Return of the Jedi
Crewman: Admiral, we have enemy ships in sector forty-seven!
Admiral Ackbar: It's a trap!
Completing the larger film Lucas planned, this film closed the door on the Star Wars film series until The Phantom Menace. Lucas still didn't direct, but did involve himself closer in the production this time.
The success of the first two films made the success of this one less of a worry. In fact, keeping the budget under control was one of the biggest issues. It turned out that locations were overcharging the production of The Empire Strikes Back, knowing it was the next Star Wars film. So the crew pretended to pitch the film to locations as a B horror movie, "Blue Harvest".
Other problems were creative. Lawrence Kasdan wanted a darker ending. Harrison Ford wanted Han to have a Heroic Sacrifice (although that might have rendered the entire arc in Jabba's palace meaningless).
After the film came out, critics were not as kind to the film's focus on more action than character, and many fans hated the Ewoks. The film was still a big hit and seen as a fitting conclusion to the saga. If nothing else, it ended the series with a lot of Spectacle.
- Dispense with the Pleasantries
- Jabba Table Manners
- No Endor Holocaust: Word of God stating the Death Star destruction did not have side effects that would effectively devastate the forest moon.
- Strike Me Down with All of Your Hatred
- You Rebel Scum
- Acting Unnatural: During the approach to Endor in a stolen Imperial shuttle with a Star Destroyer watching their every move, Han tells Chewbacca: "I don't know... fly casual."
- Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: Vader and Luke's verbal duel on Endor. In that scene, Luke shows just how much he has matured in how he can fight with logic and rhetoric against his father with as much skill as with his lightsaber to the point that Vader now has to fend off Luke's mind games.
- Aerial Canyon Chase: Flying into the Death Star, seeing as the Millennium Falcon is a rather skinny ship despite its width, whereas most Imperial fighters are as wide as they are tall.
- Agony Beam: Force Lightning.
- And I Must Scream: In the Novelization, Han describes the carbon freezing as "not just sleeping, but a big wide awake nothing."
- And There Was Much Rejoicing: When the Emperor dies (including the Nations of the World Montage in the Special Edition).
- And Your Little Dog, Too:
Vader: If you will not turn the Dark Side, then perhaps she will.
- Animal Motifs: The director's commentary mentions that the window in Palpatine's room on the Death Star - you can see it in the background of this page's image - is designed to resemble a spider's web because the Emperor is the plotter at the center.
- Annoying Laugh: Courtesy of Salacious B. Crumb (he's the tiny monkey-lizard creature that tries to steal 3PO's eyes at one point).
- Anti-Villain: Darth Vader essentially became one by the movie's second half. For one thing, it is hinted that his attempts to turn Luke to the Dark Side were as a means of protecting him (the only alternative was to kill him), and when mentioning that its too late for him to redeem himself, he seems to say it with a tinge of remorse.
- Ascended Extra: This is a Star Wars movie after all, so any and every character who appears. Like the cantina crowd in the first film, the entourage in Jabba's palace had their stories told in the EU.
- Likewise, Sarkli was only a background character of imperial officers at the Death Star. He eventually got more characterization in the EU, especially in Rebel Strike.
- Ascended to A Higher Plane of Existence: Yoda, and then Anakin, are one with the Force.
- Attack Pattern Alpha: All over the place during the Battle of Endor.
- Aw, Look -- They Really Do Love Each Other: Han and Leia at the end of the film.
- Badass Longcoat: While Luke and Leia wear camouflage ponchos on Endor, Han gets a camouflage duster instead.
- Bad Boss: Vader implies at one point that Palpatine's worse than him.
Vader: I hope you do, commander, for your sake. The Emperor is not nearly as forgiving as I am.
- Bare Your Midriff: Leia's slave outfit.
- Because Destiny Says So: Obi-wan tells Luke this is the reason he must face Vader again. Also, Palpatine tells Luke it is his destiny to join the Dark Side.
- Beware the Silly Ones: Ewoks. To some extent, Mon Calamari too.
- Big Bad: Emperor Palpatine.
- Big Badass Battle Sequence: This is a Star Wars movie after all.
- Big "Never!": Luke, when Vader threatens he will turn Leia to the Dark Side.
