20/01/2008. Contributed by Jessica Martin
This is the weapon of a Jedi Knight. Not as clumsy or as random as a blaster, but an elegant weapon for a more civilized age. Yes, the Star Wars lightsaber's lethal combination of a plasma blade and crystal-based construction, together with its deadly coloured blade has led the infamous deadly weapon to be crowned as the UK's favourite movie weapon of all time. The poll of 2,000 film fans was commissioned by Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. Indiana Jones' whip proved popular too, as well as various of James Bond's weapons.
Citing its sleek design and overall aesthetically pleasing appearance, George Lucas' Sci-Fi sword was light years ahead of the competition, with a massive 71% of the vote.
The lightsaber is the weapon of a Jedi - an elegant armament of a more civilised time. Its shimmering blade is capable of cutting through almost anything, except for the blade of another lightsaber. In the hands of a Jedi, a lightsaber is almost unstoppable.
The lightsaber's closest rivals include the .44 Magnum in Dirty Harry - a respectable second with 43% of votes,- and Indiana Jones' Bull Whip, which came in third place with 25% of the votes. Indiana Jones was voted fourth most popular movie weapon ever.
In a battle of the weapon-wielders, Uma Thurman's portrayal of the vengeful Bride in Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill films came out on top with 38% of the votes. Respondents applauded her skilful martial arts moves, which combined with her beauty, makes a killer combination. Ranking second was Luke Skywalker from the Star Wars films, with 24% of the votes. Proving that romance isn't dead, Brits attributed this to his knack for "always getting the girl and fighting off the baddies".
Home grown action hero, James Bond, came in at number three with 21% of voters accrediting his unique combination of English gent' meets action hero, with charm, wit and combat skills to boot.
Respondents were also quizzed on their favourite weapon-wielding villain. Some 47% voted for Texas Chainsaw Massacre psycho, Leatherface, whose chainsaw brandishing antics had viewers squirming in their seats in both the 1974 original and 2003 remake. Norman Bates in Psycho came second with 39% of fans naming the infamous 'shower scene' knife as their favourite weapon.
When asked what their weapon of choice would be if cast in an action hero movie, 36% of Brits opted for the lightsaber owing to its ability to penetrate almost anything in the universe and deflect other weapons in the galaxy. The standard gun, favoured by James Bond, Austin Powers and Die Hard's John Macclane came second with 29%. A knife used by the likes of Rambo came in third with 17%.
To carry a lightsaber is an example of incredible skill and confidence, dexterity and attunement to the Force. When deactivated, a lightsaber appears as a polished metallic handle, about 30 centimeters long, lined with control studs. At the press of a button the energy contained within is liberated and forms as a shaft of pure energy about a meter long. Although use of the lightsaber is strictly reserved to the Jedi -- the only ones capable of handling the difficult weapon - it is also used by their sworn enemies, the Sith.
Top 10 Favourite Movie Weapons
1. Light Saber (Star Wars)
2. .44 Magnum (Dirty Harry)
3. Bull Whip (Indiana Jones)
4. Samurai sword (Kill Bill)
5. Chainsaw (Texas Chainsaw Massacre)
6. Golden Gun (James Bond - The Man With The Golden Gun)
7. Bow and Arrow (Robin Hood)
8. Machine gun (Scarface)
9. The Death Star (Star Wars)
10. Bowler hat (James Bond - Goldfinger)
Top 10 Favourite Weapon-Wielding Movie Heroes
1. The Bride (Uma)
2. Luke Skywalker
3. James Bond
4. Indiana Jones
6. Maximus (Gladiator)
7. Insp. Harry Callahan (Dirty Harry)
8. Lara Croft
Stephen Hunt's novels - USA