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Movie Review: Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983)

Updated on August 9, 2019
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Natalie is a writer who works at her local library. She enjoys writing reviews, watching anime and TV shows, and playing video games.

Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi.
Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi. | Source

Quick Info

Directed By: George Lucas
Written by: George Lucas
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Availability: on DVD or Blu-ray, buy on Amazon or wherever movies are sold

Story Summary

Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983) tells the story of Luke Skywalker, a Jedi knight returning to his home planet of Tatooine to free Han Solo from Jabba the Hutt, meanwhile the Empire is rebuilding the Death Star, even bigger and more powerful than its predecessor. The Rebel Alliance decides to attack the unfinished battle station before it’s completed.

The Story is Great!

The story is Star Wars: Episode VI: The Return of the Jedi’s strongest point. It’s a good story; it’s a very interesting, entertaining story. The hero’s journey at its heart, Lucas does a good job of taking that and putting it into his story and despite its strange settings, it’s very well written, for the most part (unlike the prequel trilogy, where his writing was all over the place).

I enjoy the story of the original Star Wars trilogy a lot. It’s a fantastic story that everyone can relate to. The writing is good and the characters are interesting. I like how the story resolved itself and the film had a great and happy ending.

Star Wars is one of the most iconic sci-fi stories in recent history. It has memorable characters, good writing and visual effects that are still good by today’s standards.

Star Wars: Episode VI: The Return of the Jedi (1983) is a fantastic film and I love it. It is a great way to end the trilogy.

Return of the Jedi: Original Teaser Trailer (1982)

The Visual Effects Look Dated, but it’s Still a Fun Movie

The visual effects are good, but they feel extremely dated. The practical effects sometimes look hokey and the CGI that George Lucas looks really dated and old now.

It still looks decent, but you can definitely tell this is an old film. While I do still love the film, the fact that the effects are very dated to make it harder to watch, especially if you’re watching Star Wars in chronological order or if you start the original trilogy films.

The visual effects, while they do look a little dated, they still l hold up considering how old this movies is and it’s a very well done movie. It won’t win any special awards these days, but it’s still decent, although some of it is hokey-looking.

The space battles are still amazing and it looks fantastic.

The Acting is Great!

The acting is very well done and Mark Hamill does a good job as Luke Skywalker. This is the highlight of his role in the original trilogy and I liked his performance in this film.

Carrie Fisher is very good as Princess Leia, she did a good job in this film. Her lines can be hokey sometimes, but she did make them work.

Harrison Ford is perfect as Han Solo. He gave a great performance and even if this isn’t his favorite role, he did a great job in his performance. He’s a great actor and while the other actors didn’t rise to superstardom, the Star Wars trilogy definitely helped him become famous.

James Earl Jones gives an impressive vocal performance as the voice of Darth Vader. He’s a great actor and while he’s been in many fantastic movies, he will always be a part of your childhood in some way, whether he’s voicing Darth Vader or the lion Mufasa in The Lion King (1995) he gave a great vocal performance.

David Prowse was the physical actor for Darth Vader and he did a good job having to convey Darth Vader’s body language. He’s a great physical actor.

Ian McDiarmid’s performance as Emperor Palpatine. He is terrifically hammy and he did a great job portraying the sinister Sith Lord. He made a great villain and I liked his performance.

The acting is very good and I enjoyed the roles of all the actors in the film. It may not be the best movie ever, but I enjoyed it a lot.

Star Wars VI Return of The Jedi Soundtrack - The Battle of Endor 1

The Soundtrack is Fantastic!

The music is very well done and John Williams is a terrific composer. The music is one of the great and is one of the most memorable parts of the movie. The music compliments the film perfectly and John Williams is one of the greatest composers of our time. The soundtrack is excellent and I enjoyed it a lot.

Luke at the Sarlaaac pit.
Luke at the Sarlaaac pit. | Source

The Ewoks are Silly

The Ewoks are disliked by many fans because they’re small silly teddy bears. And yes, as a concept the Ewoks are silly, but they did try to eat our heroes so they’re nothing to slouch at.

While I understand why people find Ewoks to be annoying, they don’t bother me that much because they’re only in one film and they’re only in half of the movie.

If I had to choose which alien species is more annoying between Gungans from the Prequels and the Ewoks from the Original Trilogy, I’d say Gungans are more annoying, mainly because George Lucas tried too hard to make Jar Jar funny and it seemed like overkill, and his speech is annoying because it’s weird and the Ewoks are just silly gibberish.

Parental Warning

This movie does contain science fiction related violence with lightsaber fights, even though it isn’t graphic violence, people die a lot and get body parts cut off with lightsabers, although there is no blood or gore.

There wasn’t any profanity in the movie. Princess Leia wears a skimpy bikini but that’s about as suggestive as it gets.

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The Film is the Nice way to end the Trilogy

Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983) is a great movie that ended on a high note. It’s not a perfect film but I love it and it’s my favorite entry in the original Star Wars trilogy.

It’s a little dated but still a very well-made film. I still enjoy watching the movie after a very long time of not watching the film.

Quick Summary

What Works:
What Doesn't Work:
Great story, characters, and world-building
Visual effects do look dated
Visual effects still hold up, for the most part
The Ewoks are silly
Great acting
 
Great soundtrack
 

My Grade: A-

Overall, Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983) is a classic sci-fi movie that is very well done, has an interesting story, memorable and well developed characters and great visual effects. The space battles and lightsaber fights are very entertaining to watch. It also has an impressive movie score and is worth watching. Science fiction fans are bound to like it (well, except for the Ewoks) and it’s just a terrific movie that’s just fun to watch. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, but it can when it needs to.

It sent the trilogy off on a high note that was ruined by the Sequel Trilogy, thanks a lot, Star Wars: Episode VI: The Force Awakens (2015). I prefer the happy ending and for Star Wars to end here, and not what Disney did to the story. If you want a satisfying ending to Star Wars, this is the movie to watch.

It’s a great movie, Star Wars: Episode 4: A New Hope is a movie that will always be a classic sci-fi movie and it’s one that you shouldn’t miss.

My Rating

5 stars for Movie Review: Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi

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