- Big No: The new Blu-Ray edition of the film adds a "No...NO!" (supposedly as a retroactive callback to Revenge of the Sith) when Vader throws Palpatine into the pit.
- Bond Villain Stupidity: Jabba falls victim to this with the design of the Rancor Pit. Who puts the control for the door in a part a victim could get to? And designs it to come down fast enough to kill the Rancor?
- He then does this with deciding to feed the heroes to the Sarlacc. After you've just failed to kill the hero in Gladiator Games fashion, it's best not to try doing it again immediately afterwards.
- Palpatine, definitely. Inviting the last remaining Jedi (i.e. the only person who poses a threat to him) into his inner sanctum, then torturing him in front of his father... while standing next to a bottomless chasm.
- Braids of Action: Leia, when she kills Jabba.
- Bury Your Disabled: Darth Vader, who was a quadriplegic and quadruple amputee only able to move and breathe due to cybernetic implants, which had been fried by Palpatine's Force lightning.
- Call Back: "I love you." "I know."
- Card-Carrying Villain: Palpatine is definitely this; in the first scene he appears in he discusses his oh-so-evil plans with his most trusted servant and provides us with plenty of cackling.
- Caught in a Snare: Oh, those Ewoks.
- Characterization Marches On: In the original film, 3PO says, "I'm not much more than an interpreter, and not very good at telling stories." Either he was being modest, or he got better at it in the years between the two films (or actually had some stories to tell), because he does a gripping-enough Ewokese retelling of the entire trilogy so far (complete with sound effects!) that he gets the tribe to fight to the death on the side of the Alliance.
- The Chase/Chase Scene: Leia, Luke, Stormtroopers and speeder bikes.
- The Chessmaster: The Emperor.
"Everything that has transpired has done so according to my design!"
- Combat Tentacles: The Sarlacc.
- Come Out, Come Out, Wherever You Are: Luke hiding from Vader during their final battle.
- Convenient Weakness Placement: The Emperor's throne room is surrounded by tantalizing bottomless pits. Oops.
- Cool Starship: This entry in the series introduces several new ones; the Shuttle Tydirium, the A-Wing, the B-Wing, and various cruisers in the Rebel fleet.
- Creator Cameo: Director Richard Marquand portrays a rebel pilot and voices one of the evil droids in Jabba's palace.
- The Imperial officer who corners the Rebels in the shield bunker (calling them "Rebel scum") is played by series sound designer Ben Burtt, the man most responsible for reviving the Wilhem Scream (which appears a few seconds earlier).
- David Versus Goliath: The Rebel Alliance in general, but in particular, Rebel Fleet vs Super Star Destroyer. As he and his bridge crew watch the thing deorbit into the Death Star, Ackbar just flops into his chair, jaw agape, while everyone else cheers.
- Defeat Equals Explosion: The Emperor apparently explodes on impact after being thrown down the shaft at the climax of the film.
- Some EU materials, written before the Prequels, explain this as all of Palpatine's Dark Side energy exploding out of his body at the moment of his death.
- Defiant to the End: Han to Jabba when the gangster demanded they beg for mercy.
- Jabba as well, though he didn't take the threat Luke posed seriously. His mistake.
- Deflector Shields: The new Death Star is protected by one.
- Right before the Executor goes down: "Sir! We've lost our bridge deflector shield!"
- Den of Iniquity: Jabba's audience chamber, complete with conveniently-located Rancor pit.
- Did You Actually Believe?: Palpatine gives Luke this speech after revealing his baiting the Rebels' attack.
- Died Happily Ever After: Anakin, Yoda and Obi-Wan.
- Disney Villain Death: Palpatine, who also explodes on his way down.
- Distinctive Appearances: The reason why Luke's lightsaber blade is green in the finished cut of the film. In the early stages of Rotoscoping, Luke's saber had a blue energy blade. However, his blue lightsaber didn't show up against the blue sky during the Tatooine sail barge battle. Changing the saber to green fixed the problem. The fact that the green blade is obviously brand-new (unlike the blue one, where it wasn't obvious) also allowed the deletion of an early scene in the film, where we would've seen Luke finishing work on his new lightsaber. Luke's blue saber can still be seen in the original trailers, plus all the poster art for the film.
