51 users responded in this post

Subscribe to this post comment rss or trackback url
mygif

I agree with you that it feels like a remix of ‘New Hope’, but I actually thought that was one of its strengths. I’ve said elsewhere that I thought the starting point for the movie was, “What would ‘Star Wars’ look like if the original trilogy were the prequels?”, and I think it comes off pretty well as a remix that still feels enjoyable. I will agree that this one did need to do more work than it did in explaining what the relationship was between the First Order, the Republic, and the Resistance–it seemed very much like they were expecting people to go and read the ancillary tie-in stuff to find out the answers.

I also think the destruction of the Republic Senate lacked emotional heft–sure, they blew up a star system and said, “Ha! The Republic fleet and Senate are all dead,” but there was never any real sense of what that meant or why they hadn’t done it before if it was so easy and so decisive. That needed to be handled better.

On the other hand, you just can’t say enough good things about Ridley, Boyega and Isaac. Isaac’s Poe Dameron, in particular, is so good in relation to the screen time he gets that it’s jaw-dropping. You can really believe that he and Finn have formed this intense, life-long bond in the heat of battle, and you can really buy Poe Dameron as a man who gives his friendships fully and truly based on just a relatively few minutes of screentime.

And this is Daisy Ridley’s coming out party as a Big Time Movie Star. She has to carry so much of this movie, and she has to portray someone simultaneously fierce and winsome at the same time…and she does it effortlessly. It’s an amazing performance.

One of my complaints, to be honest, is that there are some unfortunate racial undertones to Finn’s redemption arc of “coward who just wants to get away becomes a hero”, especially when coupled with Lupita Nyong’o’s Magical Negro figure. It’s not terrible, and let’s all be honest, it’s the best role given to an African-American in the entire Star Wars canon, but it could still use work.

And yes, Adam Driver’s Kylo Ren is magnificent casting. The second he takes the mask off, you understand that he wears it for a completely different reason than Vader. He hates the person he sees in the mirror, and he needs to see the implacable power of Kylo Ren staring back at him because Ben Solo is weak and pathetic to him. And you can tell that Rey knows it. Excellent scene, excellent acting, excellent writing.

I’m still betting on Supreme Leader Snoke being a dodge of some sort. He has a “Wizard of Oz” feel to him, a fake for the punters full of sound and fury. I actually thought he might be Luke behind a holographic disguise, with a heel turn coming in Episode VIII, but it wouldn’t make sense given how much effort Snoke is expending to find Luke. I’d be very surprised, though, if he’s everything he seems to be.

On the whole, I liked it, but I agree that you can’t judge it fully without seeing the next episode. Which I’m actually looking forward to!

ReplyReply
mygif

Having watched Jedi just last week in preparation, I rate it as better than Jedi (Jedi is a hard subject — the parts of it that are good are as good as anything in Empire; the parts that are bad are series-worst). I’m fine with the plot, but that’s partly because I’m more comfortable than even most geeks with filling in the sociopolitical work left undone (the key words are Cold War and Proxy War), and I assume Kanata’s coy response regarding the lightsaber is deliberate fodder for E8.
But you’re 100% right that the performances are what make it. The new generation are fucking spectacular, Driver especially. Playing Ren as a spoiled baby with force powers and a lightsaber is fantastic (he reminded me of nothing else so much as a GamerGater/MRA), really ties him to the real downfall of the Sith (though he’s not Sith per se, it seems), that they all seem to be petulant children who can’t see past their own desires (Palpatine’s ability to not just let his lust for power hang out all the time is how he got that power).

I loved it and am going to see it again.

My personal theory is that not only is Rey Luke’s daughter, but she’s directly related to her cousin’s fall: Ben was used to being the favored protege of his uncle, and when he was suddenly displaced by Rey, Luke’s actual daughter rather than nephew and (possibly) naturally stronger in the force, he couldn’t deal.

ReplyReply
mygif

Daisy Ridley, John Boyega and Oscar Isaac all instantly have terrific chemistry together; you can believe that Rey and Finn can instantly connect or that Finn and Poe can have a “did we just become best friends” moment.

Riiiiiiight. “Best friends.” Sure. That was what was going on between Poe and Finn.

Just like Korra and Asami are gals bein’ pals.

More seriously, if they don’t intend for there to be raging romantic subtext between Finn and Poe they fucked up royally. If one of them was a girl there would be no doubt whatsoever in anyone’s minds.

The plot… okay, here’s where we start to find issues.

Also too on that list: why is there a map to Luke? If Luke didn’t want anyone to find him, why leave a map at all, and if he did want people to find him if necessary, why the fuck not trust your sister and your best friend to exercise their judgment in that arena and just tell them where you are?

