(spoilers galore) Star Wars Force Awakens: Seen it discussion

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  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    Given Harrison Ford's wish to be killed off in ESB and RotJ (if he'd gotten his wish that brother/sister crap never would have happened), I assume getting killed off was one of his demands for Force Awakens. That, and $25 million up front and a percentage of the back end. 

  • edited January 2016

    @DanielGWood - yeah, I don't expect him to survive. I think it would be dumb if he did. But it wouldn't be unprecedented: Boba Fett survived the Sarlacc, Palpatine survived falling down a very similar hole in ROTJ, and Darth Maul survived getting cut in half and falling down a similar hole, in the books.

    Also, Kylo Ren was left bleeding out on the same exploding planet, but I fully expect to see him again in Ep. VIII.

  • @AxelWilkinson,

    "Darth Maul survived getting cut in half and falling down a similar hole, in the books."

    Not just the books, but he shows up in the Clone Wars animated series sporting a pair of cybernetic legs.  His "hate kept him alive", as his dialogue explains.

    Anyhoo, I loved the new movie, and as usual didn't really have a problem with any of the stuff other people disliked.  Although I do think that if we were to create a drinking game whereby a line of dialogue, plot point, or character concept that was lifted from the original trilogy caused you to drink, you'd be dead by the end of the first act.  I could get worked up over it, but it is what it is.

    While we're vaguely on the subject, Simon and Axel's tutorials, especially on the sci-fi and Star Wars stuff, has been absolutely invaluable to me in learning the ins and outs of Hitfilm.  We can nitpick and overanalyze the movies all we want, but the fact is that Star Wars made me want to go into the movie business.  I never did, but as Simon says in his latest video, we can do this stuff on our desktop now.  I'm living a lifelong dream.  Thanks guys!

  • "Boba Fett survived the Sarlacc, Palpatine survived falling down a very similar hole in ROTJ, and Darth Maul survived getting cut in half and falling down a similar hole, in the books"

    @AxelWilkinson only having read one, random, book from the Expanded Universe I had only heard of Boba Fett's survival (which to be honest I thought a little daft, it kinda ruins the terror of the sarlacc, but maybe it's better in the actual story. As I say I haven't read it).

    Palpatine surviving like that seems ludicrous, and Maul? He was a badass, but that's just plain stupid.

    Kylo Ren will (sadly?) almost definitely be back. To be fair though, they prepared the ground for that - I believe Angry Redheaded Fellow was ordered to pick up Ren and bring him to Giant Hologram Serkis at the end of Awakens.

     

  • Fett's survival is actually pretty cool. The short story makes it clear that it's incredibly difficult, requires a huge amounts of self-discipline and patience and toughness, and essentially implies that only Fett could have pulled it off.

    SO, TFA: it was ok. First two thirds was actually pretty perfect - it certainly re-uses ideas and themes from the original films, but it consistently puts a nice twist on them, and has new ideas of its own. A stormtrooper having a change of heart is actually a Big Deal, and fun to see. Focusing on a non-Force-enabled rebel pilot who isn't just Porkins-style cannon fodder. Genuinely likeable characters.

    It's the last third that goes downhill, because it stops putting interesting twists on familiar themes and just repeats them rote. The destruction of the 'Republic' (it's not defined what that even means - does that include Coruscant??) and the death of Solo, not to mention what's happened to Luke and Kylo Ren etc, fundamentally changes the nature of the original trilogy (and the prequels).

    For 30 years, since I was a kid, Star Wars was a sci-fi fairy tale with redemption and victory and a 'happy ever after' feel at the end. Sure, that isn't realistic, but that was never the purpose or style of Star Wars as a story.

    By transforming it into a Marvel-style on-going forever-franchise (and as you'll know, I love the Marvel stuff), they've actually broken the original films, which are now reframed as a hugely tragic tale. The victory in the OT was for nothing. Han and Leia's classic romance was for nothing, and in fact every moment of romance in Empire and Jedi is now tainted with Solo's eventual death at the hands of his son. Even the prequels are made even more grim, because Anakin's rise, fall and partial redemption are kinda neither here nor there, because it all just continues with Snoke now taking over from the Emperor.

    The first 6 films had a cohesive tale: the rise and fall of the Emperor and the Skywalkers, and how that changed the fate of the galaxy. That was the point.

    Star Wars as a whole is a completely different story now. It's not necessarily better or worse, it's just different. I haven't decided whether I like the new version yet.

  • @Triem23 many Bothan spies died to bring you this information.

