Yes, I totally stole this from Insider again but I do love these sections they have where they ask someone to list five … somethings from Star Wars. I did one two years ago with my favorite five visual moments and one in September with my five favorite aliens.
For this Insider (actually two Insiders ago now), they asked Dan Madsen for his favorite five feel-good moments. He is Star Wars Insider’s founding editor and now publicist for Her Universe.
Here are what I think are the five best feel good moments in the Star Wars saga, listed with number one as my favorite.
5. Leia and Han Work it All Out
Leia and Han have accomplished their mission on Endor and look up into the sky to see the Death Star blow up. Han expresses his concern for Luke but Leia knows he’s safe. And Han, ever the gallant gentleman, finally concedes defeat in what he thinks is a love triangle and says he won’t get in the way when Luke returns.
Leia’s confused face then gets transferred to Han as she tells him that Luke is her brother. Han works it all out, has a big smile and kisses her more sincerely. Ah, l’amour. Wicket jumps up like a priest officiating a ceremony and even Han doesn’t seem too annoyed at the Ewok.
It’s a small scene but one that warms my heart.
4. Han Solo Comes to the Rescue
Han Solo comes to the rescue quite a few times in Star Wars but the moment at the end of ANH definitely takes the cake. I still get a fuzzy, happy feeling whenever you see him fly down to hit the TIE fighters with that bolt that sends Vader spinning off into space.
“You’re all clear, kid. Now, let’s blow this thing and go home!”
Luke then uses the Force and sends the proton torpedoes straight into the exhaust port. As the Death Star blows up and the ships race away, it was all because Han Solo decided the Rebellion meant more to him than money.
But there’s something about that line that makes me want to whoop for joy and you feel this surge of hope. The underdog comes out ahead and there really is nothing more feel-good than that. (Kind of like when the Patriots won their first Superbowl with Tom Brady and no one thought they would. Yes, I had to go there.)
3. Vader Burns/Ewok Celebration
It’s hard to define Vader’s burning as a “feel good” moment, but for many years it was one for me. There was a definitive end and peaceful feeling about everything. Luke knew about his family history, had been faced with the dark side and overcame it, had redeemed his father, and the Emperor was killed. The burning was symbolic of his past, letting go, and moving forward.
The beautiful transition (with the Force theme) from the funeral pyre to the night sky/fireworks and the Ewoks celebrating gave you this moment of all is right in the world.
As a child, I loved the ending of ROTJ. It wasn’t until many years later when people complained that it was simplistic and had been wrapped too nicely with a bow on top, that I began to see it differently.
My fear now is that my children will never understand the feel good moments of that ending because they will always know that there is more to the story. In a way, with Disney taking over, we’ve lost the simplicity of Star Wars that was so clear in ROTJ: it all worked out, everything was okay, and good prevailed.
I cherish the ending though because it reminds me of my childhood when things were more black and white.
2. “Chewie, We’re Home.” – TFA Trailer
This instance is too personal for me not to put it in. I saw this at Star Wars Celebration Anaheim last year. We had been waiting in line since 6:00am for this panel that included JJ Abrams, Kathleen Kennedy, and members of the old cast and new. Everyone was hoping and praying that they would release a new trailer during this panel for TFA and they did not disappoint.
When the lights darkened and our lightsabers lit up the room, the feeling of intense emotion was inescapable. We all held our breaths, I think, for the entire trailer and that last moment when Han and Chewie board the Falcon and he goes, “Chewie, we’re home,”…there was an explosion throughout that room at the Anaheim Convention Center.
I was swept up in the passion that you can only get when surrounded by thousands of other Star Wars fans who love and adore the series as much as you do. When Abrams asked if we wanted to see the trailer again, it was met with a deafening, affirmative roar.
The moment in the movie is good, but it will never replace that moment in the teaser trailer and the feel-good memories I take away from it.
1. Yoda Lifts the X-Wing from the Swamp
There’s something about this scene that seems to define Star Wars.
Yoda is so diminutive and up until this point, he had trained Luke and had a lot of knowledge of the Force, but did he actually use the Force?
So I can totally understand when Luke gets frustrated and walks away saying, “You want the impossible.” What he should have said is, “Oh really Yoda? If you’re that awesome, why don’t you do it yourself?!” Because that’s how I would be feeling if my only mode of transportation sunk into the grimy lakes of Dagobah, never to be seen again. Luke then walks away in frustration, which is quite mature. I might have “by mistake” kicked the little Jedi Master as I walked by.
Then you see Yoda take a deep breath and concentrate, outstretch his arm, Artoo freaks out, and the crescendo music as he lifts Luke’s x-wing out of the swamp is a moment so magical and makes you feel so good.
It sums up the Star Wars experience for me. You get it in that moment.
The impossible can be possible.
Judge me by my size, do you?
Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter.
Do. Or do not. There is no try.
What was most interesting to me is that none of these moments include the Prequels. I did try hard to think of one from the Prequels, but they are definitely more somber than the Original Trilogy. The only thing that kind of came close was Anakin winning the Boonta Eve Podrace. But…with that, I knew it was going to happen, so the feel good moment lost some of its edge when you can predict the outcome.
Can you guys think of any PT moments that could make it on this list? Or is there anything I forgot on this list out of all seven movies?