Star Wars Episode 7: The Force Awakens Thread **SPOILERS THROUGHOUT**

SilentRoamer

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I think the other thread was getting a little complex with spoiler marked posts. I've seen the film and posted that I enjoyed it on the other main thread.

My review is here: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens - A Review by SilentRoamer

Wanting to know other peoples thoughts without fear of spoilers for anyone else so I will just throw a few topics out there:

I think Rey is Lukes daughter - it seems to make sense thematically and structurally for the story.

Rey seems innately more powerful than Kylo and it was when he was doing the whole Jedi mind invasion thing she seemed to grab his thoughts?

Kylos lightsaber.

Daniel Craig as a stortrooper: Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Daniel Craig's cameo revealed | EW.com

Poor Han.

So just how quick was the Kessel Run? I thought it was under 12 Han you rogue.

What are your thoughts?


 

K.S. Crooks

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I thought Rey might have been either Luke's daughter as mentioned above or Han and Leia's and was taken from them as a child. I kind of hope she is not related so that there will be someone outside of the family using the force and fighting for Kylo without carrying about his redemption. I love Rey's strength with and without the force. As well Chewy going ballistic when everything with Han goes down. It was nice to see lightsaber fights between people with little or no training. It truly felt like they were fighting for their lives. Awesome movie.
 

Brian G Turner

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The Han Solo end part I was expecting - I'd read somewhere that he'd once asked to be written out of the original trilogy, so figured they'd deal with that issue in this film, in order to give it more impact.

A few niggling negatives:

- after all those years of being together, Han didn't really know the power of Chewie's crossbow/blaster thing? I guess that point was made for the audience, to share in their surprise that it had indeed become a more powerful weapon
- The demarcation between the Republic/Resistance/First Order wasn't clear. I guess it's a big enough civilisation to be splintered, but it wasn't made so obvious
- Planning the attack on Death Star III seemed ad hoc without any observation of military hierarchy. And how would Fin, as a cleaner, know the weak spots?
- The homage to R2D2 seemed a little forced
- When Kylo Ren removed his mask, my first thought was how on earth Han and Leia had sired an ugly Jewish boy. But my eldest daughter called him a "hot, evil Snape".
- Rey's visions seemed a little out of step with the original trilogy.
- The ending I thought was somewhat weak. However, in my family that view was the minority one
- The concept of a Death Star III seemed a little...unimaginative. And when it was used it was confusing how different planets were seen to be destroyed. Afterwards I presumed that meant that they were in the same star system.

The positives:

- Pretty much everything else.
- I especially like the first appearance of the resistance X-Wings
- Stormtroopers are now dangerous! And blaster shoot-outs much more terrifying
- Fin was a great character concept - a stormtrooper who questions their conditioning? Great!
- There was less black and white about good and evil, not least with Fin, but also with Kylo being conflicted
- Rey resisting Ren and turning his mind probe against him - great sequence
- Kylo and Han, when it looks as though Kylo will turn - then the sun sets. Great symbolism!
- Everything else again

Curiously, it's interesting to see how it wasn't simply homages and derivative concepts that were used from the original trilogy - it also appeared that they applied The Hero's Journey again, hence why we get both Rey's mystical experience and meeting Luke completes the quest.

A few initial thoughts having just got back from watching it. :)
 
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Jo Zebedee

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blah - flags. So many flags.
I will feel severely cheated if Rey turns out to be Han and Leia's daughter and neither of them even hinted at it. I mean, mother of two kids here. Giving birth hurts. It's kind of hard to miss. So a lost daughter would hardly be a secret from them. Add Luke's sabre into the mix and her having the force and, if she's their daughter, it's a fudge. (But I think she's Luke's...)l

I was told six months ago Han died, so the secret was pretty poorly kept...
 

Brian G Turner

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Oh - one question I had that didn't seem answered - wasn't that Max von Syndow at the beginning? And who was that old man character supposed to be? I had assumed it was a character who related to the original series, but I couldn't place him at all.
 

Brian G Turner

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A couple more:

Negs: the ground separating Rey and Kylo was a blatant deus ex machina to stop them killing each other...

