The Top 31 Bad Ass Star Wars Moments
In honor of Star Wars' 31st birthday
For the two people who haven’t seen the films yet… spoiler alert!
Anakin flashes “Sith eyes” after killing the Separatist leaders on Mustafar. – Revenge of the Sith
Why it’s bad ass: It’s a chilling physical manifestation of Anakin’s descent to the Dark Side.
Darth Vader’s helmet is lowered on his scarred head inside his meditation chamber aboard his flagship, Executor. – The Empire Strikes Back
Why it’s bad ass: Glimpsing the inside of the lion’s den is always bad ass.
Jango Fett takes down the Reek with one shot in the Geonosis battle arena, but then gets beheaded by Mace Windu seconds later. – Attack of the Clones
Why it’s bad ass: Mace Windu ain’t no Reek.
General Grievous ignites four lightsabers to take on Obi-Wan Kenobi – Revenge of the Sith
Why it’s bad ass: Grievous whirls them in a dizzying display of skills that would intimidate even the boldest of Jedi.
Obi-Wan slices off the arm of Ponda Baba in Chalmun’s Cantina in the Mos Eisley Spaceport on Tatooine. – A New Hope
Why it’s bad ass: It’s the first time audiences get to see a lightsaber in combat.
Princess Leia chokes out Jabba the Hutt with her chained leash. – Return of the Jedi
Why it’s bad ass: The ultimate display of girl power as a princess kills the vilest gangster in the galaxy.
Yoda Force catches the Senate repulsorlift pod thrown at him by Darth Sidious, then sends it right back at him. – Revenge of the Sith
Why it’s bad ass: Ali v. Foreman. Hagler v. Leonard. Yoda v. Sidious. All bad ass! And nobody throws something at Yoda and gets away with it!
#25Obi-Wan Kenobi Force leaps out of the chasm of the Theed Palace generator on Naboo, uses the Force to pull Qui-Gon Jinn's lightsaber into his hands, and chops down the stunned Darth Maul. - The Phantom Menace
Why it's bad ass: Darth Maul flies into two pieces as he falls to his doom down the chasm.
Darth Vader kneels on the hologram projection pad outside his meditation chamber on Executor and asks, “What is thy bidding my master?” - The Empire Strikes Back
Why it’s bad ass: The fact that Darth Vader kneels to an “Emperor” is a scary, scary thought. How can there be someone more powerful than Vader?
#23Anakin beheads Count Dooku at the urging of Supreme Chancellor Palpatine. – Revenge of the Sith
Why it’s bad ass: Anakin uses a scissor move with two lightsabers to complete the sai cha (aka beheading with a lightsaber), and Palpatine’s delight in the act is so memorably venomous.
#22Darth Vader makes his first appearance - striding through the smoke filled doorway of the Tantive IV. - A New Hope
Why it's bad ass: Someone's gettin' choked!
#21Darth Vader picks up The Emperor and casts him into the chasm of the second Death Star. – Return of the Jedi
Why it’s bad ass: The moment of Vader’s redemption still elicits wild applause at any public screening of the film. Plus, Force lightening flows through Vader – making his helmet and mask glow grotesquely, which is one of the coolest effects of the saga.
Yoda, sensing that Commander Gree's intentions have turned to betrayal, spins and beheads Gree before Gree can even react. - Revenge of the Sith
Why it's bad ass: Yoda's so attuned to the Force, that he's one of the few Jedi to escape Order 66. Gree never stood a chance.
Obi-Wan Kenobi sacrifices himself to the Force and allows Darth Vader to strike him down on the first Death Star. – A New Hope
Why it’s bad ass: Obi-Wan is so at peace with the Force that he can sacrifice himself so Luke can fulfill his destiny. Plus, it’s cool when Vader uses his boot to prod Kenobi’s robes to confirm his kill.
Yoda uses the Force to lift Luke’s X-Wing out of the swampy bog on Dagobah. An incredulous Luke mutters, “I don’t believe it,” to which Yoda responds, “That is why you fail.” – The Empire Stikes Back
Why it’s bad ass: This moment elevates Yoda’s, “Size matters not,” line to legendary status.
The shot from Anakin’s perspective on the medical table as the mask is lowered and the visual representation of Darth Vader is born. Seconds later the iconic helmet is sealed on, and the character’s fate is cemented with his first mechanical breath. – Revenge of the Sith
Why it’s bad ass: The claustrophobia is palpable as we witness the “birth” of the greatest movie villain ever.
#16The "unarmed" Emperor projects Force lightening from his bare hands and begins to torture Luke Skywalker - Return of the Jedi
Why it's badd ass: We realize just how insanely poweful the Dark Side really is.
