Friday, May 25, 2007
Star Wars (the first movie, episode IV)
Time flies doesn’t it?
On May 25th, 1977, Star Wars made it’s debut. Um. That’s THIRTY YEARS ago, people!
Hard to believe.
I didn’t see it when it first came out. But almost immediately I started seeing news reports about this movie that people in L.A. and New York were standing in line for hours to see. And when they showed some clips from the film, and then I started seeing the real commercial for it, I wanted to go see it.
So sometime during the summer of 1977, my good friend Glenn B. (lived across the street) and I rode our bikes up to the old mall in Monroe, La. that was at the corner of Louisville Avenue and Oliver Road.
There was a two-screen theater there called The Plaza (I think that’s what it was called) where Star Wars was playing.
I certainly remember us riding our bikes to go and see it, but I don’t remember sitting in the theater and watching it. Bummer.
I do remember that after it became such a hit, that people were already beginning to speak of sequels that were supposed to come out approximately every three years.
EVERY THREE YEARS?!
Three years is an eternity when you’re fourteen. As in, “Holy cow! I’ll be SEVENTEEN when the next one comes out! And then TWENTY when the one after that comes out! Heck, I won’t care about them by then.”
Yeah, I was wrong. I cared.
I’ve never been a huge science fiction fan, but I have become more and more so as I’ve grown older. I’ve even branched out and read a few science fiction books.
But I still remember seeing those commercials for Star Wars and then Glenn and I riding up there to see it. Oh, to be fourteen again. Sigh.
Our other Orleans Street buddy, Wes R. was our group’s cynic. Wes was (and probably still is) the person in our group of friends that argued about everything. Even if he totally agreed with you on a position, he would often play devil’s advocate and argue the other side of an issue, just to get you all riled up and for the sake of getting into an argument. The boy loved to argue. Some people lift weights and run marathons and such; Wes exercised his argument muscles and he was the best.
So when everyone was loving and talking about and repeatedly going to see Star Wars (Held over for the 14th big week!), Wes, being Wes, decided that he was going to be the only person in America to NOT see Star Wars.
Wes made the following statement to Glenn and me, “I’ll see it when it comes on HBO.” Wes’s parents were the first people I knew that had HBO.
And Wes stuck by his story, and over time it even became a joke among us, because years and years went by before it was finally shown on HBO. That was around 1983 or so, I remember it being not very long before I got married and left home (1984). Being stubborn is a necessary trait for loving to argue.
I do remember specifically sitting in the theater and seeing Empire Strikes Back and Revenge of the Jedi, and who I went with, but I still cannot dredge up any specific memories of Glenn and I sitting in there and watching Star Wars.
Oh well. I’ve seen it a squillion times since then anyway, and at least I remember going to see it.
(I know that's Dark Helmet up there, but although I loved Star Wars, I think "Spaceballs" is one of the great movie spoofs of all time. I loved Rick Moranis as Dark Helmet.)