Logic Flaws in the Star Wars Trilogy (long)
You don't notice these things as a kid, but as a critical thinking adult, they become obvious to you. Here is a long thorough list of plotholes and
logic flaws in the original Star Wars trilogy that defy basic logic and common sense. Feel free to add any of your own.
Star Wars A New Hope
- When the Falcon was captured by the Death Star tractor beam, and the Imperials found it empty because Han and his party were hiding in the smuggling
compartments, why didn't the Imperials use their life form detection devices, like on Star Trek? They should have such capabilities, since at the
beginning of the movie, when C3PO and R2D2 were in the escape pod fleeing the captured Rebel cruiser, the Star Destroyer personnel said, "There goes
another one. Wait, hold your fire. There's no life forms. It must have short circuited." Then later an Imperial officer told Vader aboard the
captured Rebel cruiser, "An escape pod was jettisoned during the fighting. But no life forms were aboard." This indicated that the Imperials did
have life form detection capability. So why wasn't it used on the Falcon in the Death Star?
Furthermore, the pilot of the Tie Fighter that the Falcon was chasing to the Death Star should have reported that the Falcon was following it like a
manned craft, not like a ship on automatic pilot, which should have told the Imperials that there were pilots on board.
- Before the Falcon was captured by the Death Star, Governor Tarkin ordered his Imperial officers to execute Princess Leia immediately, after she lied
to them about the location of the Rebel base. So how could Han, Luke, Ben and Chewie have so much time to sneak into the Death Star and rescue
Princess Leia, if she was scheduled to be "executed immediately"? I guess "immediately" must be a long time in the Star Wars universe. lol
- There was no reason why the Death Star personnel would let Han, Luke, Leia, Chewie and the droids escape on the Millenium Falcon. They could have
easily deactivated the ship or hauled it away, rather than leaving it intact and operable in the hangar bay with only a few guards around it. That is
too contrived and convenient.
- When our heroes went down into the trash compactor room on the Death Star, after the shootout in the prison bay, the Imperials obviously knew they
were down there, since they disappeared and blew open the trash chute. So when they set the walls of the trash compactor to close in on them, and R2D2
managed to stop it and open the exit door, there should have been guards outside the door to immediately capture them, since their location was
already known. But there weren't. That was never explained.
- When the Falcon escaped the Death Star, even though the tractor beam was deactivated, the Death Star could still have easily shot it out of space,
or immediately sent fighters to destroy it. There's no way a gigantic space station could be that easy to escape from. It should have many things in
its arsenal besides its tractor beam.
- In a military space station, areas where you can deactivate things should not be so easy to get into. They are usually locked and heavily guarded.
So Ben Kenobi should not have been able to get to that control panel to deactivate the tractor beam that easily, by simply walking through a hallway
and out onto a balcony.
- During the light saber duel between Ben Kenobi and Darth Vader, Kenobi gives up when a few stormtroopers arrive and point their weapons at him, and
lets Vader slay him and vanishes. There was no reason for him to give up like that. In the prequels, Jedis can deflect lasers with their light sabers
very easily, like a routine breeze in the wind. If Kenobi could deflect lasers so easily during his youth, there was no reason why he couldn't do it
again in that scene and continue to fight Vader, or flee and rejoin Han's party in their escape. His sacrifice seemed senseless. Furthermore, he was
in a personal duel with Vader and the stormtroopers were not supposed to interfere.
- Furthermore, during that same duel with Vader, Kenobi's light saber suddenly turns into a glass stick, revealing the prop that it was. That scene
should have been cut out, but was left in for some reason.
