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Monday, 21 December 2015

At The Fleapit: Star Wars - The Force Awakens (2015)


Honestly, there is no point writing a review of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. If you like this kind of thing, you're going to love it. If you don't, you won't. And if you're determined to hate-watch it for some perverse reason, you need to question your priorities.

A passing knowledge of the Original Trilogy would probably be useful but isn't essential. The script, from Lawrence Kasdan, J.J. Abrams and Michael Arndt, is a fantastic blend of the unexpected and the comfort of the familiar, hitting plenty of beats (both in action and theme) that resonate with the first Star Wars (aka A New Hope).

Even though The Force Awakens is about passing the figurative baton (in front of and behind the camera), there's a lot of characters here, and a lot going on, so the film will definitely require multiple viewings.

George Lucas should be proud of where JJ Abrams (and Disney) has taken his immortal creation, and - as if there was any doubt - Star Wars is clearly in safe hands.

Can't believe I now have to wait two years for Episode VIII though!!!

8 comments:

  1. Just watched it with the family this afternoon. High expecations met. Just brilliant! I felt 7 years old all over again!

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    Replies
    1. I know exactly what you mean. I think I probably sat there for a lot of the time with my mouth hanging open in awe ;)

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  2. Took my family to see it yesterday, and it transported me back to 1977. I was once again eleven years old with my mouth hanging open, captivated by the grandeur. My first thought as I left the theatre was "I have to see this again." It's been a long time since I've said that of any movie. The Force Awakens has made me a Star Wars fan all over again.

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    Replies
    1. Ha ha! Even before the ending (and what an ending!) I wanted either the film to keeping going and going (despite the incredibly uncomfortable seats in our local Odeon) or to simply start again, so I could focus on different elements of the story.

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  3. I must be the only Star Wars fan in the world that doesn't like it. The story just didn't meet my high geek expectations. If someone asked whether they should go see it, I would say no - go watch episode IV and V - same story but Lucas did it better the first time around. Anyway, I'm letting it go - treating it as a piece of fan fiction and hoping that Episode VIII has some originality. I guess I feel how a lot of people felt after watching The Phantom Menace. a movie I didn't react this way to. Anyway, enough of my bile, this isn't my blog - I'm glad that you enjoyed it Tim (and everyone else).

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    Replies
    1. Really sorry you felt that way, Nate. Personally I loved the fact that it stuck to the classic "hero's journey" for its plot structure. As I said in my comment over on your blog, maybe your attitude will mellow down the line (as mine did to The Phantom Menace). It's clearly never going to your favourite episode of the Saga, but hopefully you'll accept that this is still Star Wars.

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    2. I totally get why some folks won't like that The Force Awakens is in a lot of ways a re-telling of A New Hope, or that the Death Star rears its ugly head again (didn't work the first tow times, but the third time's the charm!). But it worked for me in the same way that John Carpenter's Escape from L.A. did. It didn't feel like an unimaginative rehash to me so much as a self-referential love note to the first movie. I felt that taking the franchise 'back to formula' was a necessary and poignant way to pass the torch, and I'm confident that Episode VIII will forge its own path.

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  4. Have to say I was also transported back to childhood and was really enjoying it up the point of 'that' scene on the gantry. What happened there depressed me, and everything that happened after that couldn't overcome that feeling. Even the very last scene which should have be a great climax to the movie was overshadowed for me by what had happened 10 minutes previously.

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