I just got out of seeing Star Wars Episode VII The Force Awakens and made myself the celebratory dinner you see before you (Sarnac Caramel Porter not pictures). It is going to take me a while and many subsequent viewing to fully digest it (the movie not the food). In the true since of this blog, I am going to say two to three things that I liked and two to three things that I didn't like.
The cinematics are great for the long shots, there are a number of callbacks and fan-service and lots and a very strong female protagonist. There are lots of sweeping long shots of exotic places that Star Wars may not be particularly renown for but were certainly impactful. Scattered about are little things that will make fans of the original three films happy. They are all pretty obvious but made me laugh. The heroin don't need no man to save her and kicks all the butt while the boys are looking for their glasses on the ground. Finally, holy crap holy OMG WTF! Why are you reading this and not watching it?!?!?!?
There was a surprising amount about this film that I didn't like. It didn't make much sense, there were a lot of needless long holds on faces and disrespect for the Expanded Universe. Much like other J.J. Abrams joints, the plot does not make much sense. Each scene makes sense and it makes sense with the scenes before and after it. When I reflect back on it, character motivations seem to come out of nowhere. Unrelated to plot, the dialogue was also very clunky with characters introducing themselves like it was the first day of Kindergarten. There are lots of long holds that seem to say to me, "Look, we got Harrison Ford. Look at this Harrison ford that we got." I found it bothersome after the third go. There is so much written in the Expanded Universe that would have either made perfectly acceptable movies or have been easy (or at very least not hard) to write around. To have the writers of these movies throe all that out now puts the new cannon of these films at odds with almost 30 years of previously authorized cannon. I find that distressing.
All of that negativity aside, I immensely enjoyed my time. The audience was pretty tame but it was a 4pm on a Friday. I wanted to stand up, cheer, scream and cry all at the same time when the crawl followed the "Lucasarts" logo. I was too young to see the original holy trilogy in theaters but saw all the remakes and the modern trilogy in theaters. I am looking forward to seeing where this will go. The only good thing about throwing out the old cannon is that I have no idea what is coming next. That is pretty exciting.