- The stolen data tapes of the Death Star that the Imperials were after the whole movie made no sense. If the Rebels can analyze it and find a
weakness in the Death Star so quickly and easily, why couldn't the Imperials have done the same long ago? I mean, what's to stop them from analyzing
the technical blueprint of their own Death Star, finding the same weakness in the exhaust port, and plugging it up or fixing it so that it doesn't
cause a chain reaction? A simple realignment or plugging of the pipes could have easily fixed the problem. This was never explained, of course,
because obviously, if they had done that, the Rebels would have had no chance. lol
Since there was no logical reason to believe that the Rebels were more technologically advanced than the Imperials were, the Imperials should
therefore have been able to discover this weakness in the Death Star long ago and fixed it. Then there would have been no need to chase the Rebel
cruiser at the beginning to try to retrieve the stolen data tapes. The Death Star would have been invincible and the Rebels would have had no chance,
and the movie would have sucked I guess. lol
- When the Death Star headed for the Rebel base on one of Yavin's moons by tracking the Falcon, there was no reason for it to stay around and risk
itself. Once it found the location of the Rebel base, it could have sent out thousands of fighters to destroy the Rebel base, or dispatched ground
troops to capture it, or called the Imperial fleet to destroy it, and then fled the scene out of harm's way. There was no need to try to destroy the
entire moon that the base was on, to destroy the Rebel base, and incur risk upon itself. Since the Imperials knew that the Rebels were planning to
find a weakness in the stolen data tapes that could destroy the Death Star, they knew that the Death Star was at risk, so they should have had it flee
and jump into hyperspace, as soon as the location of the Rebel base was discovered.
Furthermore, the Imperial fleet should have followed the Death Star for protection and backup, in case the Rebels succeeded in destroying the Death
Star. There was no reason not to have the Imperial fleet tag along in this huge pivotal battle that could end the war and the Rebellion.
- After the Death Star was destroyed, the Imperial fleet should have arrived and finished off the Rebel base. Yet, at the end of the movie, the Rebels
have enough time for a relaxing medal of honor ceremony for Han and Luke. In it, they do not look like they are in a rush to leave at all, before the
Imperial fleet arrives.
- If Darth Vader was Luke's father, then why did Vader try to shoot Luke down during the Death Star trench run? Couldn't he feel that Luke was his
son, using the Force?
- During the trench run, Vader locked onto Luke's fighter and fired his lasers. They should have hit Luke's X-Wing and destroyed it, just as it did
to the other fighters. Yet Luke's fighter was not hit and it was never explained why. Instead, Han's Falcon comes and destroys one of Vader's guard
Tie Fighters, and knocks out the other, hurling Vader's fighter into space. But no explanation or cause for Vader's miss was given.
Also, the Death Star should have had thousands of Tie Fighters and cannons protecting it during this battle, so Han's ship should not have been able
to approach the Death Star and enter its trenches so easily. You can't approach a giant technologically advanced space station the size of a moon
that easily. Its cannons and defenses should easily be able to blow targets out of the space around it.
- A space station the size of a moon ought to have thousands of fighters, not just a dozen like was shown in this movie.
- When the X-Wing squadron approached the Death Star, it was very gradual. It took time for them to get to it, and then into the trenches. Yet, after
Luke successfully fires into the exhaust port, he, Han, and a few other fighters, suddenly flee and get really far away from the Death Star, in just a
few seconds, so that they are safely out of range when it blows up. If they can get that far in a few seconds, why didn't the whole Rebel squadron
get into the trenches in just a few seconds when it was arriving too? And again, the Death Star should have had countless laser canons and missiles
which should have blown away the escaping fighters anyway.
- On Tatooine, there was no reason for the stormtroopers to have killed Luke's Uncle and Aunt that he lived with and worked for. If they wanted those
two droids and the stolen data plans they carried, which was traced to their home, they would have held his Uncle and Aunt hostage until Luke returned
and surrendered the droids. That would have been the logical move. But killing them and then moving on was senseless. It accomplished nothing and did
not help their objective. I guess Lucas was in a rush to cut off Luke's remaining obligations to his relatives on Tatooine so he could go away with
Kenobi and join the Rebellion. And when Lucas is in a rush, any senseless thing will suffice. That seems to be the pattern.
The Empire Strikes Back
- When the Imperial fleet attacked the Rebel base on Hoth, most of the Rebels ended up escaping in transport ships, even though Hoth was surrounded by
the Imperial fleet. These transport ships should have been destroyed or captured. Yet they all just slipped past the fleet, after one Rebel ion cannon
disabled one Imperial Star Destroyer. WTF?