Pos: early on I noticed a similar attention to detail that we'd expect in the originals. For example, the canvas sheets on the Millenium Falcon, and the big dent in Rey's little speeder pod

More thoughts:

Rey: I presume to be Luke's daughter - and this seemed confirmed when she faced Kylo, as it was Luke's theme that played. Also, there's the obvious point about the lightsaber belonging to her father, and her grandfather. That she was Luke's daughter seemed pretty blatant.

Poe: I thought he was Luke's son, by his looks, when I first saw him. It was never directly suggested. However - best star fighter in the fleet? Ben Kenobi described Anakin in similar glowing terms...
 

JunkMonkey

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Personally was less than over whelmed by the movie.

Why did the stupid Maguffin map need a dotted line on it? Why not a set of coordinates? Presumably the Star Wars universe has some way of navigating from one place to another that must use some commonly agreed system.All Luke had to do was write "I am here: map ref xxx by yyy by zzz". Why the stupidly huge three projecty D map with a route on it that had nothing to do with anything they did later in the film?

And just how big is the Star Wars universe? Ignoring the fact that any time anyone crashes on any planet anywhere they are with walking distance of their destination without encountering any significant geological obstacles (apart from the occasional bit of Tunisia) the way ships get from A to B and back again (even travelling at above light-speed) is stupidly fast. Everywhere seems to be equidistant from everywhere else. I have this theory that the whole Star Wars universe is actually very very very small. The whole thing is about two or three light minutes across (significantly smaller than our own Solar System) and that all the characters are in fact only a few angstroms tall. This would explain how and why Han and Rey and Fin and Chewie saw the red explosions as various planet were kablooed by the bad guys AS IT HAPPENED. The implication was the explosions were far away - yet the light from the explosions got there instantly.
 

Dave

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Kylo may have been a 'little' conflicted, but not for very long. He said something like, "I know what I have to do," but he obviously found it hard, then killed his father without any remorse. So, he knew that he had to kill his father and then did so with utter contempt for him.

If you subscribe to Rey being Luke's daughter then you subscribe to my son's idea that Luke left her behind on a desert planet because "it didn't do him any harm." (Which he said in the voice of Karl Pilkington from "An Idiot Abroad")

There is so much killing of fathers and abandoning of children in this universe that it does make one wonder.

The geography and science in Star Wars has never been great so that part didn't surprise me. This has always been High Fantasy with added Tech rather than Science Fiction (Discuss.)
 

Culhwch

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If you subscribe to Rey being Luke's daughter then you subscribe to my son's idea that Luke left her behind on a desert planet because "it didn't do him any harm." (Which he said in the voice of Karl Pilkington from "An Idiot Abroad")

That's not the case at all. Though I'm hoping Rey isn't Luke's daughter (I feel one of the four new leads as a descendant is enough - two is stretching it), I would think if she is, she was left there as protection - much as Luke was left on Tatooine. The timeline is questionable here - I'm not sure of the supposed age gap between Rey and Kylo, or when Kylo's little insurrection happened, but I imagine he's not that much older, and it wouldn't have happened when Rey was as young as depicted when she was abandoned. So I guess then the threat may have been Snoke or the sudden rise of the Knights of Ren, rather than as a reaction to Kylo's fall. But then, why keep training Kylo/Ben, but abandon Rey?

The links to Luke are undeniable, though - the lightsabre causing flashbacks, and then Maz essentially saying that Rey's family would be found ahead of her, not back on Jakku. But right now there are just so many questions. I don't know. It could still go either way.

The geography and science in Star Wars has never been great so that part didn't surprise me. This has always been High Fantasy with added Tech rather than Science Fiction (Discuss.)

You basically have to, I think. I raised the point in the other thread about them seeing the first shots of the Death Planet. The EU did a far better job of giving the galaxy a massive scope - it did take days or weeks at lightspeed to get from planet to planet - but the movies have never really tried to show that.
 

Dave

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You're right, of course, except that Ben Kenobi was there to look out for Luke (not that there is evidence that he actually did.) No one was there to look out for Rey. Her childhood would have been more like that of Anakin (who's own father abandoned his mother.)
 

