Ranking the Star Wars Films

Star Wars is a very well loved Franchise and everyone has different opinions on which films are the best. If I were to give my list alone, people would call me absolutely crazy and that is ok with me. Below is a list of our top favorite Star Wars movies as decided by the a group of us Crunchers.

8. The Phantom Menace

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Jar Jar Binks is all I need to say here…To be fair, there are some great things to come out of this movie such as Darth Maul, pod racing and Qui Gon Jinn. Most everything else is a pretty big mess. I don’t personally hate the movie like many do but I admit it isn’t a great film. It’s still Star Wars and enjoyable but it does little for the overall Star Wars story. In fact, I am totally fine with skipping this entirely when watching the saga as a newcomer could start with episode II and only need a few sentences to get them up to date.

7. Attack of the Clones

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This film is a disaster. If nothing else, it gives me the enjoyment of making fun of Anakin’s hatred of sand. The fight between Dooku, Obi-Wan, Anakin and Yoda is fun as is the Jango and Obi-Wan fight. Overall this is a pretty weak installment in the franchise. It’s successor TV show is fantastic however and truly shows the incredible war that happens in between Episodes II and III.

6. Revenge of the Sith

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I was outvoted on this one. Personally I feel it deserves a higher spot on the list but the other crunchers were clear in their vote. Admittedly Revenge of the Sith is a flawed film as are all the trilogy films. Even still, we mostly agreed that it is the best of the prequels with some epic fights and the rise of Darth Vader. It has some of the worst dialogue ever written for a major film but still shines above its other trilogy members.

5. The Force Awakens

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This is where we get into a part of the list that each film is great! The Force Awakens only stays this low on the list because it is a re-hash of A New Hope. It adds some great new characters and worlds but follows far too closely to the original Star Wars film to where it is distracting. Even still, it was a blast to go on an adventure with Han Solo and Rey.

4.  A New Hope

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The one that started it all, A New Hope was the risk that spawned the massive legacy we see today. Thank you to George Lucas for fighting so hard to make a film that everyone told him was going to be an epic failure, including the actors and crew. What an adventure that rose to be one of the most popular (if not the MOST popular) franchises in the entire world. Almost anywhere you go in the world the purr of a lightsaber is recognized thanks to this film. While there are better Star Wars movies, A New Hope started it all and hold a special place in all our hearts.

3. Rogue One

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Gareth Edwards did a fantastic job with Rogue One. It held the essence of Star Wars without a Jedi being the focal point of the story and was action packed from start to finish. It is one of the most fun movies in my collection and I thoroughly enjoy watching it over and over again. It leads perfectly into the film that started it all and offers some amazing fan service and nostalgia. If you didn’t geek out over the Vader scene at the end, you may not be a Star Wars fan.

2. Empire Strikes Back

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Easily the most loved in the franchise, Empire Strikes back barely came in second for us. This film has it all. Action, hope, despair, romance, betrayal and more. It introduced fan favorite characters Boba Fett and Lando Calrissian and had one of the biggest twists in film history with the reveal that Vader is Luke’s father. The fact that the story ends with the heroes running and having lost big was also not common in film in that day. I’d argue that it still isn’t commonplace to end a film on a bad note and Empire did it masterfully. There is a reason this motion picture is so highly lauded.

1. Return of the Jedi

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Ewoks or not this is our number one. Return of the Jedi barely won this battle and I will tell you why it did. In the end both it and Empire are fantastic films but the characters are all at their best in this film. Luke is a strong and confident Jedi Knight rather than a whiny boy, Leia is as strong as ever, and Han is a prominent member of the rebellion and leading the charge to take out the new Death Star’s shields. We get to see the force used more in this film than any others with Luke, Vader and The Emperor all using different abilities. Everything mentioned so far, the abundance of the force and introduction of the Emperor are what make Return of the Jedi such a great Star Wars movie. Add to that the journey Luke goes on emotionally and the suspense is further heightened.  In the end, our Jedi uses the dark side (anger) to defeat Vader. We see his internal struggle throughout and some less than Jedi actions (killing the Gamorrean with the force). In the end, Return of the Jedi is the epic conclusion to the first trilogy. The Death Star is destroyed against all odds, Vader turns to the light and Luke becomes a legend. Episode VI is an epic conclusion to a stellar story and well deserving of our top Star Wars movie of all time.

 

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