Star Wars: Summing up the saga

Will Pfeifer

Here’s the lowdown on the six “Star Wars” movies, listed in order of theatrical release. Beware: This list includes spoilers.

“Episode IV: A New Hope” (1977): Better known as “Star Wars,” this movie introduced us to Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Princess Leia, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Darth Vader, Chewbacca and the droids, R2-D2 and C-3PO. It ends with Luke blowing up the Death Star.

“Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back” (1980): This first sequel ends on a cliffhanger, with Solo frozen in carbonite and Luke still stunned about the fact that Vader is (gasp!) his father. This is also the movie where we meet Yoda and Lando Calrissian.

“Episode VI: Return of the Jedi” (1983): This film ties up the original story, with Luke convincing Vader to become good, the second Death Star blowing up and Solo and Leia finally getting together. For a long time, it looked like it would be the last “Star Wars” movie, but then came …

“Episode I: The Phantom Menace” (1999): Sixteen years after “Jedi,” George Lucas skipped back to the beginning. Vader is just a boy named Anakin Skywalker, and Kenobi is a young man. This movie is notorious for featuring Jar Jar Binks, one of the most annoying characters in cinema history.

“Episode II: Attack of the Clones” (2002): Now Anakin is a teenage Jedi-in-training falling in love with Queen Amidala. Trouble is, he’s already showing signs of having a dark side. We meet a slightly younger Yoda here, who proves to be pretty handy with a light saber.

“Episode III: Revenge of the Sith” (2005): Things really take a dark turn with this movie: Anakin turns evil and finally dons his Darth Vader armor. The Jedis are massacred, and Kenobi and Yoda go into hiding. Also, Amidala dies, but not before giving birth to twins named Luke and Leia. Which brings us back to where it all started, way back in 1977.

— Will Pfeifer