First View Movie Review: Star Wars – the Battle for Endor

Because I’m a crazy geek and want to understand all the canon Star Wars material out there, I decided to view all the ‘extra’ shows and movies Lucasfilm created, some of which may or may not be part of the larger narrative. Have you seen The Mandalorian yet? It’s amazing. Have you seen The Star Wars Holiday Special yet? It’s atrocious.

I decided I need to see Rebels and Clone Wars, which are considered quite good…and the really, really bad films that no one to owns up to watching. So, sit back and see if what you ignored the first time around is still as awful as you thought.

Here’s the 1985 Ewok made-for-TV movie review of Battle For Endor (I’m having trouble finding a free version of 1984’s Caravan of Courage, so stay tuned):

While it’s not easy to get your hands on a copy of these Lucasfilm Ewok TV movies, I found a terrible copy of the 1985 Battle for Endor on You Tube — and will review it right here and now, because, why not? I don’t want to miss my chance before someone takes this link down! (Like maybe you, George Lucas!)

With the Skywalker saga coming to a close in Rise of Skywalker — and The Mandalorian and the Cassian Andor and Obi-Wan Kenobi Disney+ shows in the works — I felt it was time to catch up on all the live action and even animated Star Wars specials…anything that might be considered part of the over-arcing story.

I’m surprised I skipped such miserable yet amusingly wacky outings like the Star Wars Holiday Special after all this time. I’m going to rectify this now.

Let’s continue after the Holiday Special with the Ewok duo of movies. George Lucas apparently liked Ewoks so much he made two films about them. He even got Warwick Davis to reprise his “Wicket” role! Too bad he didn’t ask anyone first if they wanted more Ewok tales. We could have saved Lucasfilm a bit of money.

Here’s one copy of the Battle of Endor (a bad copy, true) on You Tube to watch along with my commentary:

The Battle for Endor (1:20 minutes long — be ready)

Notes:

— This is a bad You Tube copy. I can barely hear it. I can’t even tell if the sound track sounds anything like John Williams.

— This Ewok has crazy looking eyes. Is this Wicket? Why does he look so bad?  I’m in the uncanny valley alread. If you didn’t hate the Ewoks in Return of the Jedi, you’ll want to look away from the terrible costuming going on here. I wish they tried better to make Warwick David’s Wicket character work. Seriously, Davis deserves better than this.

— I totally cannot hear this You Tube recording. I might need to sign up for Disney + to get up to date with old Star Wars cannon.

— The little kid is cute, but I can’t tell if it’s a girl or a boy starring in the role.

— The teen kid is a lot like Luke Skywalker. I like the role, but we never see him again. That’s too bad. He’s better than the kid or the Ewok or anyone else we’ve seen so far. (Note: I hear he plays a larger role in the Ewok’s Caravan of Courage.)

— Bad guys are introduced and they suck. I don’t care. Also good guys are introduced. But there is no decent storytelling here, in spite of Paul Gleeson trying his best.

— The production values on the Endor moon look great. Too bad I don’t get the story. Who are these new villains? Can’t the Empire provide decent bad gals/guys?

— Why am I watching this? Bored now. I think this is largely due to not understanding the lines. Does anyone have a better copy for me to review?

— The main Ewok (in spite of being played by the otherwise reliable Davis) is not given subtitles as things progress. This is poor storytelling — it’s not like Ewoks are cool in the first place. Lucas did this same thing to his detriment with Chewie’s family in the Star Wars Holiday Special.

Although maybe there are Orcs in the tale, which are an early Lord of the Rings concept. I think those are Orcs.

15 minutes in and I’m so bored

— Let’s keep going. I don’t mind kiddie stories as long as they are still interesting for adults.

–Pterodactyls. Okaaaay.

— I still don’t get why the kid and the Ewok are doing anything they do. This is pretty, but honestly, the crazy Star Wars Holiday Special is more exciting. Atrocious as that Lucasfilm wacky movie length Star Wars ‘movie’  is! Never thought that would be better than something else Star Wars-adjacent.