I hope this isn’t Jedi farseeing bullshit. The Emperor did a lot of that to, it didn’t help him much.

But on any ranking of Star Warses it has to come fourth after the original trilogy; if one were to hypothetically divide Rise of the Sith into two movies

… you mean Revenge of the Sith, right?

Otherwise your ranking is spot on. Not as good as the originals, better than the prequels.

@John Seavey

I agree with you that it feels like a remix of ‘New Hope’, but I actually thought that was one of its strengths.

There’s a fine line between “remix” and “lazy” and Force Awakens dances across that line a bunch of times. They have to fly down a trench to blow up the superweapons weak point, for crying out loud. I’m reasonably certain the laser turrets in said trench were lifted directly from the ones in New Hope.

There is just… way, way, way too much leaning on the original trilogy; there are extended stretches, I’m talking ten or twenty minutes at a time, where it feels like if they could have gotten away with it they’d just have remade the original shot-for-shot. It feels like… hmm.

It feels like the script was written by a deeply talented, passionate writer… as their very first effort, as a fanfic, when they were fourteen. “oh oh oh it has to have a DESERT planet and a WINTER planet and the winter planet needs to have AT-ATs FUCK YEAH AT-ATS LETS PUT SOME ON THE DESERT PLANET TOO and MY superweapon will be bigger and scarier and more-er than the Death Star YEAH and the bad guy needs to wear a mask (BUT HE CAN’T BE AS COOL AS A VADER NOBODY WAS AS COOL AS VADER) and my Emperor’s hologram shenanigans will be even cooler than the original ones and there needs to be a bar scene LIGHTSABERS WE NEED COOL LIGHTSABERS and there has to be family drama and I KNOW EXACTLY WHAT TO DO WITH HAN AND LEIA THIS WILL KICK EVERYONE RIGHT IN THE FEELS and we have to hide a map in a droid because maps in droids are cool X-WINGS DON’T FORGET X-WINGS.”

And then it sat in a drawer for thirty years, until the talented writer became a big-shot writer-director, and he pulled it out, dusted it off… and couldn’t bear to change very much. And it’s still mostly GOOD, because he had genuine writing talent and the passion to back it up… but maybe you shouldn’t be eager to splash the stuff your were venting as a giddy fanboy all over the screen.

I could almost literally tell which parts of it were written by Abrams and which by Kasdan, honestly. (Hint: if you ever have to actually think and analyze what you’re seeing, that was probably Kasdan.)

Honestly, I almost feel at this point… the franchise should probably be run by people who are invested in it and care deeply about it, but they should maybe bring in a talented, competent script doctor who just does not give a shit about the franchise at all and has veto power. The gravitational pull of the original movies is just too strong otherwise and nothing can escape it.

And this is Daisy Ridley’s coming out party as a Big Time Movie Star.

I would be hesitant about pronouncements like this. Five years ago this is what everyone said about Hailee Stanfield after True Grit. (She was robbed of an Oscar, by the way.)

Now she’s starring in Pitch Perfect movies. I’m sorry; co-starring in Pitch Perfect movies.

I also think the destruction of the Republic Senate lacked emotional heft–sure, they blew up a star system and said, “Ha! The Republic fleet and Senate are all dead,” but there was never any real sense of what that meant or why they hadn’t done it before if it was so easy and so decisive. That needed to be handled better.

That was handled so badly that me and numerous other people didn’t actually know that’s what they’d done. I had assumed the capital of the Republic was Coruscant, based on the fact that in three of the previous six movies the capital was Coruscant and one assumes that after the Alliance overthrew the Empire they’d have re-established themselves there. They went to the trouble of digitally inserting massive celebrations on Coruscant into the remastered original series!

So when they blew up a bunch of random not-Coruscant planets I assumed it was a demonstration strike. But now. Apparently it was a legit decapitation strike? And… the Republic had no other fleets?

If they specifically mention in the movie that the Senate and all the fleets have been destroyed it was so brief and perfunctory I totally missed it, and I’m not alone in that.

And yes, Adam Driver’s Kylo Ren is magnificent casting. The second he takes the mask off, you understand that he wears it for a completely different reason than Vader. He hates the person he sees in the mirror, and he needs to see the implacable power of Kylo Ren staring back at him because Ben Solo is weak and pathetic to him.

I actually think it might be simpler than that. He might wear the mask almost purely because Vader wore a mask and he wants to be like Vader only better.

I’ve heard a lot of complaining that Kylo Ren is basically a less skilled, less competent, whinier, more tantrum-y version of Vader; that Vader’s tantrums at least instilled fear and discipline, whereas Ren’s just come off as petulant.

