New Star Wars film awakens reminiscent feelings


Lucasfilm Ltd

Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens premiered Dec. 18, thirty years after the defeat of the Galactic Empire. The classic film series features new and old beloved characters with an action packed plot, creating several theories about sequels to come.

Becca Yi, Activities Editor

Over the winter holidays, movie-goers swarmed at the entrance of the theater, clad in Star Wars t-shirts and dressed in the occasional Chewbacca costume. Like never before, theaters across the world experienced the might of the Star Wars franchise as their box offices exploded with seemingly endless sales. Theaters filled rapidly with people clutching their drinks and massive popcorn buckets, chattering before the movie began. I, too, was among many who sat eagerly, waiting for the previews to end.

I was originally skeptical about the new film due to the extreme promotion and hype, but I hoped that J.J. Abrams would do the series justice. I had no doubt that the graphics would be spectacular, but would the new characters and plot disappoint old fans? Abrams had the pressure of pleasing old and new fans alike.

The appearance of the Millennium Falcon on-screen, as well as that of Chewie, Han, and Leia, brought back nostalgic feelings from the original movies. New viewers were engaged by the new plot, while the presence of old characters delighted old fans.  However, the plot line was considerably similar to the early series and somewhat lacked originality. For example, many new characters filled in roles analogous to old ones.

Thankfully, the new characters were wonderfully constructed, and I especially adored Rey’s character, extremely thankful that Star Wars finally found a competent lead actor. Strong and adventure-seeking, Star Wars portrayed Rey as both raw and genuine. Viewers found deep satisfaction in her spirited personality and attitude; the idea of a damsel in distress was nonexistent. I found the dynamic between Rey and Finn very amusing and I enjoyed their chemistry onscreen. This new film had perhaps the best cast out of the seven films.

Though the new characters were well-received, I was slightly saddened at the absence of favorite characters from the previous films. Maz, showing similarities to Yoda’s stature and wisdom, seemed to exist in order to replace the deceased Jedi Master. I found her spectacles endearing, but I still missed the presence of the much-loved Yoda. Kylo Ren, a new and powerful antagonist, emerged as a Darth Vader ‘wannabe’. Though he’s an interesting and complex character, I am not sure that he will receive as much love as the original man in the mask.

As the first of the three hotly anticipated Star Wars movies, it left viewers with plenty of questions and spawned an explosion of theories related to the main character’s heritage.  Rotten Tomatoes rating: 92%. My rating: 3/4 stars. J.J. Abrams, may the Force continue to be with you.