- Dressing as the Enemy: Lando dresses as one of Jabba's guards to infiltrate the palace.
- On Endor, Han dresses as an Imperial soldier and request reinforcements to get the Imperial troops in the bunker to open it.
- Hard to see, but the bearded Rebel takes the captured scout trooper's armor.
- Drunk on the Dark Side: Palpatine's all-too-obvious enjoyment of the Electric Torture he administers to Luke.
- Dying as Yourself: Anakin's Last Request to Luke.
Luke, help me take this mask off. Just for once... I want to look on you with my own eyes.
- Electric Torture: Palpatine can do this with his hands.
- Environmental Symbolism: The observation window behind Palpatine resembles, fittingly, a spider's web.
- Eucatastrophe: Palpatine says to Vader, "His [Luke's] compassion for you will be his undoing." Actually, it turns out to be his own undoing.
- Everything Is an Instrument: The Ewok celebration scene at the end of the movie shows one Ewok using sticks hitting Stormtrooper helmets as a drum set.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Had Sidious forgotten how he won Anakin over in the first place?
- Evil Is Not Well Lit: Palpatine's observation tower.
- Evil Laugh:
- "Ho ho ho ho ho!"
- "Ah-he he he he he!"
- Evil Overlord List: Jabba forgot to check number 122 when he had his sail barge built.
- "The gun turrets on my fortress will not rotate enough so that they may direct fire inward or at each other."
- Facing the Bullets One-Liner: Han's response to Jabba's final ultimatum at the Sarlacc pit.
"Threepio, you tell that slimy piece of worm-ridden filth that he'll get no such pleasure from us!"
- Fan Service/Ms. Fanservice: Why else would you have Carrie Fisher laying around in a gold metal bikini?
- Fantasy Counterpart Culture: More than one writer has commented on the Vietnam parallels in the Battle of Endor, with supposedly backwoods natives outsmarting a superior armed force.
- Fat Bastard: Jabba the Hutt.
- Fate Worse Than Death: Described as the fate of anyone eaten by the Sarlacc. To quote C-3PO:
C-3PO: In its belly, you will find a new definition of pain and suffering as you are slowly digested over a... thousand years.
- Fed to the Beast: Luke getting trapdoor'd into the Rancor pit.
- Final Battle
- Final Speech: Yoda gives one to Luke before dying, and later, Vader does too.
- Finish Him!: Palpatine to Luke when he has Vader at swordpoint.
- Fish People: Admiral Ackbar and the Mon Calamari.
- Fluffy Tamer: The Rancor's keeper, identified in the EU as Malakili, who had a deep bond with the beast as shown in his story in the novel Tales From Jabba's Palace.
- Four-Star Badass: General Solo, General Calrissian and Admiral Ackbar.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: When Vader is shocked by the Force Lightning, not only can you see his skeleton, but also surgical rods and screws.
- Gang of Critters: Ewoks.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar:
- Jabba and his... pleasure slaves. This film is rated G the U.S., and U in the U.K.
- When the A-wing pilot crashes into the Executor's bridge, on the Rebel ship, someone in the background can be heard yelling, "Die, dickheads!"
- Gladiator Games: The Rancor pit, which Jabba enjoys dropping people in and watching them be devoured.
- Go-Go Enslavement: Leia's slave outfit.
Carrie Fisher: What it is, is it doesn't adhere to your body. Boba Fett was standing behind me, and I'm laying there on Jabba the Hutt, and he can see all the way to Florida.
- Go Back to the Source: Luke must return to his home of Tatooine in order to rescue Han Solo from Jabba the Hutt
- God Guise: The Ewoks think 3PO is a god. Luke uses his Force powers to reinforce this idea.
- Good Is Not Soft: Farm boy Luke makes his introduction dressed in Sith style robes and force chokes Jabba's guards. This serves as a plot point in trying to get him to fall to The Dark Side.
- Go Out with a Smile: Anakin's farewell to Luke.
- Grand Finale
- Hand Signals: Luke's salute to R2-D2, as he is being made to Walk the Plank.
- Harrison Ford Is About to Shoot You: While Lando looks on and Luke backs him up with a lightsaber.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Two. First, the Rebel pilot who rams his fatally damaged craft into the Super Star Destroyer. Second, the more memorable Heel Face Turn on Vader's part.
