Leadership in the Star Wars Movie

leadership in the star wars movie
Leadership in the Star Wars Movie

Leadership in the Star Wars Movie


This essay sets out to evaluate the character of Luke Skywalker in episode 8 of the Star Wars movie, using some of the leadership concepts in Deep Change.  According to Quinn, (2010) transformational change starts from within. A leader is only able to create far-reaching societal impact if they are willing to acknowledge the pain of individual change (Quinn, 2010). 

Essentially, Deep Change is a radical change that has to start with the redefinition of individual values and perceptions.  The paper will examine how Luke Skywalker re-invented himself into a successful character in the Star Wars movie. On the flip side, the paper will also look at some of the miscalculation that Luke Skywalker did that would paint his downside.

Overview of the Movie                                                                                                                     

In Star Wars movie, Luke is a young man that lives in a far off desert, as such, he is not aware that his father is a celebrated Jedi Knight. On the other hand, his foster parents are afraid of Luke because his characteristics resemble that of his biological father.  This fear instills self-doubt in Luke. In addition, his foster parents discourage him from learning things from the renowned hermit commonly known as Ben Kenobi that lives in their neighborhood.

Ben Kenobi’s droid R2D2 lands in the desert, an aspect that forces him to encounter the hermit face to face. This encounter reveals a number of mysteries about his past. In addition, Ben acknowledges that he is Obi Wan Kenobi, the Jedi Knight wanted by R2D2.

At the time when R2D2 convey the message from the Rebellion seeking Obi Wan to assist them once again, he requests Luke to come with him. Obi Wan also reveals to Luke that his foster parents have kept his true identity a secret, which makes him unaware of being Jedi’s son.                                                       

Moreover, Obi Wan undertakes on training him to become a Jedi and in particular, being in the Force.  Luke turns down the offer but later learns that the galactic empire was looking for his droid and his foster parents had been killed in the process (Galipeau, 2015). Much as he becomes sad of their demise, he thinks that their restrictions increased their death.  

All of sudden, he joins his Jedi teacher Obi Wan. To start off, Obi Wan teaches Luke about trusting in the Force, he illustrates this through the games on the trip to Alderan. During this trip, Obi Wan purposes to deliver R2D2 secret plans. Nonetheless, the trip is disrupted, when Obi and Luke are captured in the new conflict base, known as the Death Star (Fullan, 2014).

Strong Willed                                                                                                                        

Despite being inexperienced, Luke Skywalker had not just the strong will but also the tenacity to achieve his ambitions (Fullan, 2014). For instance, his stubborn curiosity in wanting to become the Jedi Knight demonstrates not just his strong will but also resolve is realizing his prospects.  

At this point, Luke Skywalker dreams of the expedition and escape from the middle of nowhere only to find his true self.  This is also evident in the typical image from A New Hope, where Luke stands gazing out at the skyline at the sundowner of his world. This exemplifies the envisaging aspect of his character.                                                                                                   

On the other hand, Luke’s thirst for vision in the Star Wars movie is attributable to slow death as also depicted in A New Hope, when he is almost executed for spying on the Sand people (Fullan, 2014). The recklessness aspect of Luke and violation of trust is also evident when he pursues the R2D2 without notifying his uncle.  Nonetheless, Luke’s Deep Change is advanced by his motivation to become something larger than himself (Quinn, 2010).  This becomes a reality in the character of Ben Kenobi; particularly when Ben decides to assist Luke to assume the responsibilities of the Jedi Knight.                                                                                           

It is through his purposeful living and strong will that Luke gets the chance to embark on a space voyage to assist the Rebel Alliance in defeating the wicked Empire, so he can also have a glimpse of a father he had no idea existed (Fullan, 2014). Apart from the proximity with a Jedi, Luke was able to enhance his personal development by virtue of coming in contact with the Force.  Luke is not only indecisive but also poor in judgment.  