— New character making a meal for the kid and the Ewok. This is decent storytelling. But who is this?

— Clearly this is for children to watch, which explains why I missed it all this time. I was 12 when A New Hope came out and never thought Ewoks were a good idea. Battle For Endor has got decent production values at least. I think Lucasfilm decided the home-to-TV-movie would land us enough views to appreciate. But, no. I WISH I could move on from reviewing it. This is for you, fans.

— I’m a half hour in and want to turn this off. Maybe we should have anticipated Jar Jar Binks from this monstrosity…except Jar Jar is actually more interesting than whatever is happening here. I don’t understand why George Lucas made this awful TV movie. (To sell Ewok toys I guess.)

— The kiddo tells the bad guys why it’s not right to kidnap him. I don’t know why they even want this child. Willow did the story much better. Just watch that again instead of this mess.

— Does anyone think this is a good narrative? Who are the bad guys and good guys and why should I care? No wonder I never heard about this.

— Look, it’s Worf the Klingon! No, it’s actually nothing at all. Move along, move along.

An hour is done! Shit howdy and holy Jedi Force tidings, but this is bad. Chewie and his family waiting for Life Day is actually better.

— A battle begins! Do I care? No. Who are these people?

— I appreciated the Dewback mounts from A New Hope on Tatooine reprised here.

— Apparently, a lot of fans tried to watch The Battle for Endor because The Mandalorian was so good. Fans are trying to catch up to the bits of pieces of missed canon film in existence. You know what? Don’t bother.

— The final battle isn’t too awful. But I doubt you’ll make it this far into the film.

— I did it! It’s over. I watched this so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.

Should you watch The Battle of Endor?

No. Absolutely no, and this is from someone who watched and even sort of appreciated the insanely weird Star Wars Holiday Special. If you have kids that really like the Ewoks from The Return of the Jedi, maybe this is for you. For adults, SKIP. Really.

Otherwise…welcome to a total fail for Star Wars fans. The production values are good enough to keep The Battle for Endor from getting a total F grade, but I think I’m being too kind.

Movie Grade: D-

 

Willow Revival added to Disney+ line up (And Top 15 Willow Movie Quotes)

The Star Wars Holiday Special …Is it really that bad?

Star Wars – Top Seven Reasons to Watch The Mandalorian Now (No spoilers)

Willow Revival added to Disney+ line up (And Top 15 Willow Movie Quotes)

Disney Plus recently announced a new TV show based on Ron Howard’s 1988 flick Willow — the goofy yet sentimental pre-Lord of the Rings Lucasfilm fantasy starring Warwick Davis and Val Kilmer. The announcement is here.

I‘m cool with a Willow revival. Especially if they get Davis back on board. He and his son Harrison played the blink-and-you’ll-miss-them Ewok cameos in Rise of Skywalker in late 2019. I may not love Ewoks, but Warwick Davis seems game for anything at any time, and I’ve always been a Willow fan. It’s a guilty pleasure. If you’re having a bitch of a day, put Willow on your TV. As Val Kilmer’s Madmartigan says, you’ll “feel BETTER!”

Willow is damn fun and full of fantastic quotes. It’s goofy, pleasant, charming, and is as close to a live action Lord of the Rings that ever happened before Peter Jackson and New Zealand came along to show us how it’s done. It’s got Hobbits and The Shire and swordfights and trolls and dragons and wizards and everything!

Willow may not be one of the best movies ever, but it’s just too enjoyable to forget. Remember, in that era, the finest feature fantasy films were all a bit silly or lightweight anyway. Look at The Princess Bride, LadyHawke, Highlander, Labyrinth, Goonies, The Dark Crystal, and The Never Ending Story. Willow is a cult classic and my favorite Val Kilmer role. The scenery, sets, and soundtrack (by James Horner, even)  are perfect for a small-scale early epic fantasy. Love it, love it. If you don’t remember this film, go back and enjoy it anew.

