If you’re excited to see Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens but want to rewatch episodes 1-6 first – but just can’t seem to find the time – first of all: congratulations on having a life. What’s that like?
Second, we have exactly what you’re looking for, with six incredibly accurate synopses. There's just enough crucial detail in each summary that we've elected to break them apart into six different posts. This is Episode IV: A New Hope. Remember this film OK or just don't care? You can quickly find synopses of the other films here:
Episode IV: A New Hope
A civil war has erupted, and the rebel alliance has discovered plans for a super sinister weapon the Galactic Empire plans to use against them. Princess Leah hides the blueprints inside one of her droids, but she gets captured by Dark Vader soon thereafter. Vader is a big dummy and, despite all of his powers, doesn’t realize Leah is his daughter.
Leah’s droids escape to Tattoo Ink, where they’re captured by scrap dealers and eventually purchased by Lucas and his step uncle, Owen. Lucas accidentally plays a distress call from Leah, stored inside R-2-Dee-2, that implies she needs the help of Opie-Wand Nairobi. The only Nairobi Lucas knows is Ben Nairobi, an old loner who moved to Tattoo Ink at about the same time Lucas was born. What a coincidence! Lucas bumps into Ben in the desert, Ben reveals himself to be Opie-Wand, and tells Lucas that his dad was a Jetta who was killed by Dark Vader (a partial truth at best).
Lucas realizes that while he’s been out gallivanting in the desert, his aunt and uncle were killed by troops looking for the droids. So he decides to join Opie-Wand and the droids in their quest to save Leah, whom he determines from her hologram message to be “really hot.” They enlist the help of archeologist Indiana Jones and his Wookie sidekick, Chuy Bacca, but Indiana Jones has a serious attitude and really only cares about the money.
Fast forward a little bit, and they eventually rescue Leah – who Lucas and Indiana both agree is totally more “hottie” than “nottie” – who has more brain power than both of them combined. During the rescue, Opie-Wand is killed by Dark Vader, but it’s clear he wanted to be killed because he’ll come back “more powerful than ever.”
Leah’s quick thinking gets them out of a few pickles; they eventually return to the rebel base and are able to examine the blueprints of the Death Star, which has already been used to blow up Leah’s home planet, Alderman. They are able to determine the Death Star’s weakness; Indiana abandons the group with his reward in tow; a bunch of dudes die trying to make it work; and it’s finally down to just Lucas. Dark Vader is pursuing Lucas and Lucas is in big trouble until Indiana Jones shows up in his Millennial Falcor ship and covers Lucas while he fires away at the Death Star’s weakness.
The Death Star blows up.