre "sci-fi" in June 2008. See more »

Goofs

Near the opening scene, when C-3P0 and R2-D2 cross the corridor barely missing fire from the stormtroopers, all portals of that type are not level with the deck. However RD-D2 rolls across as if they were level. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
C-3PO: Did you hear that? They shut down the main reactor. We'll be destroyed for sure. This is madness.
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Crazy Credits

The 20th anniversary special edition has a 1997 copyright date in the credits, rather than a 1977 copyright date. See more »

Alternate Versions

These are all the changes made between the 1977, 1997, and 2004 versions:
  • The scenes where the Stormtroopers are looking through the sand for the escape pod has extra special effects in the 1997 and 2004 versions.
  • When the Sandcrawler is climbing over the sand, the angle has changed to make the machine look much bigger in the 1997 and 2004 versions.
  • C3PO saying "We've stopped." has been added to the scene where he and R2D2 are in the sand-crawler for the 2004 version.
  • The binary sunset on Tatooine was made more consistent between shots in the 2004 version.
  • When Obi-Wan makes a call to scare away the Tusken Raiders, it has been changed, due to sounding too closely like a dew back scream. In the 2004 version it sounds more like the Boga lizard from Episode III, although it has always said to be the call of the Krayt Dragon in books and other sources.
  • The establishing shot of Obi-Wan Kenobi's home has been expanded with a big matte painting in the 1997 and 2004 versions.
  • When Luke, Obi-Wan, and the droids overlook Mos Eisley, the 1997 and 2004 versions have a bigger view with more detail.
  • When the land speeder arrives in Mos Eisley, the 1997 version added extra effects to make it more real. The 2004 version further enhanced the special effects with more fluid movement.
  • Mos Eisley itself has been expanded in the 1997 and 2004 versions with extra special effects shots, and the strange black blur under the land speeder has been removed.
  • In the 1997 version, Greedo shot first during his confrontation with Han Solo, instead of the other way around. The 2004 version has them shooting almost at the exact same time.
  • The 1997 version added a scene of Han talking to a CGI animated Jabba The Hutt and inserted Boba Fett into the scene as well. The 2004 version retained this scene but improved the CGI Jabba.
  • When the Millennium Falcon takes off, extra effects were added into the 1997 and 2004 versions to make it smoother and less static.
  • In the 2004 version, a line has been added to one of the stormtroopers after they search the Millennium Falcon to confirm they found nothing.
  • A larger Alderaan explosion was added in the 1997 and 2004 versions.
  • C-3PO's line "The power beam holding the ship is coupled to the main reactor in seven locations. A power loss at one of the terminals will enable the ship to leave" was omitted from the 1981 version, but restored in the 1997 and 2004 versions.
  • Several laser shots fired in the 1997 and 2004 versions have been censored to not show the impact.
  • When one of the stormtroopers bang their head on the door, a sound effect has been added in the 2004 version.
  • The cell block corridor has been expanded in the 2004 version.
  • The Dianogah in the garbage chute has been improved with CGI in the 2004 version, and now blinks.
  • The writing on the tractor beam has been changed in the 2004 version to Aurabesh.
  • When Luke and Leia are running from the stormtroopers and find themselves at a dead end, there is extra echo effect added into the 2004 version.
  • When Han runs down the corridor and is confronted by stormtroopers, the 1997 and 2004 versions had a whole room full of them.
  • When Han and Chewie are running from the stormtroopers, the 1997 and 2004 versions add an extra small line for Han.
  • The light sabers in the Obi-Wan/Darth Vader fight have been cleaned up in the 2004 version. The 2004 version also corrects a shot from shortly after the fight where Darth Vader's light saber had not been colored by the effects crew. It now appears red as it should be.
  • In the 1997 and 2004 versions, we actually see the Millennium Falcon when it is arriving at the rebel base, and the huge doors are moving now instead of stationary.
  • There is a small conversation between Luke and his friend Biggs before they go into battle.
  • When the Rebels launch to go into attack, the 1997 and 2004 versions have added more special effects.
  • A shot of the Rebel fleet in space has been expanded in the 1997 and 2004 versions and the camera now moves with the X-Wings.
  • The line "He's ON Your Tail" was added for the 1997 version but removed again for the 2004 version.
  • The Death Star explosion is expanded in the 1997 and 2004 versions.
  • Many matte lines have been removed throughout the 1997 and 2004 versions and other similar optical improvements have been made. The overall video and audio quality has also been improved in each version, sometimes with changes to some sound effects.
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Connections

Referenced in Californication: Going Down and Out in Beverly Hills (2008) See more »

User Reviews

 
The Force will be with you, always.
27 July 2018 | by SantiagoDM1See all my reviews

"A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away..."