Movie Grade: A

Top 15 Willow quotes I still love and sometimes use:

Forget all you know, or think you know.

Don’t go near it. You don’t know where it’s been.

The bones tell me…nothing.

I miss you already.

No, don’t…! There’s a Peck…with an acorn pointed at me!

I stole the bay-beee!

You are mine to toy with….

We go THAT WAY!

I feel…BETTER!

Don’t call me a Peck! / Oh, I’m sorry. Peck Peck Peck Peck Peck!

Wanna breed?

Ignore the bird! Follow the river!

It went away? I dwell in darkness without you and it went away?

You are crawling with Brownies!

Let me do that. Get away, rodents!

The Star Wars Holiday Special …Is it really that bad?

Is it really that bad?

Yes. Yes it is. With a few moments that were faintly amusing.

Created using the real-to-goodness original cast of Star Wars from A New Hope, The Star Wars Holiday Special was an earnest  1978 TV movie featuring awful production values, clearly stoned actors, and some really cracked-out looking Wookiees. Really, no wonder Chewbacca spends his whole life with Han instead of Itchy and Lumpy. (REAL NAMES. Holy hell George Lucas, were you high too?)

How did they get Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill and Harrison Ford to do this? (Besides paychecks.) It’s so bad even Lucas is quoted as wanting to take a hammer to every copy of The Star Wars Holiday Special and smash them into oblivion. Good thing You Tube exists to thwart him. Bwahaha!

Viewing this is a Geek Rite of Passage that I need to attend to. Okay, I’m starting it now. So far, it’s got a crazy narrative opening crawl titling it Star Wars Episode IV 1/2.

Yes. 4.5: Does this make it canon?

Can I watch The Star Wars Holiday Special sober and review it for RunPee? Let’s find out.

Instead of making a really great cohesive article, I’m going to just jot comments as I go. I don’t want to work harder at this than I have to. As Threepio famously says, “We seem to be made to suffer. It’s our lot in life.”

Want to join me in the fun? Start ‘er up here, until Lucas finds and destroys this version. Then just search for another. It’s like playing Whack A Mole. Thank the Maker for the Internet!

Notes from the infamously terrible Star Wars Holiday Special, done by points because Math Is Fun:

Settle in. The Special is an hour and half long. MOVIE LENGTH, folks. I might need The Force to get through it. I have a bad feeling about this -1

Life Day sounds cool. It’s a Wookiee thing that’s hugely important to Chewbacca’s family. We never hear about it again. Now that Rise of Skywalker is finished, maybe Chewie will go back home. +1

The matte screen of the Wookiee home world Kashyyyk is fake looking, but very pretty. I’d live in these luxurious Air BnB tree houses. +1 point.

Star Wars Starfighter merch! Luke isn’t the only one to play with toys. Wookiees do too. +1

Why are the first 20 minutes filmed in grunts and roars with no subtitles? I know in-universe everyone speaks Wookiee, but in our viewing galaxy, this is a bizarre choice. -1

Poor Ms. Chewbacca. She’s crying as she holds a photo of her husband. Chewie is an absentee father, ya’ll. No wonder he didn’t earn a medal. -1

Neat 70s decor in the Chewbacca homestead, though. +1

The little kid and old man Wookiees. These are some weird looking Walking Carpets, but they’re still cooler than Ewoks. +1

I thought we were going to see a call-back of the awesome Holographic Chess Game from the Millennium Falcon, but it turned out to be something…inexplicable. Sea Monkeys in space? This goes on and on. Holy hell. A good Peetime. -1

A transmission from Luke! Fiddling with R2-D2! Actual speaking lines! +1

When did Luke learn Wookiee? He also understands R2’s Binary language. Okay,  I don’t care. (No points awarded either way means it’s a neutral comment.)

I think Mark Hamill is wearing eyeliner. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

AHA! Chewie goes to Life Day annually! So…he visits his family once a year. Lame. -1

R2 is still da Droid. +1

And now for a transmission  with Imperial Officers at a Galactic Trading Post. This is promising. +1

I actually like the Pocket Sized Aquarium. But why is this here? +1 anyway.

