Monday, February 03, 2020

Star Wars IX: The Rise of Skywalker (2019)


I took the family to see this late December, and I enjoyed myself, but I was experiencing several emotions while viewing the film.  One emotion is of familiarity.  Having grown up with the Star Wars films and it having such a profound experience on me as a young teenager I come full circle now as I view it with my own children.  I was glad to see the old cast again even if it was briefly.   It connected the film for me, and as well I enjoyed the adventure that the characters were on.  The music and the effect were all fine, and why would it not be since ILM was still involved.  It was a new cast for as new generation, and maybe thats where it gets emotional.   I saw Star Wars back in 1979, and it profoundly changed me and lite my imagination on fire.  I knew that I wanted to become involved in filmmaking.  George Lucas was my major influencer and I knew his work such as "THX1138" and "American Graffiti".  To make a long story short I looked forward to the sequels, and the way filmmaking was changing.

Its now over 40 years later and I am with my own family seeing the end of the chapter in the Star Wars saga, and I get misty eyed.  I am older, and its more behind me then it is in front of me, and I see the youthful ambition and excitement in my own children.  It's like I have to take a breath and say where did it all go?  I'm sure others say it as well.  It's not an unusual phenomenon.

So how is the movie you say?  After all isn't this a review of the film.  After all I did establish this blog way back when for reviews, and all things about filmmaking.

I have to say YES!  The movie is fun and exciting.  The critical side of me says that the story is weak, and that Disney brought back an old villain when originally Lucas never really wrote it that way, or saw it that way.  My oldest as well as my youngest even commented on it, and they have become a Star Wars aficionado's.

It was said that Lucas had a outline for his Star Wars epic saga, and it seems Disney threw that out.  Maybe they thought it was too dark, or that it didn't fit what they interpreted as the Star War's universe.  Whatever the reason the movie is weaker then the original films, and in fact makes you enjoy Star Wars I, II, and III better.  Lucas seemed to have a better vision on the earlier Star Wars universe then maybe he did in post "Return of the Jedi" time.

We'll never know.  But the film is worth seeing and I challenge anyone to say that they did not enjoy the rollercoaster ride of the film.  The film is structured like that.  In fact the film comes out of the gate quickly and doesn't disappoint in the action.

Is the movie a nice wrap up of the series?  YES.  Is it emotional for us original Star Wars fans?  YES!

Going forward the ball is in Disney's court to create interesting storylines and interesting characters in the Star Wars universe.  If "the Mandalorian" which is streaming on Disney is any is any example on what Disney wants to do they may be going in the right direction.  Time will tell.  All I can say is Disney better not get sloppy, and just produce product for the money.  Because money is guaranteed only if they stay faithful to the original series.

But back to the film.  "Star Wars IX: the rise of Skywalker" is a nice send off.  One that can be emotional for us older fans, but none the less satisfying.    See it with your family you'll get a bigger kick seeing it through their eyes because it will remind you of when you first saw the original Star  Wars back in 1977.