Thursday, May 7, 2020

I'm still a Star Wars fan

The rise of skwalker poter
By Source, Fair use,

I think pretty well everybody knows I'm a die-hard Star Wars fan so everybody might be a little bit surprised that I've waited this long to see the last chapter in the Skywalker saga. There were a couple of reasons for that. I despised The Force Awakens, thought the The Last Jedi was a little bit better - but wasn't too excited at the idea of Episode 9. And Ep 9 was directed by JJ Abrams who had directed Ep 7. So I waited til The Rise of Skywalker was released on Disney+.

All in all, it met expectations in that it was full of action, with the cast lurching from one dangerous situation to the next. The scenes with Leia were quite well handled. As we all know, Carrie Fisher died before the movie was filmed but there were enough unused shots of her from The Last Jedi to paper over the missing bits. Naturally, Kylo Ren, Rey, Fin, Po, and Chewbacca are front and center, kicking the plot along. Luke Sywalker and Han Solo make appearances as Force ghosts. And the setting, the different planets and so on are, as always, brilliant.

But the basic premise - that Emperor Palpatine had been the force behind Snoke and the First Order - didn't work for me at all. I couldn't see any point in bringing in an elderly Lando Calrissian and I think it was a shame young Rose who played an important role in The Last Jedi was used as an extra. I had huge questions about the suddenly unveiled Imperial Fleet and several of the scenes had me shaking my head at the implausibility of it all. I understand that Star Wars is a fantasy but it's nice if there's at least a bit of adherence to basic physics. At least we weren't subjected (too often) to what happened in earlier films. Oh - and I think the title is ridiculous, chosen to emulate Return of the Jedi and Revenge of the Sith.

This movie had a difficult task to fulfill. It was supposed to bring closure to the Sywalker saga and its many threads. In the end I felt it was episodic, trying to do too much with too many threads. I'd give it a 3, a fun spectacle if you didn't think too much about it.

So why am I still a Star Wars fan?

Because there is so much scope for great movies beyond the original trilogy, prequels, sequels.

I thoroughly enjoyed Rogue One and I'm on the edge of my seat for the next season of The Mandalorian. Solo didn't work because no-one but Harrison Ford will ever be able to play the role of Han Solo. Now that all the old hands are gone, there are opportunities for the new blood. Maybe we'll see Po and Fin off in the Galaxy somewhere, or perhaps Lando going off with the female ex-storm trooper to find her home world. They could well be lots of fun.

in other news, my new book, Retribution, the sequel to For the Greater Good, is now in edit. I'll tell you more about it next time. I might even have a blurb.


  1. Great points, Greta! I did not like The Last Jedi, is seemed to ramble all over the place with no real reason. Much preferred JJ Abrams's contributions, although, it was interesting how in The Rise of Skywalker he seemed to pretend The Last Jedi never happened.

    From what I understand, there was such a backlash against Rose's character, Abrams had to diminish her role--and possible love affair with Finn--just to get people back onboard. I too was disappointed by this. Rose is a wonderful character!

    1. Thanks, Lea. I'm just glad it's over and we (they) can get on and make something original - like The Mandalorian.

  2. I was happy with the ending. Though the action sequences were enough to make my head spin, there was some good content in there. I especially loved Ben channeling Han, but of course he couldn't have an HEA with Rey after being responsible for the murder of billions of people. I also agree the title, while very catchy, didn't have a whole lot to do with the episode, other than the forced line of dialogue at the end that MADE it fit.

    The conclusion left me feeling a little melancholy, but not devastated--as I was with the Game of Thrones finale. I felt it was a good wrap on the main saga. Hey, it was finally completed in my lifetime, and thankfully before Covid-19 closed the theaters, so it's all good.

    Like you, I hope there are other awesome Star Wars projects yet to be unveiled. (I haven't had the opportunity to watch The Mandalorian yet. I hear it's great.)

    1. Sounds like you were happier with it than I was. The main thing for me is that the original trilogy characters are now faded into history. I think that reference back to the original storyline became a burden. Time to move on.


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