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

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After the rebels are brutally overpowered by the Empire on the ice planet Hoth, Luke Skywalker begins Jedi training with Yoda, while his friends are pursued by Darth Vader.

Director:

Irvin Kershner

Writers:

Leigh Brackett (screenplay by), Lawrence Kasdan (screenplay by) | 1 more credit »
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810 ( 73)
Top Rated Movies #13 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 24 wins & 19 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
Billy Dee Williams ... Lando Calrissian
Anthony Daniels ... C-3PO
David Prowse ... Darth Vader
Peter Mayhew ... Chewbacca
Kenny Baker ... R2-D2
Frank Oz ... Yoda (voice)
Alec Guinness ... Ben (Obi-Wan) Kenobi
Jeremy Bulloch ... Boba Fett
John Hollis ... Lando's Aide
Jack Purvis ... Chief Ugnaught
Des Webb Des Webb ... Snow Creature
Clive Revill ... Emperor (voice)
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Storyline

Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Princess Leia and Chewbacca face attack by the Imperial forces and its AT-AT walkers on the ice planet Hoth. While Han and Leia escape in the Millennium Falcon, Luke travels to Dagobah in search of Yoda. Only with the Jedi master's help will Luke survive when the dark side of the Force beckons him into the ultimate duel with Darth Vader. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Adventure Continues... See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 June 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back See more »

Filming Locations:

Banks, Oregon, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,415,804, 21 May 1980, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$290,475,067, 31 December 1997

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$247,916,602
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Lucasfilm See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (special edition)

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby Stereo (35 mm prints)| Dolby Digital EX (DVD)| DTS-ES (6.1 channels) (blu-ray)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Yoda's iconic manner of speech has the parts of speech in Object Subject Verb order. Very few languages on Earth use this and most are based in the Amazon river basin. See more »

Goofs

When studying the Imperial probe, Han suggest that it "could be a speeder." He was told the previous night that the rebels were having trouble adapting them to the cold. See more »

Quotes

[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

The stars form the backdrop for the end credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

DVD released on September 21, 2004 features several revisions to the Special Edition cut, including:
  • Ian McDiarmid replaces Clive Revill as the Emperor, with new dialogue added (although Revill remains credited as "Voice of the Emperor);
  • Temeura Morrison provides the voice for Boba Fett
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Futurama (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

The Duel
Composed by John Williams
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
It's NOT the darkest of the trilogy - it's the most mature
26 October 1999 | by SpleenSee all my reviews

`It avoids having the standard shoot-'em-up ending,' says a friend of mine, `by not having an ending.' I suppose this is what most people think, but all the same the film manages to form a satisfying whole; or at least, a whole that satisfies me. I'm therefore inclined to think it DOES have an ending. Obviously, I can't discuss this without giving things away to those few who don't know what happens. If you're one of those few, then believe me: your ignorance is precious enough to be worth guarding until you see the film. Stop reading now.

After the surprise attack on the rebel base, Luke Skywalker splits with Han, Leia, et al. Han's party gets away first (is it just me, or is the shot of Luke watching the Falcon flying off while he stands stranded on the ground, a poignant one?), but thereafter they face one narrow escape after another, while Luke slinks off quietly and safely to train with Yoda.

The training scenes are many and Yoda talks a great deal of rubbish. But somehow it doesn't matter. The film is ambivalent in its attitude towards Yoda, anyway. Our sympathy clearly lies with the entirely non-spiritual concerns of Han, Leia and the adolescent Luke. The main story concerns the understanding that builds between Han and Leia. In the end they are honest with one another; and if Han's being frozen and shipped back to Tatooine is the price to pay for this, well, it's the price to pay. It was very important NOT to end with the dashing rescue that opens `Return of the Jedi', which would be dramatically beside the point. Instead we end with the promise that the rescue will some day occur. That's enough.

As for Luke: he abandons Yoda to rescue Han and Leia, and achieves NOTHING WHATEVER. This was my favourite touch. All five Jedis - Luke, Obi-Wan, Yoda, Vader, and the Emperor - find that their conflicting instincts are all entirely wrong. The film is really about the temporary triumph of human impulses over the mystical Force. Luke's human idealism is vindicated, but his supernatural powers, just this once, are not.

When George Lucas gave his Star Wars trilogy a fresh coat of varnish in 1997 he felt he had to justify the expense by making needless changes. You'll notice he made precious few changes to episode V. There just wasn't room. He added a few extra shots of the ice monster, which of course weakened that one scene; but even with those changes in place the Special Edition is virtually identical to the original edition. Since Lucas was so keen on making changes wherever he could this is obviously a tribute to the tightness of the story and the direction. It's also a tribute to the perfection of the original special effects, more innovative than the effects in the first Star Wars movie and better than the effects in any subsequent one.


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