The thing is, that’s the point. Ren is supposed to be a Vader knockoff, that’s literally his entire character. He’s supposed to be sad and pathetic and not actually all that intimidating, because Vader wasn’t insecure at all and Ren is nothing but insecurity.

The people around him can smell it, too. Hux doesn’t respect Ren. Not like Tarkin respected Vader and Piett respected-slash-feared him. Hux is career military, actually good at his job, and can smell the loser allllllll over Ren.

@BSD

My personal theory is that not only is Rey Luke’s daughter,

I would really like Rey to not be anyone’s kid, because if she is that makes them terribly human beings. Who the fuck abandons a child like that? Obi-Wan at least stuck around after settling Luke with the Lars’, and Leia of course went to the Organas, who were not exactly hardscrabble.

Rey was living in poverty in a shithole with nobody to look after her.

ReplyReply
mygif

As I said on Twitter, pretty much the only thing I’m sure of after seeing it is that Domhnall Gleeson needs to stop associating with robots. Because this is the third piece of robot-related media I’ve seen him in, and it has never ever worked out well. I’m betting that he either gets killed by a robot in Episode VIII, or he finds a robot that blows up half the galaxy.

ReplyReply
mygif

“There’s a fine line between “remix” and “lazy” and Force Awakens dances across that line a bunch of times.”

Eh. The last half of the Phantom Menace is a remix of the last half of Return of the Jedi (both are tri-storylines cutting to and from a space battle with a super weapon, a giant land battle involving a quirky alien species fighting imperialists, and a two on one conflict involving Jedi.) Phantom Menace isn’t all that lazy about how it remixes Return of the Jedi, but is still obviously inferior as a direct comparison.

ReplyReply
mygif

“The lightsaber battles in particular are excellent, not ridiculously ornate and complex as some of the prequel lightsaber battles were, but serve well as expressions of each character’s emotional state, which is what a lightsaber battle should be.”

You’re the second person that I’ve seen talk about how the focus of the lightsaber battles was on the emotions of the characters; I’m going to have to rewatch the movie with that in mind. Because all I could focus on during the lightsaber battles was how difficult the camera work was making it for me to figure out what was actually happening.

ReplyReply
mygif

@Chris K

I’m curious, and no judgment… how old are you, and how good is your eyesight?

Because I’ve seen a lot of opinion whipsaw back and forth between “this was some blurry Bay-esque bullshit” and “what are you talking about, that was positively sedate, especially compared to the prequels.”

And I’m wondering if the fights are actually pegged right on the borderline of a lot of peoples visual acuity. I’ve discovered as I get older I have a lot more trouble resolving moving shots; pan-and-zoom work I once found crystal clear now looks like a blurry mess to me, and that’s not the camera work, that’s my eyes no longer being able to track it. This is one of those things glasses can’t help with.

ReplyReply
mygif

Murc said: “Riiiiiiight. “Best friends.” Sure. That was what was going on between Poe and Finn. Just like Korra and Asami are gals bein’ pals. More seriously, if they don’t intend for there to be raging romantic subtext between Finn and Poe they fucked up royally. If one of them was a girl there would be no doubt whatsoever in anyone’s minds.”

I dunno about the director, but apparently Oscar Isaac has confirmed that he was playing it like a romantic scene. I’d ship it. Heck, I’d ship all three of them. Why not have a poly triad as your romantic leads?

ReplyReply
mygif

I dunno about the director, but apparently Oscar Isaac has confirmed that he was playing it like a romantic scene. I’d ship it. Heck, I’d ship all three of them. Why not have a poly triad as your romantic leads?

Bless that man. I didn’t have enough time really give him encomiums up above, because my rant was already getting overly long, but he parked it deep. I would say he gave the best performance of any actor in the movie except Ford (this is not to disrespect Driver), and he was working at a disadvantage because Ford has “I am Han frickin’ Solo” to lean on and Isaac came in cold. And delivered.

He won’t win, because the academy hates genre films, but purely on technical merit he deserves a Best Supporting Actor nomination.

Sadly, I suspect even if any of the future writer/directors are interested in playing this out in the most logical way (like I said, if one of Finn or Poe had been a woman there’d be absolutely no doubt in anyone’s mind what was happening there) Disney won’t allow it. Disney is more dependent on foreign markets than ever these days, especially Russia and China, and so teh gay is still verboten. Alex Hirsh wanted to work some minor representation into Gravity Falls (and I mean MINOR representation) and he got shut down with a heavy hammer.

ReplyReply
mygif

Well, given Poe surviving the initial crash makes no sense and he magically reappears, I’d say they had to do some drastic rewrites to justify Oscar Isaac staying in the film.