- If the ion cannon of the Rebel base was powerful enough to take out Star Destroyers all the way out in space, then why didn't the Rebels just point
it at the giant Snow Walkers approaching the base on the ground? It should easily have taken out the Snow Walkers and made it difficult or impossible
for the Empire to attack the base by ground. Furthermore, if the Rebel base was protected by an impenetrable force field, as the Imperial officer told
Vader, then how could the ion canon fire through it? I've never heard of a "one-way force field" before. lol
- In the original Star Wars movie, it was established that fighters cannot go too far out into space on their own, when Han Solo said that the Tie
Fighter they were following, headed for the Death Star, could not have gotten so far into space on its own. Furthermore, the X-Wings were shown to be
fueling in the Rebel base hangar bay before the Death Star attack. So how then, in Empire Strikes Back, did Luke's X-Wing go from Hoth to Dagobah,
and then all the way to Cloud City? Where did it refuel?
- Also, the Falcon's hyperdrive was inoperative until the end of the movie. So how did it travel all the way from Hoth to the asteroid belt and then
to Cloud City on its jet engines or sublight speed alone? Wouldn't that have taken thousands or millions of years? lol. Star systems are usually many
light years apart, so the Falcon would have had to travel at faster than light to get to other star systems. But if it's only traveling on jet
propulsion, wouldn't it have taken forever, beyond a human lifetime?
- As in the first Star Wars movie, when the Imperials captured the Falcon at Cloud City, why did they leave it operable and unguarded? Why didn't
they deactivate it or haul it away? Didn't they learn from their mistake in the first movie when they escaped the Death Star so easily? Or did Darth
Vader have amnesia? lol. How convenient of the Imperials to always leave the Falcon operable and virtually unguarded so that our heroes can jump into
it and escape. They've done it twice now.
When they left Cloud City, Vader asked the Imperial officer if his men deactivated the hyperdrive on the Millenium Falcon, and he says yes. But why
would they only deactivate the hyperdrive rather than the whole ship itself? What kind of dumbass strategy was that? Furthermore, why didn't they put
a tracking device on the Falcon, like they did in the first Star Wars movie, so that they could track it all the way to the Rebel base or fleet
Also, when Lando, Leia, Chewie and the droids were escaping Cloud City and shooting at the stormtroopers, the Imperials should have known that they
would head for the Falcon and either guard it, haul it away, or render it inoperable. Then Lando would have had to direct them to another ship for
- Chewbacca was huge and moved slowly. So how could any stormtrooper repeatedly fail to hit him? Hitting him should be as easy as hitting a big
- After Han and his party in the Falcon left the asteroid belt and the monster inside one of them, why didn't they simply catch up to the Rebel
fleet, instead of going to Cloud City for repairs and risking what might happen there? Obviously they must have known where the Rebel fleet was, since
Leia and Lando went directly to it after escaping Cloud City. If their inoperable hyperdrive wouldn't allow that, then how did it allow them to go
all the way to Cloud City, which must have been light years away? Or why couldn't they have called the Rebel fleet and asked to be picked up?
Return of the Jedi
Oh boy, this movie, which I consider the worst of the trilogy, has so many flaws and blunders that listing them is going to be tedious. Nothing made
sense in this movie. So here it goes...
- The beginning part was stupid. Why would Jabba the Hut keep Han Solo frozen? If you want revenge on someone, you don't keep them asleep. You wake
them up and punish them and torture them. Or you make them repay their debts and then either release them, kill them, or torture them, depending on
the score you want to settle.
- And why would Jabba keep Han, Leia and Luke prisoner so he could take them out into the desert and throw them into that mouth pit? Why not just
execute them on the spot or imprison them? Why take such a chance so that they could escape?
- During the battle on the barge, why did Bobba Fett hit the sand dune and then roll into the mouth pit? Sand is not ice. You do not slide down it
against your will. Anyone who has walked on a sand dune or tried to roll down one knows that you have to MAKE yourself roll down one. You do not slide
down one like ice. When you hit a sand dune, you immediately stop. You do not roll down unless you make the effort to roll down. It looks like Lucas
doesn't know anything about sand. Or he just wants the movie to be stupid.
- Why would Bobba Fett not take out Han Solo first, who is right next to him, rather than Luke? A blind Han Solo would be easy to take out in a
second. Instead, he ignores Han and concentrates on Luke, while Han accidentally hits Bobba Fett's jet pack with some pole, causing it to ignite and
propel him into the sand dune for that unrealistic roll into the mouth pit mentioned above. A great fighter or bounty hunter does not get defeated by
an accidental move from a blind man. That's silly and has never happened in history. It's also a cheap insult on the villains too.
