Film Critic Defends Star Wars Review 40 Years Later,
Star Wars was a huge hit from the day it was released. In addition to making millions of dollars, it also received critical praise from many places. Of course, not every critic is going to agree. The film critic for Minnesota’s Star Tribune 40 years ago didn’t care for the movie much. Since we’re now at the 40th anniversary of the original film, the paper thought the critic might want to take another look and reconsider his comments about a film that has become a cultural institution. As it turns out, no, he really doesn’t. According to critic Bob Lundegaard…
No regrets. There are many movies I’ve watched for a second time and wished I’d been more attentive. Early Spielberg, for instance. Or Breaking Away, a brilliant look at class struggles in America that I treated too much as a Rocky-style underdog victory. But Star Wars? I still think I was right.
To be fair, many of Bob Lundergard’s original criticisms are entirely understandable. He knocked the film for having a silly plot and boring dialogue. Anybody taking an honest look at the original Star Wars would be forced to admit there’s at least some truth in these assessments. For this particular critic, they were simply too much to overcome. When compared to something like Woody Allen’s Annie Hall, which had been released the month before, there was simply no contest. Annie Hall would go on to win the Academy Award for Best Picture, though, to be fair, Star Wars would also be nominated, which shows that a lot of people had a very different opinion of the film than the critic for the Star Tribune, even then.
While the overall review was negative, Bob Lundergard wasn’t entirely without compliments, he praises the film’s special effects, which were without question a cut above in their day, and he also praised the character of Princess Leia for being a “take-charge” woman, rather than your standard action movie heroine.
While most movies tend to find a consensus in reviews, there will always be those that buck the trend. Whether we’re talking about somebody who liked Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales or somebody who didn’t like Star Wars: The Force Awakens. As time passes sometimes those views can be changed, this critic, in particular, says that he has changed his opinion on some films over time, like early Steven Spielberg, perhaps he wasn’t a huge fan of Jaws or Close Encounters of the Third Kind, but now has decided he was overly harsh. Although, the critic also confesses he’s never watched the original Star Wars since 1977 so who’s to say he would change his mind if he gave it another real chance?
Star Wars was a huge hit from the day it was released. In addition to making millions of dollars, it also received critical praise from many places. Of course, not every critic is going to agree.