I’d like to give you my take on a god-awful piece of cinematic trash called Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
Casual science fiction fans may have enjoyed the movie but this illogical, unoriginal film is simply using cheap nostalgia to make a quick buck.
Force Awakens starts promising with a title crawl that doesn’t include the word “taxes,” and an opening scene filled with intrigue, but it heads steadily downhill from there. The first indication of where things are going is when Poe Dameron gives the “Luke map” to BB-8 and tells the droid to go off into the desert. This is the exact premise of Star Wars: A New Hope when Leia gives the Death Star map to R2-D2 and the droids wander off into the desert. I was shocked that The Force Awakens would be so unoriginal as to rip off the original Star Wars in such a blatant manner.
Unfortunately, this was only the first of many "stolen" ideas in Episode 7. BB-8 itself is just a poor man’s R2-D2. Frankly, this character looks like it belongs in a Pixar movie like Wall-E, and it is so obviously CGI that it reminds me of the prequels every time I see it. I understand many people (especially children) are fond of BB-8 and the cheap humor it provides, but I find the character to be merely Disney’s attempt at selling toys. It’s almost as bad as the Ewoks. I would much rather have seen more R2-D2 in this story, but Disney probably realized they could make more money with BB-8, so that’s what they went with.
Getting back to the movie: Poe is captured and brought to Kylo Ren. As he’s facing imminent death, this guy Poe makes a smug remark. This is the first moment where Disney decides to invalidate their own villain. No one ever snapped back at Darth Vader. You know why? Because he’s a fucking badass. He commands respect. Instead of creating a hardcore villain here, we are constantly being reminded of how Kylo Ren deserves no respect whatsoever. And this whole moment comes off as a cheap attempt to introduce us to a “new and improved” Han Solo type character we’re all supposed to love now.
Then we see Finn become a disillusioned Stormtrooper in the most clichéd manner possible. Are you telling me this guy has been indoctrinated his whole life by the First Order and is only now starting to have a change of heart? Pretty convenient! Or pretty lazy screenwriting. Finn helps Poe escape from the mean people, then they fly off and have some dialogue which tries way too hard to portray a sense of comraderie in a few seconds. The two are shot down while still in outer space, and of all the places on the surface of this desert planet, they just happen to crash within walking distance of BB-8.
The character Rey is introduced as a young girl living in the desert, scavenging old ship parts to trade for food. She runs into BB-8 in a very coincidental manner. This is Star Wars though, so a few situations like this are “allowed” I suppose. What comes off as totally hokey though is the way in which Rey gets BB-8 from this alien desert nomad. She basically says “Hey, stop that.” And the little alien just gives up. To me it just seems like it’s a little too easy for her. Others have commented that the acting style of the person who plays Rey is stilted and straight out of Drama school, but I won’t really go into that.
Disney tried way too hard to get us to like Finn. His character is as goofy as Jar Jar Binks at times. He’s portrayed as a vaguely inept, cowardly, and comic: unessential to the plot. They could have rolled Finn and Poe into one character. His acting is like a Disney-sitcom audition tape and Finn is just a cheap attempt to appeal to the youth or urban market. Disney said to themselves: “Hmm, Star Wars is not popular with girls and black people. I know! Why don’t we make them our new leads, that way we can sell useless pieces of plastic to minorities as well!” This script was crafted by a board room of executives.
Rey, Finn, and BB-8 escape off the planet in the Millenium Falcon. It is pretty unbelievable to me that this girl Rey knows this ship better than Han Solo himself just by flying it one time. And the maneuvers the Falcon makes in this movie are completely cartoonish. We see it bounce around all over the place in this movie! In the original trilogy the thing could barely keep itself together. In Force Awakens, we’re bumping off cliffs and making extreme hairpin turns which violate all the established rules of this universe. Maybe a casual viewer would not notice this, but to a Star Wars fan, it is jarring.
Han Solo and Chewbacca are introduced next in the most ridiculous manner possible. They just so happen to be flying by as Finn and Rey are leaving the planet. Chewbacca seems to have not aged a day. Couldn’t they have at least given him a couple of grey hairs? That would have been cool. And are we to believe that General Solo has devolved and become a smuggler again?? He’s a freaking war hero, this isn’t some ancient history we’re talking about, it’s just a few decades ago! That’s why his speech about the legends all being true is horseshit. This is recent history.