ReplyReply
mygif

I don’t know why Poe surviving the crash makes no sense, but Finn surviving does. I mean, unless there’s something I don’t understand going on here, surely the pilot would also get a parachute, right?

And he doesn’t magically reappear. He does something that makes perfect sense, he just does it off screen. He’s on Jakku, everyone and their mother is saying that the droid is off-world now, the First Order has bugged out in pursuit…of course he’s going to rendezvous with the Resistance instead of waiting in the arse-end of nowhere for BB-8 to come back. Why does this confuse so many people?

ReplyReply
mygif

Also, Poe coming back was stunningly predictable. I knew it the second Finn didn’t find a corpse, although they at least try to artfully shoot things so that we, the audience, cannot actually see into the cockpit.

It is the second most predictable moment in the movie.

ReplyReply
mygif

It’s also fairly predictable because the trailers had scenes of him shooting TIE Fighters down in his X-Wing, and unless they were gonna do some pretty crazy flashback stuff, that was still coming up. :)

Not that I mind. “Unpredictable” does not strongly correlate to “good”.

ReplyReply
mygif

Some of us managed to go trailer-free. :)

ReplyReply
mygif

I am impressed. I’m way too much of a trailer junkie for that–I’ve been known to go to video-room events at cons that are just a solid hour of trailers with no film. :)

ReplyReply
mygif

@Thok – The Phantom Menace was actually a quad-storyline climax, with the fourth being Amidala’s attack on the throne room to capture the Asian guys. Four separate battles, to top ANH (1 battle at the climax), ESB (2 battles) and ROTJ (3 battles). Five battles in AOTC would have been too much, I guess.

ReplyReply
mygif

@Ben- You got a lot of nerve showing your face here after what you did to your dad. Your mom and uncle are both very disappointed in you.

ReplyReply
mygif

Murc, there isn’t a map to Luke. There’s a map to the Jedi temple that Luke was going to find. Presumably it wasn’t easy to locate, because of the missing chunk of the map; the First Order got their copy from the Empire, and it was exactly as incomplete as R2’s. Now, as to how BB-8 came to be in sole possession of that part of the map…that I couldn’t even guess at. I would think it might be covered in the next movie. (But it might be randomly covered in a tie-in comic instead.)

ReplyReply
mygif
Dr Christmas said on December 24th, 2015 at 2:28 am

They should have had Captain Phasma be the Stormtrooper to fight Finn with the big ‘ol shock baton. Seems weird to have such a distinct character do so little.

Also, I gotta confess I have spent way too much time trying to figure out if Interdictors (mini-Star Destroyers with gravity generators that simulate the “mass shadows” planets project in hyperspace that pull ships out of hyperspace and preventing them and from entering) are still canon given their appearance in Star Wars: Rebels, and if that has any bearing on whether the move the Falcon pulls to get onto Starkiller Base is possible.

ReplyReply
mygif

Several people have touched on this, but I felt the flaw with this movie was the editing. It really kind of felt like the scriptwriter and director refused to talk to each other, so you get things like “oh we decapitated the Republic” with no emotional impact and the scene where the stormtrooper drops his blaster to fight Fin(which made no goddamn sense to me when I saw it because the explanation is 30 minutes earlier in a couple of offhand remarks that should have been the focus of those scenes).

General whatsisname was criminally underused, and why the fuck didn’t the film have more Phasma? She has about 2 speaking scenes, you never see her face, and in that amount of time she convinced me that here was a character I wanted to see more of.

We also needed less Supreme Leader. The only scene we needed with him was the last one, as a teaser for the next film. He’s the Emperor, he doesn’t need to have screen time yet.

Finally, of course they lifted a bunch of scenes from the original trilogy. I could have told you that six months ago, because the major hurdle this film had to clear is that it needed to be a giant apology letter for the prequels. Wiping away fan discontent over those movies and setting up the next two was the whole premise of the movie.

ReplyReply
mygif
Jack-Pumpkinhead said on December 24th, 2015 at 8:41 am

On the subject of Phasma, she was a late addition to the script, but Gwendolyn Christie was so good they realized they need to give her more time in the enxt film. Which they said they will.

ReplyReply
mygif

@Candlejack- Was any of that at all explained in the movie?

Because I seem to recall in the movie they all just talk about the “map to Skywalker.” I don’t recall any mention of a temple. That would have made it a lot more interesting, sort of an archaeological puzzle.

It’s entirely possible I just missed some details, but if it this is something you could only possibly have known from tie-in materiel (like the significance of that person who gets a random close-up when they’re blowing up the Senate, who is apparently a very close friend of Leia’s) then that’s very bad storytelling.

