The Star Wars Influence
Of course being a little kid in the early 80’s meant that I was going to be a fan of Star Wars anyway, but the interesting thing was what I wound up appreciating about those movies in the end.
And it wasn’t the toys.
My earliest memories of my rampant imagination were influenced by the adventures of Luke, Leia, and Han. I remember the worlds being flawless to my child eyes and wondering for hours about how people lived on those worlds with aliens and lightsabers.
As the years went by and I grew older, Star Wars fell out of favor with me and I didn’t watch it again until I was a junior in high school. I remember watching “The Empire Strikes Back” and being bored by it and wondering why I even cared about it all those years ago. I still respected the relatively detailed universe, even though I realized that ALL the Star Wars movies were flawed.
The prequels came and went and everyone had their opinions on them. Once again, they were far from perfect, but I liked them well enough. On an intellectual level I understood why a lot of people were less impressed and I can understand and respect their disappointment.
Getting back to the reason why I’m writing this post, George Lucas’ saga influenced my own story came in two ways: the pure creative energy in designing a universe from scratch was too fun not to do; and in the story of a son not repeating the same mistakes as his father.
Say what you will about the acting and execution of Star Wars, but for me the idea of rebelling against your parents by doing the RIGHT thing was a beautiful statement. After seeing all six movies and watching Darth Vader throwing the Emperor down the shaft in order to save his son, a boy who did not give into his hate and greed, in the belief that there was still good in the world affected me on a personal level.
Not to get too deep, but I had abandonment issues with my father who was a womanizer and a “rolling stone”. I rebelled against him by going the other way and that theme of parents being redeemed by their children hits me right in the center of my spirit.
In the end, when I finally reveal my story to the world, I’ll have different realms, cool powers, action scenes and weird technology; but the at very root of it will be the story of how a few children dealt with the absence of parents in their lives and how they grew from that.
And that focus on the human experience will be as powerful as the Force…