So, aside from the fact that the Republic apparently has no Veteran’s Affairs department to take care of senile war heroes, our introduction to Han and Chewie is also ruined by the ludicrous scene that follows. Two groups of smugglers show up and Rey releases these stupid CGI Rathtar monsters which eat up everyone onboard except the heroes. These creatures are so computer generated that they rival Dexter Jettster in pure cinematic awfulness. And apparently Jar Jar Abrams hired some excellent martial artists to play some of these smugglers. All they did was run around and get eaten! What a waste!
Then, Han Solo puts the Falcon into lightspeed from the hangar bay of the larger ship they are in! This again is a violation of the rules which were set up in the Star Wars universe. The whole Rathtar scene is bogus, serves no purpose whatsoever, and is a perfect example of why this movie is complete trash. How much cooler would it have been if someone like Boba Fett showed up instead? Or instead of smuggling Rathtars, maybe Han could smuggle baby Rancors or Wampas! But no, that would mean actually satisfying the fans or doing something worthwhile. So yeah, we just get lame ass CGI monsters.
Meanwhile, our villain Kylo Ren is busy throwing literal temper tantrums on his ship. Instead of a Darth Vader type who kills his own crewmen and is all-around menacing, we get Darth Emo who acts more whiny than Hayden Christensen in the prequels. Why would you lessen your villain like this? Disney has taken the dark comedy of Vader in Empire Strikes Back and turned it into an office sitcom with a mean boss. And their villain is such a pussy that they needed to make him kill Han Solo in a cheap attempt to get the audience to have any sort of feelings about him.
The heroes arrive at this castle run by a stupid-looking CGI character straight out of Pixar/the Prequels, named Maz Kanata. This castle is another blatant rip-off of the Mos Eisley cantina scene. This isn’t “fan service” as some have tried to label it. This is lazy screenwriting. And it shows a lack of respect for the material as well as the fans. The Maz Kanata character is totally useless, and Finn’s little bit of dialogue where he reveals he’s a Stormtrooper is incredibly clichéd. The writing in this film is dreadful, worse than an undergrad at a liberal arts college, and the delivery ain’t much better.
And apparently lightsabers can now call out to people? What the fuck? Why would this Maz Kanata person have Luke’s old lightsaber from Cloud City? Why would it be left in the basement in a chest where anybody in the galaxy could just come and swipe it? If you’re going to have Luke and Darth Vader’s old lightsaber show up, then fucking explain it. Han Solo even comments like “where did you get that” and all Maz says is “that’s a story for another time.” More like “that’s a story for another writer because I’m too fucking lazy to think up a reason!”
The lack of explanation in this movie is a hallmark of JJ Abrams because he’s just trying to hit the next plot point and doesn’t care about story! He doesn’t even care about the internal logic of the Star Wars universe! I mean, Finn somehow picks up this lightsaber and is able to wield it in battle against a trained Stormtrooper with a ridiculous “First Order” anti-lightsaber weapon. This sequence of events makes no sense at all. And Finn really should have been fighting the Captain Phasma character in this scene. Another wasted opportunity.
Rey gets abducted, Leia and Han share a scene of stilted dialogue, and Poe’s sudden reappearance in the story in the story is never explained. I think we get a throwaway bit of dialogue later where he says he survived and walked away. I’m sorry but that’s not really good enough Disney. We find out that Kylo Ren is Han and Leia’s son, and Kylo Ren takes off his mask, deflating his character even more. What’s wrong with your face? As soon as he took the mask off the first time it sort of let out the mystery and allure of the character. Darth Solo becomes quite whiney, almost child-like, after this point.
These family associations were revealed much too soon without the required build up or heft. And the stuff that should have been answered right away was left untouched. Like what the flying fuck is this Snookie thing suppoed to be?? This is one of the most god-awful pieces of CGI filth that I have ever witnessed. It’s fairly obvious they’re setting this giant hologram up to be a very small character in real life, one which will probably be training Kylo Ren in the next movie, as Yoda did with Luke in Empire Strikes back. Because it’s poetry! Everything rhymes! Fucking hell…
We find out that R2-D2 has been in a self-imposed “decommissioned” state ever since Luke left. Why? We’re never told. Then we’re treated to an explanation of how the new Death Star is literally 10 times scarier than the last one. Wow. Disney must think you all are idiots. They actually spell it out for you: “but this time it’s ten times bigger!” And apparently the Empire has not learned it’s lesson after episodes I, IV, and VI because it’s built yet another weapons-ship that basically has a self-destruct button. Holy fuck, you have an unlimited budget! Could you not come up with something better??
