1971 | 88 min. minutes | Rated PG
It's understandable that George Lucas' first film, THX 1138, would be misunderstood by film fans. The unique combination of space opera, pulp, and nostalgia that infuses almost everything in his filmography makes the starkness of THX almost as hard to work with as it was when the film was released in 1971—but for very different reasons. Then, it was widely considered yet another weird for weirdness' sake bit of dystopic commentary you'd expect from a pretentious art schooler. Now, it's seen as this dark, deadly serious (read: boring) prognostication of a future we currently occupy. Both reads are correct in their own ways, but what often gets missed in the re-evaluation is the fact THX 1138 is primarily a bone-dry dark comedy, a satire of the very commercial aspects that would come to define Lucas as he transitioned from filmmaker to CEO.
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