Sunday, December 20, 2015

Star Wars VII: Revéille de la Force

Spoiler alert. If you haven't watched the movie, read at your own risk. You have been warned. I'm posting my thoughts on it now since the movie's been around for a few weeks already.

Matty and I waited for a year to see the seventh episode in the Star Wars space opera. So when the advanced screening presented itself and both of us were willing to pay to be some of the first to see the movie, we trooped to the movie house to see The Force Awakens.

After seeing the movie, I can say this: aesthetically, it was consistent with Episodes 4–6 but the special effects were much better. And the storyline was good... I'd say, however, that Kylo Ren's build-up to the part akin to the "Luke, I am your father" scene in The Empire Strikes Back wasn't as dramatic because I was already expecting such a twist to come up earlier on (and there were no spoilers yet at that time). As expected also, women tended to be princesses in this episode... despite Leia taking on the general title and Rey's last name and social status being a mystery for the meantime. However, Rey's princess was more Fiona than damsel-in-distress... in fact, the Force was strong in this one that I'm starting to think that Jedi powers and skills are not limited to males... only, males were supposed to take on the lightsaber (at least before Rey's time). Then there were the droids. R2-D2 and C3PO were there again, making us fans connected to the present storyline. BB-8 was a welcome addition to the robotic cast, particularly since he's such a cute droid. He was carrying out a mission, just like R2-D2 was in A New Hope. He succeeded in delivering a message that led to the victory of Princess/General Leia's troops in this episode. C3PO still had the gift of the gab as he acted as translator across living organisms and droids. So what became of the three men? Apparently, Luke was the last of the Jedis and he vanished into thin air... his teammates were looking for him. Han Solo went back to his "trading business" across galaxies and in his trouble-filled ways. Chewbacca remained faithfully at his side. Both of them were pulled into the effort since the team needed to find Luke.

Filipinos tended to be some of the toughest audiences. But while watching this movie, I've been in the company of some of the most enthusiastic audiences ever! Just as the lights were dimming, Matty asked about the cinema culture of Filipinos and if I'd rather see the movie on the big screen or on the telly. As soon as the crawling introduction scrolled in, people started cheering and clapping... I told him that this was the reason why it is best to watch Star Wars on the big screen. Then, as the story was unraveling, old characters and objects kept popping up... people were just lapping it up! We have been in such a long Star Wars drought that the audiences were so excited to see familiar faces! I'm sure that if Yoda were still alive, people will start saying, "Yoda Man!"

The movie ended on a high note, literally. What an intriguing ending! I'll certainly line up for the next leg of the Star Wars saga.