Culhwch

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I thought it was pretty obvious that that that was Max von S's role.

Yeah, although if so they certainly didn't make that clear.

There is also the assumption that it was Luke who abandoned her. Why not her mother? Aha may have been taken from Luke and abandoned, or he may not even know she existed.
 

Dave

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Again, you are both right. I'm really thinking out loud here and should probably compile my thought first. There was probably much more going on in this film that I didn't catch (which is why discussions like this are useful to me.)

The question of who might be her mother, begs the question of why they began this story at this particular time (or why the prequels skipped the whole Clone Wars.) They deliberately gave us very little information on these important questions such as why did Ben Solo/ Kylo Ren turn to the dark side, who is Max von Sydow and who is the old man character. Clearly, it makes us have to wait for the answers and write about our speculation here, but that might have been a better story to tell if the actors had still been younger.
 

Culhwch

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Obviously the age of the main cast dictated the time period they have set the films in, and it makes sense in that the next generation can take up the mantle. But certainly the intervening years and events definitely should hold some interesting stories, and I do wonder if we'll get an extensive new EU to fill in those gaps.

The more I reflect on it, the more I feel the film seemed rushed, and tried to pack too much in to its detriment. I read not so long ago that Michael Ardnt, who was originally handling the screenplay, had told JJ Abrams and Kathleen Kennedy that he needed something like a year and half to write the script of the story they laid out for him, and as a result he was ditched and Lawrence Kasdan was brought in to write the script with Abrams in a shorter time-frame. I do wonder now at what that original, more considered screenplay might have delivered. Undoubtedly Kasdan brought a very Star Wars feel to the finished product, but I really would have liked to see a more complete, complex and deeper script.
 

SilentRoamer

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Awesome thoughts everyone.

Why I think Rey is Luke's daughter:

  • Thematically we see a lot of familial relationships in SW.
  • Reys Force Vision when touching the lightsaber.
  • Maz foretelling to Rey her family is ahead.
  • Reys reaction when meeting Leia - seemed like Leia felt a close bond but more of an Aunty and I assume it would have been mentioned if she had another child.
  • Rey being more powerful in the Force than Ren. It only took her a small while through his mind reading technique to "reverse engineer" the trick and then she became more powerful. I feel at the end when the ground seperated them that Rey had gotten the upperhand, Kylo was seriously injured and she had started to grasp her powers and was PISSED.
  • Rey finding Luke.
  • I think Luke would have left her there because she wasn't yet at the age to be force trained and Ben Solo had turned to Kylo and taken up his grandfathers mantle under Snoke. Safest thing was to dump her off planet with a guardian watching her - I don't think a child could have survived there without a little help. Too much of an easy picking to sell off to slavers.
  • Han and Leia already have twins in the Expanded Universe (Jacen and Jain)
I would like to see Rey battling with her Dark side under Lukes tutelage which would be a very interesting story and I think it is something we might see.


Kylo Ren

I agree with Brian that he didn't look like either Han or Leia but I just put it down to some good old fashioned Dark Side corruption.

Anyone else love the whole Force Grip on the laser? That was awesome and I don't think we've seen anyone do that before!

I thought Adam Driver did a great job - Kylo just oozes rage and his temper tantrums were some of the best comedic moments in the film. When he smashes that console and those two stormies just turn around the other way. I would not want to be a repair technician on that ship, imagine getting called to a job and you get there and the console is just all melted and slashed....

When the mask came off I thought: well mate your an ugly bugger but no need to wear a mask!

I can't believe no one has commented on his lightsaber yet, given his families obvious propensity for getting hands chopped off.

Kylo_Crossguard.JPG



Hans Death

Ford had asked to be written out so I expected it. As soon as he saw Kylo and started following him I knew the game was up.

I agree its not a bad thing, I thought Boyega and Ridley brought a more grounded feeling to their characters and Han has always been a bit cheesy. I think the new cast are really well served to bring this forward.

Chewies Bowcaster

I think they are supposed to be too large for a human to carry around and use comofrtably being oversized for a Wookies use. Wookies are really really strong so it's no real issue for them. Chewies bowcaster is modified to have the Automatic pullback and its a specialty one in that it uses a stormie powerpack.

