A New Hope

I first saw Star Wars when I was just 6 years old.
My father was dying to see it when it got released on May 25 1977. I think he said that he saw it 3 times in the first week it opened.

He took me and my sister to see it the next week (on a Saturday) and since then I've never been the same.

As I watched the film for the first time I hid my eyes under my hands through the Cantina scene (hey, I was 6 years old, the monsters were ugly). The next 10 or more times I saw it in the theater over the next 2 years I watched with eyes wide open.

It was showing in a theater on 42nd and 6th Avenue that had an "old" panavision screen (10 times as wide and high as today's "gigga-plex" screens) and the theater was equipped with the latest Cerwin-Vega SenSurround speaker system and Dolby 70mm magnetic Surround system decoding.
To this day if I hear the Fox fanfare in loud clear sound I revert to the mentality of a 6 year old and the excitement of what I'm about to see (yet again) makes me want to blow chunks.

All George Lucas really did was to retell the myths, legends, and fables of the world in a old Buster Crabb "Buck Rogers", "Flash Gordon", serial style set in space.

I think the film's) are still popular today because of this. The basic plot is simple enough that everybody can follow it and everybody can relate to it on a Good VS. Evil level.
It's a retelling of our own stories from our culture in symbols we can all relate to from other stories: The kindly old man with the white beard, the black clad evil war lord, the naive simple farm boy who dreams of adventure, pirate and his unique first mate, a comic relief duo, a white clad princess that needed to be rescued, a tyrannical "Empire" and the fight of a small "Rebel" band struggling against outrageous odds to win their freedom, the old dying wizard and his need to pass on what he knows to his new apprentice, an old dying religion in favor of new technology, etc.

I had a chance to see the Special Editions on the opening day (1st one to buy Tix for all 3 films in my city) and it was exciting but nothing like it was 20 years before that.