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May 24, 1983 - Image 12

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Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1983-05-24

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Page 12- The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, May 14, 1 3
'Jedi' junkies get theirfix

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By Richard Campbell
SIX YEARS AGO this Wednesday,
theater managers across the country
looked out of their box offices and
gasped. At the opening day matinee for
an obscure sci-fi flick, hundreds of
people were already standing in line.
The managers scratched their heads
but knew in their hearts that the novelty
would pass; science-fiction movies just
didn't make money.
A hundred million dollars later,
everyone knew. Science-fiction could
make money and a couple of whiz kids
from California were going to show
Hollywood and the rest of the world how
to do it.
Luke Skywalker and gang showed
that movies could be escapist yet still
be well made and appeal to any age
group. By paying attention to detail,
Lucas directed the movie like a juggler,
keeping ten balls in the air and not
dropping one. The acting was uniformly
good, the bits of celluloid were
meticulously pieced together, and the
writing mixed the dreams of fairy tales
with the myth of an Arthurian legend.
The special effects were sometimes
singled out as the only reason people
went to the movie, but dazzling effects
can only be believed when they exist in
a believeable world.
When Lucas wrote his first draft of a
space epic, he realized that his story
was too big to tell so he chopped the
saga up into manageable chunks. Of
these he decided to work on middle sec-
tion comprised of Star Wars, The Em-.
pire Strikes Back, and Return of the
Jedi.

With the release of each sequel,
audiences have watched carefully,
waiting for Lucas to dropa ball - so far
he hasn't. But because of the great dif-
ficulty in organizing a film production
of the necessary scale and the long time
needed to complete the special effects,
the episodes have appeared three years
apart. And while Star Wars was pretty
much a complete story in itself, Empire
brought up several fairly interesting
plot twists that will only be resolved in
the concluding episode of the trilogy.
For those that aren't Star Wars
fanatics but would wtill like to keep up
with the story, here's a brief summary
of the previous movies: Episode IV, A
New Hope, as Star Wars is more
properly titled, introduced us to the
main characters of the trilogy. C3PO
and R2D2 are robots working for
leaders of the rebellion against the evil
galactic Empire. Years ago, the old
republic, under the protection of the
Jedi Knights, made the galaxy prosper.
But Senator Palpatine, a power
hungry politician, caused himself to
be elected President of the republic and
then declared himself Emperor.
The rebellion fought steadily against
the Emperor, but his resources were
too vast to allow for a successful over-
throw of his dictatorship. To instill fear
among the various worlds, a huge
Death Star was built with enough
firepower to destroy an entire planet.
As the film opens, Princess Leia
Organa is fleeing from one of the last
surviving Jedi Knights, the wicked
Darth Vader. Just before her capture,
she sends the two robots with the plans
to a nearby planet where she knows
Obi-Wan Kenobi, an aging Jedi, still
lives.

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The 'Star Wars' clan comes together again for another thrilling adventure in
'Return of the Jedi' the third work of Lucas' continuing saga.

$1.50 TUESDAY ALL DAY ALL SHOWS (EXCEPT
ANN RBOR NAPOLEON)
"NW "T T NA NAPOLEON REVIVAL AT PREMIUM
3, , N71.0700 PRICES ADULT EVES$4.50, $3.50
WED SAT SUN SHOWS BEFORE 6:00 P.M. $2.00 CHILDREN
HURRY! ENDS THURS! I

Fortunately, the robots are
discovered by a strange group of
troglodytes who quickly sell them to
Owen Lars, who, along with his nephew
Luke Skywalker, farms the desert. In
another fortuitous series of events,
Luke and the robots happen to find
Kenobi, who tells Luke that his father
was killed by Darth Vader. When Luke
discovers that his uncle has just been
killed by the Empire searching for the
stolen plans, he decides to accompany
Kenobi on his journey to return the data
tapes to the rebellion.
Luke, Kenobi, C3PO, and R2D2 go to
the local cantina and charter a
spaceship from Han Solo, captain of the
Millenisum Falcon, the fastest hunk of
junk in the galaxy. Solo is desperate
enough to take on the job as he owes
Jabba the Hut a substantial amount of
money from a bungled smuggling job.
With our heroes finally all in-
troduced, they take off to Alderaan to
save the rebellion. The Death Star,
however, easily captures the Falcon
near the planet. As our boys run around
the giant space station trying to remain
inconspicuous as they rescue Princess
Leia, Kenobi confronts Vader in a light
saber duel. To the horror of Luke,
Kenobi appears to be defeated. Luke,
Han, Leia, Chewie, and the robots
finally escape the Death Star, regroup
with the rebellion and in a rousing
space dogfight destroy the Empire's
most precious weapon. Unfortunately,
Darth Vader miraculously survives.
The rebellion has won a stirring vic-
tory, but the Empire is only wounded.
At the opening of The Empire Strikes
Back, Darth Vader and his army im-
mediately begin searching for the main
rebel base, with the intention of
crushing the rebellion. And in a
breathtaking land battle on the frozen
surface of Hoth, they almost succeed.
But a few transports and fighters
manage to escape. Luke and R2D2 run
off to Dagobah to find Yoda, who has
trained Jedi Knights for 800 years. Han,
Leia, Chewie, and C3POrush off only to

narrowly escape the Empire's forces in
an asteroid field after which they take
refuge in the cloud city of Bespin, run
by a friend of Han's, Lando Calrissian.
On Dagobah, Luke begins his training
to become a Jedi Knight. During one
test, Luke walks into a dark cave and
finds himself face to face with Darth
Vader. In a brief fight, Luke kills
Vader, whose breath mask splits open
to reveal not the face of the Dark Lord,
but of Luke. After that chilling scene,
Luke sees a vision of his friends in
trouble on Bespin and leaves Dagobah
to help. Yoda and a ghostly Kenobi can-
not talk him out of it. "Remember your
failure at the cave," says Yoda. After
Luke has left, Ben tells Yoda "That boy
is our last hope." But Yoda cryptically
adds, "No, there is another."
At the City in the Clouds, Han and
Leia are caught by Darth Vader. To
prepare for the capture of Luke
Skywalker, Vader freezes Han in car-
bonite, much to the dismay of Boba
Fett, a bounty hunter who will take the
slab of carbon to Jabba the Hut. Lando
helps Leia, Chewie, and C3PO to
escape, but Luke is left to confront
Vader. During the climactic duel,
Vader tells Luke, "I am your father.
Join me, and together we can rule the
galaxy as father and son." In a great
deal of confusion, Luke jumps off a
balcony, gets caught on an overhanging
weathervane, and is rescued by Lando
piloting the Millenium Falcon.
Empire ends at this point. Luke is
struggling to become a Jedi and find out
who his father is. The rebellion is in tat-
ters, having been chased out of their
latest base. There may or may not be
an "other" to help the rebellion. Han
Solo is in carbon-freeze in the hands of
Jabba the Hut. And Leia, who had been
dallying around with Han, is re-united
with Luke.
Lucas has promised to tie up all these
loose ends in Return of the Jedi. And if
there is one filmmaker alive today who
can do that with style and a great deal
of fun, it's Lucas.

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