Great leaders exercise the power of the sixth sense which was lacking in Luke. This is why he never realizes the hidden truth about his real father. In the Stars Wars movie for instance, Luke refuses to be a real man by walking in the shadows of a series of father figures.  Nevertheless, his willingness to learn is a plus because he is able to control not just his own emotions but also by gaining a deeper insight into the other people’s feelings (Quinn, 2010). 


Luke is continuously determined to test his abilities, as a wannabe Jedi, a courageous doer, a gunman and ultimately a pilot. As a doer, Luke is always acting fast and comes to regret later (Galipeau, 2015). He runs after R2D2 in the dangerous regions of Tatooine where he is captured by the Sand; tries to rescue the princess with no exit plan; he strands the princess and himself on a ledge without a plan.

In essence, Luke’s Deep change is advanced by continuously testing himself; he gets in events that he would have prevented if only he was confident in himself. For instance, Luke was aware that going alone in the territory of Sand people; the fight at the bar would have been prevented; the chaotic breakout of the princess was partially inspired by his desire to test his limits.                                                                                                         

Moreover, he is unsuccessful as a result of his persistence concern with the manner in which events turn out, for example, he laments how he may not get off the rock. Again, he is not only impatient but also never contented with the development of things (Quinn, 2010). 

From Tatooine, he is interested in the time he will take to become a Jedi- his training progress. The period Obi is sliced by Darth Vader; Luke is bummed since his training lessons at the Rebel Center are over. Moreover, Luke is concerned about the rate at which preparations are conducted and in the long-run, the progress of Rebels attack the Death star.

Fantasy and Fact                                                                                                                              

Additionally, Luke has a constant problem with balancing between fantasy and fact, which adversely affects his success. Uncle Owen believes that Luke’s father was a pilot; however, Obi alleges that he was Jedi Knight. Additionally, Owen states that Ben Kenobi was not just a crazy man but also Obi-Wan Kenobi did not exist, nevertheless Ben “Ob-Wan” existed (Fullan, 2014).

The counterpoint to his interests in fantasy is the fact Luke fantasizes. Based on the C3PO, facts involved in collaborating with Rebellion are unexciting: they include; the facts of adventure that demonstrate Luke’s limitations with respect to fantasies, for example, the astoundingly significant costs of recruiting Han Solo; the unanticipated issues of hyperspace flying; fighting in the force with no eyesight among others.

Conversely, there are facts that support Luke’s constant interest in fantasies such as his father being a Jedi. Recognizing a number of these facts is important for the success of Luke in the Star Wars movie, especially when it comes to knowing what he exactly wants to become. By and large, facts are beneficial to the success of Luke.


Luke should learn to trust in himself to be successful. Testing his skills can greatly keep him from scuffles as a result of testing his skills. Furthermore, his backstory demonstrates the reason why he did not develop trust and instead focused on testing his skills (Quinn, 2010).  In essence, the confrontation between the Empire and the Rebellion requires skills and experience. The Empire is very skilled in quashing upstart parties, though the skills are extremely rusty.

On the other hand, the Rebellion is inexperienced and composed of many people with inadequate skills like Luke, which is juxtaposed by the dispute between Darth Varder and Obi.  In spite of the lack of skills, Luke is the Rebellion’s hope. In particular, he uses the computer to locate the target. Though Obi is dead, his spirit encourages Luke to have faith in the Force.                                      

At that point, he turns off the computer and allows his actions to act as the basis of trusting in the Force and himself too.  The trust helps him to achieve the objective in destroying Death Star, which makes him a hero in the Rebellion and the voice of Obi Wan continues to remind him about the Force will always be there for him.

In any case, Luke has a unique character that makes him accomplish the objectives-naturally, by becoming a Jedi Knight (Galipeau, 2015). Because the father was a Jedi, there is highly likely that he can inherit it. It is Luke’s natural liking with the Force that guarantees his safety.


Another problem with Luke is pessimism that affects him when it comes to succeeding in his missions in the Star Wars movie. Regardless of where he is, Luke constantly thinks that his problems are never-ending. When he was in Tatooine, he thought that he will work on the farm throughout his lifetime.

