Friday, December 18, 2015

Spoiler-free Star Wars Review

This is my (spoiler free) Star Wars Review

First, debunking the silliness---Luke Skywalker is NOT Kylo Ren (I don't consider this a spoiler, since it is in the credits).  Jar Jar Binks is not Kyloe Ren, nor is he in this movie.

What I loved---The final lightsaber battle, everything that happens on Jaaku, everything that happens on the Millennium Falcon, Finn (The best new character), Rey, Han Solo.  Ren is a good villain with a significant amount of depth to his character background.  The first imagine of Luke, Where you can still see the younger Luke inside of him mixed with the hardened veteran, is also great.  The ending is interesting/compelling, and leaves us wondering about a couple different issues/storylines.

Fears that didn't come to pass---The biggest was BB-8, I heard a lot of chatter that he might be the next Jar Jar Binks.  Fortunately, that wasn't the case.  Another fear was that the plot would be too much like A New Hope, and while there are some similar plot elements, there are strong differences and some good surprises.

What I didn't like---Captain Phasma was very under-utilized for a high profile villain. A lot of people seem to be noticing this.  Poe was under-developed and basically a stock character, the proverbial "ace pilot" who has no character depth or back-story.  He basically is a glorified Wedge Antilles, no backstory, which is disappointing.  I am not knocking Oscar Isaac, who played the role of Poe great, but can only perform what is written into the script.

Overall---The Story was good, and the pacing of the story was excellent.  Time spent away from action scenes is relatively sparse and limited to what is essential to the story (the Opposite of Episode II).  The soundtrack is good/solid, though not outstanding.  There are some humorous moments, and they all work well.

There is a part of me that feels like there is something missing.  I can't put my finger on what it is, but it seems to fall a little short of the hype I have hear about it, at least in my opinion.  It's like all of the ingredients are there, but they weren't mixed quite right, so instead of tasting fabulous, it's just really good.

Compared to the other movies, A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back are still the 2 best in my mind.  The Force Awakens is better than the Phantom Menace and WAY better than Attack of the Clones, and is on par with (or maybe a little better than) Revenge of the Sith and Return of the Jedi.  Definitely a worthy movie for the Franchise.  Any fan will feel very satisfied and enjoy this newest installment.

Overall Comparison:
The Empire Strikes Back---5 stars
A New Hope---4 1/2 stars
The Force Awakens---4 stars
Revenge of the Sith---3 3/4 stars
Return of the Jedi---3 1/2 stars
The Phantom Menace---2 3/4 stars
Attack of the Clones---1 1/2 stars

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