50 reasons Star Wars is better than Lord of The Rings

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11. Yavin 4 vs. Rivendell

What was Yavin 4? The moon on which the Rebel Alliance built a base amongst the ruins of an ancient city

Who was Rivendell? An ancient Elvish city in Middle-earth

Verdict: Two ancient cities, one abandoned and the other in the process of being abandoned. Both of our sets of heroes hole up in these places as they plan their next move in the first movie of the trilogies.

Yavin 4 is actually the real-world ruins of Tikal in Guatemala, among the largest ruins of the great Mayan civilization that disappeared before Christopher Columbus arrived in the New World. Though Lucas was by no means trying to evoke that story in A New Hope, the idea of a our heroes’ last hopes at least in part residing in the remnants of a once-great empire seems kind of fitting.

Rivendell is in the process of becoming a Tikal of sorts in Middle-earth. The Elves are leaving, emptying out their cities as they take to the sea and leave the continent to the men. It’s therefore also fitting that those that would attempt to save Middle-earth would base themselves temporarily in the city of those that had before been its saviors.

Points for overthinking things, sure, but there’s no denying the parallel. In the end, it’s Rivendell that takes the round though. The architecture and vistas alone earn it that much.

Lord of the Rings wins

Next: 10. Lando vs. Boromir