Plot development….and the line about doing it by “Han(d), Solo” was cool. Maybe this won’t be so bad .+1

Star Destroyers! And Vader. +1

WTF. Okay, back to home life on Kashyyyk. This is where the truly weird stuff happens. Why is there a cross-dressing cooking show? Again, not that there’s anything wrong with that.  At least we learn how to create a savory Bantha rump stew. Move along, move along. -1

Outrunning Tie Fighters is good. Harrison Ford looks like he’s trying to make his scenes work. Poor guy. No wonder Ford wanted to kill off Han. +1

The trader shows up at House ‘Bacca. More plot!  +1

Whoohoo! We survived the first half hour, relatively unscathed.

Wait. What? Wookiee VR porn? For ten minutes! I’m no longer unscathed. Delete ten points for this shit. -10

A transmission from Leia and C-3P0. But not even the makeup on Carrie can hide that’s she’s totally not sober. -1

Stormtroopers. Not too bad a scene, considering. And the trader provides some understandable translation from the endless grunts and roars. He’s not as funny as he thinks, though. I’ve seen better fan films.

The evil Imperial agent watching Jefferson Starship. A ten-minute Jefferson freaking Starship video in the middle of this movie. I’m seriously confused. -1

The kid — Lumpy? Or Itchy? — sits down for some more inexplicable TV watching. Is all this filler, or did someone decide half of the show should feature non-sequiturs? …But wait: it’s the Boba Fett cartoon show! It’s got Han, R2, Admiral Ackbar,  and all the regular OT gang in it. It’s probably the best segment of the Holiday Special.  I’m almost okay with this, but why is Chewbacca’s son watching a show where ‘real people’– including his father — are ‘acting’ in it? I don’t understand, but this somewhat awesome viewing. There’s even a Y-Wing Starfighter. +1

(I’ve decided the cartoon-within-the-show was an excuse to run an animated show they already halfway produced and didn’t know what else to do with.)

And what is it about Star Wars and lava?

I hate to say this, but after seeing Season One of The Mandalorian, the Boba Fett cartoon explains some apparent Easter Eggs. Also Fett rides a dinosaur. Again, is any of this considered canon? +1

There’s a Starlog Update in the Boba Fett show! Was Lucas a Star Trek fan ? It made me smile anyway. Too bad they never did more of these Boba Fett cartoons. It’s so much better than many of the live action movies. +1

Back to Wookiee grunts and moans: the actual plot. -1

One Hour has passed…40 more minutes to go. Sigh.

 

YAY — the Wookiee child watches yet another weird-ass show on the Galactic Internet. I think it’s a toy instruction manual, like what you can find on You Tube. With dumb humor. And it never ends. -1

A new scene from Mos Eisley: it’s the Cantina Band! I don’t mind if this is just extra footage they wanted to use, but enough already. Apparently all they do on Wookiee World is watch TV. Maybe it’s a meta commentary about the internet, from before the internet. Well, actually, I doubt it. The Holiday Special isn’t clever enough for that.

The Cantina stuff is totally unused footage from A New Hope. Even aliens like the Hammerhead are in it. I’ll just enjoy it as a Star Wars deleted scene. +1

Oops: spoke too soon. There’s more footage from the Mos Eisley Cantina, and It. Is. Bad. There’s also a Golden Girl in it. Don’t make me describe this  anymore. Delete ten more points. -10

Ooh, is that blue milk? Nah, beige milk. What a missed opportunity. -1

Are we done yet?

