Drawing on hero mythologies throughout history, writer-director George Lucas created a whole new galaxy where Jedi knights and a ragtag rebel force battle the oppressive Empire in a classic tale of good versus evil.
The film's opening sequence of a humongous Imperial Star Destroyer chasing Princess Leia's little rebel ship -- its vast underbelly seeming endless as it passes -- is one of the greatest special effects in film history. Lucas revolutionized the genre by combining cutting-edge computer technology with a stubborn determination to infuse his Stars Wars world with grit and grime, giving it a reality that previous sci fi movies lacked.
Long ago in a galaxy far away, the evil Empire is building the Death Star, a weapon so powerful it can destroy entire planets in a single blast.
A rebel force futilely fights the Empire and its powerful champion Darth Vader until young farmer Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) joins forces with reclusive Jedi knight Obi-Wan Kenobi (Alec Guinness), the beautiful and spunky Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher), smuggler Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and personable droids C-3PO and R2-D2, tapping the power of The Force to save the day.
A sleeper mega-hit in the spring of 1977, Star Wars captivated legions of fans and spawned a multi-billion-dollar industry that continues to grow three decades later.
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