Friday, May 20, 2005
Star Wars, Episode III -- Revenge of the Sith
Long ago, in a galaxy far, far away, Judy and I and our two kids, Angela and Allen, walked ito a movie theater in Brownwood, Texas, to see a new movie called Star Wars. We didn't know much about it. Judy and I had seen and loved George Lucas's American Graffiti, but that was all. However, I had high hopes. I'd been waiting for a really good SF movie ever since I'd been the age of Angela and Allen, which is when I'd seen Destination Moon, a movie that had impressed me no end. Since then I'd sat through any number of really, really bad SF movies (and, of course a few good ones), but nothing had captured my imagination like the first one. I thought about that while we sat there in the dark, and then the movie started. As soon as that big space ship started its slow crawl across the screen, a big grin plastered itself on my face, and it just got bigger as the movie went on. Wow. It's hard to explain now how much fun I had that day.
This afternoon Judy and I went to a mall to see the new Star Wars movie. It's been nearly 30 years since we saw that first one. I was a young guy then. I'm not now. When I think of all the things that have happened during the time that's gone by, my mind boggles. My parents got old and died. Judy had surgery to remove a brain tumor. Angela and Allen have long since graduated from college (and in Angela's case, law school as well). I wasn't even thinking about becoming a writer, but I've published 60 or 70 books since then. We moved from Brownwood to Alvin. There's plenty more, but you get the idea. It's been a long time. But finally the Star Wars saga is complete, as far as I'm concerned.
I can't really be critical about Revenge of the Sith. I know it has plenty of flaws, but I didn't mind them. For me the final half hour or so of the movie rendered them immaterial because as I sat there, I realized that the story was finally tying up all the loose ends and leading up to the point where I'd walked into that theater 30 years previously. Wow. For a minute there it was as if all the intervening years were wiped out. I was still that young guy with his wife and kids, a young guy with thick black hair and a spring in his step instead of an old gray-haired gink with a shuffle in his walk. The feeling didn't last long, but it was great while it did last. I don't care if Episodes I and II sucked. I owe George Lucas for that moment.