Michel Sargent, staff
The Untitled Star Wars Mockumentary (2003) begins as a fake tribute to director Damon Packard by Tony Curtis followed by Packard cutting himself, friends, old trailers, pornography and other film clips into an actual Star Wars documentary of the weeks leading to the release of Attack of the Clones (2002). Fucking hilarious!
The reason George Lucas© made Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back (1980) is because Episode IV ½ – The Holiday Special (1978) bombed so badly. About one-third is almost watchable as it’s our newborn heroes on cheap mock-up sets and reused space footage. The rest is painful interpretive dance videos and Chewbacca’s family on “Life Day” waiting for pops. Nobody knows Wookiee so no subtitles, just mimes making horrible screechy Wookiee-babble noises. George Lucas© has tried to bury it but YouTube’s a troll so catch it and add another weapon to your WHY STAR TREK IS A FAR SUPERIOR UNIVERSE arsenal.
Hardware Wars (1978) was the original Star Wars spoof that filmmakers hoped to turn feature length (producers Spaceballed the idea). The 12-minute-long film is a funny extended trailer for a farcical story featuring household appliances and characters like Fluke Starbucker, 4-Q-2, Ham Salad and Chewchilla (Cookie Monster dyed brown). The Schwartz be damned!
Star Crash (1978) opens with the exact same spaceship shot as Star Wars IV, has characters that exhibit a “force”, Ray Harryhausen-influenced stop-action robot skeletons, a medusa-in-a-jar, Millennium Falcon look-alikes and a sword-swinging stop-action giant Greek robot. It’s also known for David Hasselhoff’s acting debut and a Texas-accented robot yelling “Look! Amazons on horseback! I hope they’re friendly.”
Star Odyssey (1979) is a terrible excuse for a Star Wars rip-off featuring hilarious mustaches, terrible costumes, force-like telekinesis, trashcan “prehistoric cave robots” and suicidal lovebots. The English dub dialog is awesome; one guy pronounced U.F.O. as “oofow”. Light sabers complete the film-analogy but the story lacks. There’s a prison break on the moon to save humanity from an interstellar auction where aliens are in a bid war for Earthling slaves. A great Moog soundtrack almost makes it not a waste of time.
Mmmmm, Burl Ives as a narrator. The Horror! Caravan Of Courage: An Ewok Adventure (1984) needs a narrator because nobody learned Ewok. Sigh… Young Wicket finds two kids separated from their parents after their ship crashes so the village shaman blesses a magical Ewok journey to save the parents from a giant. Boasts cool stop-action monsters and obvious puppets plus more myth and magic than your usual science fiction spin-off, though, quickly forgettable and not recommended.
Holy SHIT there’s a sequel! It opens with the family about to leave Endor when the parents and son are killed and the girl escapes with Wicket. They hook up with Wilford Brimley and his smiling high-speed (and high on speed) sidekick creature to retrieve a piece of stolen spaceship back from the local magical aliens. Ewoks: The Battle For Endor (1985) is NOT as good as it sounds, plus you have to watch the first one first.