Galaxy far, far away stirs memories

Campus Times
March 14, 1997


by Scott Harvey
Assistant Sports Editor



Whizzing through the realm of time, it is sometimes so rare to find a work of art that can be referred to as a classic. The "Mona Lisa," Monet's "Waterlilies," though objective and silent, have kept their rarity through the course of time, but lack the fire and energy to appeal to a new wave generation such as ours. No, Generation X, we must identify and cherish the classic art we recognize through growing up in the '80s and '90s which can be perfectly epitomized by the re-release of the "Star Wars" trilogy in movie theaters.

As I look back through my childhood, especially the early years, I can classify only a few things that stood out as memorable and one thing that I will always recall as an overwhelming and exciting event was the first time I saw "The Empire Strikes Back" on the big screen.

Arriving at the theater was a marquee event for me. Lines ran all the way around the back of the building and each moment I drew closer to the door, my heart overflowed with excitement. When I finally reached my seat, my feet could hardly reach the floor, but I was glued to my chair and to the screen.

The whole experience of the movie moved me, and even though I was only 7, I could see that the trilogy would be remembered as a special event for all ages. It was the first movie that not only blew the audience away with effects, but moved them to embrace their country, family and friends with the concept of the "Force," almost a reflection of religious faith to some.

With the remastering and re-release of all three movies to the big screen this year, a new generation is now properly introduced to the magic of the trilogy. Although I had seen the second installment of the trilogy, I was too young when the first movie was released in 1977.

I recently saw "Stars Wars" for the first time and the experience of seeing the new version of this classic was like magic. When I first saw it on video, I was entertained, but in the theater it was so different. The way people embraced the movie was so unique. Sitting in the theater, waiting for the lights to dim and the curtain to rise, the audience was full of excitement. Seeing both old and young people in attendance, cheering and chanting, made me realize what a classic it really is. When two generations can get excited about and share a movie like "Star Wars," it is a special experience.

I had a conversation after the show with a man who was quick to criticize the movie. He thought that re-releasing the "Star Wars" trilogy was a ploy to make money by George Lucas, hoping that the new theater version would lure patron viewers in before the release of three new episodes in the continuing "Star Wars" saga. I firmly disagreed with him.

I believe that Lucas and his staff wanted to re-release the movies to help new viewers of the trilogy get a sense of this classic, on-going story. Long after Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill have starred, there will be new actors and a whole new story line that will once again capture the hearts of viewers.

I hope one day I can look at my son and say that, when the first version of the trilogy was released, I saw it in the theater. I want my friends and I to be able to see the new episodes in the year 2000 and remember the times we saw "The Empire Strikes Back" together. Most of all, despite paying the exorbitant price of a movie ticket, I want to feel the young boy in me when I sit in the theater waiting for the lights to dim and the curtain to rise.

Lastly, to that man I spoke with after the showing of "Star Wars," I suggest that you think about how your child will feel when you avoid seeing the new episodes of this classic just because you want to save a buck.

Scott Harvey, a sophomore journalism major, is assistant sports editor of the Campus Times. He can be reached by e-mail at

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