SPOILER-FREE first impressions of Star Wars: The Force Awakens

WP_20151217_21_51_51_ProYeah, it was great.  Not a perfect movie, but really fun.  It definitely warrants another trip to the theater sometime this weekend, or maybe over Christmas.

I actually switched showings to a 7:30 one at my hometown theater, where I saw at least one or two of the prequel movies.  Because it’s a small theater, it wasn’t even that crowded (there was an empty seat next to me).  But everyone seemed to have a great time.

Favorite things:

  • The new characters.  I just love Finn, Rey, Poe, BB-8, and Maz, plus some other minor characters whose names I need to find out.  The characters were so well written, and well acted.  I think they will really breathe some life into Star Wars going forward.  I was getting a little choked up thinking about how all the little girls going to see TFA this weekend have a character like Rey to look up to now.
  • Good script.  It was funny!  And there were some very quote-able lines as well.
  • Fast-paced.  Almost too fast at times.  It keeps up the energy and intensity very well, but I almost think some scenes could have used some room to breathe.
  • It was pretty.  From the opening pan-down shot, there were some really great visuals.  Sets and props looked great, and there was some nice cinematography, including a cool shot following an X-wing in combat from a ground perspective.
  • Skellig Michael was awesome!  I absolutely recognized the shots from Skellig Michael right away.  I was freaking out in the theater (my husband can attest, I was hitting his arm).  It’s so cool to think I’VE BEEN THERE.  Check out my post about it here.
  • I haven’t mentioned the plot yet…because there were some weak spots.  It wasn’t The Crystal Star-level bad, but it wasn’t outstanding either.  Still, we have to remember that this is just the first movie in a trilogy, and I think it did a nice job with set-up, and definitely whetted our appetite for future films!

I’ll talk more about all these things in a spoiler-y post after the weekend.

Feel free to share your reactions in the comments, but please no spoilers here.

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6 thoughts on “SPOILER-FREE first impressions of Star Wars: The Force Awakens

  1. starwarsanon December 18, 2015 / 12:40 pm

    LOL I feel like we had different opinions. I thought the movie was astoundingly slow for the first 2/3 of it and only picked up at the end. And, yeah, the plot was meh, standard, but like you said – I feel like we really have to remember it as the first movie in a trilogy so it had a lot of setting up to do. (Also so funny how many SW fans look at The Crystal Star as the epitome of a bad plot)

    The new cast was great! I loved, loved, loved Rey and can’t wait to see more of her in the future. My favorite for sure, along with BB-8. I wanted more of Poe, much more! I was neutral with Finn but he was a good addition.

    My review is up if you want to read it!

    Like

    • Mei-Mei December 18, 2015 / 9:49 pm

      Haha, I figured Crystal Star was a good shorthand that SW fans would understand to mean “the worst story possible”

      Like

  2. Bookwraiths December 18, 2015 / 3:21 pm

    Glad you enjoyed it. Unfortunately, I hated it for a lot of reason, but I’ll summarize it down to my three main problems.

    Poor story. The Force Awakens is basically A New Hope retold. Unfortunately, I’ve already seen that movie, which meant there were not many surprises here. Honestly, some people in my theater were calling out the next scene because everything was identical to Episode IV. Guess I shouldn’t have been surprised by this, because JJ Abrams has a track record of doing this repackaging routine with Star Trek, doesn’t he?

    Pathetic bad guys. Really, these guys are jokes. Kylo Ren (A bratty kid who is all whine all the time and comes across as a weakling in a fight.) and his Supreme Leader Snoke (Who must be the offspring of Voldemort and the Imperious Leader from the ’70s Battlestar Galactica TV series.) are both laughable, especially the longer the movie goes.

    Overpowered hero. Rey is a great character, who had lots of promise, but she is so overpowered she comes off as completely ridiculous. She is Anakin Skywalker, Han Solo, and Luke Skywalker rolled up into one without any need to train any abilities. Anytime she needs to be able to do something BAM! she is automatically the best ever at that particular thing. Everything she does toward the end of the movie just makes you roll your eyes and cringe.

    Honestly, I wish I was the only one who felt this way. I’ve grown up with Star Wars and love the series, but everyone I’ve encountered in real life hates this movie, i.e. my three sons and all our friends/acquaintences . I even overheard the people sitting near us at the movies saying TFA sucked. As we exited the movies, a chant of “Star Wars Sucks!” broke out among the younger viewers. And that is a bad sign of things to come for the saga.

    Hopefully, I’m wrong and the next movie will be great, but I’m really worried all the doomsayers might have been right and Disney has ruined this series already.

    Like

    • Mei-Mei December 18, 2015 / 9:58 pm

      Thanks for commenting, and sorry it was a disappointment. Your criticisms are quite valid–I especially agree with #2, I felt the First Order as a whole was lame and under-explained. As for #1, I went into the theater expecting a rehash, so I had already resigned myself to that.
      There are plenty of other problems, they just didn’t outweigh the fun of the movie for me. I think I have a pretty big blind spot when it comes to Star Wars–I don’t even hate the prequels. 🙂

      Like

  3. NovEllaandBanannabelle December 26, 2015 / 12:42 pm

    Thanks for sharing some spoiler-free insights with us! I’m going to see it next week!!

    Like

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