I saw Star Wars: The Force Awakens today. Let me ask you, is there a better theme song than the opening Star Wars Overture? Just hearing the strains of John Williams thematic masterpiece gives me chills, and I’ll admit I teared up a bit as song as the opening crawl began. But I digress…
I went in with rapt wonder, waiting for the film to begin, lamenting that I had to wait this long after opening day to watch the movie. I tried to avoid spoilers, but yesterday I read a major one, one that put a little dent in my fangirl excitement. I went in regardless, determined not to let it ruin my experience.
My problem now is that I want to talk about the movie, but I can’t. I won’t be that person to ruin the movie for anyone. I will say that it’s magnitudes better than the prequels, and I enjoyed them to an extent. But they never managed to capture the old magic of the original trilogy. In my opinion, The Force Awakens did. Maybe it was the inclusion of the original cast that did it. Maybe JJ Abrams and the writing crew just wrote a superior script, but the cast and crew recaptured that magic.
There’s also the new additions to the cast, the next generation to continue the saga. Daisy Ridley and John Boyega are wonderful actors, making me care about the characters they were portraying, as did Oscar Isaac and Adam Driver. They complimented Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher wonderfully.
I loved how everyone had their part to play, not limited in scope due to race or gender. Women were given their due as forces in their own right, without resorting to insulting the male gender. Abrams was deft in his direction of the movie, a vision that it’s not the sex or gender of an individual that defines an individual, but it’s what’s on the inside that makes all the difference.
And every main character has their strengths and their weaknesses. Every one gained something and lost something they hold dear in victory. On of my favorite scenes is when (minor spoiler) General Leia and Rey find each other after the battle and embrace each other in abject grief, in stark contrast to the rest of the troop who were jubilant in celebration.
I loved this movie. I want to watch it again. Then again. And I can’t wait for Star Wars VIII and IX. I need to know what happens next. I need to follow their journey, to see each one of the character’s journeys as they grow. In the end, that’s why we follow a saga. It’s not only what happens, but rather is how our heroes react to their trials that makes us care. In a way, we want to be the heroes we see on screen, and I want deperately to be as awesome a Leia and Rey.