What sayeth I, Noah? (Actually a lot. I could easily write an essay on each Star Wars movie, but that would be too long, so here’s the short version.)
Attack of the Clones: this spot is typically reserved on lists like these for Phantom Menace, except I think AotC did a lot worse. While TPM proved that George Lucas can’t write dialogue, AotC proved that he can’t write romance to save his life either. I could fill this post with why I don’t like romance in movies, and most of my examples would come from AotC. To be perfectly honest, though, AotC would be much higher on the list if it wasn’t for Annoyakin Skystalker and Padme taking up so much screentime.
Return of the Jedi: main gripe: slave Leia. Star Wars does not need that level of fanservice. Moving on.
The Phantom Menace: …I actually enjoyed it. Everyone remembers it for what it did wrong, but I remember it for what it did right. The Podrace and Duel of the Fates—heck, the entire Battle of Naboo—were very well orchestrated. Speaking of orchestration, John Williams really outdid himself for this movie. In hindsight, though, this movie wasn’t great. AotC was just worse.
[Cue the hate mail.] A New Hope: if I were to write out a comprehensive list of my favorite movies worst to best, the Star Wars movies would be clustered very closely together. Except AotC, but I’ve beat that metaphoric dead horse enough already. That said, I like some Star Wars more than others marginally. While I like ANH’s story, it’s probably the slowest of the eight movies, even topping TPM’s drawn out political dialogues.
The Last Jedi: it took the problems of RotJ and fixed them, but it hybridized its story with—you know, I did a post on this movie. Why repeat what I’ve already said?
Revenge of the Sith: I said I didn’t like ANH because it was slow, and I guess I RotS is the inverse of that. Despite its flaws—and it has them, don’t get me wrong—I would re-watch it. Also, as a point in its favor, we finally get Anakin Skywalker (instead of Annoyakin Skystalker from the previous two movies), ace pilot and Jedi knight. Also, Grievous. Also, John Williams flexing his music muscles for what could have been his last time. My thing is that people look at the prequels and see a lot of bad; I look at the prequels and see the good that came from them.
The Force Awakens: again, I didn’t like ANH when it’s put next to the other Star Wars movies. So when everyone complained about how TFA had the same plot as ANH, which made it predictable, I was glad that it took the problems of ANH and fixed them. Star Wars, as it stands, is over forty years old now. My parents saw the first one when it was in theaters. The sequel trilogy is a Star Wars made for my generation, and I am grateful.
The Empire Strikes Back: but that doesn’t mean I hate the classics. TESB not only has the best pacing, acting, story, and special effects of the Star Wars movies, it also has the least flaws. When I’m ranking Star Wars, that’s probably the most key. I do love the series. I really do. But that doesn’t mean I can ignore its flaws.