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Star Wars fans are a dedicated bunch of people, and most have probably countless documentaries about George Lucas, Harrison Ford and Mark Hamil, but few will have heard from the countless extras that helped make Star Wars the true classic that it is. Elstree 1976 solves this problem. Elstree 1976 brings together a group of extras who tour on the comic-con circuit and a few who don’t to tell us for the first time about their careers, and about the life of an extra and the battle between credited and uncredited stars.
Jon Spira delivers a well cut and well paced documentary that brings an in depth understanding to its subject matter and goes from beginning to end with a good uninterrupted flow. The only downside of Elstree 1976 is perhaps its build up and premise. Opening with a lot, and I mean a LOT of emphasis on Star Wars and marketing itself pretty much entirely asa picture about the franchise, much of the film it does dedicate quite a large portion of its time to their careers outside of Star Wars near its start that often left me wondering when we would actually get to hear about their experiences on set. That being said, the discussion is interesting and keeps you watching, it just perhaps isn’t quite as advertised.
Elstree 1976 isn’t just for Star Wars fans, and in truth I think die hard Star Wars fans might not actually be happy. It is however, a film for avid and interested film fans. Elstree isn’t for your fair-weather film buff, but for your true fanatic.