I love sharing my Star Wars experiences with others, and I especially get a kick reading about other fans, and how Star Wars affected them, and how they came to be a fan. It’s a wonderful communal experience, and you soon begin to realize their are Star Wars fans EVERYWHERE. It doesn’t matter what part of the world you are in; you can find fellow fans. Although we might not share the same spoken language, we share the language of Star Wars.
A few months ago I had the pleasure of meeting fellow Star Wars fan, Chris Macht, at a local micro brewery, SunUp Brewing in Phoenix. Chris was in town to catch some Spring Training games before the baseball season kicked off. Chris and I had been chatting on Facebook for a while, when Chris mentioned he’d be in town. So my wife and I met Chris one Saturday evening after I got off work. Chris is just solid people. He’s got this great Chicago accent and is very down to earth. He loves talking about his passions; Star Wars, baseball, the Walking Dead, and family. And meeting Chris finally afforded me an opportunity to thank him for two movies that really had an impact one me.
So who is Chris Macht, and just what are these two movies he made. Well, outside of being a businessman and a family man with a new baby (Congrats Chris!), Chris also runs his own independent film company A number of years ago Chris got the crazy idea to explore Star Wars fandom as well as his own through a documentary, The Force Among Us. He followed that up a couple of years later with a much more intimate look at how Star Wars impacted him, aptly named The Force Within Us.
In Chris’ own words, The Force Among Us is a Star Wars documentary for fans and non fans alike and is meant to dispel the stereotypes and stigmas attached to fans. Through a series of engaging interviews of fans ranging from a philosophy professor, a priest, members of the 501st, collectors, and casual fans, Chris shows that Star Wars fans are just like everyone else; no different than your average sports fan, its just their passion happens to be Star Wars.
Chris follows up his successful first film with one of my favorite Star Wars documentaries, The Force Within Us. This time the subject matter is Chris himself. A number of emotional interviews with family members reveal how Star Wars got Chris through a lot of difficult times, and how the Saga still has a profound effect on him today. Through the Saga he has forged a number of life long friends and this personal journey is nothing short of outstanding cinema.
When I finally met Chris, I was able to tell him face to face how much The Force Within Us meant to me and how I felt, through the film, that I had known Chris for years. Like Chris, my passion for Star Wars got me through a lot of rough times, especially my parents estrangement and divorce. For me, Star Wars was an escape, a refuge to an innocent time in my childhood when our family was strong and life was much simple. In many ways, Star Wars was a time capsule for me.
I shared these feelings with Chris, and his response was very touching. So thank you Chris for the wonderful legacy you built with these films, and I look forward to your next exploration of the Saga, and fandom. You can visit Chris’ site below if you would like to learn more about his films, and you can also order a copy for yourself. You’ll be glad you did:
May the Force Be With You