@Dasz

of course they lifted a bunch of scenes from the original trilogy. I could have told you that six months ago, because the major hurdle this film had to clear is that it needed to be a giant apology letter for the prequels. Wiping away fan discontent over those movies and setting up the next two was the whole premise of the movie.

I keep seeing people say this, and it’s complete bullshit.

I don’t mean that in the sense that “they’re wrong.” They’re transparently right. I mean in the sense that it’s a reasonable explanation. The way you “apologize” for the prequels is by making movies that don’t suck. If you want your new trilogy to be as enduring as the original trilogy, it would perhaps be best to not make artistic choices that can only be justified as “we felt like we had to placate bitter fans.”

I said it upthread and I’ll say it again; the gravitational pull of the first trilogy is exerting an unhealthy pull. It always has; you can see it impacting the prequels in a negative way as well, on top of all the other flaws the prequels had. (“Hey guys, Anakin built C-3PO and used to own Artoo! And Chewie served alongside Yoda!”)

They need to bring in some people who have seen the original materiel, and are good writers, but absolutely do not give a fuck about it as some sort of nostalgia idol to be worshiped. Nostalgia, as the man said, is a drug, and it will fuck you up. They need someone to tell them “you are directly ripping off a scene from a forty year old movie in an obvious and awkward way for no other reason than that it sends a tingle up your leg. Stop it. Write your own materiel. It’s okay to be inspired by something you loved; it brings passion to the project. It’s not okay to treat the thing you loved as some sort of paint-by-numbers guide. Be a writer, not a hack.”

@Jack-Pumpkinhead

On the subject of Phasma, she was a late addition to the script, but Gwendolyn Christie was so good they realized they need to give her more time in the enxt film. Which they said they will.

… she’s not dead?

If they’re bringing her back they committed a massive editing failure, because the last we see of Phasma they’re talking about how they’re going to cram her into a trash compactor, and then about half an hour later they detonate the planet. Usually when you lock someone into a room and blow up the planet, that means they die.

If they want to continue using her they needed to include about thirty seconds of her blowing her way out of the trash compactor and getting to an escape shuttle with Hux and Ren. For that matter, it would have been nice to get a scene of Hux dragging Ren’s sorry ass into a shuttle. We know he did that, because we saw Snoke order him to grab Ren and make tracks, but… show, don’t tell, movie. Maybe spent a minute less on your scenery porn elsewhere in the movie to fit in relevant plot points.

(I wish we’d had more Hux in general. I love Hux. I love how he doesn’t respect Ren one tiny bit and doesn’t care if Ren, who could force choke him to death, knows it. He could have been cast a little bit older but I really like him.)

ReplyReply
mygif

The best part about this movie was its sense of fun and life that is evident in pretty much every scene. Never before this movie have I seen somebody taking their spaceship out to dock and forgotten to take the gas pump out before leaving. It, and the dialogue, and the little moments of pointless detail, shows that this fantastic world is ordinary to the people who live in it, and that makes it more fantastic to the audience. That is essential to Star Wars, and they captured it perfectly.

That said, I think that the search for Skywalker should have been the focus of the movie, and that the Starkiller plot should have been abandoned or integrated better.

If we want to talk about this movie’s relationship to ANH, then it’s important to remember how well the two threads of “Rescue the Princess” and “Destroy the Death Star” came together. Luke and company need to get the plans to Alderaan, Leia is imprisoned on the Death Star, which goes to Alderaan, Luke finds himself in perfect princess-rescue position. Both plots come together so well you’d forget that they only happened upon Leia by luck.

In this one, the plot to locate Luke is started, and then abandoned about halfway through for the sake of an even bigger gun that can destroy even bigger stuff. I mean, say what you will about the prequels but they at least didn’t fall into the trap of bigger and better superweapons that you saw in every other EU book. I would have preferred if they had saved that plot for its own movie and just have the movie be a search for the missing parts of the map, with the Resistance and First Order fighting each other along the way, as in the section on Maz Kanata’s planet. You wouldn’t need to change the significant character events, just their setting.

Or, if that couldn’t be done, have the Starkiller Base plot tie in to that. They mentioned that the First Order had the rest of the map from the Imperial Archives. Rey could have made an attempt to download the data from the Starkiller Base and add it to her information and that would tie both plots together. Instead they left that gun hanging on the mantelpiece and had R2 pull out an entirely new gun.

None of this really makes the movie bad, just… it feels like it could have been made a lot tighter without changing much of the emotional core.

