Star Wars is one of the few space opera series in the history of cinema. George Lucas created it in the early seventies. His initial project included a transposition of the Flash Gordon’s adventures (which was instead produced in 1980 by Dino de Laurentis), but Lucas didn’t purchase the rights. He was then forced to write an original story.
The first three films were produced between 1977 and 1983 and formed the so-called Original Trilogy, which includes: Episode IV - Star Wars Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back Episode VI - Return of the Jedi. From 1999 to 2005 George Lucas produced the Prequel trilogy formed by the film Episode I - The Phantom Menace, Episode II - Attack of the Clones, Episode III - Revenge of the Sith. This trilogy has set between twenty and thirty years before the events of the original trilogy. The Prequel Trilogy shows the evolution of Anakin Skywalker, the end of the Old Republic and the rise of the Galactic Empire. In 2012 it was officially announced the production of the Sequel Trilogy, which is the sequel of the original trilogy. The first chapter will be called Star Wars: Episode VII - The awakening of the Force, which will be release in cinemas on December 18, 2015. Episode VIII and IX will be released in 2017 and 2019.
Star Wars is a modern representation of the eternal struggle between good and evil, between the Galactic Republic, the cradle of democracy, and the Empire, a dictatorship based on terror and repression. The protagonist of the saga, however, is the Rebel Alliance and its heroes; it is a secret society established by some senators. At the end, this association will be able to restore the ancient republican order and the Order of the Jedi Knights; this Order consists of peace and justice’s protectors that derive their powers from the faith and observance of the Force, the energy that keeps the galaxy together.
This is a mystical energy field created by all living things that pervade the universe and all the things it contains. Obi-Wan Kenobi described the Force as "an energy field. It surrounds us and penetrates us; it binds the galaxy together". Manipulating the Force allows the mastery of mystical abilities, such as the psychokinesis, clairvoyance, and precognition, control other minds, the amplification of the reflexes and physical agility. The Jedi Knights are opposed to the Sith, born from the fall of a Jedi and devoted to the dark side of the Force, that feeds on negative feelings, such as anger, fear and desire for revenge.
In a perfect dosage of ingredients, Star War represents the first product of a science fiction adventure that finally brought on screens galactic sagas that was all the rage in literary science fiction and comics. Fantasy influences (wizards and princesses), western echoes, swashbuckling, horror, a disillusioned cynicism (Han Solo), humour (the bickering between R2-D2 and C-3PO) have been mixed with a common adolescent fantasy about the adventure, transforming it into a modern fairy tale that begins with the famous words scrolling across the screen "A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away....". This is a saga that, for the first time, has no references either to the planet Earth or to the human race.
The most famous weapon is certainly the lightsaber, as Obi-Wan Kenobi says, “Not as clumsy or random as a blaster. An elegant weapon... for a more civilized age”, and it is used in combat by the Jedi Knights and Sith Lords. Capable of cutting any material except another lightsaber, it works thanks to a few crystals of Adegan, which project the energy required to form the blade through a system of mirrors. The blade is green, blue or purple for the Jedi, red for the Sith. It certainly reminds mythological swords such as Excalibur and it is the protagonist of the decisive battles of the saga.
Since the beginning, 100 or more years ago, the cinema has made us live (and relive) in thousands of times, and situations of disparate universes. Many have been, thanks to the big screen, the adventures experienced by the public. Yet Star War is a saga that, regardless of tastes and preferences of each of us, not only made history, but is also the most universally known. Millions of fans literally grew with visions of Lucas, beyond fashions, controversy and more or less successful attempts to integrate the mythology. His heart is unique and inimitable, and it certainly represents one of the finest cinematic stories on which we can fantasize, although the expressed utopias sometimes step aside once we are in front of the charm of interstellar travel, the adventures in the service of the Jedi’ ideals, the simple and irresistible raspy hiss of a lit Light Saber.