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Can someone explain to me the appeal of Empire Strikes Back

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Can someone explain to me the appeal of Empire Strikes Back

Old 02-25-03, 03:16 PM
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Can someone explain to me the appeal of Empire Strikes Back

Out of the original trillogy, this one is my least favorite even though I still do enjoy it and watch it evey so often. What ruins the movie for me, is that the entire second act (Luke with Yoda ect), was really slow, borring and unintersting imo. But the rest of the movie is great, the Hoth system, Han being frozen, the best lightsabor fight, and who can forget the twist ending. For me at least, the second act is even sleep worthy so sometimes I fast forward it until the crew meets lando.
Anyone with an opinion.
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Old 02-25-03, 03:18 PM
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I love ESB. The second act is by no means any more boring than the first half of Star Wars, which seems to take forever to get going.
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Old 02-25-03, 03:33 PM
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I used to feel the same way about Empire, I even fast forwarded throught the second act as you did. But as time went by I found I enjoyed the middle section, when the cast is split up and "lost" to one another, the most.
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Old 02-25-03, 03:53 PM
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I think that many people have the same thoughts at first. But usually on subsequent views people (including myself) really start to like ESB.

For me its the:
Hoth Battle - I love the speeders and the At-At
Yoda - I love how he is an all powerful jedi and is so quirky and lovable
Millenium Falcon Asteroid Scene - I love all the TIEs being slammed by the asteroids. The whole scene is so cool.
Bobba Fett - we are introduced to him and he found and tracked the Millinium Falcon
Darth Vader - has a very commanding aura in this one and of course the big plot twist in the end.

You definately learn the most about Star Wars Mythology in this episode.

It is just the best IMHO of the original trilogy. Many people don't like it since it is the middle of a trilogy.
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Old 02-25-03, 04:05 PM
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About that part with Luke and Yoda- exactly how much time is passing? It seems like weeks or months, but the parts with Han and Leia seem like it might have only been a few days. Any thoughts?
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Old 02-25-03, 04:15 PM
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I think Dante Hicks has the best reason for why ESB is so brilliant.

"'Empire' had the better ending. I mean, Luke gets his hand cut off, finds out Vader's his father, Han gets frozen and taken away by Boba Fett. It ends on such a down note. I mean, that's what life is, a series of down endings. All "Jedi" had was a bunch of Muppets."
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Old 02-25-03, 04:29 PM
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For me personally, it's just the complete movie. You have action, drama, comedy, twist ending, excellent atmosphere throughout and so far, it's the only Star Wars score that doesn't have what I like to call "novelty tunes" (ie "Cantina Band" in ANH and "Jedi Rocks"/"Lapti Nek" in ROTJ").

I actually like the Luke/Yoda in Dagobah scene. I still don't see a puppet when I watch Yoda.
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Old 02-25-03, 05:11 PM
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the reason i value ESB so highly, is that it isn't the same old same old.
it's not a 3 act retread of the previous film.
it has a strong sense of continuity but doesen't
- take us back to tatooine or another death star
- doesn't give us another canatina scene.
- doesn't give us another version of the death star trench climax
etc

ESB was completely new and different- a rare thing for a sequel.

it deepens the story of the characters from the first film, takes them places i wasn't expecting ,
both geographically and emotionally, and treats them like real human beings.

contrast this to its follow up.
ROTJ could have been made by any hack sequel-meister, because there isn't a whole lot in there that deviates from the templates created by SW and ESB.

certainly nothing in there deviates as far as ESB, as a whole, deviated from SW.
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Old 02-25-03, 05:11 PM
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Originally posted by Kal Jedi
I actually like the Luke/Yoda in Dagobah scene. I still don't see a puppet when I watch Yoda.
I completely agree. It is pretty sad that Yoda looks more real in Empire than in Clones, a movie made 20 years later.

I love Empire the most probably because it is the one I seemed to yearn for the most. I saw Star Wars when I was 5 years old (a year after it was released) and then saw Empire when I was 7, the perfect impressionable age. The thrill of the effects, the music, Yoda, AT-ATs...just the entire imagination of it all was enthralling for a kid my age. That feeling still hits me from time to time when I pop the laserdisc (damn Lucas) in. I guess those feelings are why I hope the original is released eventually.

By the time Jedi came out, I was 10 and a little more worldly. It took a little more to impress me by then and I just did not get the same feeling for it that I did for Empire.

Last edited by Spiderbite; 02-25-03 at 05:14 PM.
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Old 02-25-03, 05:44 PM
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Old 02-25-03, 05:45 PM
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I think and this is just my opinion that someone long ago started posting on internet message boards that ESB was the best. Now it has spread so far that whenever someone asks what the best Star Wars movie is ESB always comes up. Kinda like when some one asks what the best 10 movies of all time are some joker pops up with a list of ten of the most obscure films in the world just because it makes him feel special.
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Old 02-25-03, 06:27 PM
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Originally posted by Simpson Purist
I think Dante Hicks has the best reason for why ESB is so brilliant.

"'Empire' had the better ending. I mean, Luke gets his hand cut off, finds out Vader's his father, Han gets frozen and taken away by Boba Fett. It ends on such a down note. I mean, that's what life is, a series of down endings. All "Jedi" had was a bunch of Muppets."
You beat me to it

And yes I agree with Dante.
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Old 02-25-03, 06:49 PM
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I think and this is just my opinion that someone long ago started posting on internet message boards that ESB was the best. Now it has spread so far that whenever someone asks what the best Star Wars movie is ESB always comes up. Kinda like when some one asks what the best 10 movies of all time are some joker pops up with a list of ten of the most obscure films in the world just because it makes him feel special.
Of course that is a possible scenerio.