- The Hyena: Salacious Crumb. You know, that creepy little monkey thing that sits next to Jabba the Hutt.
- Hyperspeed Ambush: The Rebel fleet comes out of hyperspace en masse near the Death Star II in order to surround it and cover the attack squadrons that will fly inside the half-constructed space station to destroy it. The Imperial Fleet appears soon after to trap the Rebel fleet.
- If You Kill Him You Will Be Just Like Him: This what Palpatine is counting on when he tells Luke to take back his lightsaber and strike him down with all of his hatred.
- "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: Luke and Vader's lightsaber duel.
Luke: Your thoughts betray you, father. I feel the good in you... the conflict.
- Imaginary Love Triangle: Han mistakenly thinks Leia is secretly in love with Luke, and is relieved to find out at the end that she was only upset from finding out they're twins and Vader is her father.
- Incest Is Relative: Luke did not know. Leia apparently "always knew"... yet she still kissed him, even if it was to tick off Han.
- Although a very strong sexual attraction would not be unexpected. Check out Genetic Sexual Attraction, a potentially very troubling phenomenon that can occur in situations like this one, which was first definitely identified as a general risk years after Jedi.
- Inescapable Net: The Ewoks' trap.
- Ironic Echo: Vader does this to Luke during the I Shall Taunt You portion of their duel.
Vader: Yes... your thoughts betray you. Your feelings for them are strong, especially for... sister. So, you have a twin sister. Your feelings have now betrayed her too.
- I Surrender, Suckers: C-3P0 and R2-D2 dupe a pack of stormtroopers into walking into an Ewok ambush.
- Jedi Mind Trick: Jabba is immune. Bib Fortuna is not.
- The Jester: Word of God states that this is Salacious Crumb's position in Jabba's court. It's also implied that Jabba considered eating him had Crumb not managed to be amusing.
- Large Ham: Palpatine chews the scenery with considerable flair during all of his scenes.
- Last of His Kind: "Luke, when gone am I... the last of the Jedi will you be."
- Lecherous Licking: Jabba gives Leia a slimy lick.
- Lethally Expensive: "Many Bothans died to bring us this information."
- Look Behind You!: Played for Laughs. In the skiff battle, Chewbacca warns the still half-blind Han that Boba Fett is behind him. He's telling the truth, and when Han whirls around to check, he accidentally strikes Boba Fett's jetpack, causing it to misfire and send him flying off of the skiff.
- Love Redeems: Darth Vader.
- Luke, I Am Your Father: Leia was shocked to learn that Vader is Luke's father, but is more shocked when Luke tells her they're siblings. After he left to face him, Leia was in tears because: Darth Vader, the man who represents the evils of the Empire she's fighting against (and who has tortured her and Han), is her father. And that the man she kissed was her brother.
- Machine Worship: The Ewoks do this to C-3PO at first.
- Made of Explodium: Jabba's barge deck, since it takes only one shot at it to make the entire barge combust.
Luke: Point it at the deck!
- Meaningful Echo: Han and Leia reverse the famous "I love you," "I know," from The Empire Strikes Back.
- At the end of The Empire Strikes Back, Vader cuts off Luke's hand, signaling Luke's defeat by the Dark Side. At the end of this film, Luke cuts off Vader's hand... signaling that Luke is dangerously close to succumbing to the Dark Side (for bonus symbolism points, Vader's hand is already cybernetic).
- Meaningful Funeral: Luke gives Anakin a Jedi's funeral on Endor, cremating his armor.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: Vader believes this at first.
"You don't know the power of the Dark Side. I must obey my master."
- Nations of the World Montage: At the end of the Special Edition, with the planets of the galaxy celebrating the downfall of the Empire. Naboo's celebration was added with the DVD release.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: During Luke and Vader's duel, every time Luke gets more aggressive (and thus closer to the Dark Side), the Emperor gleefully points this out, causing Luke to step back and regain his composure. This happens several times during the duel.
- Soon the Emperor shuts up, allowing Vader to taunt Luke, finally unleashing his anger, but when Luke sees that he cut off Vader's hand, which Vader did to Luke in the previous movie, it was Vader who then fixed it for Luke at that time.
