Since May 4th is Star Wars Day (May the Fourth be with you), I thought I would share a couple Star Wars memories. In particular I want to share 3 memories, of when I saw each of the original Star Wars movies. Each one is a vivid memory for me, which says a lot about how influential the series was to me.
My first memory is seeing the original Star Wars in a drive-in theater. My mom and I piled into a friends car, and all headed to the typical double showing of movies at the drive-in. I’m not 100% sure, but I think the first movie of the double feature was Disney’s The Fox and the Hound. My biggest memory from this drive-in experience was when the Death Star exploded. Apparently the people we were with knew it was going to be loud, and the turned the speaker way down before it happened. I was pretty young, probably 5-6 years old, so it was a loud, late night for me.
My memory of The Empire Strikes Back involves another theater that is no longer in existence. We didn’t own a car when I was very young, and so on this particular Saturday morning we caught a very early bus to Har Mar Mall. We then got in line with all the other geeks and waited for the theater to open. This was back when Har Mar had a theater on one end of the mall (which is now a grocery store). Since this was before the whole midnight showing craze we only had to wait until 10 or 11am to get in, but I vividly remember the memory of walking into that theater to see what is still my favorite of all the Star Wars movies.
The final memory is from Return of the Jedi. Again, we didn’t have a car, so we had to hit a theater that was accessible by bus. In this case we went to the Highland Theater on Ford Parkway (this theater is still around!). This is a classic old two screen theater with a large screen on the first floor, and a smaller screen on the second. I’m not sure why, but the showing we were at was in the second floor theater. I still remember sitting in the balcony, munching popcorn, as we watched the finale to the whole saga.
It’s amazing how memories of Star Wars have been so important to me that I still remember where I was for every movie. I even have memories of the prequels, but I’ll save that story for another Star Wars Day.