Immediately, he begins Jedi classes, he also thinks that training is endless and will certainly not be a Jedi Knight; at Rebecca’s, he believes that Han will always be a self-interested mercenary who preferred his hide (Fullan, 2014). He thinks that addressing his unending problems is to end things. He will be on the farm for a given time frame or season; he will train to be a Jedi and stops once he joins the revolution.

Low self-esteem                                                                                                                                

Much as Luke’s low self-esteem undermines his worth, others assessments of his inadequate worth also affects him. As a wimpy, whiny and farm individual, he remains uninterested in increasing his worth. But when adequately assessed, he moves on and uses his Jedi skills. Furthermore, Luke has been unsuccessful since he has spent many years listening to the advice of other individuals. Though, he eventually ignores his superior’s directives to remain focused. His inner conviction turns out to make him a successful person not just in the Force but also in the Star Wars movie (Medved, 2011).                                                                                           

Nonetheless, his conscious thought is a hindrance in trusting the Force, the less he thinks, the closer he comes to the very Force. As a matter of fact, the Force makes Luke move on while allowing the Force to act in him. In turn, this enables the Force to act as the basis of unthinking views as well as reflexes to become an indomitable individual for wickedness or good. 

As the main cause of commotion at Catalina’s, he forces Obi Wan to use the lightsaver that attracts the attention of Stormtroopers. He is the reason that alerts the troops on Death Star that hampers not just the escape but also makes Obi Wan attack Darth Vader (Medved, 2011). These attempts are done to show Luke the impacts of Force on individuals as well as objects. Eventually, he is drawn to the Force that makes him an eager learner.

Ability and Desire                                                                                                                            

The elements of ability and desire make Luke successful in the Star Wars movie. For example, much as he inexperienced in certain areas, he is young and strong. Furthermore, he has beaming and driving desires, particularly for Princess Leia.  The association between Luke and the princess involves the exchange of two currencies till he drives his target to Death Star while increasing his abilities using the computer. 

The voice of Obi Wan encourages him to have faith in his feelings, that is, desires. The major thing regarding Luke’s and the princes’ association contributes to the destruction of Death Star making him a hero (Medved, 2011). By and large, in this association, desire takes the center stage.                                                                                               

Again, in his association with Obi Wan, desire is the main thing. Nevertheless, their relationship is rather problematic in the beginning since Luke does not give himself a chance to get whatever he wants. On the other hand, Obi Wan talks to him while teaching him ways of becoming successful as a galactic hero (Medved, 2011).

Owing to the fact that Obi Wan is a hero in the past decades; the desire in this relationship is not practical. They are, however, ridiculed by Chewie and Han, especially when discussing exploring the Force and assisting the Rebellion. Simultaneously, though, this association can achieve any success with no shared desires, it remains paramount.


            Undeniably, deep change is radical and starts by redefining individual values and perceptions. In the Star Wars movie, Luke Skywalker re-invented his character by acknowledging his strengths; weakness and pain, which not only fulfilled his purpose but also positively impacted the society. Increasingly, to become an effective leader in this society requires one to view the world through two lenses using the telescope that examines current issues that must be addressed and potential future issues.

From this analysis, it is evident that transformational change us holistic and derives its power from individual’s heart, minds, and societal structures and system they exist. Embracing Gandhi quote “we must be the change we want to see happen in the world,” it is important for one to honor the past lessons, and while appreciating its impact on our lives, establish one’s future life goals. Like Luke Skywalker, dealing holistically with every element of human systems results into a transformational change that is enduring and irreversible.


Fullan, M. (2014). Leading in a culture of change personal action guide and workbook. John Wiley & Sons.

Galipeau, S. A. (2015). The Journey of Luke Skywalker: An Analysis of Modern Myth and Symbol. Open Court.

Medved, M. (2011). Hollywood vs. America: Popular Culture And The War on Tradition. Harper Collins. Quinn, R. E. (2010). Deep change: Discovering the leader within (Vol. 378). John Wiley & Sons.

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