- How can Luke stand in the middle of the barge in broad daylight, surrounded by enemies, and not get hit? Anyone can shoot him from behind. A light
saber does not provide 360 degree protection.
- How did Leia choke Jabba the Hutt to death with chains so easily? He was huge. How could he be that weak to have a woman choke him so easily?
Furthermore, why would Jabba tie chains around himself so that anyone can choke him with it, including his female slave Leia? Also, wouldn't a super
gangster like Jabba the Hut have some body guards around him?
- Why would firing the barge's deck gun at the barge's deck destroy the whole barge and explode it? Why would Jabba have a barge that was so easy to
blow up with just one shot from its own deck gun? That is way too contrived. It seems that this movie was designed for the brainless.
Next, the whole Death Star/Endor battle scene was ridiculous and senseless. It was like a cartoon. I guess you don't have to have common sense to be
a movie director.
- Why would the new Death Star need to have a shield generator outside of it? Ships and space stations usually have shields generated from the INSIDE,
not outside. Why would they have a shield generated outside, which could be easily destroyed? Furthermore, why would the Emperor place himself in a
Death Star that was so easy to destroy?
- The Rebel strategy for taking out the shield generator was nonexistent. Why send a small assault team to try to take it out, not knowing what would
happen or how heavily guarded it was or even how to get into it? There was no real plan or basis for this strategy. I mean, what if they arrived and
the shield generator was heavily guarded by an army and had many exterior guns? What would their small assault team do then? Try to take them out in a
shootout? Infiltrate them? Recruit wild animals? lol. They simply had no real reliable plan. Yet they banked the survival of the whole Rebel fleet and
the outcome of the war, on this one ground mission which technically had no chance of succeeding?! WTF? That was weird.
Yet in spite of this, Lando kept telling Admiral Ackbar to have faith in Han completing his mission and getting that shield down, when there was no
logical basis for such faith, as explained above. So, the survival of the whole Rebel fleet was at stake and they were banking on Han's small assault
team taking out a heavily guarded shield generator with no strategy or method? WTF? That sounds suicidal to me. No one would rely on such a strategy
or bank a whole war on it.
It would have been more quick and efficient to simply fire missiles at the shield generator to take it out, or try to use fighters to secretly attack
and destroy it. But oh wait, I guess if they did that, then our heroes wouldn't have had the opportunity to meet those stupid Ewoks, and the film
wouldn't have appealed to children. lol
- When Han and the Rebel assault team in the shuttle transmitted the clearance code to the Imperial fleet to get to Endor, Vader sensed that his son
Luke was on board the shuttle. He even told the Emperor about it afterward. So he knew right there that there was a Rebel assault force in the
shuttle. Yet he let the shuttle land anyway. That was a huge tactical blunder that made no sense, and cost the Empire the whole war. Why would he let
them land and put the shield generator at risk? Why not immediately capture the shuttle and take his son to the Emperor to be converted, if that was
his plan? Or put the tractor beam on them without warning? Why bank on Luke coming to Vader of his own will on Endor, if he didn't have to, and could
have captured them right there? Vader's decision to allow the shuttle to land was completely baseless and reckless. It also cost the Empire the whole
war. Antagonists always do the stupidest things.
- The battle on Endor was ridiculous, goofy and impossible. The Ewoks had no chance against the stormtroopers. How could the Ewok arrows pierce the
armor of the stormtroopers? If their armor can't stop arrows and stones, then what's the point of them wearing it, which slows down their movement
and heats them up (unless there is a cooling system inside)? Arrows are no match for laser blasters and walking machines.
- Swinging logs cannot destroy the metal hull of AT Walkers like paper. Metal does not collapse like paper from colliding with logs. Furthermore, a
big Snow Walker, like those used on Hoth in Empire Strikes Back, was shown on Endor at night, but never used during the Ewok battle. I wonder why.
Maybe cause the Ewoks would have had no way of destroying it? lol
- When Han and his party were captured by the stormtroopers at the shield generator, there was no need to take them outside to stand around. What was
the point of that? To have them look at all the stormtroopers and gloat in their defeat? Why didn't they just execute them, and eliminate the risk
that threatened their whole war?