    "Yup, great stuff. I actually liked The Phantom Menace, too, but Attack of the Clones really is something else......amazing stuff. Great stuff all round. Some people won't like the romance plot, some people won't like the political stuff, but I liked all of it. And it was damned funny, and it just KICKED ASS in so many place. So many defining moments in this one. And, yes, Hayden Christensen is fantastic." - Simon Jones

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    Quick digression here (soooo... "quick"  for me is... I'll try to keep it short. For me. 

    Ok, books, videogames, RPGs have no bearing on plot or story at all. The "EU" was officially licensed fanfiction, never "canon." Lucasfilm's position, back to 1993 at least, was that the novels are official, but if a Lucasfilm produced movie or TV show contradicted the novels, the MOVIE is canon. Lucas's (alleged) statement is "The movies are Gospel, everything else is Gossip."

    EU ain't canon, never was. To prove my point, you find Mara Jade in Special Edition RotJ. When Lucas reshot the Jabba Palace scene for ROTJ, her EU backstory was well established. He could have snuck her in. 

    Disney's "decanonizing" the EU didn't matter. It's a seperate story. 

    Simon, I don't know if the changes in the franchise matter as much as you say, in terms of "ruining the fairy tale, since the EU has Han and Leia's only son turning evil, and Chewie dies and... 

    ... Nope, Simon's right,  a few hundred thousand people read the books, tens of millions will see this film. Wow. Eloquently spoken.  

  • "Kylo Ren will (sadly?) almost definitely be back. To be fair though, they prepared the ground for that - I believe Angry Redheaded Fellow was ordered to pick up Ren and bring him to Giant Hologram Serkis at the end of Awakens."

    True. Snoke even made the statement that it was to complete Ren's training. Which could imply that Ren was only loosely trained/corrupted to that point and why Ren was still struggling between light and dark.

  • BB8 reminds me of my chihuahua

    If doomsday weapons engineers in the Star Wars universe ever grasp the concept of redundant systems all hope is lost.

  • As for my overly-enthused statements about the prequels 13 years ago - well, I was young, I was foolish, I needed the money.

  • I enjoyed watching TFA... I liked the characters of Finn and Rey, the characters were actually characters unlike in the Abomination Trilogy (prequels)... but I was disappointed by the fact that it was essentially a rerun. It had new characters and all that, but the story wasn't just borrowed from previous episodes, it was cloned. Same as last time, again, but bigger and prettier. 

    I came out of it thinking that if the original trilogy hadn't existed at all, TFA would have been a great movie, instead of a good remake.

     

  • I need StormyKnight's "Like" button for your comment, WCP. That pretty much nails how I felt about the movie. I liked the new characters, but the story was too much of a rehash.

  • I enjoyed the prequels.  Even Jar Jar.  They're not perfect, I definitely would have done some things differently, but I enjoyed them.

    It's funny.  Star Wars is a huge institution in my life; my dad's actually flying out in a few weeks so we can see TFA together, because we've seen every movie in theaters all the way back to the original release of ANH.  And yet, I don't really get worked up over the gaffs and goofy shit that seems to put other nerds into conniption fits.

    I do have to wonder why the hell they changed the droid voices in Episode III, though.  I loved the battle droids in Episode I, but by the time they got to III it was like someone forgot to overdub the placeholder dialogue.  And then they kept it for the Clone Wars TV series.  Oy.

  • edited January 2016

    Ya, well made movie with no attempt at originality. At least they didn't revisit the midichlorian idiocy.

  • Ah, midichlorians.  Proof positive that the vast majority of Star Wars fans are complete idiots.

    They explain right in the movie that midichlorians cluster around Force-sensitive people.  At the most, they provide a "bridge" between the Force and the Jedi, as Qui-gonn mentions in his "when you learn to quiet your mind" bit.  At no point does anyone ever say that the Midichlorians are the source of the Force.

    But no, every time it comes up it's always "hurr durr MIDICLORIANZ IS TEH FORCE, MYSTICISM OVER BIOLLOGY, GORGE LUCAS RUINED MY CHILDHOOD@"

    Could it have been explained better?  Sure.  Did they basically just need a plot point to get across that Anakin was really powerful?  Yup.  Did the Internet blow a gasket over nothing?  BINGO.

  • No, it was a failure in storytelling. It was basically TELLING the audience that he was powerful, instead of SHOWING the audience that the farce was strong with that one. That wasn't the only glaring failure in storytelling, but it was a classic textbook example of telling instead of showing.

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    Don't get me started on the prequels. Heh. This forum already saw an epic dissection of them which was only the tip of the iceberg! 

  • I'm old at 58 so I saw the original, but never wore a costume.  Too busy partying after high school I guess. Despite this, seeing photos of JJ in full garb as a kid made me respect his childhood devotion.

