Three decades after the defeat of the Galactic Empire, a new threat arises. The First Order attempts to rule the galaxy and only a rag-tag group of heroes can stop them, along with the help of the Resistance. (IMDb)
Alright ya’ll, I have a confession to make:
I haven’t seen all of the Star Wars movies.
Let the shaming commence.
I’ve seen all of Episode IV. And then bits and pieces of all of the rest of them.
But. I have friends and family who are big old Star Wars nerds and I was in a show that was a Star Wars version of Shakespeare. (MacSith. Yup. It’s exactly what it sounds like). Put that on top of all of the pop culture surrounding the franchise, and I definitely know a thing or two.
So, my family and I went to go see this. You have my 16 year old sister and my dad, who love the series, my mom and my 21 year old sister, who could care less, and me, who lives somewhere in between.
Me? I thought it was fantastic. It was the perfect melding of the old and the new. There was enough of the nostalgia to leave fans happy, but not stuck in the past, and enough new material to bring in new fans without completely disregarding where the series came from.
Of course it’s always fun to see older characters (Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher in particular) slide seamlessly back into these roles, but I think it was the newcomers jumping in head first that was the most impressive. Daisy Ridley killed it. I don’t say that lightly. She was completely captivating and this movie was a hell of a debut for her. Adam Driver was also great. I’m not going to lie, when he took off the helmet for the first time, it really took me a minute to get used to it, since I’m so used to seeing him in more comedic things, Girls especially. But this was a nice change of pace for him and I’m sure we’ll be seeing Kylo Ren again. John Boyega also did a nice job. What I will say is I with the script gave him a tad more to do sometimes than running around and breathing heavily, which I’m pretty sure was the first 15 minutes of his screen time.
As for the rest of this star-studded cast, Oscar Isaac and Domhnall Gleeson never disappoint. (I especially loved Gleeson’s Hitler vibe he had going on, it was something completely different for him). Then, when I found out after the fact that Andy Serkis was Supreme Leader Snoke and Lupita Nyong’o was Maz, I freaked out. Loved it.
Side note, in the next movie can Gwendoline Christie take off her helmet? Please?
The special effects are insanely impressive, but we knew that was a given. The story moved along at a pretty good pace. It drooped in the middle there, but it picked back up again at the end. BB8 is the cutest droid in the history of the world, and J.J. Abrams laid off of the lens flares. So all in all, I was really impressed.
Maybe I do need to go back and really watch the rest?
As for the rest of my family? My 16 year old sister was totally on board with me, my dad thought it was good, but he wanted “more”. (I think he was looking for more nostalgia), my mom was like “yeah that was ok” and my 21 year old sister had the most surprising reaction. “Huh. That was actually kind of cool. Maybe I need to go back and watch the other ones so I get this one more?”
Good job Star Wars. You may have converted a brand new fan.
In regards to spoilers: I think I did a pretty good job not revealing any. Would love to talk about them though! Some really interesting choices were made.