Another awkward scene is where Chewie tackles Cpt Phasma and Finn starts getting in her face. That is just so “millennial” I can’t fucking stand it. Those lines are way too “modern” for the Star Wars universe. Then, Phasma betrays her whole organization by lowering the shields on the Starkiller base! Aren’t these highly trained elite guards? Why would Phasma give up this info just because she has a gun to her head?! Finn and Han apparently KILL her anyway as their next batch of dialogue indicates they will crush her in a trash compactor. Yeah real sympathetic heroes there!
Now the part where the movie just fell apart for me is Han’s death. There is a way to dispose of the biggest badass in the universe in a dignified, proper way. The Force Awakens fails to do this. Despite the fact that this death was foreshadowed in the movie way too much (we could see it coming a mile away), it also had very little build-up or impact on the story. In fact, it’s unnecessary! Han Solo should have gone out in a blaze of glory, not get cut down by Darth Pussy and dumped in a pit. The character, as well as the fans, deserved better than that.
Rather than the desired effect of making the audience sad, or angry at Kylo Ren, or maybe giving Han a touching send off, we’re just left mad at Disney for executing this so poorly. There was so much untapped potential there, and Han’s last adventure was pretty lame to be honest. Worst of all, we’re apparently never getting the reunion of Leia, Luke, Han, Lando and the gang that we all were waiting for! This was the chance of a lifetime and these corporate fucks who made this godforsaken movie have denied us of that satisfaction. Han never even calls C-3PO “goldenrod” or nothing!
If you’re going to kill Han, there’s a way to do it. Even a few adjustments to that scene would have made it much more impactful. Imagine if we had not been shown Kylo Ren’s face yet, or told that he was Han’s son. Now, when Han steps out on the bridge, instead of calling out “Ben!” he calls out “Luke!” For a moment, the audience thinks that Luke is Kylo Ren! But then it is revealed that Han named his son Luke (not Ben). Now that would have had MUCH more resonance, would have kept the mystery and intrigue of Kylo Ren intact until the climax of the film, and helped validate Han’s death.
The dialogue in this scene also sucked. I just did not buy the whole "you're my son, come home" thing at all. It’s like watching a rough cut of first takes where the actors were so focused on saying their lines, that all they did was say their lines. And Darth Crybaby decides to turn back to the Dark Side just as the sun goes out? Give me a break! How corny can you get?! Meanwhile, another useless character, Poe Dameron is leading yet another trench run of X-Wings trying to hit a small port or whatever in the Death Star… I mean “Starkiller Base” …while the good guys disable the shield.
What a bore. And the lightsaber battle, if you can call it that, was a mess. Men in tights had better swordsmanship! Finn lands a blow on a trained Jedi? I don’t think so. And Rey learns to use the force in less than an afternoon and defeats someone who has been trained in both the Dark Side and the Light (by Luke himself)! Sorry, but no one learns that fast, Luke wasn't even a full on master by ROTJ. Yet this girl is intuitively doing Jedi Mind Tricks and all sorts of other nonsense? Disney once again shits upon the morals, ethics, and internal rules of the Star Wars universe. How can this happen?
Well, I'm not an anti-feminist but it’s really too much in this movie. It’s like the female lead just had everything handed to her because she couldn’t be made to seem vulnerable to men in any way. It’s not “progressive” in any way and if you think it is you’re a sucker. This is just a marketing gimmick, and I’m sure girls will love this flick as it taps into the whole Hunger Games motif. Just like with that Mad Max movie: it was complete shit but it has a “progressive” agenda so there you go. In a few years though, people will realize these “movies” are not as good as they all thought.