- No More Lies: Obi-Wan has no choice but to at last tell Luke the real truth on Dagobah.
- No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: Subverted in that it is heavily implied that the Empire figured out how Luke managed to destroy the first Death Star and redesigned the second one with thick anti-fighter defenses and no two meter wide exhaust port.
- Not So Different: Luke realizes this upon seeing that he did the same thing to Vader that Vader did to him in the last movie, which shows him what he would become if he gave in to the Dark Side.
- Oh Crap: Luke when the Rancor emerges.
- "It's a trap!"
- Lando's "Well, how could they be jamming us if they don't know... (dawning realization) ...if we're coming? Break off the attack! The shield is still up!"
- "Intensify forward firepower!" "TOO LATE!"
- "That blast came from the Death Star... That thing's operational!"
- "And now, young Skywalker... you will die.
- "I know that laugh."
- "Intensify the forward batteries! I don't want anything to get through!
- "Too late!"
- Moff Jerjerrod in the beginning.
Jerjerrod: [The Emperor] asks the impossible! I need more men!
Vader: Then perhaps you can tell him when he arrives.
Jerjerrod: (shocked) The Emperor's coming here?
Vader: That is correct, Commander. And he is most displeased with your apparent lack of progress.
Jerjerrod: We shall double our efforts!
Vader: I hope so, Commander, for your sake. The Emperor is not as forgiving as I am.
- Han when the AT-ST walker approaches him.
- One-Scene Wonder: This is a Star Wars movie after all, so any and every character who appears.
- Bib Fortuna.
- Salacious Crumb.
- The Rancor.
- The Sarlacc.
- Mon Mothma.
- General Madine.
- Only a Flesh Wound: Leia gets pegged in the shoulder by an (unusually lucky) Stormtrooper blast.
- Out of the Inferno/Outrun the Fireball: Done twice.
- The heroes escaping from Jabba's exploding sail barge on a skiff.
- The Millennium Falcon, piloted by Lando, does both while outrunning the explosion from the reactor destroying the Death Star. The explosion blows out the exit first, but the Falcon emerges from it.
- The Paid for Harem: The slave girls in Jabba's palace
- Palate Propping: Luke used this trope on the Rancor, albeit not very successfully due to its jaw strength.
- Papa Wolf: Vader, proving he wasn't beyond hope.
- Pet the Dog: The Rancor keeper's inconsolable reaction to Luke killing the monster, although more played for laughs, managed to garner a bit more sympathy than expected. As Roger Ebert said, "Everybody loves somebody."
- Pig Man: Jabba's Gammorean guards.
- Please Wake Up: The depressing scene during the fight on Endor when one Ewok is shot dead and another one (most likely its sibling/spouse/child) comes up to it, crying and pushing the dead one to wake up. Many a tear was shed for this scene, and at least momentarily, we forget that we hate the Ewoks with a passion.
- Proud Warrior Race: The Ewoks.
- Proud Warrior Race Guy: Wicket the Ewok.
- Psychopathic Manchild: Jabba.
- Putting the Band Back Together: Twice, actually. The gang reunites on Tatooine to save Han, and later they formally get back together for Han's planned strike against the shield generator on the forest moon of Endor.
- Rage Breaking Point: Luke really tries not to let his anger get in the way when he's confronting Vader, but Vader then threatens to take the last of his family from him.
Vader: If you will not turn to the dark side, then perhaps she will.
Luke [igniting his lightsaber]: NEVER!
[cue the Curb Stomp Battle]
- Railing Kill: An Imperial officer in the shield generator room.
- Rapunzel Hair: Leia, when she takes her hair down on Endor.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Luke gets one from Palpatine while undergoing his electro-shock therapy.
- Redemption Equals Death: Darth Vader.
- Refuge in Audacity: You have to give Luke credit, he told Jabba he would die unless he let them go...
- Relative Button: Luke lost most of his family, either dead or turned evil. His sister is all he has left, so threatening to take her away is the one thing that sets him off.
- Rescued From Purgatory: Rescuing Han Solo.
- The Reveal: Obi-Wan revealing that Luke and Leia are brother and sister.
- Also, a confirmation of the reveal in the previous film when Yoda tells Luke (and the audience) the Vader is indeed his father.
