I may be a little late on the "May the 4th be with you" train, but as a writer and an avid Star Wars fan, I figured that I should still put this out before day's end. I started out thinking about a favorite SW moments article, but to be honest those things are going to be everywhere today. I ultimately decided on writing about some of the my own personal high points in the Star Wars films: the lightsaber battles.
10. Mace Windu Vs. The Emperor (Episode III: Revenge of the Sith)
This is technically the only lightsaber battle that Mace has, so I knew that it had to make the list. That being said, it was pretty dull. The battle starts with four Jedi against the Emperor, and Palpatine manages to take down three of the Jedi in a matter of seconds, including one of my personal favorites, Kit Fisto.
The battle is also pretty short and not very engaging. I honestly think that Mace should have more of a fight before, you know, he was electrocuted and thrown out a window. Poor Mace.
9. Anakin Skywalker Vs. Count Dooku (Episode II: Attack of the Clones)
Now let me make this clear, I hate Count Dooku's character. I love Christopher Lee as an actor, and he makes a heck of a Saruman, but Dooku is a pretty uninteresting character. Sure he has a weird curved lightsaber hilt, but that's about as interesting as this character gets.
I put this fight on the list because it's the first time that we really see Anakin fighting in an actual lightsaber battle. We saw him butcher droids and sand people, but we first see him fighting against a lightsaber wielder when he took on Dooku. It's also pretty cool to see him fighting with two lightsabers in that moment when Obi-Wan tosses his own into the mix.
8. Yoda Vs. The Emperor (Episode III: Revenge of the Sith)
You would assume that when the epitome of good fights the epitome of evil, the battle would end up being a little more spectacular right? Wrong. Minus all of the chair hurling, the battle is mostly the Emperor standing still while Yoda flies around him. It isn't exactly the most thrilling point in the film.
That's without noticing that the battle happens at the same time as the Anakin/Obi-Wan battle, which is the epitome of a good lightsaber battle. When you compare the fights next to each other at the same time, you can see an obvious winner, and an obvious loser.
7. Obi-Wan Kenobi Vs. Darth Vader (Episode IV: A New Hope)
Honestly, this is the dullest duel in the history of Star Wars. It is basically two opponents standing in front of each other talking, occasionally taking a lazy swing or two before resuming the conversation.
I placed it under number seven because it is literally the first of its kind. This is the first time in the franchise that we get to see blade meet blade, and it is a pretty memorable scene when Kenobi basically gives up and Vader deals the finishing blow.
6. Obi-Wan Kenobi Vs. General Grievous (Episode III: Revenge of the Sith)
Face it, General Grievous was an awesome character. He was a cyborg General of the droid army that just happened to have four arms and an affinity for lightsabers. He just has an overall sleek yet menacing vibe to him.
The only reason that this battle is so far down is that the actual lightsaber fighting didn't last very long. The fight started out pretty solid, with Grievous spinning his lightsabers and advancing like a living buzz-saw, but the clone army just had to show up in only a few minutes, causing the General to flee.The rest of the fight was a big game of cat and mouse through Utapau. Talk about wasted potential.
5. Yoda Vs. Count Dooku (Episode II: Attack of the Clones)
Like I said before, I despise Dooku. However, I love Yoda, and this is the first time we got to see the ancient Jedi Master work his magic with a blade. I remember getting butterflies in my stomach when I saw Yoda drop his cane and equip his stunted green lightsaber. He flailed about like a madman, and the entire time I couldn't stop thinking about how awesome the little green guy was.
The only part that took away from the battle was again, Dooku. With all of Yoda's fancy flips and spins, Dooku deflected the blow with a simple flick of his saber. I think that he should have been more on the edge and terrified.
4. Qui-Gon Jin and Obi-Wan Kenobi Vs. Darth Maul (Episode I: The Phantom Menace)
There is one redeeming quality from The Phantom Menace for me, and that is obviously Darth Maul. He is one of the most worthy-combat adversaries I have ever seen in Star Wars films, and that is why this battle is ranked so high.
Maul, a Sith apprentice that wasn't even known of until his appearance on Tatooine, was able to fight back a respected Jedi Master and his Padawan learner. He even overpowers and kills the Master, causing the apprentice to give into his anger and strike down the agile Sith. The entire fight is incredible to watch, and John Williams' "Duel of the Fates" really adds to the scene.
3. Luke Skywalker Vs. Darth Vader (Episode V: Empire Strikes Back)
I really wanted to put this as number two just because of the classic "I am your father" line at the end of the battle, but the actual fighting wasn't quite impressive enough to beat out its successor.
That being said, this is a battle that will be remembered for ages, as this is the first face off between Luke and Vader. Luke finally gets to try out some of his training that he received from Master Yoda, and Vader gets to see that the new Force-user isn't as helpless as he appears with a lightsaber.
2. Luke Skywalker Vs. Darth Vader (Episode VI: Return of the Jedi)
This was the cream of the crop in the original trilogy. That signature moment where father faced son yet again to determine the reign of either good versus evil. This battle wasn't just a well-fought skirmish between to foes. It was the turning point in the war between the Empire and the Rebel Alliance.
Luke finally let loose his anger and battered Vader over and over until he severed one of the dark lord's hands. Vader then shows his light side when he reverts back to Anakin to save Luke from the torrent of Sith lightning from the Emperor.
1. Anakin Skywalker Vs. Obi-Wan Kenobi
Say what you will about the prequel trilogy, but I stand by my claim that this is doubtlessly the most epic battle in the history of the Star Wars movies. The very best of friends forced to fight against each other, each letting loose a flurry of emotions and battle-hardened prowess. Every single blow was landed in pure fury that made for a brilliant cinematic moment.
If the battle itself wasn't magnificent enough for you, take into account the scenery. Unlike the other bland arena-like battle venues, Anakin and Obi-Wan had to maneuver through a collapsing station surrounded by lava, with massive magma spurts shooting up every couple of moments. Add John Williams amazing "Battle of Heroes" score, and you get one unforgettable clash of titans.