ReplyReply
mygif

@Murc–it isn’t exactly spelled out, but it is in the movie. Han says Luke fucked off to find the original Jedi temple in the aftermath of his massive failure at rebuilding the Order, and as TheDon says above, the movie does mention that the First Order’s incomplete map came from the Empire. The Empire wouldn’t have had a map to Luke’s current location, so it stands to reason what they do have is a map to the place he was going to find.

I haven’t read any of the tie-in stuff. Probably eventually I will. But like you, I think everything you need to know for a movie’s plot to make sense should be in the movie. And I’m still a little pissed you had to read the Star Trek reboot prequel comic to really know what the hell was going on in that movie.

ReplyReply
mygif

@Murc: You’re greatly overreacting. It’s space opera – callback shots to famous scenes are par for the course. I honestly don’t know why you care so much, none of the problems with this film had anything to do will callback imagery to the first series.

As for Phasma, it’s totally fine that she escaped off screen. I would have liked to see that scene, but it’s not really necessary, and if we’re going to add scenes there are a lot of things that needed covering more than this. More character establishing scenes between the general and Ren for one thing, where they could have slotted in all the exposition they needed to explain the current state of galactic politics.

Actually, I found out today that apparently Rogue Squadron is a prequel to this, so maybe the real explanation for the lack of exposition is that it was edited with the assumption that in the future, people will have seen Rogue Squadron first.

ReplyReply
mygif

http://mightygodking.com/2010/12/24/the-only-christmas-tradition-this-site-has/ <–since MGK is too busy having an awesome life.

ReplyReply
mygif

So many plot elements were recycled that I couldn’t really get into the new characters. They were well done, but I just didn’t care about them, having seen their journey before, and watching as they checked off one box after another. It’s Rey that suffers from that the most, and BB-8.

I didn’t find Kylo compelling. Again, well done, but I didn’t really find anything interesting about watching someone check off all the boxes on Anakin’s descent into evil again.

The super weapon was just a bigger Death Star. I could have accepted it if it was tied back to the original Death Star better — maybe the empire built dozens of things like this, and the First Order inherited it. the obvious flaws in design (destroys its own star, vulnerability easily spotted in a two minute meeting) could have been explained by it being a prototype.

We didn’t get any new, iconic war machines. That was sad. Everything was just a minor upgrade to what came before.

Poe and Finn were great. The old cast was great. I’d love Rey to get her own, original story next time out. Maz Katana was awesome. I liked that the villain was in the family — shifting off of the Skywalker line now would be weird and just not fit.

Also, I hope Rey is Luke’s kid. After Ben Solo falls to the dark side, Luke realizes that all of the problems of the past hundred years of galactic history are caused by people using the force, so he wipes the minds of the padawans and dumps them on various planets to live small, quiet lives, including his daughter.

ReplyReply
mygif

Also, I hope Rey is Luke’s kid. After Ben Solo falls to the dark side, Luke realizes that all of the problems of the past hundred years of galactic history are caused by people using the force, so he wipes the minds of the padawans and dumps them on various planets to live small, quiet lives, including his daughter.

… let me get this straight, the outcome you are rooting for is that Luke brainraped a bunch of children and then abandoned them to fend for themselves in a harsh universe.

Allow me to submit that I’m not sure the Star Wars franchise would be well served by making Luke a psychotic supervillain.

ReplyReply
mygif

I quite liked the movie, on the whole.

It could have been improved, obviously. I personally would have cut all the Starkiller stuff and kept the climax focused solely on rescuing Rey; other than giving Poe something to do, it doesn’t add much.

The new characters are all very promising, which is by far the most important part.

ReplyReply
mygif
Candlejack said on December 27th, 2015 at 2:24 pm

So somebody at work yesterday told me that in the Force Awakens playset for Disney Infinity 3.0, Ren addresses Rey as “cousin”. So, yeah…unless somebody changes something down the road, it looks like Rey is intended to be Luke’s kid.

Skywalkers should maybe not be parents. They aren’t very good at it.

ReplyReply
mygif

So, yeah…unless somebody changes something down the road, it looks like Rey is intended to be Luke’s kid.

Jesus fuckin’ Christ, really?

Even leaving aside the fact that he abandoned his daughter in a hellhole without telling Han or Leia about her, it would be maybe nice to have a force user who isn’t important because of their connection to the Skywalker line. This is precisely what I mean when I say the original movies exert too strong a pull. It’s possible to have characters who are important for reasons other than being a Skywalker or a Solo! They manage it with Finn and Poe, for chrissakes.

It’s also amusing as hell that Disney went to enormous lengths to stop spoilers from getting out, going so far as to delay novel release dates and make people sign beefy NDA’s… and some idiot producing dialogue for Didney Infinity lets the cat out of the back.