I’m understanding why I never watched The Star Wars Holiday Special. It’s really, super, uber, astoundingly weird. Weird can be good if done right (see Farscape), but this is just a hot mess. There’s a romance between the Golden Girl and a man who pours drinks in a HOLE IN HIS HEAD. -1

Turns out Head Hole Guy (played by Harvey Korman) is a six fingered man. I’d give this ten bonus points if I was sure it was an homage to The Princess Bride, but I seriously doubt that. -1

The  Cantina ‘romance’ is so awkward that I miss watching the damn Wookiee porn. I don’t know what this is here for. Was it intended to be a pilot episode for a continuing Star Wars rom-com? Am I overthinking this? -1

And now there’s Bea Arthur singing a Star Wars version of Semisonic’s  Closing Time. Make it stop, please. -1

Bringing it home for the holidays

15 more minutes. I can do this. I’m totally a (storm) trooper.

Child abuse. -1

Chewie and Han made it home! Harrison Ford is still acting, unlike everyone else, who’s clearly given up. +1

I THINK I JUST HEARD A WILHELM SCREAM! Plus ten for unexpected awesomeness! +10

Awww. And now for the feels. I could watch Han Solo do anything, really, even if it’s just giving hugs to groaning Wookiees. +1

Peter Mayhew really deserved better than this. And Chewbacca, but at least he finally got his medal in Rise of Skywalker. Oh, spoiler. Sorry about that.

Chewie’s bowcaster! +1

Wookiees kissing! -1

Plot. +1

The dead Stormtrooper is named 7-11. I really wish I knew if that was an intentional joke, or just randomness.

LIFE DAY! Finally. The moment we’ve all been waiting for. Let’s get those red robes on so Carrie Fisher can sing and end this thing. The opening crawl promised us a singing princess.

The denoument: magic candles, Wookiees walking in space/walking into a star, what the holy Force hell? Just when I figured the stupid was done. -1

Suddenly, C-3P0 and R2 appear to share tidings of comfort and joy. It’s fine. Everyone shows up. We’re almost finished. +1

The Princess says sappy things. “This is the promise of the tree of life.” What? Is that a reference to the Jedi tree on Ach-To somehow? Whatever. Fisher isn’t a bad singer.

Cue a random montage from A New Hope. -1.

Small heartwarming epilogue. +1

Credits. As with (almost) every Star Wars film, there are no extra scenes.

And… It’s over. Happy Life Day!

I did it! I finally watched this train-wreck! Ten Points to Gryffindor House. Oh wait: wrong saga. I hope you appreciate that I watched this for you so you don’t have to. 😉

Overall, I wish I could say this was a parody. But it’s not funny enough to matter. Or sensible enough. Yes, even parodies can be high quality and brilliant on their own. Take a look at Troops, a riff on Cops (with Stormtroopers). This isn’t anything like that. At least there weren’t any Death Stars.

Movie Grade, using Star Wars Math: +33 points, and -31 points…leaving The Star Wars Holiday Special with a surprisingly positive total of 2 points. That’s a lot better than I actually expected, saving it from a total Fail.

Let’s give this a D- for effort.


Maybe I’ll find the two Ewok TV specials to review next, because I’m an  idiot completist. 

Here’s the 1985 trailer for The Battle of Endor, also officially made by Lucasfilm. A better title: Ewoks — Still Better Than Jar Jar Binks.

Another time, perhaps. 

Star Wars – Top Seven Reasons to Watch The Mandalorian Now (No spoilers)

The 6 Most Epic Lightsaber Fights in Star Wars (plus 3 that didn’t make the cut)

Two Must See Science Fiction Spoof Film Documentaries (plus: the most ‘inconceivable’ parody of a spoof)

Two Must See Science Fiction Spoof Film Documentaries (plus: the most ‘inconceivable’ parody of a spoof)

It’s hard to make a decent movie spoof for a beloved franchise, and being in the science fiction genre doesn’t make things any easier. The producers have to sell a fresh plot, quality special effects, and sparkling humor, while somehow keeping the fan base happy. You have to honor — while riffing– the base material. It’s a tight line to walk.

Two beloved science fiction spoofs not only stand out as Best in Genre full-length film satires, but have now have their own documentaries. That’s impressive for a parody.

If you’re a Star Wars or Star Trek fan, you’ve probably heard about Spaceballs and Galaxy Quest. Join me in discussing the cameo-studded documentaries about these fabulous science fiction movie parodies.

