I was hesitant about writing a review of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. I’m sure everyone has done one. Hell, there’s another review for the movie on this site that was posted four days ago. I glanced at it and it’s far more in-depth than I’d ever wish to go. I really try my damnedest to not include spoilers if I don’t have to. I obviously ignore that when I want to and like spoiling things with the solitary intent of being a jerk face. The lengths we go to amuse ourselves…
From the box office numbers, it appears that most of the people in the first world have seen the new Star Wars film – repeatedly. I don’t need to give a lot away. I will go into a discussion I had with my landlord of all people about how we saw two different movies. We spoke very passionately about the film and I found myself playing the role of the contrarian more than anything else. His was the view that the movie squandered an opportunity to do something new. I hadn’t really considered the idea of Episode VIIreinventing the wheel. In the weeks leading up to the film, I had discussed several aspects of the film but not once did anything resemble a change in the pace and tone that the other six films had followed.
The new film didn’t do anything new. It felt forced and for all intents and purposes, the entire film was a hackneyed effort that was called in. I found myself having to defend the film against such accusations. As the conversation went on, I realized the accusations were mostly correct. The film didn’t provide anything substantial in the way of uniqueness and creativity. There were a lot of plot holes. The story itself was thin. The acting was a bit wooden by some of the cast. I couldn’t deny any of this and find myself agreeing with it again as I write it.
Despite all of that, I still fucking loved it. In the weeks prior to seeing the film, I caught up on the other six episodes. They were watched in order from the first episode to the sixth. Some deleted scenes were watched in case there was something else to add to the experience. Days after seeing the film, I’ve jumped head-first into The Clone Wars, a cartoon to bridge the gap between episodes II and III. If Star Wars was a disease, I’d be fully-infected with no sign of cure in sight.
The newest episode to me felt like an extension of the other six. While it didn’t break new ground, it felt comfortable. Never once did I find myself at odds with where the movie was going. The special effects were stunning and I felt it really allowed a person to be immersed in a fantastical universe where we don’t have to stop at the end of our atmosphere. The music was as grand and beautiful as one would expect. Surprisingly, there was some well-placed humour in the film. That’s not to say the other six didn’t have their moments. I just felt there was a bit more in this film. When Han Solo has to check in with the officer on the other side of the radio in Episode IV or when he celebrates with Luke Skywalker by pushing his face away, I find myself laughing out loud. The new film simply offered more and I liked it.
I don’t know that I have any complaints that weren’t voiced by my landlord. I still agree with most everything he had to say about it. That being said, I don’t care and have subsequently seen the movie a second time and will inevitably see it once or twice more before it leaves the theatre. At that point, I have to make a mental note now to not be lured into buying a special edition Blu-Ray because I know the trilogy box set that will inevitably come out in a few years will pack far more punch. I’ll hope to remember this but will most likely be overcome by excitement and buy it regardless. I look forward to Rogue One and Episode VIII coming out in the next couple years. If it is true that Disney and Lucasfilms plan on making Star Wars movies until they stop being popular, I’m fully on board with it. Here’s to another forty years of a wonderfully diverse and immersive universe that keeps my childhood wonder and amazement alive and well.