Did I mention Ren’s lightsaber design makes no sense? Well it doesn’t, you’d chop off your hands at the wrist if you used that thing, and an opponent could easily cut through the metal of the hilt, rendering it as useless as Maz Kanata. And so this pathetic excuse for a “duel” ends with the biggest, laziest Deus ex Machina you could imagine. An earthquake just so happens to split the planet in half right where our main characters are standing. Bullshit. I can’t believe people can just eat this stuff up, are you all in denial or something?
And how is there even trees and atmosphere on this planet if it’s sucking up solar energy everywhere it goes? What kind of crazy planet is this? Also, when the weapon was fired, the heroes on Takodana can see the blast traveling through space. How? Space is awfully big. The Base is in one solar system and the target system is another then how is the beam seen by the heroes in a third solar system? And are we led to believe that the Republic has now been obliterated by the Starkiller? That completely invalidates all the struggle and hardship our characters went through over the previous episodes!
The movie makes no sense and my head hurts from the illogical series of events not to mention the shitty 3D glasses. I mean, I have great vision and it was unimpressive and straight up blurry at times. But anyways, now we come to the end of the movie. No eulogy for Han, no memorial. Chewie whimpers for 2 seconds and that’s all we get. After returning from the final battle, why does Chewbacca walk past Leia without even a growl? Did they have an affair years ago that we don’t know about? Why does Leia hug Rey when they don’t even know each other?
R2-D2 wakes up because it’s convenient for the plot (no other reason is given). And we see this silly map we’ve been chasing the whole movie. It’s literally just a little puzzle piece that was missing. Are you telling me that the Galactic Republic couldn’t find Luke in that little area of outer space? And why the fuck would Luke abandon his people like that? Was he really that shitty of a teacher? Were Han and Leia such shitty parents? Didn’t anyone ever tell this kid that Darth Vader redeemed himself at the end of ROTJ? Fuck! Leaving an audience with questions is one thing, this just makes no fucking sense.
Jar Jar Abrams is famous for his whole “Mystery Box” thing but this movie had no great mystery. The big stuff was predictable, interesting characters were wasted, and I’m not terribly interested in all the smaller unexplained bits of the plot. I have to wait for the sequel to find out what the fuck that CGI shitfest of a character is?? No thanks. I can live with one or two "wait to find out" elements, but there were just too many things left unanswered. Where did they get the map to locate Luke? Even the main McGuffin, a cheap plot device, remains unexplained. This isn’t art, it’s lazy writing. The movie sucks.
I don't even want to watch the next movie in this series because The Force Awakens is just terrible. Did Jar Jar Abrams just pick up a script from A New Hope and cross off some line and add like two new characters and call it a day?? And this movie is getting rave reviews! How gullible and stupid are people anyways?! The expanded universe has a way better story line than this movie, but of course Disney cancelled that too, in another F.U. to the hardcore fans. People should just start boycotting this franchise and supporting indie sci-fi. Hit these corporate assholes in the pocket.
After all the marketing and publicity, Force Awakens is just an insulting rip off of the original with less tension, and uneven spots of humor, plot management, and character. It started badly, declined quickly, and ended as an utter failure. John Williams' music score was not even memorable. The whole thing is just a mediocre film with a recycled plot, forgettable characters, awful acting, and terrible writing. It is full of continuity errors and actions which make no logical sense at all. The movie badly needed a script editor but they spent all their budget on shitty CGI characters.
The main problem is that it doesn't do enough new. It's a copy of episode 4 with NO ORIGINALITY. They completely failed in their attempts to reference the old and develop the new. Nostalgia was awkwardly inserted in an unsatisfying attempt at recalling the original magic, and things like the first order, phasma, and the starkiller base were heavily underused. Like shouldn’t the First Order be called the Resistance? Not the Republic? Who wrote this crap? What group of morons decided this was the movie we get?
The Disney-fied "Star Wars" is a soulless, formulaic corporate British import movie with bogus box office media accounting and reviews by the usual trolls praising and protecting it. This junk got old years ago. I could go on and on about how you’re all getting ripped off. Hey, I want to relive the feeling I had when I watch the original three movies just as much as anyone, but I wanted that feeling with something new, and fresh. Disney, and even George Lucas himself, does not respect you or the material. If you’re one of those “fanboys” out there, then snap out of it. Stop watching Disney movies and grow some brain cells.