- During the shootout outside the shield generator, Han and Leia stood in the corner of the closed doorway of the shield generator, totally
unprotected and exposed in the open. They were no more protected than if one were to stand in the corner of an open room. This means that they were
sitting ducks and anyone could have shot them. Yet none of the stormtroopers hiding in the forest could hit them?! WTF? That is unbelievable and
implausible. They should have been easily gunned down in seconds. I guess Lucas expects us to subdue reason and believe that two people standing out
in the open cannot get hit by trained military soldiers surrounding them. Uh huh.
- When Leia was hit in the shoulder during the shootout outside the shield generator, Han gets distracted and the stormtroopers come up behind them
and order them to surrender, which they get out of after Leia just shoots them down. Yeah right. Again, why didn't the stormtroopers just shoot them
when they had the chance, since they posed a high risk and threat to the shield generator, on which the whole war hinged on? They should have
immediately shot Solo in the back and finished them both. I guess the Empire just wasn't meant to win...
- The way Han Solo and his party finally capture the shield generator defied basic logic. Han poses as an AT Walker driver, using a captured AT
Walker, and asks the shield generator personnel to send reinforcements to pursue the fleeing Ewoks and Rebels. When reinforcements are sent out, they
are immediately ambushed and captured, and the door is left open for Han and his party to enter into the shield generator and blow it up. Now, there
are a number of obvious problems with this:
First, why would an AT Walker driver be giving orders to the personnel of the shield generator? He takes orders. He doesn't give them. And the
personnel in the generator should have refused his request anyway, for the next reason.
Second, the shield generator personnel's primary duty was to protect the shield generator and keep it running. It was their highest priority, since
the whole war with the Rebels hinged on the shield generator's protection of the Death Star (well according to the logic of this movie that is).
Therefore, there was no sense in sending out most of the personnel inside out to chase Ewoks and Rebels deep in the woods, leaving the shield
generator unprotected and undermanned, when their primary duty was to protect it. That made zero sense and was a suicidal move.
Logically, the shield generator manager should have replied to Han's request with the following, "That won't be necessary. Just let them go and
return to the shield generator to help guard it. The protection of the generator is our highest priority right now."
At that point, Han would have no way to get into the shield generator except by trying to destroy it with the AT Walker, or placing the explosive
charges on the outside of the generator. But then again, shouldn't a crucial shield generator have some exterior weapons, armor or defensive
capability, or at least a protective force field of its own?
Third, when the squad of Imperial personnel left the shield generator only to be surrounded by Ewoks, there was no reason for them to surrender. They
could have immediately fired their laser weapons at the Ewoks and at Han Solo too. Arrows are no match for laser blasters. If arrows were better, why
would anyone be using lasers? lol. And plus, if the Imperial squad knew that giving up the shield generator meant that the Empire would lose the war,
wouldn't they have gone for broke anyway and started firing at the Ewoks and Solo? Han's strategy made no sense and should not have worked.
Furthermore, when the Imperial personnel inside the generator saw that the squad sent out was immediately captured, with their security cameras, why
didn't they immediately close the door? And why didn't the door close by itself after the squad went outside? Surely the Imperials weren't planning
on leaving that crucial door open were they? Geez. Also, how did all those Ewoks get on top of the generator for this stupid ambush? Weren't there
security cameras outside that let the Imperials see what's going on outside?
As you can see, the capture of the shield generator contained multiple errors of basic logic. Sheesh. George Lucas must suck at any kind of strategy.
If he were a military commander, he'd probably be the worst in history. He probably could not even beat the computer at chess on level one. The
strategy and actions used in Return of the Jedi were obviously meant for the most brainless of people.
Next, the space battle above Endor also defied basic logic.
- The Imperial fleet obviously outnumbered, outsized and outgunned the Rebel fleet. Admiral Ackbar even admitted this when he said to Lando, "At that
range our ships won't last long against those Star Destroyers." Yet it was never explained why the Imperial fleet didn't finish off the Rebel
fleet. Even after the Death Star was destroyed and the Emperor was dead, nothing still prevented them from finishing off the Rebel fleet.
We are expected to assume that after the Emperor died, the entire Empire fled and disbanded. Yeah right. Didn't the Emperor have a successor, or did
he plan that after he died, his Empire would be no more? Presidents and Kings have always had successors, to continue their nation or empire.
