The widely anticipated “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” opens in theaters on Dec. 20. Disney and Lucasfilm have said this is the end of the “Skywalker Saga.”
The “Skywalker Saga” is all of the episodic Star Wars films produced up until this point.
Beginning with the adventures of Luke, Han and Leia, then the prequel trilogy focusing on Anakin, Obi-Wan and Padme, the sequel trilogy finally wraps up starring Rey, Kylo Ren, Finn and Poe.
With such a monumental nerd chapter coming to a close, here are my full Star Wars movie rankings—including the anthology films—and a quick predictions section for “The Rise of Skywalker.”
10. Star Wars: Attack of the Clones
Bogged down by a force-fed love story between Anakin and Padme, “Attack of the Clones” is filled with poor acting and head-scratching story decisions. Obi-Wan’s arc is easily the best part.
9. Star Wars: The Phantom Menace
Remove Jar Jar Binks and this would still probably rank ninth on my list. In one movie, George Lucas ruined everything we thought we knew about the Force and turned Darth Vader into a whiny little kid. We do, however, get one of the best lightsaber fights ever between Obi-Wan, Qui-Gonn Ginn and Darth Maul (shoutout to the music “Duel of the Fates” playing).
8. Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
Finally, we get to see Anakin become Darth Vader. Oh wait, maybe we didn’t want to see little Ani mercilessly kill younglings. In all honesty, this is probably the only prequel that I enjoy watching out of the three, mainly because there is real emotion when they execute Order 66. Also, the final fight between Anakin and Obi-Wan does pull at a few of my heartstrings.
7. Solo: A Star Wars Story
This may seem like I am ranking this movie low, but I actually enjoy “Solo.” The story, characters and action sequences are all enjoyable but it doesn’t provide any unforgettable moments in my opinion. While Alden Ehrenreich does the best he can playing Han Solo, my biggest problem with this movie is that he’s not Harrison Ford. Obviously, it would be impossible for Ford to play this aged character now but that just makes me question if we really needed this movie at all.
6. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
This is exactly what a “Star Wars story” should be: a well-crafted story around likable characters that we grow to quickly love throughout the film. We only see one lightsaber (the one and only Darth Vader’s) and it is one of the best scenes in Star Wars history. Not only does this movie perfectly lead into “A New Hope,” but it provides us with the “wow” factor we all crave when journeying to a galaxy far, far away.
5. Star Wars: The Last Jedi
This was nearly placed at number six on my list, but despite all the movie does wrong, the super sweaty, gasping-for-air moments in this movie give it the nod over “Rogue One.” Kylo Ren, also known as Ben Solo, is my favorite character of the new trilogy and I love everything he does in this movie. All of the moments between him and Rey are great (#TeamReylo), and their brief team-up against Snoke’s guards is pure Star Wars bliss.
4. Star Wars: A New Hope
Back where it all began. The teaching between Obi-Wan and Luke learning what the Force is, our first appearance of Han and Chewbacca, Darth Vader force-choking his subordinates and the beginnings of an iconic friendship between Luke, Han and Leia. The original Star Wars film will always hold a special place in our little nerd hearts.
3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Some take points off for being very similar to “A New Hope” but I absolutely love “The Force Awakens,” even with the blatant copying. Star Killer Base was a misfire. However, seeing a Storm Trooper—Finn—go rogue, being introduced to the best pilot in the resistance—Poe—and meeting our midi-chlorian-filled scavenger Rey are all great character moments and sets the foundation for the next three movies. Also, Han (rest in peace), Chewy and Leia are heavily featured and it feels like a dream come true.
2. Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
I do not mind the Ewoks. Inject the throne scene between the Emperor, Vader and Luke directly into my veins. Next.
1. Star Wars: Empire Strikes Back
If this isn’t your favorite Star Wars movie are you really even a Star Wars fan? Some of the best elements are the battle of Hoth, Luke training with Yoda and Lando Calrissian and Cloud City. This movie also has some of the best moments of dialogue, including the moment between Han and Leia where she proclaims her love for him and he simply responds, “I know.”
There’s also this iconic exchange between Luke and Vader:
Luke: I’ll never join you!
Vader: If only you 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.
The Rise of Skywalker questions/predictions:
- How and why is the Emperor back?
- Who was Snoke?
- How do they handle Leia?
- Kylo and Rey team up in the end to fight the Emperor.
- Kylo dies in the end.
- Rey, Finn and Poe all survive.
- We see Hayden Christensen reprise his role as Anakin Skywalker in the form of a Force ghost.