    I hated several of the six movies but didn't hate this one, so I'd rate it an 8 just for not disappointing me.  No silly Jamaican-Pigden Jar-Jar's though I did spot a generic humanoid Jazz player amongst the alien bar band. Clearly I was sitting on the edge of my vibrating seat waiting to shout out a boo. Didn't happen.

    The plot was very similar to the first but I didn't mind it since I saw it more as a modern remake for this generation than anything else. It might have held it's own without the original actors but now that they've had their swan song my fellow elders should bow out, or fall to their deaths, fondly remembered but no longer seen. (Chewbacca and droids an exception.)

    The music was innocuous to me until the point I actually noticed it as a crescendo of the original track. Subdued and subliminal was better.

    The kid sitting next to me had a Darth Vader mask so let's hope he grows up to be a film-maker that produces something I enjoy as much in the retirement home.

  • edited January 2016

    @Triem23, have you seen the CinemaSins videos on the prequels? They're actually very funny, because there is so much in those films that really shouldn't be there.

    And so much that isn't that should have been... like characters.

    Watching those CinemaSins vids reminded me of why those films nearly killed the careers of several talented and up-and-coming actors, like Natalie Portman.

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    @WhiteCranePhoto I have seen the Cinema Sins videos, but for the definitive tear-apart of the prequels one must give it up for Red Letter Media. 

  • Aladdin4dAladdin4d Moderator
    edited January 2016

    The Phantom Menace was the most disappointing thing since my son

    EDIT: I don't really have a son disappointing or otherwise, it's just a quote

  • edited January 2016

    Never mind.

  • Funny forum edit system. No self-delete function and apparently only one chance to edit. Or maybe it's a delay thing. I'll have to get used to it.

  • You can edit your own posts indefinitely now. When you go back to one there should be a gear icon in the upper right corner of your post.

  • edited January 2016

    BTW, I've just  watched the New Hope today, with my kids. Try to do it and apply the same criticism to it. Oh boy :)

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    I did. Being supercritical on the original (Theatrical edit) does yield many issues. Special Edition adds more, but even tearing apart ANH, it holds up better than Force Awakens and the prequels. 

  • Well, you have the Death Star, that could move to any point in the galaxy in minutes, can destroy whole planet and you want to show it's power and it happens that technical plans of it are on a planet that no-one would care about. Would you:

    1) Send storm troopers to search the planet

    2) Blow the Tatooine up in 20 minutes, congrats, no problem, Death Star saved, now secure this small tunnel leading straight to the reactor :)

    ?

    And even if you choose option 1, why destroy the Jawa's vehicle and kill them all? Why kill Luke's uncle and Aunt (yes, I've see the fan made short but I doubt it is the original idea :) )

    How did R2D2 travelled through the dessert? Sand is not good for small wheels, and the rock slab higher than 25cm (10 inches) stops you in progress. There are no stairs in the SW universe? :)

    Coincidences. Mass of them. For instance, how it is possible, that R2D2 knew, where to head to find Obi Wan?  And if not, what a coincidence, that Obi Wan was in the place to save them from the Sand People?

    And Luke wanted to join the imperial flight academy?

    And so on...

    But well, I like SW, so I don't think too much about all these things. I just let my inner 11 year old boy to enjoy the ride :)

  • See, this is why I don't understand why people tear apart the prequels.  The ORIGINALS don't hold up under any kind of scrutiny.  So yeah, "Midichlorians are bad stoytelling".  Woo.  So was the Star Destroyer holding its fire on the escape pod.

    Honestly, I wonder how Star Wars ever made it big in the first place.  At this point I think it was either a case of moviegoers not being such unappeasable pricks in the '70s or a case of right place, right time.

  • edited January 2016

    The only problem with prequels I have, is that they were targeted to the too wide audience (at least EP1). So it ended up annoyingly childish for grown ups (mainly Jar Jar) and not understandable for kids (politics and Anakin's motivation).

    But even Jar Jar got the significant role in EP2 and EP3, as an example, what the "useful idiot" term means.

  • But coming back to the topic. I really liked the Force Awakens. About 99% of it :) New main characters are great. Also Kylo Ren- the dark side character, tempted by the light side is a nice twist (dark side wannabe?). Also- he seems to be a bit unstable, which will make him more dangerous, than an average black character, I think.

    I treat the copying the story of the New Hope as a message, that the new trilogy will be more like the original movies than prequels.

    The only thing I didn't buy is the map. Who made it? What for? Why it was split and how R2D2 got a part of it?

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