Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back Reviews

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Ralph Novak
People Magazine
August 4, 2013
It's not up to the original.
Top Critic
Vincent Canby
New York Times
January 1, 2000
I found myself glancing at my watch almost as often as I did when I was sitting through a truly terrible movie called The Island.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/5
Top Critic
Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader
May 30, 2007
Irvin Kershner directed the actors this time around, and without the benefit of Lucas's personal affection they seem stiffer, more clenched.
Top Critic
Earnest Leogrande
New York Daily News
April 30, 2015
A spectacular piece of work that carries the new "Star Wars" tradition forward.
Jason Zingale
July 5, 2005
Everything you loved about A New Hope and more.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Roger Moore
Winston-Salem Journal
January 1, 2000
One of the great space operas of all time!
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
January 1, 2000
It is a visual extravaganza from beginning to end, one of the most visionary and inventive of all films.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
January 1, 2000
A superior motion picture!
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Nell Minow
Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies
December 15, 2002
| Original Score: 5/5
Scott Nash
Three Movie Buffs
September 30, 2005
The best of the films.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Alan Jones
Radio Times
August 4, 2013
Director Irvin Kershner's imaginative supervision of George Lucas's brainchild gives this second part of the first Star Wars trilogy a truly epic dimension, adding a mature, philosophical aspect to the nonstop barrage of brilliant special effects.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Phil Villarreal
Arizona Daily Star
June 23, 2006
The most imaginative and emotionally connectable "Star Wars" film and, with the exception of "Revenge of the Sith," also the darkest.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Scott Weinberg
January 1, 2000
Have you heard of this one? Sequel to Star Wars?
Full Review | Original Score: 10/10
Stephen Hunter
Baltimore Sun
January 1, 2000
Scattered and less focused, the second of the Star Wars trilogy to be re-released in the Special Edition format remains a deep pleasure to behold.
Top Critic
James Harwood
March 4, 2008
The Empire Strikes Back is a worthy sequel to Star Wars, equal in both technical mastery and characterization, suffering only from the familiarity with the effects generated in the original and imitated too much by others.
Jeffrey Lyles
Lyles' Movie Files
September 9, 2013
See it and prepare to be captivated by the most spellbinding sci-fi film of them all.
Full Review | Original Score: 10/10
Rob Gonsalves
July 30, 2007
Each section of the film has a stand-out sequence that inspires hyperbole like 'best ever.'
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Charles Cassady
Common Sense Media
December 15, 2010
The best of the original series, but the most intense, too.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid
May 26, 2006
The second act is very strong, cutting back and forth between Luke training with Yoda and Han, Leia, Chewie and C-3P0 fighting the Empire. And it's paced leisurely enough that you get to know the characters a little bit.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Felix Vasquez Jr.
Cinema Crazed
May 22, 2010
Continues to set the standards for sequels to this day...
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