#15The Rebel fighters approaching the Death Star from their base on Yavin IV lock their S-foils in attack formation. - A New Hope
Why it's bad ass: Because we're all X-Wing fighter pilots at heart.
#14Darth Vader reveals to Luke Skywalker, “…I am your father,” while Luke dangles precariously over a seemingly bottomless chasm on Bespin. – The Empire Strikes Back
Why it’s bad ass: Proof that Vader is no virgin!
#13Obi-Wan Kenobi waves his hand and uses the Force to influence the weakminded Sandtroopers in the Mos Eisley Spaceport that, "These aren't the droids you're looking for." - A New Hope
Why it's bad ass: Obi-Wan's got mad Force skills!
Darth Maul removes his Sith robes and ignites his double-bladed lightsaber in the hangar bay door on Naboo as he confronts Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon Jinn. – The Phantom Menace
Why it’s bad ass: Double-bladed lightsaber!!!!!!!
The 20th Century Fox fanfare plays, followed by the Star Wars logo, the opening credits theme and the iconic crawl. – The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, Revenge of the Sith, A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi
Why it’s bad ass: The most recognizable epic in history begins.
Han Solo and Chewbacca return unexpectedly in the Millennium Falcon and blast a path for Luke to get off his shot to destroy the first Death Star. After letting out a whoop, Han delivers the memorable line, “You’re all clear kid!” – A New Hope
Why it’s bad ass: The surprise of this moment was so rewarding for audiences on first viewing that it created uncontrollable applause and cheering and one of the most bad ass endings in movie history.
Devastator, Darth Vader’s Star Destroyer, sails over audience’s heads in hot pursuit of Princess Leia’s Rebel Blockade Runner, the Tantive IV, high above Tatooine. – A New Hope
Why it’s bad ass: The saga is born. In one of the greatest visual shots ever constructed, jaws dropped in theaters as audiences realized they’d never seen anything like this before. Everyone immediately understands just how huge the Empire really is in relation to the Rebellion.
The red lights of the carbonite freezing chamber on Bespin silently turn on, and Darth Vader appears atop the platform in silhouette to deliver the line, “The Force is with you, young Skywalker. But you are not a Jedi yet.” – Empire Strikes Back
Why it’s bad ass: Vader’s presence is never more menacing than when he speaks these lines. So much so, that practically every member of every audience thinks in their head, “Run away, Luke!”
Darth Vader blocks Han Solo’s blaster fire with merely a gloved hand and then Force yanks the weapon from Han in a meeting room on Cloud City. – The Empire Strikes Back
Why it’s bad ass: Vader’s pure dominance. Han Solo gets owned and eats his words, "Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side.”
Yoda throws his lightsaber and impales a 501st Legion Clonetrooper as he and Obi-Wan Kenobi fight their way back into the Jedi Temple on Coruscant. – Revenge of the Sith
Why it’s bad ass: Because seconds later he leaps onto the dying clone and rips the saber out of his chest as the clone crumples to the ground.
Han Solo shoots first and kills Greedo in Chalmun’s Cantina in the Mos Eisley Spaceport on Tatooine. Then, as he flips some credits to Wuher the bartender, he casually delivers the line, “Sorry about the mess.” – A New Hope
Why it’s bad ass: Han shot first.
Princess Leia is revealed in her gold bikini and chained leash on the dais of Jabba the Hutt, where she will serve as his new prize. – Return of the Jedi
Why it’s bad ass: Uhm… if you don’t know, we’re not sure we can explain it to you. Needless to say, millions of fanboys were launched into puberty all at one time.
Darth Vader Force chokes Admiral Motti to near death in a meeting of top Imperials in a conference room on the Death Star. He delivers the line, “I find your lack of faith disturbing,” to Motti’s open defiance of Vader’s adherence to the Force – A New Hope
Why it’s bad ass: Vader’s calm demeanor during the entire moment is just cold blooded.
Yoda pulls back his Jedi cloak and uses the Force to flip his lightsaber from his belt into his hand as he prepares to fight Count Dooku in his lair on Geonosis. – Attack of the Clones
Why it’s bad ass: Yoda casts off his doddering persona to show why he’s the most bad ass Jedi in the galaxy. Fans went so nuts at their first viewing of this moment that many missed the details of his blinding lightsaber fight with Dooku.
In the carbonite freezing chamber on Bespin, Princess Leia professes her love to Han Solo with the line, “I Love You,” and he responds, “I know.” Moments later he’s frozen in carbonite. – The Empire Strikes Back
Why it’s bad ass: It’s 100% pure pimp.
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