mike@projection-booth.com mike@projection-booth.com

May 19, 2015

Episode 219: Star Wars (1977)

Special Guests: Roger Christian, Michael Kaminsky, Chris Taylor, Alexandre O. Philippe, Harmy
Guest Co-Host: Chris Bricklemyer

Continuing our Maudit May series, we look at George Lucas's Star Wars (AKA Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope), the sci-fi film from 1977 that has been rendered unavailable in its original form due to its creator's tampering.

We're joined by Outside the Cinema's Mr. Chris to get nostalgic and discuss how Star Wars may (or may not) have influenced our lives.

Listen/Download Now:

Listen to the Star Wars Music Mix:

Buy The People Vs. George Lucas on DVD
Buy The Secret History of Star Wars by Michael Kaminsky
Buy How Star Wars Conquered the Universe by Chris Taylor
Buy Cinema Alchemist by Roger Christian
Read more about Roger Christian's Black Angel on io9
Watch The Star Wars Holiday Special on YouTube
Watch From Star Wars to Jedi on YouTube
Read about Harmy's Despecialized Version of Star Wars
Read George Lucas talking about altering films
Listen to Rob St. Mary's interview with Richard Chew on WDET
Read about the Annotated Star Wars
Read about the Lost Cut of Star Wars
Read the io9 Star Wars Guide
Read the Raiders of the Lost Ark story conference
Read George Lucas Was Incredibly Specific About How Much He Wanted Greedo to Shoot First by James Whitbrook
Read Mike White's article on Star Wars Rip-Offs
Visit the OriginalTrilogy.com website
Visit the official Star Wars website

"In the Year 2525" - Zager & Evans
"Double Sunset" - John Williams
"Star Wars" - Dangerous Darrin
"Star Wars Gangsta Rap" - Jason Brannon & Chris Crawford


Blast it Biggs! Where are you?! - By @jamieswb from Filmumentaries - Jamie Benning on Vimeo.


  1. Gentlemen, this was above and beyond great. First you guys make it impossible for anyone to follow in your wake with the "Conan the Barbarian" review, and now this. I'm not a huge "Star Wars" fan. In fact, it's because Lucas has seemingly made it his life's goal to screw over fans of the original three films -- all practical effects intact and devoid of digital enhancement -- that I've really soured on the whole thing. I don't consider the original films high art or anything, but they were fun and exciting films for kids that generally stuck with anyone growing up back in their time, and became fondly burnt into the nostalgia centers of the brain. After that, Lucas seemed determined to feed kids badly-written junk food, that isn't fun or even interesting. He started a game of ball and then took that ball home in the middle of the game, pissed on it, and then threw it back out on the street for the kids to continue to play with. Thanks so much for the hard work put into this episode, guys. Fantastic work.

  2. Another great episode guys. It ranks in the top five along with Dune, Blade Runner, Conan, and Rocky Horror. I saw this movie at the perfect age of 14. I saw it opening day at the best theatre with the best sound and biggest screen in Waco, Texas at that time. I saw it many times after that. This was a theatre that had the old 2 projector system where the projectionists actually had to work for their money. The projectionist would have to make sure to shut down the reel playing and start the next one up around that same time. So you would never have the same movie experience at least as far as reel changes go when ever you went there.

    As far as merchandise goes, one great toy that is hardly mentioned anymore was the Star Wars movie viewer which showed about 1 minute of actual (exciting) footage from the movie.


    And while most trading card sets had around 60 to 70 cards max, the original series cards had a massive 330 cards. This included the infamous X-rated C-3PO card.


    Also, people don’t remember what a big deal the soundtrack album was. I had many soundtrack albums which consisted of all the James Bond and Clint Eastwood Spaghetti Western titles I could get. I also had others such as 2001 A Space Odyssey, Space 1999, etc, but this was something very special. This soundtrack came out like a double vinyl rock album with an almost “Spinal Tap” black quality about it. I can tell you that soundtrack albums like this from the 60s and 70s had a better warmer sound when played on a good stereo compared with the digital files that you can download now or even listen to on CDS. I can’t recommend having and listening to these kinds of vinyl soundtrack recordings if you can afford it.


    When the re-release came out in 1981, it played at one of the smallest theatres with one of the smallest screens in Waco. That was my first of many disappointments. Also, like Mike I hated the Episode IV addition and have hated the whole Episode XX thing since then.

    My next disappointment was when Return of the Jedi came out. I didn’t care too much for it and neither did any of my friends. It’s telling that before his prequels came out, George Lucas would go on record saying the ROTJ was his favorite of the original 3 films. I have also heard him change his story about how many films he originally had in mind going from 3 to 9. It really seems he gears his movies for small children with stuff like Ewoks, while also trying to appeal to older kids and adults with more mature fair. This has translated to mostly uneven, disappointing results.

    I never understood why I hated the prequels until I came across Red Letter Media. All I knew was that they were bad but couldn’t put into words why. Watching the reviews I now understand what went wrong with these movies. I highly recommend watching their Star Trek/Star Wars reviews along with other shows like “Half in the Bag” and “Best of the Worst”.

    I’m still hoping for the best regarding the new movie. I’m ready to watch a good Star Wars movie again!

  3. I do wish more people cared or acknowledged that the theatrical cut of THX-1138 is just as lost as STAR WARS.

    (This isn't directed at you guys. I enjoyed the episode. Just an open lamentation, is all.)

    1. Thinking we'll cover THX-1138 in 2017.

    2. Okay, we covered it. Hope you enjoyed it.