As the temperature drops and winter is coming closer, a new Star Wars film approaches the horizon. Watching the latest Star Wars movie has almost become a new Christmas tradition at this point, alongside setting up a Christmas tree, wrapping presents, making gingerbread houses, listening to that one song by Mariah Carey, and getting completely hammered on eggnog. But since the last few flicks have been complete dumpster fires, you should stay home with your family this year and huddle around the fireplace to enjoy a classic Christmas movie, the Star Wars Holiday Special.
This legendary television motion picture is the original sequel to the first film released in 1977, Star Wars: A New Hope, which was a very small independent movie that a lot of people may not have heard about. The movie boasts the return of the entire cast except for Kennedy Baker, who played the beeping trash can in the original movie who in the special was replaced by a robot to little discernible effect. The acting and emotion in this film is absolutely tremendous. The line delivery by the actor who plays Han Solo, Harrison Ford, is almost as wooden as the furniture Ford made during his days as a carpenter.
The story begins with Han Solo, an intergalactic Amazon delivery guy, and Chewbacca who is basically just a seven-foot space-dog-man, heading to the latter’s homeworld to celebrate the holiday known as Life Day. The only problem is that they are being chased by the Galactic Empire for assisting in blowing up their big space ball laser weapon. It is here where we get to see Chewbacca’s family for the first time: his wife and son, Malla and Lumpy, as well as his father, Itchy–yes those are their real names. All of them are prominently featured in the movie and only speak in the Wookie language of Shyriiwook, which sounds like they are aggressively yawning the entire time and is probably what the audience is actively doing as well.
As they wait for them to arrive, the main characters try to keep themselves busy. Malla tries to cook a recipe from a cooking show, but like every housewife whose had a little too much eggnog, she cannot keep pace with the show’s host. Lumpy watches some interesting holographic videos of aliens doing acrobatic dances, and Itchy is busy being a boomer. They later meet their friendly neighbour galactic trader man who calls himself Saun Dann, who has wares if you have coins but got robbed by an imperial officer. He then straps a strange looking virtual reality helmet-like device on Itchy and shows him an adult film…
Suddenly, they hear a knock at the door and wonder who it is. Well, knock knock, the evil space nazi police along with a group of Stormtroopers are here to look for a space terrorist by threatening innocent aliens who live in treehouses. Saun Dann tries to calm everyone down and distracts the imperials by playing them a hard rock music video with the band members singing into pink glow sticks.
They begin searching the house to find the furry terrorist, Chewbacca. Meanwhile Lumpy gets ready to watch a super meta cartoon about the main characters of Star Wars. The gang are looking for a magic wizard necklace and team up with a man named Boba Fett who has a giant laser fork for a weapon. They eventually contract a sleeping virus from the mystical pendant but fortunately for them, the guy they just met knows where the cure is so he leaves to find it but like every father going to the gas station to get some cigarettes, he never returns. It is later revealed that he was a bounty hunter working for the evil space wizard samurai, Darth Vader.
In the meantime, the imperials head into Lumpy’s room and begin trashing the place like a bunch of drunk college students and rip off the head of his beloved stuffed space cow. Lumpy then runs back to his room and tries to reassemble the majestic creature to no avail. In his room, he finds parts to begin building a radio-looking device with help from a video but the show’s host is a half-man, half-robot creature who literally stops working and dies–as in the dreams of so many millennials with $100,000 in student loans.
In the living quarters, the Imperials are required to watch a video about life on Tatooine, a planet covered nothing but sand and kleptomaniac robed gremlin creatures who sounds like Alvin and the Chipmunks if they spoke the language of the Sims. It focuses on a cantina and its owner, Ackmena. She gets hit on by another humanoid man named Krelman who has a dolphin-like blowhole in his head that Ackmena pours drinks into. A public service announcement is then played urging people to return home. Initially, she asks everyone to leave but that doesn’t work because they’re all drunk so she does the next best thing, getting everyone even more wasted and kicking them out with a musical number.
While the Stormtroopers are distracted, Lumpy uses the device he fabricates to send a fake report telling the imperials to return to their headquarters but this plan is thwarted and the young Wookie gets chased by a Stormtrooper. Han Solo and Chewbacca finally arrive at the house, getting ready to defend his son but both Wookies get cornered on a balcony by the Stormtrooper and it is up to captain Solo to save their lives. He sneaks up from behind and with the strongest slap the universe has ever seen and knocks the blaster rifle out of his hands. It was now a one-on-one confrontation between a highly trained elite imperial soldier and a lone smuggler. Both sides juke each other but eventually, the bucket-wearing soldier slips on his own weapon and falls through the precut balcony railing to his demise.
After all the hijinx are over, the Wookie family finally gets ready to celebrate Life Day, dressing up in red robes, grasping some strange looking Fushigi ball things and surrounding the tree of life. In the end, Chewbacca gets his own greatest hits flashback moment where we get to relive all the epic details in his previous adventure in A New Hope, making up for all the Wookie racism that caused him to not receive a medal in the last film for his heroic deeds.
The Star Wars Holiday Special is truly one of the best Christmas cinematic experiences you’ll ever be able to feast your eyes on. It’s probably the only movie you’ll ever be able to see Chewbacca dressed up as a Walmart version of Jesus of Nazareth and if this wooly-mammoth looking false apostle is our true lord and saviour, then we’re going to need a lot more nails.
This year, make sure to chuck your plans to watch the newest Star Wars movie in the trash and watch this one of a kind masterpiece in glorious VHS quality.