Number 9: “Empire Strikes Back”

“Empire Strikes Back” at Number 9?! Blasphemy right? Well hear me out.  I flippin love this movie.  Seen it probably thirty times.  Connected with it and the whole original trilogy like whoa BUT it just wasn’t dark enough FOR ME.  I deeply connected with this film but there was just something missing.  I needed more brooding, pain, and darkness I suppose.

This one definitely got the closest of the bunch and I love it but it’s not going to make it to my top five this time around.  Although I do have very high hopes for “The Force Awakens”.  I trust JJ Abrams with my very soul.  He’s essentially the opposite of how I feel about George Lucas.

But anyway let’s talk about why I love this film.  It’s my goto whenever I am discussing story structure or the hero’s journey.  Due to my intense love and burning desire to create great stories I’ve read everything there is to try and find my storytelling edge.  Every book and their Mom points directly to “Star Wars” as the pinnacle of effective storytelling through the Hero’s journey.

I feel there is a lot of truth to this.  I once heard a quote from Penn and Teller lambasting religion.  They said if you erased everything on earth all of science would come back exactly the same but all religions would have to be re-made up.  To a certain extent I agree with them but I think they overlook certain story structures and arcs that have been recurring for thousands of years.  The stories in the Bible have amazing arcs and represent the hero’s journey extremely well.  But they are not alone.  All other religious texts both before and after the Bible have similar story arcs and hero’s journeys.  So I think these recurring themes and story arcs would come back just as scientific facts do.

Back to the lightsabers.  This movie rocks my face off.  The old school special effects are still better and more real looking than all the Transformers in the universe.  There is something about practical real effects that keeps me in the story so much better than armies of computer graphic artists toiling away.  Maybe it’s my INTENSE hatred of the complete lack of any character development in Transformers maybe it’s nostalgia.  In any case I wish we still did special effects like this.

The story is great and gave us the greatest sensai of all time in Yoda.  He quickly became the paragon of all great teachers throughout life.

The ending to this movie is so ballsy it brings tears to my eyes.  SPOILER ALERT ASSHOLE!  We find out Darth Vader is Luke’s father?  WHAT? OmG! That’s awesome!  Then after his partnership request is denied he cuts off Luke’s hand and leaves him for dead?  Dark dark dare I say Film Noir esque ending.  Really really enjoyed that.

If you enjoy Dark Dark film Noir esque stories than come on down to the Staged Reading of my Psychadelic Cyberpunk Film Noir screenplay “Mum Knows Best” on Sunday August 9th from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm at the Annoyance Theatre & Bar https://www.facebook.com/events/875860632494808/ because my movies a film noir OMG!

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