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Monday, December 21, 2015

Quick Review: Star Wars: The Force Awakens

So just before Star Wars: The Force Awakens began I posted this question to my Facebook and Twitter: "Star Wars will be a reboot/nostalgia exercise. But will it be great (Creed), awful (Terminator: Genisys) or in between (Vacation)?"

Now, I enjoyed the original trilogy a lot, but I was never that obsessed with it. I never bothered to see Episodes 1 through 3 (especially when I heard about Jar Jar Binks) or got into any of the spinoff products (cartoons, novels, comic books...). So for me the hype for the new installment got to be a little much, and the endless ads touting everything from autos to fast food to jewelry were an extreme turnoff. And the extreme obsession over spoilers! IF YOU DON'T WANT SPOILERS, STAY OFF THE INTERNET! But, because I am kind, I won't post any details that will spoil your experience. This time.

I really didn't want to see it on the opening weekend, knowing the theaters would be crowded and not wanting to seem to reward the previously mentioned ad campaign. But bus and movie schedules, plus my desire to not miss too much of the NFL, combined to put me in one of those crowded theaters.

I look at it as one of those Colorforms sets from way back (and today, as their website makes clear). You take vinyl pieces and slap them on plastic backgrounds. There are many scenes in SW:TFA that are very similar to those in the original, but instead of the original characters, newbies are slapped into their place. And, bit by bit, those originals appear to tie events together and propel the plot towards the next film.

So as for that scale I established: it certainly tapped into the nostalgia. As for updating or bringing a new perspective on things, not as well as "Creed" but definitely better than "Vacation." If you're one of those superfans, you'll love it. Me, as I said, I'm not one of them, so... My grade: B.

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