Film Micrœview #254: Star Wars Episode VI: The Return of the Jedi (1983)
11.26.2015 § Leave a comment
This one has, by far, the most epic space fighting.
And a ton of rehashed lines, shots, and moments from Episode IV and especially V. Usually not as well done this time around, too.
One never really believes that Luke would turn to the dark side, not even to stop them from going after his sister. The deal never makes sense. And we didn’t need a whole prequel trilogy to understand that Vader resents what the Emperor did to him and is swayed by Luke’s resistance to it – but why did the Emperor turn in the first place? Is desire for power enough of an explanation?
It’s interesting how in the first movie, Vader feels on equal footing with Grand Moff Tarkin. The rank and file Empire leaders are bold enough to challenge and question and gripe at Vader, who feels more like this chaotic, dark wild card, somehow allowed to operate outside of the system at will. In V there is no Grand Moff equivalent, Vader is uncontested and obsessed with Luke and the Empire leaders merely quiver in fear and do his bidding no matter the cost. Finally in VI, Vader is a straight up servant and wuss.
I don’t mind the Ewoks as much as others seem to. I like how C3PO gets a moment to shine. The trilogy would be sorely lacking without baddies like Jabba and the Emperor (funny how badass baddie Boba Fett from V gets dispatched with so embarrassingly here). But something about this movie does just feel on rails, too easy. It feels like the shortest film even though it’s actually the longest.