My Force is AWAKE!!!
Spoiler Free Bit
I saw it yesterday morning! Yes, at 9 am and it was AWESOME!!!
I might go into more detail in a future post, but here are some initial impressions. This was a great movie--not just a Star Wars movie, but a great blockbuster of a movie. It felt like being back in the Star Wars Universe with an added bonus of actually reversing some of the damage done by the prequels. The prequel's shrank the universe and felt limited, while The Force Awakens took advantage of the fact that they have an entire universe to play in. That means different planets, races and types of spaceships.
The casting was incredible and it was gratifying to watch these new heroes interact with the previous generation whose mere presence added so much gravity to the movie. Unsurprisingly, this movie is one to see in theaters, though from the looks of the box office, I am one of the last people to see it. So maybe you already knew that. But go and see it again! Great work, J.J.!!!
(Very Small) Spoilers Ahead
Watching the movie had me figuring out who all of the new characters represented in the movie. It is the geek in me. Like, who was the new Han, Leia and Luke? Chewie is still Chewie after all.
Rey: Rey is obviously Luke. This one goes almost without have to say it. She was raised on a desert planet, dreamed of leaving, and a droid from space changed the course of her life.
Finn: This one to me is kinda obvious too. Finn is Han. He was not looking to be a hero, planned to leave when the going got rough, but returned to save his friend (hopefully love interest! Yes. I am officially shipping those two and their crazy amount of chemistry.) and has that roguish charm.
Poe: Poe has to be Leia in this new rendition. He is captured early on a secret mission, already a member of the Resistance, and has that biting Leia wit during an interrogation scene. Some people may say Poe is Han because he can fly a ship but his motivation doesn't line up.
My overall thoughts of the movie is it felt like A New Hope but that is mostly due to covering a few of the same beats, similar worlds and the starting of a new trilogy with Han as a faux mentor. I could not stop smiling when Han stepped on to the screen. He is my Star Wars character, I even read the now defunct Expanded Universe books to follow the journey of the character.
After watching The Force Awakens, my film order has to change. OK. My ranking of Star Wars.
1) The Empire Strikes Back
2) The Force Awakens
3) A New Hope
4) Return of the Jedi
5) The prequels. I refused to re-watch them, generally remembering a feeling of dread. Lucas executed my childhood love while distracting me with the insult that was Jar Jar.
Overall, it was everything I had hoped for from a movie that needed to make fans happy, to be accessible to other non-fan people, and to be something I want to show my kid. A good show, indeed. I am going to think on it for a couple of days and then really think through the details, but I can't wait to buy the blu-rays, run some RPGs based on it, and show this movie to my daughter.