What I would like to see in the new film(s)

More Rey, Finn and Kylo.
More John Williams.
More Luke Skywalker.
Many more Kylo Ren temper tantrums.
More force stopping lasers - I mean WTF!
Snoke in the flesh - apparently he's supposed to be like 7" tall and super thin.
Shorter aeriel battle sequences (the only space battle sequences I've ever really liked are new BSG)
Kashyyyk (Chewbaccas home planet)
 

Bugg

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The Han Solo end part I was expecting - I'd read somewhere that he'd once asked to be written out of the original trilogy, so figured they'd deal with that issue in this film, in order to give it more impact.

Yeah, I had a feeling long beforehand that this was going to happen - it seemed like the only way Ford would agree to do it. With all the mirroring of Ep IV that was going on elsewhere, it also felt a little like Ben Kenobi's 'death' at Vader's hands - although I'm guessing we won't be seeing or hearing Han's ghostly presence at any point in the future :D



- The concept of a Death Star III seemed a little...unimaginative.

This was the one thing about the film that I didn't really like - another Death Star? Have they not twigged that the first two failed? - along with the whole Rathtar sequence. I felt they could have dumped the latter completely and used the time for more character scenes, perhaps some more about Ren and his parents.

Re the planets being in the same system, didn't they say at some point that the weapon was firing through hyperspace? :unsure: I think they went for visual impact rather than having it make sense, which is what happens in most blockbusters these days.




- Kylo and Han, when it looks as though Kylo will turn - then the sun sets. Great symbolism!

Loved that!



Negs: the ground separating Rey and Kylo was a blatant deus ex machina to stop them killing each other...

Yes, that was annoying! Had to keep him around for the next film, I suppose, so he can fight Luke.
 

Brian G Turner

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Another detail I liked is that the stormtroopers had a range of proper looking weapons, and some had scopes on them. ALSO! Remember the stormtrooper equipped to fight hand-to-hand against a lightsaber? :)

I know Ren's lightsaber design got a lot of negative comment, but IMO it fits nicely with a weak-willed tantrum-driven character - the cross-guards as an attempt to cheat for extra damage if his skills in the force weren't entirely up to scratch. We've seen that sort of plot element used a lot for villains in general film - though usually as something that pops out as a surprise, rather than shown from the start.

I think someone also commented on how Rey could fight Kylor Ren when she'd had no combat training - but we never saw this with Luke either. All of his training was about putting him in touch with the Force, not learning martial arts. And I think that was underlined by the brutal attacks and lack of dance choreography in the lightsaber battles we did see in Force Awakens. The user of camera shots in those did make them feel more deadly to me.

Oh - and Maaz never mentioned Midichlorians! Instead, we're back to the idea of The Force being a permeating...spiritual force...that can be tapped into, either to try to do good, or exploit for personal gain.
 

Culhwch

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ALSO! Remember the stormtrooper equipped to fight hand-to-hand against a lightsaber? :)

But why have troops that carry this weapon and are trained to use them? Who were they expecting to run up against, if Luke has been AWOL for years and Ren killed all of his disciples? Seems strange to go to those lengths for what had to be a one-in-several thousand chance some random perp pulls a lightsabre out...

I think someone also commented on how Rey could fight Kylor Ren when she'd had no combat training - but we never saw this with Luke either. All of his training was about putting him in touch with the Force, not learning martial arts. And I think that was underlined by the brutal attacks and lack of dance choreography in the lightsaber battles we did see in Force Awakens. The user of camera shots in those did make them feel more deadly to me.

I didn't find that an issue - she had showed earlier she was a good fighter with her staff, so it follows she'd be better than average with a sword. The mind control of Daniel Craig's Bondtrooper seemed more far-fetched, to be honest, but I'm prepared to go with that as well.

Oh - and Maaz never mentioned Midichlorians! Instead, we're back to the idea of The Force being a permeating...spiritual force...that can be tapped into, either to try to do good, or exploit for personal gain.

Amen to that! May the Force be with us all!

Also - meant to mention this earlier, but did anyone else think Snoke was a dead-ringer for Bill Nighy? Or was that just me?
 

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