It wasn’t my intention to avoid the main Star Wars movies; it’s just that covering all nine is an event all to itself. And then the question becomes in what order do I watch them? Chronologically (1-9)? By release (4-6, 1-3, 7-9)? Flashback mode (4&5, 1-3, 6-9)? And what about Rogue One and Solo? But that’s a problem for future Chwineka, and fuck that guy. Today we’re talking about Caravan of Courage: An Ewok Adventure, a made-for-TV kids film featuring everyone’s favorite Star Wars VI: Return of the Jedi characters, the ewoks. What, you didn’t love the ewoks? Well too bad.
The story follows young siblings Mace and Cindel, two kids who look like discount versions of Mr. Mark Hamill and Ms. Drew Barrymore (at least them in the 80’s). Their ship crashed landed on the forest moon of Endor and their parents were abducted by a giant monster called the Gorax. The kids get help from some ewoks, including Wicket W Warrick (Warwick Davis), the ewok that helped out Leia. Does this take place right before Return of the Jedi? 150 years later? The film is now considered non-canon, so who knows! Anyway, the children and ewoks team up and form a caravan to the rescue. At the Gorax’s cave, they fight a giant spider and then the Gorax itself. An ewok dies during the fight, but don’t expect me to remember which teddy bear it actually was. The parents are saved and the family is reunited, but their ship is still crashed, so I guess that leads into the sequel, Ewoks: The Battle for Endor.
In terms of this being a childrens’ movie, I’m sure it was fine. It’s not made for me, but not in a way that is objectionable on a basic level (looking at you, Doolittle). Specifically it was made for George Lucas’ daughter, Amanda, who… was an MMA fighter? Huh, didn’t see that coming. Anyway, it all makes sense knowing that Star Wars is all about the merchandising and that kids love teddy bears. Sure, these teddy bears are implied to eat people and never blink (I hear this has changed in one of the countless digital revisions to the series), but still.
The acting is… not the worst, but not the best. The majority of the cast are children or little people in fursuits speaking Ewokese with just a little Galactic Basic Standard (English) thrown in. Cindel’s actress is fine, but her older brother Mace tries way too hard. At one point his southern accent breaks through, which is odd since the internet says actor Eric Walker was born in California. Don’t go in expecting Emmy worthy acting, but I’m sure kids won’t notice or mind. Or at least kids watching it on a cathode-ray tube television box in 1984.
Full disclosure, but I’ve been trying to watch this movie for months. It has a listing on Amazon, but
I couldn’t figure out what to set my VPN to it’s region locked, so it was no go there. I never imagined Disney would admit that these movies existed, so it went completely over my head when they got uploaded to Disney+ in April of this year. But there they are, along with the Ewoks animated series. Not sure if/when I’ll cover that, but expect Ewoks: The Battle for Endor sometime next week and the rest of the Star Wars movies… eventually.
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