There’s nothing that cures a bad day, breakups, flus and colds, or this-job-sucks-I-really-need-to-get-a-new-one like watching Star Wars. I mean, it’s just the perfect movie and really helps put your life into perspective.
Feel like your problems are insurmountable? Well, at least you don’t have to take down the entire Empire by destroying their shield generator AND their huge, revolving space station.
Is your flu so awful that you are almost hallucinating due to your high fever? Well, at least your arm hasn’t just been chopped off while at the same time finding out your father is one of the biggest, baddest guys in the whole universe.
Does your job suck so much that you are considering quitting? Well, at least you aren’t that undervalued stormtrooper who hits his head on the closing doors, but doesn’t get a pay raise. Ok. I made that last part up. I doubt stormtroopers even got paid. Well – at least your job isn’t done by a million other clones!
So you’re having a bad day and “under the weather” so to say, but which of the Original Trilogy films do you actually end up watching?*
This is where I literally use the weather to help me out. When I was younger, and having a bad day, I would always turn to Star Wars. I couldn’t just pick out any of the OT movies to watch…I had to make sure the weather coincided with it.**
So without further ado…
Kiri’s Ultimate Weather Guide to Watching Star Wars
Sunshine (any kind of cumulous or cirrus clouds are ok in this situation)
Let’s start off with the easy weather. A New Hope was always the movie I watched when the day was bright and beautiful. A day that begins well and ends well is just like ANH. We start off on Tatooine, a bright, sun-filled planet with nary a cloud in the sky, and end in Yavin 4 with a fabulous victory. Isn’t that just the movie you want to watch when the sun is shining and you have nothing but lazy, summer days ahead of you? (It’s been a long time since I sat and actually watched a movie when a beautiful summer day was beckoning, but when I was younger, I had a lot more free time)
Cloudy days (any kind of stratus cloud)
This is a little bit harder. Cloudy days can be warm or cold, but can be very oppressive, especially here in the Northeast where the winter weather includes overcast skies for continual days on end. So this is where I have to refine the formula even more and say that if it’s summer and there’s a cloudy day – I will go with Return of the Jedi. It’s still warm outside, so that makes me happy, but the cloudy weather makes me want to stay inside. With ROTJ, we have this movie that brings you down because you think that Luke will have to kill Vader and the attack on the Death Star makes you realize how close the Rebellion is to being completely destroyed. But in the end, it’s happy and, well, warm. Now – if it’s a cold, cloudy day, which often means there’s snow on the ground here in New England, then you have to go with Empire Strikes Back.
Snow days (nimbostratus)
ESB is meant for snow days. For one reason, the movie starts off on Hoth, which is full of snow. It’s very relatable when you’re sitting outside looking at the snow rapidly falling and thinking, “I wish I didn’t have to shovel myself out and could just jump on a Tauntaun.” Secondly, you’re trapped inside so you need a movie that lends well to contemplative thoughts. And the scenes when Luke trains with Yoda can get boring after a while and should only be watched when you’re trapped inside with nowhere to go. In this way, you can digest all of Yoda’s wisdom without any distractions.
Rainy days (nimbostratus)
This, too, has to be ESB for the above mentioned reasons. Rain on Dagobah matches the rain outside, and you are trapped inside with Yoda scenes.
So that really only leaves two types of weather left: thunderstorms and crispy fall days (ok, that’s not really a weather pattern, but if you live in New England, it TOTALLY is).
Thunderstorms are a tough one. We don’t often get full days of thunderstorms or that would be an easy choice (ESB). We will usually have a warm day with a thunderstorm that pops up in the afternoon due to frontal changes. Since that’s the norm around here, I will have to say thunderstorms fall in with ANH.
With crispy fall days, I pretty much only watch Fellowship of the Ring. Wait, what? Yup, threw you for a loop on that one. I rarely watch Star Wars in the fall because the weather is much more similar to Lothlórien or Rivendell and my Tolkien urges take over. The changing color of the leaves, the gold hue surrounding us, the feel of the crunchy leaves beneath your feet as you walk – it is real life Lothlórien.
That, my dear friends, is how I used to watch Star Wars when I was growing up. Not based on what movie I had an urge to watch, not based on my emotional level at that moment, but based on what the scene looked like outside my window.
And now, occasionally I still will use this Guide when the question pops into my head, “I’ve had a bad day. Which Star Wars should I watch?” and it goes to show that old habits really do die hard.
*If you’re having a bad day, don’t watch the Prequels. It may make your day worse.
**I love weather. Always have and always will. I majored in it in college but then decided to take a different route for my career. I still forecast occasionally now, but it’s more of a hobby than something I sincerely pursue.