Assuming this is accurate, of course.

ReplyReply
mygif
William O'Brien said on December 27th, 2015 at 5:57 pm

Supposedly he is saying “Curses”, not “cousin”.

ReplyReply
mygif

Murc, I’m with you on this. I want Rey to be a nobody, somebody who only matters because of herself, not who her parents are. I really hope William O’Brien is correct.

ReplyReply
mygif
Candlejack said on December 27th, 2015 at 8:27 pm

Let’s hope.

(But at the same time, let’s be honest: Star Wars is basically a fairy tale in space, so abandoned kids and a plot built on the back of amazing coincidences would be par for the course.)

ReplyReply
mygif
Jack-Pumpkinhead said on December 27th, 2015 at 9:24 pm

I believe they said in interviews that the episode movies will focus on the skywalker lineage, & the ancilliary films (assuming they make good money) will tell the stories of other equally awesome not-skywalker people. Now I’m not advocating a young Han Solo film or boba fett film, but Rogue One does sound fun & this could open some fun doors.

Also, you assume Luke would have left her on Jakku, not the mother perhaps. I’m surprised no one here’s mentioned the possible backdoor for Mara Jade to become canon here.

ReplyReply
mygif

I’m with Dasz and Murc: Rey should absolutely not be another bloody Skywalker.

But as Candlejack points out, she probably will be. Alas.

ReplyReply
mygif

Also, you assume Luke would have left her on Jakku, not the mother perhaps. I’m surprised no one here’s mentioned the possible backdoor for Mara Jade to become canon here.

Mara Jade will always be canon and I will fight anyone who says otherwise.

More seriously, what makes Mara interesting isn’t just there being a redhead named Mara Jade, but her actual, you know, story arc in the Zahn trilogy. (We shall leave her incredible mishandling in the EU books that came after aside.) Without that she would just be a name.

ReplyReply
mygif

There’s a lot of good discussion of the movie here. Heavy on the New Hope remix. Phasma criminally underused. I liked the lightsaber duels better in this one better than anything in the prequels–the prequel duels looked staged in a bad way. Like the Chinese Opera they were imitating, they didn’t really seem like anyone was actually fighting. Maybe that was a symptom of the hidebound and stagnant Jedi Order of the time, teaching padawans these overly stylized forms, but I hated the first two prequels enough to skip the third so I give them no credit.

Also, Rey should not be a Skywalker. That would be weak.

The Starkiller base was one of the weakest elements in this movie I think–weaker than the Rathtars. It is the classic kid’s ploy of ‘like the death star but FIVE TIMES BIGGER and it totally can destroy several planets at the same time with HOMING LASERS!’

I’m not complaining about shitty science in a Star Wars movie but the Death Star at least had to go to there to shoot something and shot things that named characters cared about. The death of ‘The Republic’ gets more or less a shrug. It raises the stakes far less than the assault on Cantina 2.0.

Anyway, it was a decent film, and I’ll go see the next one.

ReplyReply
mygif
Christian Hansen said on December 28th, 2015 at 4:33 pm

Which half of “Revenge of the Sith” was the “excellent” one? Was it the beginning with the wildly shifting tone (decapitation and R2D2 slapstick?) and the nonsensical character decisions (Gee, the Separatists are awfully willing to do what this hooded man says when it is obviously the worst thing for them to do!) Or was it the half with the overly-melodramatic, ball-numbing ending and facepalm dialogue (“Only a Sith deals in absolutes…You’re breaking my heart…NOOOO!”, etc.)?

EDIT: My bad, it said the second half in the original post. Looks like the Yoda/Palpatine fight wins out!

ReplyReply
mygif

“Now, as to how BB-8 came to be in sole possession of that part of the map…that I couldn’t even guess at. I would think it might be covered in the next movie. (But it might be randomly covered in a tie-in comic instead.)”

Poe put it on his hard drive after getting it from… some guy. (Seriously, was that supposed to be somebody? The crawl calls him “an old ally”, but damned if I recognized him.)

They never say where that guy got it from, but I presume Luke gave it to him.

ReplyReply
mygif

Okay, I remember that now that you mention it.

I find it kind of hard to believe Luke provided the map in the first place, though. I mean, Luke doesn’t seem to particularly care if he’s found. And if he did want to be found, there are surely more direct methods than giving some guy a partial map to deliver to some other guy who will, eventually, give it to somebody else who gets near enough to R2D2 to activate the plot sensors that will cause him to wake up and provide the rest of the map.

