Every Star Wars movie ranked

The Skywalker saga has come to an end with Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (or so they say). Here’s my ranking of every film in the series.

Star Wars has been a controversial topic the last couple of years and with the release of The Rise of Skywalker, it has only gotten worse. I’ll be the first one to say that it’s good, but not great. In many ways, it’s disappointing, but I wouldn’t say it’s nearly as bad as some say. Then again, it doesn’t mean I don’t have my problems with the film. That’s a discussion for another time, though. With Star Wars being a main topic of discussion nowadays, I figured it would be the perfect time to rank every film in the series from worst to best. Let it be known that this is simply what I think and my opinion may differ from yours. Then again, that’s what opinions and movies are all about; subjectivity.

For this list, we’ll be sticking to the main theatrical releases. So, you won’t be seeing any of the holiday specials and so on.

12. Star Wars: Attack of the Clones

This is, without a doubt, the most forgettable Star Wars film. Anakin Skywalker, at times, acts like a teenage child and Hayden Christensen’s portrayal doesn’t really help, delivering a sometimes dull and poorly acted performance. The relationship dynamic with Padme Amidala doesn’t do the movie any favors either. The only redeeming qualities are the fight scenes (even though they feel more like choreographed dance sequences rather than gritty duels), and Ewan McGregor as Obi-Wan Kenobi. Other than that, this is an absolute bore of a film that gets even worse with every viewing.

11. Star Wars: The Phantom Menace

There’s nothing that truly excites you about The Phantom Menace up until the very end, the “Duel of the Fates,” which is actually a great fight scene. In fact, it’s one of the best lightsaber duels in the entire saga. But, that’s probably the only reason why this isn’t dead last on the list. This is yet another movie where you have to force yourself to watch. The majority of this movie is simply boring. Sure, Obi-Wan and Liam Neeson as Qui-Gon Jinn are fun to watch, but they’re bogged down by Jar Jar Binks, who steals every scene he’s in, except it’s not in a good way.

10. Star Wars: The Clone Wars

Consider this movie an extended trailer leading to the animated TV series of the same name. I’ve actually heard it’s pretty fantastic. Granted, I haven’t seen it and I have a feeling a lot of others haven’t as well since this film wasn’t a good starting point to get you to see it in the first place. All in all, The Clone Wars movie was highly unnecessary and didn’t really do anything to help the cinematic realm of this universe. I think the creators could’ve simply gone straight to the series and it would’ve been just fine. Then again, somehow, it’s still a bit more watchable than The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones, even if that isn’t saying much.

9. Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith

This film is the best thing the prequels ever produced. Even though it still isn’t that good, it does just enough to help you forget about the other two atrocities that came before it. Revenge of the Sith still suffers from some boring moments, but what’s most interesting about it is how dark it is compared to the other two. I also still think the Anakin/Padme dynamic is pretty weak. Even Christensen’s performance is unconvincing throughout since he doesn’t really sell the “chosen one being seduced to the dark side” arc. He’s very emotional and his line delivery is pretty awful. However, it does end on a high note with the “Duel on Mustafar.” Of course, the highlight is seeing Darth Vader come to life as well.

8. Solo: A Star Wars Story

Some will say this prequel is unnecessary. Unfortunately, I agree. But, I also don’t hate the movie. In fact, there’s a lot that I actually enjoy about it. Maybe it’s because I went in with low expectations after seeing all the negative reactions and all the drastic changes being made during its production, such as Phil Lord and Christopher Miller dropping out and Ron Howard stepping in. Alden Ehrenreich wasn’t as bad as I thought he would be either. Let’s face it though; there’s no one who can fill Harrison Ford’s shoes as Han Solo and, in the end, he didn’t need an origin story, especially with how the filmmakers decided to reveal how he got his name.

7. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

The recent release is probably the most controversial. Well, I won’t say that since The Last Jedi‘s release was pretty negatively received by a chunk of the fanbase. But, still, The Rise of Skywalker got a lot of hate. In some ways, I understand all the backlash. At the same time, it wasn’t as bad as I thought. As I mentioned earlier, it’s more disappointing rather than a bad movie. The first half is extremely rushed, trying to cram in a bunch of storylines into an hour and change, and most of the creative decisions are ones I don’t really agree with. The film also relies heavily on fan service and a ton of nostalgia. Granted, I did enjoy some of it though. The most unfortunate aspect is how director J.J. Abrams decided to just do away with most of what The Last Jedi established and I feel he went this way because of the fans and their hatred for that movie. At least for me, it was sad to see since I absolutely love The Last Jedi. Despite that, there are a lot of moments to love in this movie and it’s a heartwarming sendoff to the Skywalker saga, it just could’ve been so much more with a proper plan in place.

6. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Seeing all the Star Wars films prior to the release of this prequel, I was always fascinated by how they were able to pull it off (getting the plans to destroy the Death Star, that is). I expected Rogue One to be good, but it definitely exceeded my expectations. There are a ton of great characters, especially Donnie Yen as Chirrut Imwe. Throw in some incredible fight scenes, gorgeous set pieces, and beautiful cinematography, and you have Rogue One, which is the best prequel to date and, as you can see, ranks high in my list of the best Star Wars movies. I hope future prequels follow suit and are as good, if not better, than Rogue One. Let’s not forget the epic Darth Vader scene towards the end, which rivals some of his best appearances in this entire saga.

5. Star Wars: Return of the Jedi

Although I think Return of the Jedi is the weakest film in the original trilogy, I still very much enjoy it. What held it back the most is the lack of focus. I thought there were way too many stories it was trying to tell. But, despite all that, it works pretty well for the most part. What’s best about it is Luke Skywalker doing whatever it takes to turn his father, Darth Vader, back to the light. Turns out he does in a very emotional and gritty lightsaber duel, which makes for a heartwarming finale to one of the greatest trilogies in cinema history.

4. Star Wars: The Force Awakens

The Force Awakens is, in my opinion, a great starting point for the new Disney trilogy. Some say it played it too safe because it’s very similar to A New Hope. In some cases, I do agree since it is pretty similar. However, it doesn’t mean the film isn’t great. I feel the film does a phenomenal job at introducing the new characters to a new audience, as well as the old fanbase. Plus, it has some returning fan favorites, such as Han Solo and Chewbacca, which triggers all the nostalgic moments the fans from the original trilogy remember. Besides, the ones who didn’t enjoy this one because of the similarities to A New Hope are the same ones bashing The Last Jedi because it changed way too much and took risks. So, you can never win some insufferable Star Wars fans.

3. Star Wars: The Last Jedi

This is, by far, my favorite film in the new trilogy. It’s not a very popular opinion, but who cares? Obviously, I recognize The Last Jedi doesn’t come without its flaws, but the flaws aren’t enough for me to completely disregard it as a Star Wars film like some others have. I thought what Rian Johnson did with Luke was actually great, considering he’s able to realize what he has done is wrong and his character is, in a way, redeemed at the end of the film. What I didn’t really enjoy is how wasted Snoke is as a villain and once you see The Rise of Skywalker, it makes it even worse. But, as a film, I think it’s pretty fantastic, full of great characters with compelling storylines, and the story itself is a great one. It’s a shame that in the grand scheme of things, it was basically forgotten because of the toxicity of some fans. I’m not saying that’s entirely the reason why The Rise of Skywalker turned out to be what it is, but I definitely think J.J. Abrams wanted to avoid more backlash. Just my opinion, of course.

2. Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

This is widely considered the greatest Star Wars film ever made and rightfully so. It’s extremely challenging to even try and find a flaw in this film because of how good it truly is. When speaking about risks, this one takes the most (other than The Last Jedi) out of any film in the entire saga. Throw in a story that’s never boring and always engaging, the introduction of Lando Calrissian, and the iconic moment where Darth Vader reveals he’s Luke’s father, and you get arguably the best Star Wars experience. I can only imagine what the audience felt watching this in the theater. It’s one of my favorite movies ever, without a doubt, but there’s just something about the one that started it all.

1. Star Wars: A New Hope

A New Hope is the film that delivers the greatest memories and nostalgia for me. It was my introduction to the Star Wars universe and I wouldn’t want it any other way. Seeing characters like Luke, Darth Vader, Han Solo, Princess Leia, C-3PO, and R2-D2 for the first time was an extremely memorable experience. The development of each character was fantastic, considering that there are many of them. They each feel important to the plot in one way or another, which is sometimes rare seeing in movies of this scale. I can’t forget Alec Guinness as Obi-Wan Kenobi either, which stills holds up as a great performance.

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