Pre review:

Its writing started in January 1973, "eight hours a day, five days a week", George Lucas said by taking small notes, inventing odd names and assigning them possible characterization... After many drafts, he finally came to a satisfactory conclusion.

Then, Lucas presented Star Wars to the United Artists, but they refused to budget the film, so he went to Universal Pictures, the studio that financed American Graffiti; however, it was rejected, as the film concept was "too strange".

Suddenly, Alan Ladd Jr -head of 20th Century Fox- appeared, a man that trusted in Lucas' genius. And that's how Star Wars became a reality.

The shooting of the movie was full of mishaps, problems with practical effects never done before, a bad first edit of the movie, but that didn't stop George from fulfilling his Space Opera. Due to those setbacks, Fox Studios began to put pressure on Lucas to finish the movie. Finally, the movie was done. On the eve of Star Wars release, 20th Century Fox, George Lucas and his cast and crew braced themselves for the worse. One way or another, May 25, 1977 would be a day they would never forget...

Review:

Star Wars is a modern tale of mythic adventure. It follows the journey and growth of the protagonist: Luke Skywalker. His journey of discovery is set amidst a larger struggle between the Empire and the Rebel Alliance; both parties are embroiled in a civil war. The Empire is comprised of corrupted power within a small group of leaders. These sullied leaders abuse their power over the masses with impunity. It is oppression and repression of the masses. The Empire wants to destroy the hope of the rebellion to ensure the small group of leaders can keep their power...

One of the most important features of the movie are the special effects. The use motion control was even superior to Stanley Kubrick's revolutionary masterpiece: "2001: A Space Odyssey" thanks to the creation of The Dykstraflex, the first digital motion control photography camera system developed for Star Wars on 1976. Along with an incredibly iconographic character and production design, the movie became stylistically unique.

The story and the characters are original and relatable. R2-D2 and C-3PO: the astromech as the optimistic adventurer's desiring to move forward. In direct opposition C-3PO, the protocol droid filled with doubt and reservations. Luke Skywalker, the brave hero, often haunted by doubts and hopes about his future journey. Obi-Wan Kenobi, the wise master and moral guidance of our hero. Han Solo, the rebellious smuggler whose personality represents tenacity. Leia, the damsel "in distress", a fearsome princess and general. Finally, Darth Vader, the most iconic character in the franchise, the merciless tyrant in a black suit, representing evil and final conflict of the journey.

The film score presents an emotional resonance trough a romantic 1930s Hollywood orchestral score that was commissioned for composer John Williams, who succeeded to create a haunting constellation of operatic leitmotifs.

The visual composition is authentic, as Lucas wanted a nostalgic "filtered look" so he kept changing key lights for a "flashing" effect. He used a loose, "nervous" frame, as in newsreels. The dramatic center was displaced, deflecting the eye to background activity, which in later films would include poetically changing weather. This first film gradually turned darker, following a symbolic color scheme where organic brown and warm gold yielded to high-tech black, white, and steely gray." This is authenticity is reflected in it's most iconic shot: the 'Binary Sunset' sequence, which establishes the narrative through-line of the story and the world it takes place in, the main value of the scene lies in how powerfully and economically it develops Luke's character: As the suns begin to slowly sink in the evening sky, he gazes towards the horizon, his sense of longing for something more is palpable. Taking things further, he goes on to squint into the distance as if he could see his new future just out of reach, and for the first time we get to see him not as a kid, but for as a new hope.

Books such as "The hero with a thousand faces" by Joseph Campbell structured the story, The War of Vietnam inspired the battle between the Rebels and the Empire, the lifestyle of buddhist monks characterized the Jedi, real shots of warplanes made the space battles real, Kendo foreshadowed the epic lightsaber duel, Akira Kurosawa's storytelling influenced the focus on minor characters, Fritz Lang's it's iconic protocol droid and John Ford westerns determined it's soul.The fascination with filmmaking and anthropology are the components that allowed Star Wars to be compelling and human, besides being located on a galaxy far, far away.

10/10


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »

Country:

USA | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 May 1977 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,554,475, 30 May 1977

Gross USA:

$460,998,507

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$775,398,007
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (special edition)

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby Stereo (as Dolby System) (35 mm prints) (1977 print)| DTS-Stereo (as DTS Stereo® in selected theatres) (1997 print)| Dolby Digital (as Dolby® Digital in selected theatres) (1997 print)| Dolby Atmos | SDDS (as Sony Dynamic Digital SoundTM in selected theatres) (1997 print)| Mono (some 35 mm prints) (other 16 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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