Ranking the 'Star Wars' Trilogies

My Ranking of the ‘Star Wars’ Trilogies

Annlyel ranks the best trilogy from the Skywalker saga

Thanks to Disney’s acquiring of Lucasfilm we have three, yes three, Star Wars trilogies to enjoy. Each trilogy offers a different storyline with lovable characters and downright fantastic moments that make the particular films in those trilogies stand out while also managing to tell a somewhat cohesive story that links the three trilogies into an epic saga. But which trilogy reigns supreme? Let’s find out, shall we?

My Three Least Favorite Star Wars Movies

Surprisingly, my three least favorite Star Wars films are from each trilogy.

The Best Moment | Star Wars: Attack of the Clones

9. Attack of the Clones

Sitting at the bottom of the list is Attack of the Clones simply because while I like Obi-Wan‘s storyline and the movie’s action sequences Anakin and Padme’s romance is the ultimate icky fest for me.

Between Anakin’s cringe-worthy dialogue about comparing sand to Padme’s “smooth” skin or the puke-worthy conversation by the romantic firelight on whether they should be together or not, the romance in this film is a far-fetch from the romantic storyline in The Empire Strikes Back. Not to mention, the chemistry between Hayden Christensen and Natalie Portman feels forced, making the kissing scenes that much ickier.

Rey and Kylo Ren - Star Wars The Rise of Skywalker

8. The Rise of Skywalker

Honestly, this is pretty much my least favorite Star Wars film because it annihilates so much of what has come before. Not to mention all of the plot holes and ridiculous scenarios that spring up in the film that are only recognizable upon closer inspection. Like the idea that Kylo Ren had secretly hoarded Lando‘s blaster for decades only for it to finally come to the forefront at the very end of his story. Of course, this tie-in will undoubtedly be fleshed out in some comic book or novel but still, it doesn’t make the Easter Egg any cooler or sensible. And while the scene with the horses on the Star Destroyer was pretty cool in theory when there is no context provided for why the horses are there in the first place it comes across as ridiculous and uber-corny.

The Rise of Skywalker is like an apple filled with worms. It looks good at first but upon closer inspection, the story is pretty rotten.

Star-Wars-Return-Of-The-Jedi-Disney-Plus

7. Return of the Jedi

Return of the Jedi isn’t a bad film, in fact, compared to Attack of the Clones and The Rise of Skywalker, it deserves an Oscar, but being someone who isn’t a fan of the Ewoks, this movie can sometimes be a drag to watch. However, Luke‘s confrontation with Darth Vader and Emperor Palpatine is the epitome of epic and the film’s conclusion manages to always bring a smile to my face.

The Middle-Tiered Star Wars Movies

These are the Star Wars films that are caught in the middle. They’re not the worst of the saga but compared to the top 3 on the list there’s no contest.

The-Best-Moment-Star-Wars-The-Phantom-Menace

6. The Phantom Menace

There are a lot of Star Wars fans who don’t like this movie but I happen to be one of the Star Wars fans who love it. I mean, you’ve got Qui-Gon Jinn, one of the coolest Jedi in the franchise. Padme Amidala who is at her absolute best in this film as the Queen of Naboo. And there’s Darth Maul, one of the greatest Sith to be conceived for the Saga. On top of all of that, it has the greatest lightsaber duel in the franchise, in my opinion.

The Phantom Menace is a blast to watch and I’m going to continue loving this film.

Star Wars A New Hope Featured

5. A New Hope

I always say it. If it weren’t for the incredible quality of this film Star Wars wouldn’t be what it is today. That being said, it’s pretty boring in comparison to these next four Star Wars movies. And that makes sense. It’s the first one. But it’s still enjoyable to watch every now and then.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi

4. The Last Jedi

It almost feels wrong to place this movie in the middle-tiered section of this post because it is SO GOOD but there are some elements to this story that still don’t sit well with me. For example, Vice Admiral Holdo and DJ. Here are two characters that had the chance to be really cool but ultimately turned out to be rather annoying. There’s Admiral Ackbar’s death which felt a stretch uncalled for considering how beloved the character is and Leia‘s use of the Force, while powerful, does look a bit weird and Mary-Poppins-esque. And the Canto Bight sequences could’ve been better. Besides that, this movie is off the chain!

My Three Favorite Star Wars Movies

And here we go, the top three Star Wars films that manage to excite me every time I’ve watched them.

Star Wars The Force Awakens

3. The Force Awakens

Even though this film is basically a fancy rehash of A New Hope the joy this movie gives me every time I watch it is pretty much unparalleled. Rey, Finn, Poe, Kylo Ren, Han Solo and Chewbacca, Leia, Luke Skywalker, everything about this movie is fun to watch. The storyline is simple and laced with exciting action sequences but there is a drama that unfolds, leading to Han’s heartbreaking demise. Rey and Kylo’s lightsaber duel is one of my favorite in the franchise and Poe’s piloting skills are at their finest. Great movie!

Star-Wars-Revenge-of-the-Sith

2. Revenge of the Sith

While the two previous prequels were either decently enjoyable or downright horrendous this movie is storytelling at its best. It’s one of the few Star Wars movies to end with the villains winning and boy, is it fascinating. Anakin‘s fall to the dark side is truly tragic. The musical score is some of John Williams’ finest work. Anakin/Obi-Wan and Yoda/Palpatine’s lightsaber duels are EPIC! And its conclusion is undoubtedly one of the best in the entire franchise. The Rise of Skywalker should’ve taken notes from this film. Then, it might’ve been a better movie.

Top Five: | Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

1. The Empire Strikes Back

It’s really no surprise that this is my favorite entry in the Skywalker Saga. With impeccable storytelling from beginning to end, one of the greatest plot twists of all time, and the creation of the original diminutive green alien that everyone fell in love with, Yoda, this movie is undoubtedly one of the best sequels of all time.

So, judging from how I listed these Star Wars movies, let’s see how I rank the trilogies as a whole.

Prequel Trilogy

#9. Attack of the Clones

#6. The Phantom Menace

#2. Revenge of the Sith

Original Trilogy

#7. Return of the Jedi

#5. A New Hope

#1. The Empire Strikes Back

Sequel Trilogy

#8. The Rise of Skywalker

#4. The Last Jedi

#3. The Force Awakens

Judging from these numbers, the Original Trilogy just barely manages to take the top spot with the Sequel Trilogy at a close second. The Prequel Trilogy is in a distant third considering that two of the film’s three movies aren’t in my top five list. The Sequel Trilogy would’ve easily been my favorite if The Rise of Skywalker had just been a little better and more cohesive for the Skywalker Saga as a whole. Apparently, we’ll be getting another trilogy starting 2022-2026 and hopefully, that trilogy will have a story that’ll blow all of these movies out of the water. We’ll see.

 

The Future of the Force. The future of pop culture writing.

 

Annlyel James is a prolific Staff Writer for Future of the Force. She is passionate about Star Wars and Marvel but loves a wide variety of movie genres. Aside from her role with Future of the Force she also writes for her own blog: annlyelonline. Follow her on Twitter @annlyeljames where she channels the Force frequently!

 

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

 

Editor’s Note: The views and opinions expressed in this feature are solely that of the author and do reflect the overall opinion of thefutureoftheforce.com, it’s writers or affiliates.

 

Leave a Reply