- Right-Hand Attack Dog: The Rancor.
- Rock Beats Laser: The Ewoks versus the stormtroopers.
- Rocket Ride: The speeder bikes.
- See the Whites of Their Eyes: "Yes, I said closer! Move as close as you can, and engage those Star Destroyers at point-blank range!"
- Self-Restraint: Luke surrenders himself to the Imperials in order to meet Vader, letting himself be bound.
- Separated at Birth: Luke and Leia discover this.
- Shark Pool: The Rancor pit and the Sarlacc pit.
- Schmuck Bait: Chewie paws at a hanging slab of meat, triggering an Ewok trap net which entangles himself, Han, Luke, R2-D2 and 3PO. Outstanding.
Han: Great, Chewie! Great! Always thinking with your stomach!
- Sheathe Your Sword: Luke attempts to do this during his fight with Vader as Palpatine reminds him that as he becomes more aggressive he shifts more towards the Dark Side.
- Shoot the Messenger: Jabba thumps Threepio whenever he translates a response he doesn't like. Also implied in the earlier comment: "We have need of a new protocol droid after his excellency got angry at the last one and disintegrated him."
- Shout-Out: Word of God stated that the scene depicting Palpatine's arrival was based on the May Day military marches in Soviet Russia.
- Slave Collar: Princess Leia is forced to wear a collar by Jabba the Hutt. At one point, he yanks her around by a chain attached to the collar: she later uses the chain to strangle him.
- Smug Snake:
- It is a key theme in this movie that Palpatine's arrogance is his weakness. Though he does pull a pretty good trick of giving the rebels the location of the shield generator to lure them into a trap, he simply is too arrogant to anticipate that the Rebels could overcome it.
- Jabba the Hutt. Han offered money instead of his captivity and Jabba refused to listen; when Leia and Luke warned Jabba that they could defeat him, Jabba and his minions did not take them seriously at all. Even when being led to the Sarlacc Pit Luke said "free us, or die." Jabba still refused to listen, and he and his minions still refused to take Luke seriously. Jabba was offered so many warnings, and so many opportunities for alternatives that for him to keep ignoring them made his Karmic Death all the more satisfying.
- Space Base/Space Station: The second Death Star.
- Spanner in the Works: The Emperor would have gotten away with it if it weren't for those meddling Ewoks, and Chewie's brilliant idea to hijack one of the walkers. That's the real turning point of the ground battle (which trickle downed to the space battle when the generator went up in flames).
- Spikes of Doom: The Sarlacc Pit has spikes around its edges.
- Standard Sci-Fi Fleet: This is the first time we see the full Rebel fleet.
- Standard Starship Scuffle: The Battle of Endor starts out more as a Battle of Midway-style melee, with snub fighters attacking the enemy capital ships, but once the Death Star cranks up its superlaser the Rebel cruisers have no choice but to go in and engage the Imperial Star Destroyers toe-to-toe so that at least the Death Star can't get a clear shot at them. The novelization sort of lampshades it; there's a line to the effect that the opposing capital ships are now exchanging broadsides at point-blank range like the oceangoing vessels of another time and place.
- Stand Your Ground: As Lando convinces Ackbar the rebels have to do until the team on Endor gets the Death Star's Deflector Shields down.
- Stop Worshipping Me!: It's against C-3PO's programming to impersonate a deity.
- Storming The Shield Generator
- Suffer the Slings: Ewoks use them.
- Suicidal Gotcha: Luke vs. the Sarlacc.
- Sword Over Head: After Luke defeats Vader, he notices his father's mechanical hand (much like his own) and realizes how close he's coming to suffering the same fate.
- Tactful Translation: 3P0 tries to provide one for Jabba, but it's difficult to reason with him.
- Taking You with Me: The doomed A-wing pilot flying his own ship into the bridge of the Executor.
- Lando's reasoning for engaging the Star Destroyers at close range.
Lando: Yes, I said closer. Move as close as you can, and engage those Star Destroyers at point blank range.
Ackbar: At that close range, we won't last long against those Star Destroyers.
Lando We'll last longer than we will against that Death Star, and we may just take some of them with us.
- In the novelization, Lando says that the Death Star can't fire at them without hitting their own ships.
- Tastes Like Friendship: Leia and Wicket.
