Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983) - Rotten Tomatoes

Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi1983

Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983)



Critic Consensus: Though failing to reach the cinematic heights of its predecessors, Return of the Jedi remains an entertaining sci-fi adventure and a fitting end to the classic trilogy.

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Movie Info

In the epic conclusion of the saga, the Empire prepares to crush the Rebellion with a more powerful Death Star while the Rebel fleet mounts a massive attack on the space station. Luke Skywalker confronts his father Darth Vader in a final climactic duel before the evil Emperor. In the last second, Vader makes a momentous choice: he destroys the Emperor and saves his son. The Empire is finally defeated, the Sith are destroyed, and Anakin Skywalker is thus redeemed. At long last, freedom is restored to the galaxy.

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Mark Hamill
as Luke Skywalker
Carrie Fisher
as Princess Leia
Harrison Ford
as Han Solo
Billy Dee Williams
as Lando Calrissian
Peter Mayhew
as Chewbacca
Alec Guinness
as Ben Obi-Wan Kenobi
David Prowse
as Darth Vader
Ian McDiarmid
as Emperor Palpatine
Sebastian Shaw
as Anakin Skywalker
Kenny Baker
as Paploo/R2-D2
Michael Pennington
as Moff Jerjerrod
Kenneth Colley
as Adm. Piett
Michael Carter
as Bib Fortuna
Tim Rose
as Adm. Ackbar
Dermot Crowley
as Gen. Madine
Jeremy Bulloch
as Boba Fett
Annie Arbogast
as Sy Snootles
Claire Davenport
as Fat Dancer
Jane Busby
as Chief Chirpa
Malcolm Dixon
as Ewok Warrior
Mike Cottrell
as Ewok Warrior
James Earl Jones
as Darth Vader
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News & Interviews for Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi

Critic Reviews for Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi

All Critics (96) | Top Critics (32)

If the revels of Star Wars are indeed now ended, Jedi couldn't have been a better resolution for them.

December 17, 2019 | Full Review…

"Return of the Jedi," the final act of George Lucas' first "Star Wars" trilogy, is the best one yet.

April 26, 2018 | Full Review…

There are all sorts of hints in the latest escapade (notionally directed by Richard Marquand) that we are meant to be taking it seriously.

December 15, 2015 | Full Review…

It's everything it ought to be -- glorious, exhilarating, exciting, absorbing, technically wondrous. But there also is something bittersweet in the knowledge that, with Jedi, we are bidding a fond farewell to all of the characters we got to know so well.

December 15, 2015 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

The characters and dialogue get lost somewhere between the bug-eyed monsters and the exploding spaceships, but it is all so much fun it probably really does not matter a whole lot.

December 14, 2015 | Full Review…

With this last of the central Star Wars cycle, there is the sense of the closing of a circle, of leaving behind real friends. It is accomplished with a weight and a new maturity that seem entirely fitting, yet the movie has lost none of its sense of fun.

December 14, 2015 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi


A powerful, albeit flawed, conclusion to the trilogy.

Matthew Samuel Mirliani
Matthew Samuel Mirliani

Super Reviewer


Return of the Jedi, while a reasonably satisfying finale to the original trilogy, does not match the heights of the previous two films. It is pigeon-holed somewhere in the middle: not quite dark and mature enough to match Empire Strikes Back and not free-spirited and original enough to match A New Hope. The tone is more in line with the first film, but after Empire you want them to continue to get more mature and that didn't happen. The main aspects of the plot certainly are fine, but the subplots involving the Ewoks and rescuing Han seem kind of shoe-horned in. Ultimately, it is entertaining and certainly still worth watching, but a mild disappointment because of the high expectations of following Empire.

Josh Lewis
Josh Lewis

Super Reviewer


After a cliff hanger ending in The Empire Strikes Back, the Star Wars (original) Trilogy concludes with Return of the Jedi, a film that while great and entertaining, doesn't quite live up to the majesty of the previous two installments. The film opens with our heroes led by Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) attempting to rescue Han Solo (Harrison Ford) from overgrown slug Jabba The Hutt. Meanwhile, the Empire have begun construction on another Death Star that will culminate in a three front battle on the forest moon of Endor, in space, and the final confrontation between father and son with the Emperor (Ian McDiarmid) as an active audience. Return of the Jedi is a fine adventure film, full of fun and excitement. The problem really boils down to the fact that it seems that the story seems to rehash the previous two entries, especially the first one. The Cantina scene returns with the numerous alien creatures hanging around Jabba's palace. The Death Star once again becomes the powerful weapon that can destroy the Rebellion. I would add the final duel between Luke and Darth Vader, but this time it feels different. Luke has matured into a contemplating Jedi, not a head strong young man just wanting to save his friends. There is a nice arc to each character in this film. Luke's arc from farm boy to the last of the Jedi Knights. Han from smuggler to war hero. Leia (Carrie Fisher) no longer seeming as regal, but more revolutionary. It's magnificent that this trilogy actually has character grow instead of being set personalities, never to change. Once again, praise must be heaped on writer Lawrence Kasdan. This may be George Lucas' story, but Kasdan makes it a living piece. Even though the film isn't as great as Star Wars or Empire, Return of the Jedi is a fitting end to the original trilogy and the saga up to that point. Conclusions usually aren't the greatest things to see, but with Return of the Jedi the film makers do this franchise justice. A fitting ending for the adventurous characters created by George Lucas.

Chris Garman
Chris Garman

Super Reviewer

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