* AlternativeCharacterInterpretation: People have noted that the Death Star gunner lingered on Yavin IV despite having a firing solution for some time. ("Stand by.... Stand by....") They believed that the gunner might have had an attack of conscience and was deliberately delaying in the off-chance that someone might stop him from destroying the Rebel base. This interpretation has even became canon in the Legends universe.
* AndYouThoughtItWouldFail: Multiple studios turned the film proposal down and most of the management of TwentiethCenturyFox outside of Alan Ladd Jr. thought it would be a final embarrassment before Fox closed its doors. Even George Lucas' director's guild thought it was going to bomb, which was the only reason they let him release it [[ValuesDissonance without any opening credits]]. After the film exploded into the public consciousness, everyone else changed their tune saying this film was the kind of unorthodox creative dare that company founder, Daryl Zanuck, often won big with.
* AngstWhatAngst:
** Princess Leia. "We have no time for sorrows, commander."
*** Although a deleted extension to Alderaan's destruction had Leia sinking her head in shock, before saying to Tarkin [[YouMonster "And you call yourselves human..."]]
** Luke gets over Owen and Beru's death pretty easily. Making his [[HeroicBSOD reaction]] to Obi-Wan's death even more strange.
* AwardSnub:
** Many people see it losing Best Picture to ''Film/AnnieHall'' as this. Both are widely considered to be fantastic movies, though, and quite a few ''Star Wars'' fans even regard ''Annie Hall'' as [[TheOnlyOneAllowedToDefeatYou the one film they were okay with losing to]], given that it's about as different to the usual OscarBait films as ''A New Hope'' was.
** Quite a few see Alec Guinness losing Best Supporting Actor to Jason Robards in ''Julia'' as this. Though given how much the actor came to hate the fame he gained purely for playing Obi-Wan Kenobi, this could be for the best.
* BrokenBase: Who shot first.
* CompleteMonster: [[BigBad Grand Moff Tarkin]] is a ruthless Imperial officer, and one of the Emperor's top agents. While in command of the Death Star, Tarkin had Princess Leia tortured and threatened to destroy Alderaan, Leia's homeworld, if she didn't give him the location of a Rebel base. When Leia gave him the information he wanted, Tarkin [[ILied destroyed]] [[EarthShatteringKaboom Alderaan]] anyway, killing billions of innocent people, solely to demonstrate the Death Star's power, then ordered Leia's execution. After discovering the location of the Rebel base, Tarkin attempted to destroy that planet as well.
* EnsembleDarkhorse: Porkins is only on-screen for about a minute before being blown to smithereens, but is probably the most popular background character in the movie.
** Wedge Antilles became popular enough to bring back in the rest of the series, helping lead the fight against the second Death Star in ''Film/ReturnOfTheJedi''.
** The Cantina denizens. In the actual film they're more set pieces than characters, but they did their job in the narrative - giving the viewer an impression of just how diverse The Galaxy is - so well that most of them have [[AscendedExtra received extensive backstories]] in the ExpandedUniverse. And to think, a number of them were cobbled together from old Halloween costumes!
* FunnyAneurysmMoment:
** The {{Ship Tease}}s between Luke and Leia in this movie and the first half of ''Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack'' get a whole lot {{Squick}}ier after the [[LukeIAmYourFather Leia, I Am Your Brother]] plot twist in ''Film/ReturnOfTheJedi''. This has made them infamous among fans.
* HarsherInHindsight:
-->'''Aunt Beru''': He's just not a farmer, Owen. He has [[TurnOutLikeHisFather too much of his father]] in him.
-->'''Uncle Owen''': That's what I'm afraid of.
** Not only did Luke's father become ''Darth Vader'', but we later see in ''Film/AttackOfTheClones'' that, the same day Owen met Anakin, Anakin killed a whole tribe of Tusken Raiders out of anger. Evidently he's afraid Luke will do something like that.
** After watching the prequels, seeing Vader so callously shoot R2 with a ''TIE Fighter blast'' makes him seem all the more cruel. He might not have known it was R2 or even aiming for him but it still jerks a tear.
** Also, Darth Vader, later revealed to be the father of Luke Skywalker, had Luke's Uncle and Aunt murdered by stormtroopers, meaning he had his (step)brother killed. Several years later, with ''Disney/TheLionKing'', Simba's father ends up killed by his uncle. The connection between the two? Both Vader and Mufasa (Simba's father) were portrayed by Creator/JamesEarlJones.
** Garven Dreis, aka Red Leader, was shot down by Darth Vader in the last moments of the film. A New Hope also proved to be the last acting role that Drew Henley, the actor who played Dreis, would partake in, retiring shortly thereafter due to being diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Also, Dreis being shot down by Darth Vader is even more harsh after the revelation that he and Vader (then known as Anakin Skywalker) were originally ''comrades''.
