Yes, there are spoilers in this review. If you
haven’t seen this movie, I don’t know why you’re even
reading this site.

Cast, Crew, and Other Info

Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker

Harrison Ford as Han Solo

Carrie Fisher as Leia Organa

David Prowse and James Earl Jones as the body and
voice of Darth

Sir Alec Guinness as Obi-Wan Kenobi

Kenny Baker as R2-D2

Anthony Daniels as C-3PO

Written and by directed by George Lucas

Music by John Williams

Complete information is available from the

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Past movie reviews can be found here.


A naive farm boy gets caught up in a galactic

High Point

There are a lot of fun moments in this movie. Still,
the first minute
or two, with John Williams’ fantastic score blaring,
the scroller
moving across the screen, and that Star Destroyer
zooming past are
pretty incredible.

Low Point

Greedo still shoots first.

Comments on the DVD

The Special Editions didn’t look this good on the big
screen. (The
originals probably didn’t either, but I don’t
remember them well
enough to judge. I was in the womb when this was
originally in

Oh, and Babbster needn’t worry. Not only does the
Jabba the Hut scene
end at a chapter stop, it starts at one, too. There
are 50 chapter
stops in this movie, and that scene is chapter 24.
(That’s an average
chapter length of about two and a half minutes.) I’ll
and review the
other two movies later this week. (Hopefully, I’ll
have time
Wednesday and Thursday. Thursday will be a late
night at work, so
Jedi might wait until Friday.)

The Scores

On one hand, this feels original. The
effects were
revolutionary in its original incarnation, and it
showed Hollywood
that there was a completely untapped genre out there,
but it did it by
combining elements that were around for decades but
Hollywood just
forgot how to use. Still, watching this doesn’t feel
like watching
anything but a Star Wars movie. I give it 5 out of

The effects are a mix of models and CGI, and
they don’t mesh
well. Some of the CGI looks better than the Special
Edition stuff,
but it’s still clearly CGI. Also, there seems to be
three distinct
shots (all in the duel with Vader) in which Kenobi’s
lightsaber blade
is purple instead of blue. There’s a lot of great
work here, though,
including the first-ever effect by Industrial Light
and Magic (when
the life pod is ejected at the start of the film.) I
give it 5 out of

The story is simple, but well told. I give
it 4 out of 6.

The acting is weak from Fisher at times, but
the rest of the
cast does well this time out. (Too bad Hamill’s work
doesn’t last
through the sequels.) I give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response is marred only by
Greedo pulling the
trigger. The shots are so close together that it’s
probably less than
Han’s reaction time, so you could claim that Han was
going to shoot
anyway. I’d rather see Han shooting just before
Greedo, though. Then
you could argue that he saw Greedo getting ready but
was faster on the
draw, and that Greedo missed because he’d been shot.
(This assumes,
of course, that “Greedo doesn’t shoot at all” isn’t
an option.) I
give it 5 out of 6.

The production was well done. We’ve got
some classic wipes
coming back, and the editing is great everywhere but
when they first
get to Mos Eisley and we’re hit with a series of
“look what we can do
now!” special effects. John Williams’ musical score
is a part of this
category, though, so I don’t think I can give it less
than 6 out of 6.

Overall, this is Star Wars Episode IV: A
New Hope
DVD. It’s a better edition than the 1997 one, and in
some ways
superior to the original. I’d love to see a deluxe
package with all
of the versions on the day that home theater
technology can deliver
the same resolution as film, but until then, this
will cover what we
need. I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
recieves 35 out of 42.

UPDATED: The first version of this article had the
math wrong on the average length of a chapter. It’s fixed