- Tell Me About My Father: Luke asking Leia about their mother.
- Tempting Fate: Lando promises Han that the Falcon "won't get a scratch!". On the way into the Death Star, the Falcon's communication dish is knocked off. Han even remarks on it in EU books.
- Also, Han commenting "I hate long waits" and "That doesn't sound so bad", before being told he's up for an incredibly long and excruciating death by Sarlaac.
- Theme Music Power-Up: When Luke pretends to jump into the Sarlaac pit, and then starts attacking the guards.
- Took a Level in Badass:
- Luke, yet again. When we see him for the first time in his Dark Is Not Evil get-up and coolly demands "You will bring Captain Solo and the Wookiee to me", we know right away this is not the same green and reckless Luke from The Empire Strikes Back.
- While Leia was badass as early as her detention center escape in Episode IV, this movie sees her bluff Jabba with a thermal detonator, choke him to death, and help lead the ground assault on Endor.
- Discounting the prequels, R2-D2 takes one as he now has a taser and uses it on that little Muppet rat Jabba keeps around, and the Ewok who frees him.
- Trap Door: Jabba uses one to drop people into the Rancor pit.
- Tribal Carry: When the protagonists are captured by the Ewoks -- with the exception of C-3PO, who get a comfortable palanquin chair since they believe he's a god.
- Turn the Other Fist: Luke Skywalker seems to turn away from the Emperor's taunting, but suddenly swings back to grab his saber and take a slash at him. Darth Vader blocks it.
- Under Crank: Used to create the backgrounds for the speeder bike chase.
- Underestimating Badassery: Jabba really should've taken Luke a little more seriously. Especially after Luke uttered the words "this is your last chance. Free us, or die."
- Unexplained Recovery: In the Expanded Universe, Boba Fett did not die in the Sarlacc Pit.
Fett: The Sarlacc found me somewhat indigestible.
- The Expanded Universe clarifies that he fought his way out of the Sarlacc with his various weapons.
- Unstoppable Rage: Luke defeating Vader after he suggests that Leia might be turned the dark side in Luke's stead.
- Unwanted False Faith: The Ewoks mistake C-3PO for a deity, much to his embarrassment.
- Villainous Demotivator:
Darth Vader: I hope so Commander, for your sake. The Emperor is not as forgiving as I am.
- Villains Never Lie: George Lucas said that the reason Luke sought Yoda to confirm Vader's revelation was because discussing with a psychologist he learned that most people would assume that Vader was lying, and it was all just mind games. Luke needed a respected figure to get proof.
- James Earl Jones reports that, when he got the line, his first thought was, "Oh, [Vader's] lying!"
- Walk the Plank: The way for prisoners to be fed to the Sarlacc.
- Watch Out for That Tree: Important to remember when you're on an ultra fast speeder bike flying through an incredibly thick forest. Also, don't turn around to check behind you, as one of the scout-troopers learned the hard way.
- Also, Boba Fett lands face first into Jabba's barge after Han Solo accidentally activates Boba Fett's Jetpack in a way almost reminiscent of George of the Jungle.
- Wave Motion Gun/Kill Sat: The Death Star II.
- We Can Rule Together: Emperor Palpatine to Luke.
Palpatine: Your hate has made you powerful. And now, fulfill your destiny, and take your father's place at my side.
- We Need a Distraction: The Rebels do this several times on Endor, including the two droids.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Vader.
- X-Ray Sparks: Rare non-humorous example. When Vader lifts Palpatine over his head to save Luke, he's hit with Force Lightning, revealing flashes of his skull.
- Xanatos Gambit: Pulled off by the heroes in Jabba's Palace. If Leia succeeds at getting Han out of the palace, Lando can get Chewbacca (and, presumably, C-3PO and R2-D2 out). If Leia is caught, Luke can go in. If Luke is captured, R2-D2 has Luke's lightsaber. Even if Jabba thinks things are going his way, they're really going Luke's.
- You Rebel Scum: An Imperial Mook says this when the Rebels are captured during their raid on the shield generator.
- Your Little Dismissive Diminutive: When Palpatine is trying to provoke Luke.
Palpatine: It was I who allowed the Alliance to know the location of the shield generator. It is quite safe from your pitiful little band.