Ranking the Star Wars Original Trilogy from worst to best

Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. Image courtesy StarWars.com
Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. Image courtesy StarWars.com /

Every Star Wars fan has their own list of favorite Star Wars media, including their own personal ranking of the films. With Star Wars Day upon us, let’s rank the original trilogy, Episodes IV- Episode VI of the Skywalker saga.

These first there films are what launched the craze which has passed the test of time and made the franchise as relevant today as it was when Episode IV- A New Hope was released in theaters back in 1977.

Here’s my ranking of the OT, of course, yours might differ, and that’s ok!

Star Wars Original Trilogy movies ranked

3. A New Hope

The one that started it all ranks third on my list. The start of the film is a little slow, and it isn’t until Obi-Wan is introduced to us and we find out who he is and how important he is that things really get moving. Alec Guinness is outstanding and like Luke, it’s hard not to get attached to the old loner. The beauty of the Lars Homestead and an iconic binary sunset are just some of the visuals that stay with us after we’ve seen the film.

The highs come in the form of Darth Vader and Obi-Wan Kenobi’s short but dramatic confrontation, which results in Obi-Wan becoming part of the Force, leaving us, and Luke, far too soon. Good thing the OT was only an introduction of Obi-Wan to Star Wars fans, and we were destined to see a lot more of the beloved Jedi Master.

2. Return of the Jedi

Sure, not everyone was a huge fan of the Ewoks, but in its emotional moments, Return of the Jedi delivered in every possible way. What could be better than Luke becoming what he was meant to be; a wiser, more restrained version of his own father?

Though the action and drama were balanced by some of the lighter and funnier moments with the Ewoks, Return of the Jedi’s climax is the most memorable one in the entire saga. Palpatine seemed like was just minutes away from achieving eternal domination over the galaxy, as Vader and Luke, father and son, dueled it out. This led to just one of the most moving moments of the film when he declared that he would never turn to the dark side, and said “I’m a Jedi like my father before me.” The ending, especially Anakin’s return to the light, is an unforgettable experience for any Star Wars fan.

1. The Empire Strikes Back

With no internet connections and absolutely no spoilers, The Empire Strikes Back was able to deliver the biggest twist in franchise history. In a twist that might be one of the top 5 most shocking movie twists of all time, Darth Vader revealed that he’s Luke’s father. Anyone who saw this one in person back in 1980 must have quite a few fun stories to tell about how people reacted when Vader told Luke, “No, I am your father.”

Along with this shocking reveal, the overall more serious feel of the film as well as all the action and character development given to Luke, Leia, Han, and even Darth Vader, makes this the best film in a trilogy which is a masterpiece overall.

Next. Anakin’s 3 most important and heartbreaking bonds. dark