What self-respecting Geeky Mom would not talk about Star Wars on its 30th Anniversary?
I’m old enough to have seen it in 1977 in a movie theater. We only had to wait about half an hour in line for this movie that blew me away. Here was a movie had everything I could want in a movie then–a couple dozen different aliens and droids, lightsaber duels, princess rescues, jumps to hyperspace, space battles, and the good guy winning.
I was in sci-fi heaven from the moment the horns proclaimed the start of the movie and the intro crawled until the final notes of the credits. For those of you who weren’t alive during that time, I can’t begin to tell you how it felt to be sitting down near the front when the Millenium Falcon (finally) made it to hyperspace, or Luke dodged TiE fighters during the dogfight around Yavin. No one had ever seen anything remotely like it–the closest movie to Star Wars was Logan’s Run the year before. The special effects are still stunning today, 30 years later, though DVDs do it about as much justice as eating fake chocolate.
Star Wars let us escape a scary world for a bit. While America suffered through double-digit inflation, the oil crisis, post-Vietnam angst, and the Cold War, George Lucas created magic in that galaxy far, far away. For those 121 all-too-brief minutes, we were transported to an epic space fantasy where we could be Jedi, princesses, scoundrels, and saviors. The movie reminded us during a difficult time that Princesses could be saved, Force-sensitive Jedi could use lightsabers , crusty scoundrels had hearts, and the Good Guy triumphed over evil in the end.
This was the first movie ever where people would camp out on the sidewalk just to get tickets. In a time when people went to movies twice at the most, people went to see the movie 10, 15, 20 times to see the jump to hyperspace, the lightsaber duel, or the final battle. Nothing ever had come close to creating that kind of fan devotion. It was in the news for months, and books, toys, and a host of other items filled store shelves. Much to the chagrin of etiquette experts, our traditional greeting changed from ‘Hello, how are you?” to “Hi, have you seen Star Wars yet?” The movie reminded us during a difficult time that Princesses could be saved, Jedi could use the mystical Force, crusty scoundrels had hearts, and the Good Guy triumphed over evil in the end.
Thanks, George, for giving us A New Hope.