After all the hype and the counter-hype and the fear and the hope about what it could wind up being, we’re just one month away from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. A new Stars Wars movie for the first time since Revenge of the Sith is coming, and we should all get ready for it. What’s the best way to do it? Well you could get your costume together alone in your apartment OR you could head to Halyards every Tuesday from this week until December 15 for a screening of each film in the space saga in Machete Order. What is Machete Order? Only the nerdiest out of order way to watch all of the films, including two of the prequels.
So before the overwhelming detour into nerd town, here’s the basics: Halyards (406 3rd Avenue) is starting a film night this week, with every Monday devoted to independent films and every Tuesday given over to classic Hollywood excess. It all starts this Tuesday, November 17 at 8pm with a screening of Star Wars: A New Hope on the big screen in Halyards’ back room. Beyond the movie, there’ll also be $8 “Darth and Stormy” cocktails, free popcorn and a photo booth. The screenings will continue every Tuesday through December 15, ending just in time for you to go out and see Episode VII that week.
Now for the very nerdy part: For starters, the bar is showing the original cuts of the movies, none of that Special Edition bullshit. Second, the movies will be shown in something called Machete Order, which means the order of the screenings will be Episode IV, V, II, III and then VI. What is Machete Order? There’s a long explainer/justification of it by Rod Hilton, the man who came up with the idea, but you might not have time to read all of it. Machete Order exists in order to make the two trilogies into Luke Skywalker’s story to defeat the Empire and redeem his father, as opposed to two stories about Luke and Anakin separately. In that way, Episodes II and III work as a kind of extended flashback after the events of Episode V, allowing you to see how Anakin fell, before you finally wrap everything up with Episode VI. It’s pretty brilliant, so much so that it was endorsed by King Nerd Patton Oswalt earlier this year:
You might also notice that there’s no Episode I in that order. That’s because beyond being the weakest of the movies, Machete Order makes the film into a kind of vestigial tail that doesn’t fit into the rest of the story. It’s pretty brilliant and if you have some time to kill the whole theory is a good read if you’re a nerd. If you’re and you just want to enjoy some space wars without the baggage though, there’s always that option too.