I’m honestly surprised nobody’s remade THE LAST STARFIGHTER yet. It’s been more than 25 years since the release of the classic science fiction film directed by Nick Castle and in that time video games have gone from being a curious sub-culture ruled by people like Billy Mitchell to a full-fledged cornerstone of Americana.
Can’t you see the remake in your head? Interstellar birds travel to Earth to recruit the top Angry Birds player for their war against the evil pig overlord that’s been wrecking havoc across the galaxy. Give it a few years and the remake will come — whether you want it to or not.
In the meantime, though, you can enjoy the original film on the big screen this month at your local Alamo Drafthouse Cinema. This is the perfect opportunity to see the ‘80s classic on the big screen — whether you’re rekindling a crush on Lance Guest or Catherine Mary Stewart or introducing your children to the movie that defined your youth.
And THE LAST STARFIGHTER is a great movie to show kids — namely because it has a ton of important life lessons to learn. For example, playing video games nonstop is a good thing because you’re mastering important skills that could help you out if you’re ever recruited to become a starship pilot. Not everybody can just simply find a ring and become a space cop like the Green Lantern. Some of us have to work our way to the top and that work involves hours spent mashing buttons and killing aliens during marathon games of Halo.
THE LAST STARFIGHTER also shows that you can’t judge a book by its cover. When Alex Rogan (Lance Guest) is recruited to be an interstellar starfighter and is taken up to meet his fellow squadron mates, he doesn’t blink an eye when he sees his new buddies have scaly skin or half a dozen tentacles. It’s inside what counts and kids could learn a thing or two from the film about acceptance. Of course, they should also pick up the fact that some ugly looking aliens really are Zando-Zans, interstellar assassins with no moral code, and will shoot kids with laser guns without a moment of hesitation. So I guess what I’m say is, trust aliens but not all aliens?
It doesn’t matter. Not every movie needs to teach a kid a moral lesson. Some films are just great forms of entertainment — designed to keep kids pacified for two hours as their heads are filled with dreams of traveling the stars and killing evil aliens. If those dreams were good enough for the kids of the ‘80s, they’re good enough for the kids of today.