That One With The Ice Planet, The Green Muppet and Lobot

I didn’t realize this earlier (if I had, this entry would have been posted yesterday, instead of today), but yesterday, May 21, 2010 was the 30th anniversary of the release of The Empire Strikes Back.

Now I feel old.

I was born in ’77, the year Star Wars came out.  I don’t have exact memories, but I have flashes of memories of seeing Star Wars in the theaters (and back then, it was in the theaters for years, not weeks like the movies of today) a few different times.  I was hugely into Star Wars as a kid.  But for some reason it took me a while to see Empire.  But unlike with Episode IV, I do remember the first time I saw Empire.

It was actually a few years after it came out- sometime in April or May of ’83, right before Return of the Jedi (which I saw on its opening night in a drive in, but that’s another story).  In that spring of ’83, I was five and after seeing several commercials for Jedi, my father knew that I needed to see Empire before seeing Jedi.

Or else I would have been spoiled big-time.

So King Classic found a theater somewhere in North Jersey that was having a double feature of Star Wars and Empire back to back.  And it was on a Friday.  So my father took me out of kindergarten that day, sat through Star Wars for yet another time with me and then also sat through Empire with me.

As a five-year-old, the movie blew my mind.  And it still continues to do so, probably because I gotten it more as I’ve aged.  I have to say that Star Wars and Empire are tied for first on my favorite movie list (followed closely by UHF), but I do have a better story for the first time I saw Empire.  And maybe because I saw it two years after it came out, I shouldn’t feel so old.

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