Elstree 1976

Elstree 1976

Jon Spira (2015)

97min
12 Certificate
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Review

Our Score
The title of this excellent documentary - referring to the year Star Wars was made at the venerable British studio - is a mere starting point for a fascinating delve into the lives of ten disparate performers who all happened to work on George Lucas's sci-fi saga. Don't expect the usual making-of dissection of the film, though. Director Jon Spira adopts a 7-Up approach here, as he traces the lives of a group comprising star names like Dave Prowse (Darth Vader) and Jeremy Bulloch (Boba Fett), character actors (Angus MacInnes, Garrick Hagon) and background extras (just don't call them bit-part actors!), even using a technique appropriately labelled "vibrapause" to reveal the latter's blink-or-miss appearances. The film certainly brims with anecdotes about Lucas's soon-to-be cultural phenomenon, whether it's cheeky John Chapman larking about with Mark Hamill during the final ceremony scene, Laurie Goode confirming he is the Stormtrooper whose head clattered a door in one notorious on-screen scene or Bulloch just being charm personified. But Spira keeps the spotlight firmly on his interviewees and their subsequent ups-and-downs (Prowse's bitterness over his most famous role; battles with depression and addiction for others). All have interesting, humorous stories to tell (Prowse on Kubrick; Paul Blake on being Greedo). Indeed, who would have thought the pecking order at Star Wars conventions could become so tetchy after 40 years? Nonetheless, it's a richly rewarding experience whether you are a fan of all things Star Wars or not.

Summary

Documentary examining the making of the first Star Wars movie and the legacy it left behind. Among the contributors are David Prowse, better known as Darth Vader, Garrick Hagon, who played Luke Skwalker's friend Biggs, and Jeremy Bulloch, who went on to play one of the saga's most popular characters, Boba Fett.

Cast & Crew

Dave Prowse Dave Prowse
Jeremy Bulloch Jeremy Bulloch
Angus MacInnes Angus MacInnes
Garrick Hagon Garrick Hagon
Derek Lyons Derek Lyons
Pam Rose Pam Rose
Paul Blake Paul Blake
Anthony Forrest Anthony Forrest
Laurie Goode Laurie Goode
John Chapman John Chapman (2)
Director Jon Spira
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourGuidance: Some swearingAvailable on: DVD
Arts