ReplyReply
mygif

Regarding the Disney Infinity thing: the word he says does sound more like “curses” in isolation, but I can see why people would think that’s not what he’s saying. “Face me, curses!” is a weird thing to say. “Curse you!” would have worked better…and gotten people less worked up. Or maybe it’s a timing thing. Maybe “Face me!” and “Curses!” are two things he says separately, but occasionally he says them as if they were one sentence when the dialogue triggers are too close together. You decide!

ReplyReply
mygif
William O'Brien said on December 29th, 2015 at 5:08 pm

“I find it kind of hard to believe Luke provided the map in the first place, though. I mean, Luke doesn’t seem to particularly care if he’s found”

He didn’t. Han says that “those who know (Luke) best” (presumably Leia) think that he went to find the first Jedi temple. The map (which Ren explains comes mostly from the Imperial Archives), presumably goes there.

ReplyReply
mygif

@Candlejack: It’s not the map that conveniently wakes up Artoo. That arrived at the Resistance base roughly mid-way through the movie with Poe and BB8.

Artoo only woke up when Rey arrived at the base, and a lot of the internet it taking that as Highly Significant. A significant sub-group of those people are taking it as Proof That Rey Is A Skywalker, and I wish those people would STFU.

More importantly, IMO, Rey brings with her Luke’s lightsabre. I’m pretty sure *that* is the trigger for Artoo’s otherwise extremely convenient boot up.

ReplyReply
mygif
Candlejack said on December 29th, 2015 at 7:22 pm

@William O’Brien–I know? I was responding to the post above mine that said Luke probably gave the map to the guy who gave it to Poe. I was elaborating on why I didn’t think that was the case.

(He, in turn, was responding to a previous post of mine where I commented that I wasn’t sure how BB-8 came to be sole possession of the piece of map to the Jedi temple that was missing in both the Empire’s records and R2’s.)

@JayDzed–okay, the lightsaber explanation is the best I’ve heard so far. I’ll take that as truth unless it gets contradicted by a later movie.

ReplyReply
mygif
DistantFred said on December 29th, 2015 at 8:42 pm

JayDzed- Except that Finn shows up with the lightsaber at the same time as BB-8, the map, and the plot shift towards “blow up the third Death Star”

ReplyReply
mygif
Christian Hansen said on December 29th, 2015 at 8:49 pm

@Candlejack

I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but I distinctly recall JJ Abrams answering that question in an interview. His answer was, and I’m paraphrasing here, “BB-8 showing up at the base reawakened R2-D2 (my thoughts: presumably all of BB-8’s beeps and boops when he saw R2 was him saying “I’ve got the rest of the map dude!”). R2 didn’t reawaken until the end of the movie because he was in low power mode for so long that it took him a while to boot up.”

I don’t know whether or not that’s better or worse than anything else we’ve heard. I for one think it’s fine and not really that big of a deal.

ReplyReply
mygif

@DistantFred: Does he? Well, I was meaning to give it a second watch sometime soon, I’ll have to keep an eye out for that. (Amongst the numerous other things to watch for the second time, like Daniel Craig.)

@Christian Hansen: So, to me that the answer means that JJ is didn’t think it would be important to fans when and why Artoo wakes up at a particular moment, and so he didn’t bother to make it clear in the movie?*

Especially when all it would have taken was a very brief scene of Artoo showing some signs of waking up slowly when BB8 first talked to him/Threepio stating it would take a while for him to fully boot up because of how long he’d been in suspend?

Well, that’s pretty disappointing of him, the scriptwriter and the editor, at the very least.

(*) Because Of Course The Fans Will Read Deeply Into EVERYTHING! Duh!

ReplyReply
mygif

> One of my complaints, to be honest, is that there are some unfortunate racial undertones to Finn’s redemption arc of “coward who just wants to get away becomes a hero”

True. I will however note that at least Finn’s fear of the Order is *entirely* rational from his point of view. He’s the only character who knows exactly what’s coming. Getting as far away from it as possible at least makes sense.

ReplyReply
mygif

> (That last one would be my preference, incidentally, just because all the significant Force people being from one family is an idea that can now go away.)

I have to disagree with you there. I kind of like that Star Wars is, at its heart, a family story. Like the Bible with more spaceships.

ReplyReply
mygif

> Riiiiiiight. “Best friends.” Sure. That was what was going on between Poe and Finn.

On the one hand, I feel like I should be cautioning everyone into reading too much into it… but yeah, I’d be lying if I didn’t pick up on that too.

Mind you, Finn was clearly into Rey, too — it was practically a plot point — so… oh dammit, this is all gonna end up in a threesome, isn’t it?

ReplyReply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please Note: Comment moderation may be active so there is no need to resubmit your comments