When it comes to action scenes, the Star Wars franchise is known primarily for repeating two specific types: lightsaber battles and spaceship combat. We’ve already ranked the series’ numerous lightsaber battles from worst to best, but what about when it comes to the actual “Star Wars” in Star Wars? Everyone loves a good X-Wing vs. TIE Fighter battle, but there are definitely some scenes that hold up better than others. With that in mind, we’ve ranked every significant ship scene across all 8 Star Wars films to figure out which are the best and which are the worst. For sanity’s sake, we’re just counting scenes that feature some sort of significant moment featuring ships, so you won’t find any establishing shots or anything like that on this list.
19. Escape From Naboo – The Phantom Menace
Coming in at the bottom of the list is this relatively brief scene from A Phantom Menace, in which Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Queen Amidala, and the rest of their companions make a rather lackluster escape from the Trade Federation’s Naboo orbital blockade. For a scene that ostensibly depicts a daring escape, surprisingly little actually happens. The scene primarily consists of the Naboo Royal Starship being heavily damaged by enemy fire, prompting the dispatch of several droids to fix the shield generator. The twist is that one of the droids is none other than R2-D2, who not only fixes the generator but is the only droid not to be destroyed in the effort. After that, it’s smooth sailing as the Royal Starship makes an effortless escape.
Much like the majority of The Phantom Menace, there’s little in the way of riveting action to be found here but as an introduction to everyone’s favorite little Astromech droid, it gets the job done. Really, it’s the scene that follows, in which R2 is personally thanked by the queen for his heroism and bravery that makes the whole thing worthwhile, as it establishes that R2 has been a boss right from moment one.