It’s been a decade since the world has been graced with a Star Wars film and over thirty years since the original cast has been on screen, so to say that Star Wars: The Force Awakens is the most highly anticipated film of the year would be an understatement. Now under the Disney brand, the film begins a new trilogy that will hope to capture the wonder and admiration of the original films while helping to heal the wounds of that the prequels left. Director J.J. Abrams takes the helm of the nostalgic walk thru the galaxy with a cast of old friends and some new ones. Ladies and gentlemen the Force is indeed awakened.
****From this point on I must caution to a few plot points that may be seen as mild spoilers. Proceed with caution*****
Taking place thirty years after the events of Return of the Jedi, the First Order has risen from the ashes of the defeated Empire and are looking to once again take aim at destroying the Republic. Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis) controls the First Order with General Hux (Domhnall Gleeson) controlling the fleet and Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), his powerful apprentice knowledgeable in the ways of the Force, leading the search for a map that can spell the end of the Jedi forever. The Resistance is also looking for this map as well as General Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher) sends her best pilot Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac) to the planet of Jakku in hopes to find the coveted map. After encountering the First Order and fearing capture, Poe puts the recovered map into BB-8 and sends his far from the fight.
Rey (Daisy Ridley), a young scavenger from the planet, finds BB-8 and agrees to help the droid get back to it’s master. With the help of Finn (John Boyega), a defected First Order Stormtrooper, and Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew), the mission to get the map to the Resistance has begun. Many mysteries surround this group of companions and the fate of the galaxy is in their hands, with the First Order hot on their tails, can the group complete their mission and save the Republic, while securing the future of the Jedi?
Nostalgia aside, Star Wars: The Force Awakens stands on it’s own as a wonderful addition to the Star Wars universe. Director J.J. Abrams captures the magic of the original trilogy and adds a wonderful mix of humor, action and drama to complete his sci-fi masterpiece. Newcomers Daisy Ridley, Oscar Isaac and John Boyega have staked their place as fan favorites in this vast collection of memorable characters and leave you excited for future installments in their stories. Domhnall Gleeson, Andy Serkis and Adam Driver awaken the dark side with intense precision and capitalize on all that was great about the Empire and add their unique personalities to enhance the First Order and it’s villainous ways. The franchise is truly in good hands with this new guard. My one and only grip was with Gwendoline Christie’s Captain Phasma. The character was set up to be a complete badass in this storyline but was underutilized. Let’s hope we see more of this unique character in the future.
It was such a pleasure to see Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Peter Mayhew, Anthony Daniels and Mark Hamill back on screen reprising their iconic roles. No matter if they were on screen for a moment or for the duration of the film, each added to the enjoyment of the film in their unique way and brought back memories of my childhood that I was so happy to revisit. I am so very much looking forward to the next chapter in their stories.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens is the movie event of the year and one not to be missed by Star Wars fans and novice alike.
4 out of 5
After Credit Scene?