Though, people actually liking it the most is also another possibility.

I like ESB best, not because it's hip, but because it is the most complete and least cheesy -- though ANH is certainly at about the same level. The darkness adds quite a bit, something that didn't work in AoTC.
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Old 02-25-03, 07:02 PM
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The Luke/Yoda scenes are brilliant from start to finish. They are the heart and soul of Star Wars. I cannot imagine anyone skipping them. I'd skip right to them if I had the DVD or LD.
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Old 02-25-03, 08:00 PM
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ESB holds the whole trilogy together. It gives the characters a purpose and bulids up the Star Wars story line. By far ESB is my favourite out of all of them. Now days in SW its too many puppets and CGI characters that ruin the S.W experience.
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Old 02-25-03, 09:59 PM
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When I was 9 years old, I lost my Han Solo action figure with the full Hoth gear (blue snow suit, tan pants, blaster, etc..)

I... I never found it again.

Excuse me for a moment... must be...*sniff*... something caught in my eye...
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Old 02-25-03, 11:09 PM
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Empire had the coolest locations: Bespin (my favorite of the Star Wars Universe), Hoth, and Dagobah, while not cool, it was interesting.

The battles, the space chases. Empire really opened up the Star Wars Universe.

Jedi sadly rehashed most of SW, and really didn't expand on the Star Wars Universe.
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Old 02-25-03, 11:13 PM
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I posted this thought in the "Is ESB a masterpiece" thread last week, but it bears repeating.

Sometime last fall or so, I had not seen the original trilogy in some time. I had seen Phantom Menace and Clones fairly recently, so I put in the LDs of the OT. And TESB was better. There is just a feeling to it. The Luke and Yoda scenes on Degobah contain more of the mythology and reason for Star Wars existence than the other four films put together. Only Luke training with the remote in ANH has similar tones and it's too short. The training scenes on Degobah are so moody and atmospheric, you really get into the feel of it, and start to feel like you're in a mysterious, swampy land yourself. I would love to see any deleted scenes from the Degobah sequences.



As for the elapsed time, I figure about 3 months. I think I read that number somewhere from someone who calculated someone would need about that much time to get fairly good at a martial art, with a bit of innate talent. I'm not sure about the mechanics of how the Falcon traveled between planetary systems without lightspeed, the only thing I can figure is that it was relatively close to Hoth, maybe some kind of supercluster of planets.
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Old 02-26-03, 12:57 AM
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I'd like to think of Empire as the best-looking of the first three.

I like the black and white contrasts (Hoth, Bespin) and the haunting greys (Dagobah, Asteroid system). The white walls of Bespin really reminded me of Alien a little bit. Han Solo had a less 70's haircut. Leia had a more neutral but elegant hairstyle. And I even thought Vader's suit looked better.

I thought Empire also had the best soundtrack. The Imperial March became an instant classic of movie scores.
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Old 02-26-03, 01:19 AM
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Originally posted by hokeyboy
When I was 9 years old, I lost my Han Solo action figure with the full Hoth gear (blue snow suit, tan pants, blaster, etc..)
It seems you really liked your Hoth Han Solo figure. I think I got mine because all the really cool Bespin Han Solos were gone. Well, I don't have my original figures as well. But I do have my original cardboard backing. They seem to hold up pretty well.
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Old 02-26-03, 08:01 AM
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shrot answer: the empire WON.

long answer: for a while, i didn't like esb because it seemed so dreary to me. but really, i think its the dreariness that makes it interesting.

lets see. luke nearly dies twice, once *in the beginning*, once in the end. and in the end, his life was spared. solo is captured and luke, while not dead, is really challenged to cope with vader being his pappy. the rebels are driven from their home. and none of this is shown to have a hope of getting better.

plus, comedy is still present but hardly as forced as other SW movies. luke is not quite so whiny. harrison ford finally comes into his own, esp. with the love affair with leia.

it's just a well executed story. it's interesting to see how much lucas had to do with this movie, isn't it.
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Old 02-26-03, 08:18 AM
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Three words...Billy Dee Williams
Still the onlyblack guy ever to grace a Star Wars film! (Not counting James Earl Jones)
I mean, Captain Panaka and Captain Typho, come on!
They could've easily be replaced by pieces of cardboard.
But Lando...He was one smooth badass!!!
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Old 02-26-03, 08:27 AM
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I would have to agree, I think this is the glue that holds the entire trilogy together. Alot of it comes together in this movie, and especially in the 2nd part. And I have to give it up to Lando, come on, Billy Dee advertised for COLT 45 following this movie.. Its great. On a whole, I think this is the best out of the 3
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Old 02-26-03, 08:50 AM
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This is probably not the explanation you're looking for, but I'll give it my best shot. This is my second favorite movie of all time behindThe Shawshank Redemption. Just like everyone else, my reasons for loving this movie are not limited to just one or two. First off, it reminds me of my childhood. That's probably the most basic reason for me loving this movie.

Also, I love the Hoth sequences. The buildup to the battle at Hoth (the Imperial probe droid, the evacuation) is outstanding. I also find the tension between Han and Leia to be well written. More abstractly, the movie has a dark and melancholy mood to it, but not to the point where it is downright depressing. That in a nutshell is why I love TESB, and why I think it stands above the other movies.
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Old 02-26-03, 08:59 AM
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1. Fantastic score
2. Yoda
3. Boba Fett
4. Intelligent, dark story that treats the audience with respect
5. Yoda
6. Incredible action sequences that actually serve the story
7. At one point, Han is face-to-face with Vader, and he takes out his blaster and freakin shoots him! How cool is that?
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