You can’t really expect a movie from 1983 to live up to the insanely high production standards of today’s cinema, but thanks to George Lucas’ clever space magic, Star Wars fans now have a perfectly reasonable explanation for this dreadfully choreographed Return of the Jedi scene.
The original Star Wars trilogy has been re-released multiple times over the years, mostly in an effort to minimize all the technical mistakes fans have unearthed through almost four decades of living with these iconic movies. But try as they may to give lightsabers a visceral color or make the explosions more realistic, there are some things you just can’t edit out of the movie.
Take, for instance, this fight scene at the beginning of Return of the Jedi, where Luke Skywalker and Lando Calrissian engage Jabba the Hutt’s mercenaries over the Sarlacc pits. At one point, Luke kicks one of them in the face, but his foot doesn’t even come close to hitting the poor guard.
Such is the fate of one of the greatest movies of all time, that it should get vivisected frame by frame thanks to diehard fans who’ve seen it a thousand times. But fear not, because this particular motion could have a perfect explanation in the Star Wars canon.
You see, Luke Skywalker doesn’t even need to hit someone to send them flailing in the air. All he needs to do is direct the Force at them. Now, most Jedi use their hands as a physical gesture to Force-push someone, but Luke is not like most Jedi.
Did George Lucas and director Richard Marquand canonize Force-kicks without even knowing it? Star Wars certainly seem to want to think so.
But hey, if the Force can be used to send your image halfway across the galaxy or heal any wound, then it can certainly be used to punt someone across the face.