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Psychology of Star Wars

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Trooper89, Mar 14, 2005.

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  1. Trooper89

    Trooper89 Jedi Youngling

    Mar 13, 2005
    I have been asking myself this question for a very long time. Why is Star Wars so successful? What makes it that way? And to be honest, the only way to answer it, is to hear from those who know Star Wars. So is it the characters? The classic battle of good and evil? Plots? Twists? Effects? I hope everybody puts their input in, because I"m very curious.
  2. BauconBatista

    BauconBatista Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jun 24, 2004
    Very easy: it has remained true to itself, even after nearly three decades :)
  3. MatthewZ

    MatthewZ Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 21, 2003
    I'm psyched for Episode III. Is that on topic?
  4. emilsson

    emilsson Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Oct 5, 1998
    I think good vs evil is part of the answer. Heroic tales has fascinated humans for a long time. But that doesn't explain why Star Wars in particular is such a success. I think part of the answer is also that Star Wars seems very real. Although the story takes place in a distant galaxy the planets and cities seem very much real. For example, many the designs of many creatures seems believable.
  5. Darth-Seldon

    Darth-Seldon Jedi Grand Master star 6

    May 17, 2003
    "So is it the characters? The classic battle of good and evil? Plots? Twists? Effects?"

    All of that and much more.
    The heroic journey which has obsessed humanity since it's origins. The story of a fool becoming a hero and combating evil. The struggles, the melodrama, the effects, the plot twist, the escapism, the themes, the loveable characters....there is no one thing which explains why so many people love this type of story, they just do.

  6. Master_Starwalker

    Master_Starwalker Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 20, 2003
    For me it's the classic battle of good and evil, the hero's journey, the dark twisted hero's journey of Anakin, the effects, the plot, the themes, the philosophy of the Jedi, and the characters
  7. Techno-Union-Elite

    Techno-Union-Elite Jedi Youngling star 2

    Mar 15, 2005
    I love Star Wars because of the amazing universe that Lucas has created. This ranges from planets, ships, species, weapons, ideals, etc. Then these are all combined together during debates, battles, love scenes, etc. Overall, it is a universe that we will probably never experience.

    Other than that, the stories are also very well done and some of the scenes/quotes are very memorable.
  8. Malikus

    Malikus Jedi Youngling

    Mar 15, 2005
    I think that it truly is the epic battle of good vs. evil. But it centers on that struggle within the heart of the main character. e.g. Anakin's inability to control his emotions lead him to his tragic fall, on the other hand, Luke, seeing the pitfalls of the dark side through his father is able to overcome it. It is something we all encounter, the good and evil within our ourselves, some times we're strong and sometimes we fail. The message, ala Anakin, is that there is always a way back. No one is beyond redemption. A most powerful message indeed.
  9. Trooper89

    Trooper89 Jedi Youngling

    Mar 13, 2005
    I would have to agree with you Malikus. If you look at the entire SW saga, the one character,(with the exception of 3PO and R2) in all the films is Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader. The way I see it, GL is telling a story about Anakin, and how a person can go bad, but come back to good. That, I think, is a message everyone needs to hear. But there are several movies that have the same basic message, so what makes SW so different?
  10. michaelbacca

    michaelbacca Jedi Youngling star 1

    Mar 15, 2005
    One of the things that I love most about Star Wars is the fact that The Force is seemingly all-powerful. With just a thought, Vader can strangle people that are vast distances from him. That kind of power makes Jedi and Sith seem like they are one step from godliness.

    Another thing is that a decidedly evil person, Vader, can be turned from evil and can be made to serve good once again.
  11. Jabba-wocky

    Jabba-wocky Chosen One star 9

    May 4, 2003
    As to why Star Wars succeeded, a combination of factors that culminates in luck, but with each individual component rooted in skill. For instance, designing a light, but entertaining story that many can relate to. Or really pushing the boundaries with effects. Etc. Lucas deserves credit for all this, but to be fair, many movies have at least one of these elements in equal or greater quality than SW does. It's just that Lucas hit the right combination of them, at exactly the right time. And there was a phenonmenon.

