Top 10 Greatest Star Wars Quotes
As we begin to count down the days to the quickly approaching release of Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens, we should take the time to look back at one of the most enduring aspects of this beloved series: the insanely quotable dialogue. Among its countless other contributions to pop culture, if there is one thing that this decade-spanning series can be given credit for, it is producing some of the most memorable one-liners of arguably any film series before or since.
With so many awesome Star Wars quotes to choose from and only a limited amount of space on this list, some exclusions had to be made. “May the force be with you” may be the most well-known and oft-repeated line to come out of Star Wars, but it is also found on top of pretty much every list of this kind. So for the sake of variety it has been cut. Likewise, don’t expect any lines from the prequels on here. Regardless of overall quality, they just don’t have any memorable one-liners. Anyway, without further ado, here are our picks for the greatest Star Wars quotes:
10. Princess Leia (A New Hope): “Help me Obi-Wan Kenobi, you’re my only hope.”
This really is the line that started it all. Spoken by Leia to R2-D2 in haste before her capture at the beginning of A New Hope with instructions for R2 to deliver the recording to Obi-Wan on Tatooine. On top of being a heavy point of reference for fans of the series, these are the words that kick-started Luke’s involvement. Without them he likely would have never met Obi-Wan, never joined the Rebellion, and thus the Empire would have remained undefeated.
9. Admiral Ackbar (Return of the Jedi): “It’s a trap!”
This one gets easy points for cultural permeation. It has practically become a joke among both casual and hardcore fans. It is just one of those one-liners that everyone knows. It has been made fun of and parodied countless times. It is through prominence that Admiral Ackbar’s only claim to fame earns its way on to this list.
8. Han Solo (A New Hope): “Traveling through hyperspace ain’t like dusting crops, farm boy.”
Spoken by Han to Luke Skywalker, this line finds a place on this list for two reasons. One is that, like most of Han’s most memorable lines, it’s quite funny. Two is that at this point in A New Hope we haven’t known Han Solo for very long, and this quote and others like it go a long way towards establishing the dry wit and devil-may-care attitude that has come to define most aspects of his character.
7. Obi-Wan Kenobi (A New Hope): “You can’t win, Darth. Strike me down, and I will become more powerful than you could possibly imagine.”
A pivotal moment in A New Hope comes when Obi-Wan faces off against his former apprentice, Darth Vader, during a mission to rescue Princess Leia from her imprisonment aboard the first Death Star. Anyone who has seen the movie obviously knows the outcome before being struck down, Obi-Wan issues this now legendary, endlessly quoted warning. It’s a warning that doesn’t come into play until later movies but it still penetrated pop-culture history from the moment it was uttered.
6. Yoda (The Empire Strikes Back): “Do. Or do not. There is no try.”
Here is another one that we always see being quoted. Ubiquitous use is a common thread among most of the classic Star Wars one-liners, particularly where Yoda’s mixed up speech pattern is concerned, and this one is no different. This is a line that comes into play when Yoda is training Luke on Dagobah, where many of the best scenes in The Empire Strikes Back take place.
5. Princess Leia (The Empire Strikes Back): “Why you stuck-up, half-witted, scruffy-looking nerf-herder!”
Okay, this one is on here pretty much only because it makes me laugh. Princess Leia, never one to sugarcoat her feelings, yells this at Han during a heated moment between the two early on in The Empire Strikes Back. What makes this line so special is the way it sets the tone for the relationship between the two for most of the film. Many of their interactions play out almost like a screwball comedy of sorts as the two quip back and forth at each other. This is one of the best examples of that dynamic.
4. Darth Vader (A New Hope): “I’ve been waiting for you, Obi-Wan. We meet again, at last. The circle is now complete. When I left you, I was but the learner; now I am the master.”
Here’s another line from the aforementioned confrontation between Obi-Wan and Darth Vader aboard the Death Star in A New Hope. What makes this quote so interesting is the way it is informed character history. Now we’ve seen the prequels so we know every aspect of their former relationship, but before that we could only guess at the depths being hinted at between the two. It is what made this confrontation so substantial. It’s a fantastic line for both its quotability and its storytelling.
3. Obi-Wan Kenobi (A New Hope): “These aren’t the droids you’re looking for…”
This line from early on in A New Hope where Obi-Wan uses one of his Jedi mind-tricks to safely move past an Imperial checkpoint is a standout not just because of how immensely quotable it is, but also because it is one of the very first times we are given an idea of what exactly the Force is and of what it can do. Yet, we only get a glimpse of the power behind the mystery. This is yet another Star Wars quote that has forever wormed its way into pop culture.
2. Luke Skywalker (Return of the Jedi): “You’re wrong, Leia. You have that power too. In time you’ll learn to use it as I have. The Force runs strong in my family. My father has it. I have it. And….my sister has it. Yes. It’s you, Leia.”
This is a personal favorite line of mine which comes to us from Return of the Jedi. It is the culmination of the developing familial relationship between Luke and Leia where it is finally confirmed that the two are in fact brother and sister. There is a lot of weight in this exchange between the two, with this quote in particular emerging as a series all-timer, made evident by the way it was brilliantly repurposed in one of the Force Awakens trailers.
1. Darth Vader (The Empire Strikes Back): “No. I am your Father.”
And really, what else could possibly have topped this list? Such a short, simple line just so happens to be one of the greatest reveals in the history of cinema. Everyone and their mother knows this line and this scene by heart. Even people who have never seen Star Wars are at least aware of the line which has been imitated, parodied, and referenced countless times in an immeasurable amount of properties and mediums. This is the definitive Star Wars quote. One of the most memorable scenes ever resulted in one the most memorable one-liner ever.