December 20, 2019

The Rise of Skywalker – Review

This post is 100% spoiler-free!

I hadn’t planned on seeing the 9th and final installment of the Star Wars main story arc today. Wrapping up my last workday before heading into a few days off for the holidays I was informed that my eldest would be going to see Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker at 4:30, and I needed to take her to the theatre. Wanting to make sure she connected with her friends, I walked her in. We were uncharacteristically early so we waited together and chatted. I realized that I started her on the Star Wars journey years ago and I should be there to finish it. I dropped my money on the counter and grabbed a ticket.

After 30 minutes, literally, of trailers, the iconic tagline of blue text came across the screen, “A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away …”. The horns blasted and the black and gold of the Star Wars were plastered across the screen. The scrolling text provides an update of where we are in the story after the events of The Last Jedi. The movie wastes no time jumping into a chaotic battle scene with the main antagonist, Kylo Ren, leading the First Order on the field.

Quickfire: The Rise of Skywalker

To avoid accidentally revealing anything about the film I’ll instead make a few comments as to the film in general. If you’d like to discuss it in detail, I’d LOVE to! Reach out to me via my contact form or if you know me personally, then just text me!

  • The Rise of Skywalker doesn’t drag like I felt The Last Jedi did. The pace is solid and each part of the story feels like it has merit and knits together well. Both were problems that plagued The Last Jedi.
  • It is common knowledge that “our Princess”, Carrie Fischer, passed away at the end of 2016. The ending that was given to her character, Princess Leia was nothing short of perfect. Even the dialogue around the event seemed to resonate not only inside the story but with the feeling of the public at large.
    • A certain news outlet had an editorial stating that they should have recast her role. That outlet can drown in the lava flows of Mustafar as far as I’m concerned.
  • We finally find out who Rey is and it is indeed surprising.
  • There are SEVERAL little nods to the former movies. Some of them are obvious while others you have to really be paying attention to catch. My daughter missed a big one that I can’t talk about because it will give away a surprise cameo. I about jumped out of my seat.

Is this the best Star Wars movie ever? No. Personally the original holds a special place in my heart. But its also not the worst. I would rank it among the better of the 9 but can’t call it the best. The ending is solid, and while there will be those who dislike a particular character’s demise, it certainly makes sense in the grand scheme of the story. I think that will be the hardest thing for fans to swallow.

To the fellow geeks and nerds out there …

To me though, one of the truest ‘Star Wars’ moments occurred before I bought my ticket. Waiting in line next to my daughter a group of 4 or 5 teenage boys was talking about the Star Wars movies. They were talking about which film was best and each of them making their case. One of the kids stated that another friend, who wasn’t part of the group, stated that a certain one of the films was better than another. One of the boys said that he could see the point and immediately the most passionate of the group said, “Boy you best get away from me with that kind of talk before I roll up on you”. It was great seeing people being passionate about something they love.

The movie is great. It’s worth seeing in the theatre. The fact that there are 9 of the films says more though. When Star Wars came out, things like comic books and sci-fi were seen as things that only geeks or nerds enjoyed. Fast forward some 40 years and comic book movies have dominated the screen for well over a decade. Star Wars has 9 core movies and multiple Star Wars “stories”, Star Trek has had an equal number of movies and multiple iterations of TV shows. The nerds and geeks have grown up, they’ve had kids and they are sharing their passions. We, my fellow geeks, have won.

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