A video essay breakdown of Star Wars Episode IV’s climax by The Discarded Image (VIDEO).

What Makes Star Wars: Episode IV’s Climax So Good? A Video Essay Breakdown. 

What Makes Star Wars: Episode IV’s Climax So Good? A Video Essay Breakdown. 

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Slate's Culture Blog
Dec. 19 2015 11:45 AM

What Makes Star Wars: Episode IV’s Climax So Good? A Video Essay Breakdown. 

starwarsdiscardedimage

Still from Vimeo

It’s no spoiler to note that Star Wars: The Force Awakens takes much of its template from the very first Star Wars film. It’s no surprise either: Episode IV is a masterclass in world-building, and its climactic assault on the Death Star secured the series’ grasp on the popular imagination.

In the final episode of his “Discarded Image” series, Julian Palmer observes, in pinpoint detail, how that climax also captures the raw technical ambition and deft character development that make the franchise tick. Through careful repetition of shots, an unusual trust in visuals and sound design, and a dollop of symbolism, the sequence set the blueprint for how to turn a movie into myth.  

Sharan Shetty is on the editorial staff of the New Yorker. You can follow him on Twitter