Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
|Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi|
|Theatrical Release||May 25, 83|
|Theme(s)||Sci-Fi (Futuristic), Family, Children's|
 Plot Summary
WARNING: spoilers found ahead!
Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia Organa, C-3PO, R2-D2, Chewbacca, and Lando Calrissian arrive on Tatooine, planning to retrieve a frozen Han Solo from the notorious hutt, Jabba. C-3PO and R2-D2 enter Jabba's lair and are eventually given jobs as an interpreter and a waiter. Leia enters Jabba's bar disguised as Boushh the bounty hunter, whom after the day is finished, reenters Jabba's throne room in secret to find Han Solo still frozen in a carbonite shell. After melting the carbonite off him, several curtains open to reveal Jabba the Hutt and his posse listening to her invasion the entire time. Leia is then made Jabba's personal slave. After days have passed, Luke enters the bar and inquires to Jabba to release Solo. After Jabba refuses, Luke is dropped into a pit containing a Rancor, which is later crushed by a gate. Jabba's guards then seize Luke and escort him, Solo, and Chewbacca - an accomplice in Boushh's (Leia's) act - to the Great Pit of Carkoon to be fed to the Sarlacc living within. As Luke jumps off the plank, he acrobatically lifts himself back from the plank onto the ship he previously stood on, and caught his lightsaber shot by R2-D2 from the main ship where Jabba sat. A skirmish erupts from the small strand of ships hovering over the pit, and several guards are flung into the Sarlacc's mouth. Amidst the chaos, Leia successfully strangles Jabba using the chains bound to her wrists, and Solo knocks Boba Fett, deliverer of Solo to Jabba, into the pit. Luke then blasts Jabba's ship using its own deck cannon, and flees with his companions before it explodes.
After the battle on Tatooine, Luke separates from his strand of friends to singly fly to Dagobah to complete his Jedi training. Upon his arrival, a dying Yoda informs Luke that although his training is complete, he will not truly achieve Jedihood until he kills Darth Vader, who is confirmed by Yoda to be Luke's father. Yoda's final words were "there is another Skywalker". After Yoda disappears, Ben Kenobi's ghost appears and tells how Darth Vader was once Anakin Skywalker, who turned to the dark side of the force after becoming a Jedi Knight. As Luke asks Ben about Yoda's comment - "there is another Skywalker" - Ben informs Luke that the other Skywalker is Luke's twin sister, unseen and hidden from Vader and separated from birth to ensure the protection of her and Luke. Luke quickly concludes that this twin sister is Princess Leia Organa.
During Luke's stay on Dagobah, the Rebel Alliance devised a plan to a strategy against the Galactic Empire. Solo is elected to lead a direct attack team on one of the moons of Endor, whose purpose is to deactivate the shield generator for the Death Star. A newly returned Luke joins him and Leia in their conquest; yet afterwards, he fears that Darth Vader's presence on the forest moon will make him hinder the team. Having landed on Endor, Leia discovers the native Ewok race, which capture Luke and Solo elsewhere. With the assistance of C-3PO, considered by the Ewoks as a god-like icon, an alliance is formed between the Rebels and the Ewoks. As time progresses, Luke feels prepared to battle Darth Vader. Luke explains to Leia what Ben Kenobi had told him on Dagobah, and then surrenders himself to Darth Vader. Upon confrontation with his father, Luke tries to convince Vader to abandon the Sith, yet to no avail. The two are escorted to the Emperor's room on the Death Star, where Emperor Palpatine informs Luke that he had anticipated the Rebels' presence on Endor and had set for them a trap. This trap is revealed when Solo's assault team is captured by Imperial forces waiting within the bunker holding the shield generator. Yet as the Imperials are led outside of the bunker, the Ewoks ambush them, and a large interracial battle takes place. Several minutes into the battle, the Rebels unexpectedly gain the battle's favor once Chewbacca hijacks an AT-ST Walker. Meanwhile, Lando's rebel fleet arrives from hyperspace outside the Death Star to discover that the weapon's shields are still up. A large space battle occurs in order to give the assault party time to deactivate the shields of the Death Star. During the two battles, the Death Star's laser annihilates two Rebel star cruisers, revealing that the Death Star had actually been operational, despite its physical appearance. After a hasty rethinking of strategy, the fleet hides between two Imperial star destroyers, so the Death Star could not destroy the remaining ships without betraying its own.
Palpatine begins tempting Luke into anger and hatred against his father, whom then engages in a lightsaber duel with his son. During the battle, Vader learns about Luke's twin sister by reading Luke's thoughts. After Vader suggests that Leia would more than likely give in to the dark side if Luke refuses, Luke's anger overpowers him, and he slices off Vader's right robotic hand. However, Luke regains his stability and refuses to kill Vader, despite Palpatine's encouragements. Angered by Luke's good will and his inability to become a Sith, Palpatine begins using force lightning against Luke. As Luke pleads for his father's help, Vader experiences an epiphany, and realizes that his son simply will not give up on his own feelings toward his father. Vader then struggles to get up and throws Palpatine into a reactor shaft, fulfilling his original Jedi prophecy that he would restore balance to the Force by suppressing the galaxy's worst evil. However, the betrayal forced some of the deceased emperor's lightning onto Vader, and Vader struggles further to move and to breathe. After Luke assists him to the docking bay, Vader insists that Luke removes his mask so he can see his own son with his naked eye before he dies. It is then that Vader's identity is revealed: a withered, bald, and pale man, shriveled by the dark side and his own disability. He then tells Luke to abandon him, since he will die either way, and that he should save himself. Luke hesitantly enters a ship without his father, who is left behind to peacefully die amongst an exploding battle station.
Some time during the battle of Endor, the shield generators were destroyed, and allowed the Rebel fleets to quickly launch a final attack on the Death Star. Calrissian directs Wedge Antilles and his fighter group into the interior of the Death Star; they later fire at the main reactor, which then collapses. By now, Vader should be throwing/have already thrown Palpatine into the reactor shaft. Antilles (and his group) and Calrissian, operating their own X-Wings and Millennium Falcon, deftly escape the exploding Death Star's innards, while Luke flies out of the Death Star in one of the Death Star's ships. Leia senses that Luke has successfully escaped the Death Star before it exploded, much to her relief. Later that evening, Solo believes that Leia loves Luke, but Leia reassures her love with Solo, and informs him that Luke is her twin brother; Luke cremates the body of Darth Vader on a pyre on Endor; and a party is had on Endor with the Ewoks' and the Rebellion's attendance. During the celebration, Luke notices the spirits of Ben Kenobi, Yoda, and a younger and purer Anakin Skywalker watching over them with pride.
 Cast & Crew
(Ordered by Real Name - Played Character)
- Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker
- Harrison Ford as Han Solo
- Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia
- Billy Dee Williams as Lando Calrissian
- Anthony Daniels as C-3PO
- Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca
- Ian McDiarmid as Emperor Palpatine
- Frank Oz as the voice of Yoda
- David Prowse as Darth Vader
- James Earl Jones as the voice of Darth Vader
- Alec Guiness as Ben Kenobi
 1997 Special Edition
 DVD Release
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