** Try watching Obi-Wan in the original trilogy [[OldShame knowing]] how Alec Guinness [[MoneyDearBoy felt about his work]] on ''Franchise/StarWars''.
** Leia's ColdBloodedTorture at the hands of Vader is disturbing enough, then comes the revelation that he was (unknowingly) doing it to ''his own daughter''.
* HeartwarmingInHindsight: Luke and C-3PO's bond throughout this film and the OT becomes more heartwarming once it was revealed in ''Film/ThePhantomMenace'' that Threepio was originally built by Anakin, making Luke and Threepio, in a sense, brothers.
* HilariousInHindsight:
** Obi Wan's line that the blaster marks are too precise for Sand People and must be from Stormtroopers gets funnier as the series goes on. We see (Justified and not) [[ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy stormtroopers miss nearly everything they shoot for]], while the Tuskens are able to hit pod racers moving at hundreds of [=MPH=] in ''Film/{{The Phantom Menace}}''. [[FridgeBrilliance If you think about it]], it's more just showing that Obi Wan's been in hiding for so long. The last time he was hanging around with troopers they were kicking ass, and then killing Jedi. There's also the fact that that Sandcrawler is huge and slow. Even a Stormtrooper could probably hit that just fine.
** Given what we later discover about Vader's [[YouHaveFailedMe policy on employee mistakes]] in the next movie, Admiral Motti comes off as ''exceptionally'' stupid for picking a fight with Vader, especially by mocking the religion ''the Emperor holds to''. This is even lampshaded by Grand Moff Tarkin in the Death Star Technical Manual, where he expressed that if Motti didn't keep his opinions to himself regarding the Force, he won't last long under Palpatine's Empire.
** Just going by the films, Palpatine may not have ''ever'' let on to anyone but his apprentices that he was a Sith Lord.
** According to the novelization, Obi-Wan was uncomfortable about Luke's questions about his father, but unlike Owen, Obi-Wan *didn't like lying* so he told the truth {{from a certain point of view}}: Darth Vader killed Luke's father.
** Those who got to watch this first before they encountered the reveal that Luke and Leia are twin brother and sister may call the latter as a cop-out from the romantic triangle issue, but it does add some flavor to the films. With that knowledge, Han and Chewie have become two unfortunate guys getting caught in the middle of a big family mess, acting as some kind of baby sitters as the two siblings start putting things together. And it does add some more humor at how the two separately snark at his ship when each sees it for the first time.
-->'''Luke:''' What a piece of junk!
-->'''Leia:''' You came in that thing? You're braver than I thought.
** "[[Film/ReturnOfTheJedi I'm never coming back to]] [[TemptingFate this planet again.]]"
** C-3PO exclaiming "Thank the maker!" is amusing, when you know who built him. "Thank Darth Vader!"
** [[http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/f/f9/Death_star1.png This]] is the Death Star, as it debuted in 1977. ''[[http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/b/bc/Mimas_Cassini.jpg This]]'' is Mimas, one of Saturn's moons, discovered 3 years later.
** Han's line "Where did you dig up that old fossil?" has gotten funnier on two counts: first, Creator/HarrisonFord went on to play AdventureArchaeologist Franchise/IndianaJones, and second, in the sequel trilogy, Ford will be older than Creator/AlecGuinness was during the making of the OT.
* MemeticLoser: Greedo, after Creator/GeorgeLucas edited his scene so that he shoots but misses Han Solo at point-blank range. Even Franchise/{{LEGO}} got in on the fun with a FunnyBackgroundEvent in ''Revenge of the Brick'' wherein Greedo repeatedly fails to hit a dartboard positioned only a few inches away from him.
* MemeticMutation: "These are not the droids you're looking for."
** '''"I have you now!"'''
** "Use the Force, Luke."
** "[[DangerDeadpan Stay on target...]]"
** "[[TheStoic Almost there...]]"
** "TheForceIsStrongWithThisOne"
** "I find your lack of faith disturbing."
** "Great shot, kid! One in a million!"
** "Red ____, standing by," with the space filled in with your reference of choice. Partly thanks to 4chan, but mostly thanks to ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy'''s spoof.
** "ThatsNoMoon, it's a space station."
** "Cover me, Porkins."
** "Who's the more foolish: the fool or the fool who follows him?"
* {{Misblamed}}: Vader did not destroy Alderaan. Tarkin did. Some fans actually forget this.
** The wingman who flies on Vader's left somehow manages to escape blame for his flub. Han Solo only shot one of Vader's wingmen - the other one simply overreacted to Han's surprise attack and ''crashed his TIE Fighter into Vader's of his own accord''.
** Lucas revealed in an interview that the reason why Greedo shoots first in the re-made version was to prevent a PG-13 rating, which didn't exist in 1977. Not because he hated true fans, despite what some may say.
