Dir. by Irvin Kershner - 2 hrs. 4 min.
by Clayton Hollifield
I'm not even sure what the point of writing about any of the Star Wars films is. I'm also not even sure what the point of watching any of them is, either. At this point, watching any of them fills me with a feeling of familiarity, and not in a good way. Since the 1990's, creative folk have been systematically strip-mining the series for off-hand references, jokes explicitly about the series in the name of homage, and eventually, just plugging their characters into the Star Wars plots ("Family Guy" and "Robot Chicken," I'm looking in your direction) so that there's nothing left at all of the source material but a withered husk, every quirk turned into a big deal and every stone turned over, digested, and ruined for anyone who is unfortunate enough to see the movies afterwards.
"The Empire Strikes Back" is the one with the AT-ATs on Hoth, where Luke goes back to the woodshed with Yoda, where Lando turns on Han Solo, who is then encased in carbonite, and where Luke has a most unfortunate turn of events (starring in the worst episode of "Who Do You Think You Are?" ever, and being turned into half of a Transformer). Got it? Good.
At this point, I can't even begin to judge any of these films as movies. It's like trying to deal with a song that you liked until it got played to death on the radio, and then everyone kept playing it and making references to it (thinking that they were being super clever the whole time), and then having it jammed down your throat one more time just for kicks. It's past iconic (by about twenty years) and deep into "go away" territory for me. There are plenty of cool visuals, but I had to fight the urge to just turn it off and give up on it for good. As it stands, it took me two sessions to get through the entire film. I'll finish off the series, if only for the slave Leia outfit, but I think this is probably the last time I'll ever sit through any of these films.
UGH / 5 - DVD