Friday, May 15, 2009

Star Wars at the Drive In

My earliest memory of a drive-in movie was a history-making event. It was history making not only for me, but also for the world as a whole. We lived in North Little Rock, Arkansas and had a double drive-in movie between Kiehl Avenue and 167 (or 67) North. Unfortunately, today the area is home of the Links Apartments, but way back then it was home to a double drive-in called Twin City Drive In. There was a large Razorback painted on the outside of the screen facing 167. It was there that I enjoyed movie history with the rest of the world at the opening of Star Wars in 1977.

Star Wars had been highly bashed by critics as a bad overall movie, but I was determined to see it and convinced my parents to take my sister and me. We all sat in the car with small beads of sweat rolling down our faces as we listened to a crackling window speaker and watched Luke Skywalker save the galaxy from someone called Darth Vader. As most know, the rest is history and Star Wars: The Adventures of Luke Skywalker became known (and renamed) as Star Wars: A New Hope. But, I'll never forget the first time I learned that critics are not always right and that space adventures did not always revolve around CBS, ABC or NBC's ideas of science fiction.

Note: the above was written for CNN.Com's I-Report.