Spoofing Star Wars: Spaceballs – The Documentary (30 minutes, 1987)

Lucasfilm actually did post-production for Spaceballs. Mel Brooks said George Lucas loved the screenplay, thankfully, since Brooks wasn’t going to go forward with Spaceballs if Lucas had a problem with it.

In the documentary, Brooks says, “to make a good spoof film, you have to love the genre.” Truth.

Not only did Brooks pull together a stellar cast for Spaceballs, the story was funny and reasonably sensible. Even better, there were film nods to other science fiction classics like Star Trek, Alien, Planet of the Apes, and even Superman. Spaceballs is a good romp.

Here’s the 1987 Spaceballs Documentary to get you back in the saddle for some silly Star Wars fun:

 

Spoofing Star Trek: Galaxy Quest (2019)

Ask any Trek fan to list their favorite Star Trek films and invariably Galaxy Quest comes up. Even the real Star Trek actors love it, and praise it to Klingon Heaven (aka Sto-Vo-Kor) in this documentary. When it comes to the best Star Trek films, Galaxy Quest is near the top for me. It also handles the fanbase with great esteem, letting ‘us’ help save the day (“It’s all real.” “I KNEW it!”)

Indeed, I loved the Galaxy Quest Documentary when it came out in a limited release in 2019. I laughed with all the other fans in a packed screening room, while we clued back into to why this…wacky  spoof…was so good. It told a real story. And FELT like Star Trek. It had a coherent narrative, gave us all the feels, and reminded us how amazing Alan Rickman can be with even the goofiest lines (“By Grabthar’s Hammer, you shall be avenged.“)

Here’s the trailer for the Never Surrender Documentary (not available free on You Tube Yet):

My Never Surrender Galaxy Quest Documentary Review:

Never Surrender – A Galaxy Quest Retrospective

Extra! Must-See Bonus Spoofiness

The Deadpool Before Christmas (2018)

A superhero spoof of a fantasy spoof? With genre-hopping Princess Bride fun? Yes, please.

Here’s the trailer if you somehow missed this Deadpool & Princess Bride Mashup:

And my review of The Deadpool Before Christmas:

The Deadpool Before Christmas

 

Every Type of Star Wars Stormtrooper, Explained

So, I was making my own list of every type of Stormtrooper we see in Star Wars, and I found a definitive video explaining more types than I ever noticed. And I notice most things in science fiction films. One of the great things about Star Wars is the massive but oft-unmentioned world-building. The more you watch these movies, the more you notice.

So many Stormtroopers, so little time to spot them

Can you recall which movie features Shore Troopers? How about Snow Troopers, Riot Troopers, SandTroopers, Mud Troopers, and Scout Troopers?

Offhand, I can answer that. In order: Rogue One, The Empire Strikes Back, The Force Awakens, A New Hope, Solo, and Return of the Jedi/The Mandalorian. But that’s barely scratching the surface of Stormtrooper designs.

Some sweep by so quickly you have to stop the movies to catch the new armor and designs. Apparently, I missed a lot of brand new specialized Stormtroopers in Rise of Skywalker.

Also, Star Wars has a lot of Imperial & First Order Guard Troopers. These aren’t the same as the generic Troopers: they are elite. These are the scary ones in red that defend the Emperor and Supreme Leader Snoke. Honestly, in their scenes I mainly noticed they were red-suited, and often wore capes. Sometimes they used unique laser weapons and may have a touch of the Force.

I learned there’s a lot more to the Guard Troopers than I realized when I watched the clip below.

Lucasfilm made this video with real design crewmembers, and it’s incredibly detailed.

Obviously, the designers had a lot of fun creating these different Stormtrooper outfits. There’s a lineage that flows through the decades of storytelling in Star Wars. I’m impressed with the care and attention paid to even the smallest difference in helmet features and armor accessories.