But either way, even without an Emperor, the Imperials should have finished the Rebels off anyway out of pride and vengeance. That way, they could go
home and say, "We lost our new Death Star and Emperor, but we destroyed the entire Rebel fleet and won the war. All we need now is a new Emperor to
continue the Empire. Since we successfully crushed the Rebellion, our Emperor did not die in vain." Wouldn't that have been far more honorable and
glorious than going home and saying in shame, "We lost our new Death Star and Emperor, so we fled and gave up and lost the war. The Empire is no
Um Lucas, hello! Have you ever tried putting yourself in the Empire's shoes? I guess when Lucas wants closure in a movie, he rushes it any way he
can, even in the most nonsensical way.
- When the Death Star's shield was down, why didn't the Imperials close off the tunnels that the Rebel fighters were flying through to get to the
main reactor? Why make it so easy for fighters to fly through the Death Star and blow it up? Haven't the Imperials ever heard of a "door or wall"
- The way the Imperial flagship Executor got destroyed by crashing into the Death Star after a Rebel fighter crashed into its bridge, was cheap,
cheesy, implausible, and defied the laws of physics, for a number of reasons.
First, you can't destroy a ship the size of the Executor, which looked to be at least ten times the size of a Star Destroyer (based on the scene in
Empire Strikes Back when Star Destroyers moved alongside and under it, see here: www.theforce.net...
simply crashing a fighter into its bridge. Geez. Can you sink an aircraft carrier by simply crashing a fighter plane into its bridge? No, you can't.
You have to inflict a lot more damage than that to sink a carrier. So this made no sense.
Second, a huge flagship the size of ten Star Destroyers should have a ton of defensive capabilities, including shields, armor, lasers, backup systems,
etc. and should be extremely difficult to destroy or incapacitate. A few outmatched, outnumbered and outgunned Rebel fighters isn't going to take out
a thing like that. Come on now. Furthermore, such a ship should have backup navigation systems.
Third, even if you destroy a ship's navigation system (by crashing a fighter into its bridge in this case), it will simply glide onward and
eventually get lost in space. It will not fall down like a plane from the sky in Earth's atmosphere. Come on now. Moreover, the Death Star does not
produce gravity, and even if it did, it would not be strong enough to pull down a gigantic ship like that. Obviously, Lucas thinks that Earth's sky
and space have the same properties and physics, or thinks that we are dumb enough to think that. Either way, he insults the viewer's intelligence.
Again, this scene was made for the stupid and brainless. Lucas obviously has low respect for your intelligence. Either that, or he has low
intelligence himself or cheesy taste. I guess when Lucas wants something out of the way, whether it be a Galactic Empire or a flagship the size of ten
Star Destroyers, he will do it any way he can, even if it insults your intelligence. That seems to be his pattern all right.
- When the Death Star's shields were down, and the Rebel fighters were flying through the tunnels toward the main reactor, none of the Imperial
personnel contacted the Emperor to tell him to evacuate to his escape pod. Gee I guess they didn't really care about him. Wouldn't the Emperor leave
his intercom on, in case his forces lost or the Death Star was in danger, so that he would be notified?
- In the Emperor's room on the Death Star, there is a bottomless pit next to it, so that he can be thrown into it at the end by Darth Vader, who has
no other way to kill the Emperor. Gee how convenient. Do rulers and kings like to sit near bottomless pits? Does Julius Caesar or King George sit
around bottomless pits while giving out orders, so that someone who wants to assassinate them can simply throw them into it? Well, not in our world.
But in the Star Wars universe, I guess they do. How bizarre.
- How could Luke endure the Emperor's lightning attack for so long, and then get up with normal strength afterward, yet Darth Vader only got hit with
it for a few seconds while carrying the Emperor into the bottomless pit, and as a result, began dying right after?
- When the Death Star is about to be blown up, Luke takes Vader, his father, from the Emperor's room all the way to hangar bay to flee in a shuttle.
Now, how did he get someone as big and heavy as Vader all that way? Did he drag him on the ground? If so, that would take a long time and they would
not have escaped in time. Or did he carry him in his arms? If so, that would strain his arms and slow him down. Either way, why didn't any Imperials
who saw him arrest or capture him?
Whew. I think this list is done for now. Sorry that was so long, but I hope you enjoyed reading this list of logic flaws, which you probably never
thought about or realized while watching the Star Wars trilogy. Feel free to add any more if you like.