* MoralEventHorizon: Grand Moff Tarkin orders the Death Star to [[EarthShatteringKaboom destroy the planet of Alderaan]], killing millions, if not billions, of innocent civilians.
** About two billion, according to ''Legends''.
* ProtectionFromEditors: ''Star Wars'' was refined damn good, if not made watchable in editing. The original slow paced assembly cut by John Jympson was deemed unusable, so the film had to be re-edited from the ground up by Richard Chew, Marcia Lucas, and Paul Hirsch, who later won Oscars for their work. To give an example of the changes made, the TickingClock element of the Death Star battle was written into the film entirely in post-production to add actual element of tension to the final battle.
* SeinfeldIsUnfunny:
** At the time, it was so controversial that there were no traditional opening credits. The Director's Guild of America let it slide for Creator/GeorgeLucas [[ItWillNeverCatchOn only because they assumed it was going to bomb and be quickly forgotten.]] [[AndYouThoughtItWouldFail It obviously didn't]], but when Lucas did it again for ''Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack'', the DGA issued Lucas a hefty fine that he paid before leaving the DGA altogether. Today, many filmmakers forgo traditional opening credits, or even opening titles, that now it seems like [[DisproportionateRetribution the DGA overreacted]].
** Likewise, the first lightsaber battle on screen between Vader and Obi-Wan is fairly stilted and even ''dull'' compared to the ones in the films to come.
--> '''Vader''': [[LampshadeHanging Your powers are weak]], [[FridgeBrilliance old man]].
* SpecialEffectFailure:
** The infamous "Han Shot First" scene is a victim of this in the remastered editions. The digital editing isn't so great at convincing you that Greedo shot first, and Han's attempted "dodging" is particularly bad. It doesn't even look so much like "dodging" as much as it does "Greedo misses ''at point blank range''."
** Another failure first seen in the special editions was the use of a (very poor) CGI Jaba the Hutt in one [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rCdZ11BM-6Y previously deleted]] scene. That particular model was replaced in the 2004 edition with the one used in ''Film/ThePhantomMenace''.
** During the trench run just before the "Use the Force Luke" line, one scene of the Tie Fighters flying into the camera is obviously a flat photo-stat.
** One failure that was fixed in the 1997 special editions and onward; in the shot just after Vader's "I have you now!" line, freeze-framing will reveal that the Tie Fighter to the right of Vader is completely absent for two frames.
** The Stormtrooper rifles were made from fully-functional British Sterling submachine guns, and fired "Hollywood blanks" to provide smoke and muzzle flash. During the gunfight across the chasm in the Death Star (where Leia kisses Luke before swinging across) the sound of the blank cartridges is heard when Leia takes a few shots, instead of the usual sound effect dubbed in.
** In many scenes involving Lightsabers, there's always bound to be errors. These were fixed in the special editions.
*** As was a matte painting of a hallway and most of the optical lines around the ships.
** As with ''Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack'' and ''Film/ReturnOfTheJedi'', in the unedited theatrical cut a number of shots featuring TIE Fighters have a faint silhouette of each model's [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matte_(filmmaking)#Garbage_matte garbage matte]].
* TheyChangedItNowItSucks: This is some fans' reaction to the Special Edition, particularly the above-mentioned Greedo Shot First scene.
* UnfortunateNames: The overweight member of the Rebel Alliance happens to be named Porkins.
* SugarWiki/VisualEffectsOfAwesome: This film completely revolutionized special effects for modern movies.
* WhatDoYouMeanItsForKids: This film got a U rating in the UK, despite shots of Luke's uncle and aunts' burning corpses and [[WhatMeasureIsANonHuman a close-up shot of Ponda Baba's severed arm in the Mos Eisley bar after Obi-Wan Kenobi chops it off with his lightsaber]]. Not to mention numerous on-screen deaths and an inferred genocide.
* WhatDoYouMeanItsNotPolitical: The fact that for a while (and before he [[RetCon retconned]] the reason for the famous change into "so it would stay PG"), Lucas acted shocked and disappointed that fans would actually prefer "Han shot first", and then went on to assert that the original version basically has Han shoot Greedo in cold blood (or...something). George's attitude has led to analogies being made to the "gun control" debate of today.
* WinTheCrowd: For many, it was [[SugarWiki/VisualEffectsOfAwesome the first Star Destroyer shot]]. This was actually George Lucas's intention, and it was subsequently one of the most expensive shots of the film - he believed that if he hooked audiences from the beginning, then they would likely come back for more.
* {{Woolseyism}}[=/=]BilingualBonus: In the Italian versions of the movie, the Death Star was called the Morte Nera, which means the "Black Death." It's a very fitting name, as like the Death Star, the Black Death also resulted in a large extermination of people.
----