If you have not seen the movie, then you should probably stop reading right now. There will be spoilers. Seriously, lots of spoilers. This is not a full review or anything, just my thoughts on the movie. What I liked, what I did not like. I highly recommend seeing it though, which I am sure everyone will.
-Okay, first of all, the entire movie was great. I loved how it starts with action and really never slows down. I kept expecting there to be a slow down and we get like forty minutes of explaining a bunch of stuff, but Abrams just assumed we knew stuff about Star Wars.
-The humor of the film. I really could watch an entire film of just Poe and Finn together. Or is that what Rogue One is about? Like a buddy-cop film? This one is the Resistance’s best pilot, the other is a former stormtrooper, when they team up, crazy hijinks ensue! Just kidding, I know that Rogue One is not a story of those two, but it should be…
-Kylo Ren. Not only was he cool looking, but he was pretty badass. Plus, I loved how they did not try to build up his identity. They just give it away early on, probably because 97% of fans had guessed as much.
-The death of Han Solo. So I read a long time ago that Harrison Ford would only do the movie if he got a cool death scene. I assumed he would die, but I figured it would be some big heroic death. Like having to explode the charges manually and sacrificing himself to save everyone. When he walks towards Kylo Ren though, I knew it was coming and yet it still hit me pretty hard. Especially when his own son is the one who kills him. Once Kylo said something like “thank you father for helping me” (or whatever he said), you knew it was going to happen. Still painful.
-The callbacks to the original trilogy. This could easily have been something to hate. They could have littered the entire movie with tons of references and jokes and it would have gotten old. However, there was just enough. One of my favorites was when they were attacking Starkiller Base and someone calls out to the X-Wings and is like Red 4 and Red 6, you are with me. In A New Hope, Luke is Red 5, so that little omission was cool to me. Plus, Starkiller Base is a good name, since that was the original surname for Luke.
-The mysteriousness of the Knights of Ren, Supreme Leader Snoke, and Rey’s identity. My theory is that Snoke and this Order are maybe an offshoot or rivals to the Sith. I am guessing we will learn a good bit more when Kylo Ren completes his training. Which brings me to Rey. Who is she? Who are her parents that she is waiting for to return? My initial thought is Luke Skywalker. Allow me to explain. Maybe Luke had a daughter and was beginning to train her, but then Ben Solo goes to the Dark Side and begins murdering all of Luke’s students. Luke is afraid for his daughter and takes her to Jakku, but first makes her forget that she is a Jedi-in-training. That would explain why she was able to pick up on the Force stuff so quickly. I mean, Luke had to have training from Obi-Wan (and later Yoda) before he could pull a lightsaber out of some ice or use a Jedi Mind Trick.
Here is the problem with that theory though. Why hide her away? If he is completely safe away from Ben Solo, he should be able to keep his daughter with him and continue her training. Unless of course Luke’s wife took Rey to keep her safe. Another idea is that maybe Rey is Han and Leia’s other child. Maybe she is Ben’s twin. I mean, twins obviously run in the family. It would also make the showdown between Kylo Ren and Rey a bit more meaningful. Plus it would be taking something from the Expanded Universe (Han and Leia’s first children were twins, Jacen/Jaina, also, Luke’s child was named Ben…odd). Again though, this has some problems. Why would Han and Leia not recognize their own daughter (or do they?) and not want to keep her as safe as possible? They both seemed to have some affection for her and maybe knew more about her than they were letting on; which leads me to lean towards the daughter of Luke idea.
-Stormtroopers are badass. The joke about the original trilogy is that the stormtroopers have terrible aim and are pretty useless in a fight. Yeah, JJ Abrams addressed that problem. These ones were ruthless and we learn a bit about this current batch. They are children taken from their parents and brainwashed. Finn does not even have a name, just a number, I love how Poe is like “FN, Finn, that is what I am calling you.” The fight between Finn and the stormtrooper with the anti-lightsaber weapon was awesome. You definitely got the sense that these troopers were deadly.
-The final lightsaber battles. Kylo Ren versus Finn, which I thought was good and realistic (I know, funny right?). Allow me to explain. Finn is a soldier, probably trained to use anything as a weapon and having very good reflexes. He can hold his own in a fight. However, Kylo Ren has the Dark Side of the Force. It helps him be stronger, faster, and anticipate his opponents moves. At first Finn can keep up, but it does not take Ren long to dispatch his foe.
The fight between Kylo Ren and Rey was also fantastic. You could almost feel the Force flowing through her, like she just instinctively understood what to do and how to fight. I am guessing she is much more powerful in the Force than Kylo Ren.
-Not a whole lot. The major thing would be that the movie was not long enough. I know, it was like two hours, but another thirty minutes would have been helpful. Maybe develop Poe Dameron or explain who the hell that guy was at the beginning. You know, the Max von Sydow character who has the map.
-They never really explained much about the First Order. Granted, I am glad we did not get a history lesson on their rise, aside from the crawl which said they rose from the ashes of the Galactic Empire. I would imagine they were a faction within that was able to hold together the final remnants of the empire.
-Maz Kanata had Luke’s lightsaber. Not his green one, but his blue one, the one that was originally Anakin’s. How did she get it? Luke lost that one during his fight with Vader in Empire Strikes Back. Remember? Vader cuts off his hand, and the lightsaber falls down the shaft, I would guess out into the gas giant, right? Or did it just fall to the bottom of Cloud City and some janitor fount it a week later?
Seriously, those were the only things I disliked about the movie. There were no silly characters, no boring trade federation discussions or senate meetings. And hell, those things that I disliked were pretty minor.
I would definitely like to hear what other people thought of it, plus any theories you have about the next movies. I guess we have a year to wait until Rogue One and until May 2017 for Episode VIII. We have time to discuss.