I know, I'm delaying my Hobbit film review post again. But I'm already late to the party with reviewing this film and I didn't want to interrupt The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug once it got started.
My little local cinema outdid themselves at the end of last year, when they
were able to arrange a midnight showing of the latest Star Wars film, The Force
Awakens. I didn't go to it, but I was very keen to see the film. I was half
hoping that we might manage a trip to the mainland to see it in a big cinema at
some point over the holidays, but the weather was so bad we spent the whole time
on the island.
We got down to the final three days of it at the cinema and Mr Click scored
us some tickets. I'm actually kind of glad we didn't see it until towards the
end of the run because it meant that we weren't seeing it in a packed out
cinema. Plus I've diligently avoided spoilers and all my colleagues and friends
have been very careful about not revealing spoilers to me (which I'm thrilled
That said, if you don't want to be spoiled. Don't read this post. There will
be spoilers abounding in the next few paragraphs.
I'm warning you. Seriously, don't read on if you don't want to know what
happens in this film.
Okay, read on, but don't say I didn't warn you.
This 'Episode' of the Star Wars saga is set roughly thirty years after the
events of Return of the Jedi and things are not going so well in the galaxy far
far away. A rather Nazi-ish group, known as the First Order, is trying to take
over where Darth Vader left off, meanwhile the Resistance (a new and improved
Rebel Alliance) is doing their best to bring them down. An X-wing pilot, Poe,
hides an important document in a droid (the adorable BB-8), which then falls in
with Rey and Finn (a scavenger and a Storm Trooper deserter, respectively) who
must use this information to help the Resistance and bring down the First
Order's latest weapon.
It all feels a little bit A New Hope.
And in a way it kind of is. There's an awful lot here which took me right
back to A New Hope, to the degree that I came out of the cinema and pronounced
it Star Wars: A New New Hope.
But I loved every minute of it.
Seriously, right from the moment that familiar music started, and the text
began to scroll. I was in my element. I was almost expecting to be disappointed
by the film, because so many people had told me how good it was, that I couldn't
really believe that it was going to be that good. Sure, there are bits
I could pick fault with, but on the whole, it was a really good story and I like
how it's set things up for future films.
I should probably begin with the cast, but I honestly can't start with any of
the human characters. They are all upstaged by the cute little droid, BB-8. Move
over R2 and Wall-E, I've got a new favourite robot! It's amazing that a large
ball with a head on top can have so much character, but he really does. I
especially love the way that he hides behind people's legs and then peers out.
He looks really scared and you feel for him. I really want an actual BB-8 of my
Also, Han Solo, Leia, Chewbaca, R2-D2, C3P0 and Luke! Everyone's there. It's
so much fun watching them all appear on the screen and then wondering if any of
the others will. And then they do! I'm so glad they did it like that.
I know that some people online have complained about scavenger, Rey's
Mary-Sue-ish qualities and I can sort of see where they're coming from. She
impressed Han Solo, for crying out loud! She's never had any training in the
Force but just picks it up without any trouble and she can get the Millennium
Falcon flying without too much trouble. But all the same, she's all kinds of
awesome. I love that she's a female character who just doesn't really need
rescuing; she ends up in difficult situations or in trouble and then just does
what she can to get out of it. I hope that's a trend that continues in the
I also like the character of Finn. Considering he's basically a clone,
there's something very human about him. He found himself in a horrible situation
and did what he needed to in order to escape, he's a little like Rey in that
respect. At the same time, he's ashamed of where he came from and doesn't want
anyone to know, so he's prepared to make up things which could potentially get
him into trouble. He doesn't want to be a hero, he doesn't want to save the
world, he just wants to get somewhere safe without anyone trying to kill him.
He's very much a reluctant hero and it's that ambiguity in the character which I
The biggest moment for me in the film was when they killed Han Solo! I'm so
glad that I wasn't spoiled for that, it was such a shock that it took everything
in me not to yell out 'NO!' in the middle of the cinema. It certainly
had the effect it was supposed to.
As for the rest of the film, I'm not sure I was prepared for it to be as
funny as it was. I can't wait to see it again because there are some truly
hilarious moments. One of my favourite bits was when Rey was trying to fix the
Millennium Falcon and is getting Finn to hand her the tools she needs. She keeps
pointing to the one she wants while he holds up completely wrong tools, she gets
really annoyed with him and is all 'No! The one I'm pointing to!"'
I'm torn between reading online spoilers and speculation about the next films
and avoiding it so it's all a big surprise to me when it comes. I'm fairly
certain that Rey has got to be some relation to Luke or Leia. I just can't wait
to see it again.