Additionally, if you like Stormtroopers in general, and A New Hope specifically, this parody spoof Troops below is a must-see. It’s now part of my personal head canon on what went down that fateful, deadly day at the Lars Homestead on Tatooine.

“All suspects are guilty. Period:”

TROOPS – A Star Wars Parody Does COPS

Lastly, here is a high quality satire from Saturday Night Live taking place behind the First Order scenes with Kylo Ren and his off duty Stormtroopers, called Undercover Boss. Adam Driver is not to be missed as he sends up his pouty, emo character arc in The Force Awakens. I consider this head-cannon too. Why not? It fits right in.

Undercover Boss – A Star Wars Parody on SNL

Every Type of Starship and Starfighter in Star Wars, Explained

Star-wars-death-star-battle-return-of-the-jedi
There are a lot of ships in the Battle of Endor. It’s a great scene — learn how to recognize the Starfighters here.

It’s kind of interesting when this happens: I come up with an idea for a RunPee article, start my research, and then find someone made an entire video with more detail and authority then I ever could. This has been happening frequently with Star Wars.

In this case, I was personally interested in differences and uses of the Starfighters used each in each movie. (A Starfighter is a one — sometimes two — manned, dogfighting style,  maneuverable armed space attacker. Some are modified for specifically atmosphere, as in the Imperial Tie Strikers on Rogue One.)

What are these Starfighters and who flies them?

Who gets to  fly certain designs and why? What does each ship look like? Offhand, can you tell the difference between a B-Wing and an A-Wing fighter?

The Empire & First Order Ships

For example, if you’re an Imperial or First Order pilot, you might get a Tie Fighter, a Silencer, or an Interceptor. We also see a lot of distinctive Imperial Shuttles with folding bird-type wings. Darth Vader has his own elegant Tie Fighter design that we see in the Death Star trenches of A New Hope.

Capital ships include Star Destroyers and Dreadnoughts (and Death Stars), but we’re not covering the big cruisers / spacestations here. (“That’s no moon.”)

You probably noticed the Tie-Class Starfighters have a distinctive ‘whine’ sound. Here’s one minute of the classic Tie Fighter sound as they flyby and spin out:

Here is is again if you want to listen to the Tie Fighter whine as ambient sound for 12 hours, because, why not?

(Photo embed below shows Darth Vader’s Advanced X-1 Tie Fighter)

Rebels & Resistance Ships

Everyone knows what an X-Wing looks like. It’s Luke’s ship design, after all. But there are also Y-Wings, B-Wings, A-Wings, the Naboo N-1, and on and on until they merge together with minor changes of design.

 

Rebel and Resistance capital ships include Cruisers, Bombers, and Ramming ships (and some rag tag unique boats, like the Millennium Falcon, owned by scrappy individuals like Han Solo). But again, the video below has enough to cover without leaving the realm of Star Fighter.

Where do we see these Starfighters?

The best space battles are in A New Hope, Return of the Jedi, The Last Jedi, Rogue One, and finally, Rise of Skywalker. I’m not going to include The Phantom Menace, which does have a space battle, but is kind of dodgy. Except for Rise of Skywalker, you can find these scenes on You Tube, so you can easily start and stop the action to pick out the different Starfighters and big capital ships.

(Here are all the Star Wars movies ranked by my thoughts on re-watchability.)

OK, where’s the Starfighter Video?

Honestly, I’d been listing things on my own, looking over scenes in various movies, and then I found THIS. It’s the definitive answer, taking almost 18 minutes to watch, created/hosted by design crewmembers of Lucasfilms.

I can’t compete with that. 😉

So here’s the video. Can you name each type of Starfighter as it appears on the screen? 

The other big article I’m no longer going to write is about Stormtroopers. There are more types of troopers than I originally noticed, and I really thought my personal list was pretty good. Oh well! This video is also by Lucasfilm designers, and I’ve written about that here.

Star Wars – Death Stars and Planet Killers: Enough Already

The 6 Most Epic Lightsaber Fights in Star Wars (plus 3 that didn’t make the cut)

Who rated Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker higher, men or women?