    The only other alternative is to believe that someone can read the trends of the population so well that they could deliberately construct a mega-success. That's almost impossible for one person to do, alone, unaided, and with limited resources. Even with all those things, people haven't been able to do it very reliably. So I have to say that in all likelihood, Lucas just made something he thought was good, and as chance would have it he ended up being right.

    As for what happened afterwards, well, I see the thing as really self-perpetuating after ESB. It was too big of a cash cow to just let die, and fans had become to invested to just move on. So there's been a kind of reciprocal relationship that's has (and probably will) keep SW going for a pretty long time.
  12. severian28

    severian28 Jedi Master star 5

    Apr 1, 2004
    There are alot of not-to-hidden metaphors all over SW. Some are timeless and some are quite progressive in there nature.
  13. Shadowen

    Shadowen Jedi Youngling star 3

    May 11, 1999
    The moment that Star Wars becamse a pop culture phenomenon was not during the runaway success first movie. It was a single line in Empire Strikes Back:

    "No, Luke--I am your father."

    Even then, it was a classic storytelling technique--make the bad guy a relative of the good guy--but it wasn't all that common, at least not in movies of the age. The shock value was incredible. No doubt, to some people who were fond of Star Wars but until then had found the basic idea hokey, that line alone was worth the ticket price.

    After that, it became a full-blown pop cultural "signature line", like "yaddayaddayadda", "Bond, James Bond", or "And now for something completely different...". Forever after, "I am your father" could rarely be taken seriously as a literary device; it was more often used as a wink and nod at the audience, a way of saying, "Yeah, I saw that too; wasn't it great?"
  14. Winston_Sith

    Winston_Sith Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Apr 8, 2004
    :::"No, Luke--I am your father."

    But, you... just... misquoted it!


    Don't worry, it happens. :) <Emperor Palpatine cackle...>
  15. orangefuzz

    orangefuzz Jedi Padawan star 4

    Feb 21, 2003
    The use of fundamental human themes and archetypes is what has made it such an international success, even for people foreign to our American way of life. Plus if you think about it, the saga is so strong on so many levels. Great characters, great settings, great plots, great effects, great technology, great action, great emotion, Star Wars is practically perfect!
  16. severian28

    severian28 Jedi Master star 5

    Apr 1, 2004
    " The moment that Star Wars becamse a pop culture phenomenon was not during the runaway success first movie. It was a single line in Empire Strikes Back:

    "No, Luke--I am your father." "

    I would disagree with that. Id say that the opening shot of ANH was the moment it became a pop culture phenomenon precisely because it is a watershed moment in filmmaking. While the true depths of what was going on in that opening shot was probably only truly understood by film technicians, as displayed in " Empire of Dreams ", the juggernaut impact that it had on the average film goer is undeniable, also displayed in EoDs with people asking the f/x techs for autographs. Even the common Joe knew nothing in films would ever be the same again and the phenomenon was born.
  17. Shadowen

    Shadowen Jedi Youngling star 3

    May 11, 1999
    How does that line go, then?
  18. Spike_Spiegel

    Spike_Spiegel Former FF Administrator Former Saga Mod star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Aug 12, 2002
    LUKE: I'll never join you!

    VADER: If you only knew the power of the dark side. Obi-Wan never told
    you what happened to your father.

    LUKE: He told me enough! He told me you killed him.

    VADER: No.... I am your father.

    LUKE: No... No... That's not true! That's impossible!

    VADER: Search your feelings. You know it to be true.

    The funny thing is that the line that has entered popular conscience is the "Luke, I am your father" which is actually a missquote. Kind of like "Beam me up, Scotty" which was never uttered in the Original ST series.
  19. Megara_Lemelisk

    Megara_Lemelisk Jedi Youngling star 1

    Mar 12, 2005
    For me it is also the battle between good and evil but yet it is more then just that. I was introduced to Star Wars by my brother when I was 4 years old and I have stayed true to my love of Star Wars. It is a way to escape to a Galaxy Far Far Away. For me it was always imagination and very inspiring to see other worlds and alien species. Also with the Force I always loved the mystic sense of it. I love Star Wars for its imagination that it brings to me especially when I look up at the stars.
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