Credit due: reading some old _Mythprints_ last night, I noticed that David had identified basically the same parallels I did, but in more detail, and more than 20 years earlier, in an editorial on _Return of the Jedi_ in the July 1983 issue.
(This post is completely coincidental to the major discussion of late -- I hadn't logged onto the Mythsoc list for the past few days until this evening, and didn't know that parallels between Lucas's and Tolkien's stories had come up again.)
--- "Merlin DeTardo" <emptyD@...> wrote:
>>>---David Bratman <dbratman@> wrote:
>>>Returning to fiction, this, I maintain, is why
>>>George Lucas never made Star Wars Episode VII.
>>>Given the moral premises he set up, and the
>>>behavior of his hero, it is impossible for Luke
>>>Skywalker to do otherwise than become another Darth
>[I]t seems that Luke Skywalker, in refusing at the last
>to fight, is choosing a path quite opposed to his father.
>This climax of _Return of the Jedi_ is actually similar
>to that in _LotR_: like Frodo, Luke finds himself confronted
>with a power too great for him, but he and his cause are
>saved by his mercy. (Though the parallel is spoiled
>because the other heroes, in what could be seen as the
>film's equivalent of _LotR's_ Aragorn subplot, succeed
>without regard to Luke's achievement.)