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Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Discussion Thread (SPOILERS!)

Discussion in 'Movies' started by dpippel, Dec 19, 2019.

  1. Dave Upton

    Dave Upton Audiophile
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    The movie explicitly calls out Luke training Leia extensively before he departs after ROTJ, including her crafting her own saber, typically the final step in a padawan's training. Lucas also foreshadowed this in ROTJ - so it's not jarring for me.
    I know there's a lot to complain about, but at least to me, Rey being trained by Leia wasn't a stretch so much as a given.
     
  2. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    Go for Papa Palpatine!

     
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  3. dpippel

    dpippel HTF Premium Member
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  4. Cranston37

    Cranston37 Cinematographer

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  5. ScottRE

    ScottRE Supporting Actor

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    I'll circle back and read this whole topic when I can, but until them...

    “THE DEAD SPEAK!"

    If my eyes rolled any harder, they would have stuck in my head. The opening crawl was awful and set the tone pretty poorly. Why? Because one of the two things I was afraid of was confirmed: first, that they would pull a SPECTRE and make Palpatine the orchestrator of everything after the fact. The second happened in short order…they walked back Snoke to make him pointless and later, worse, Rey’s lineage by making her of a "Saga" bloodline instead of just a "nobody" who happened to be powerful with the Force. When the hell did Palpatine have kids? He never seemed like the kind of chap to even like the ladies. I guess he could have an heir, because monarchs do that, but he also had clone technology from early on, so he wouldn’t need heirs. Just clones and moving his consciousness into them as he did here apparently. How did he make this super giant fleet without anyone knowing about it? How did he crew it? Why do they all have Death Star strength lasers? Jesus, JJ, who needs a billion strong fleet of these? You’d need like 7. All of this came out of nowhere, which has been the problem with this trilogy. The fact that they just threw Palpatine in there in the crawl instead of leading to it over three movies makes this film less involving to me (he laughably did a radio broadcast to reveal himself like Lord Haw-Haw). It truly felt as if Abrams basically turned around and created a whole new retroactive arc because he didn’t want to build on what came before. Like it or not, that film exists. Outside of a few passing mentions, it’s like it never happened. Remember when the resistance was slaughtered down to like 6 people with only the Millennium Falcon for transport? Well never mind, there are hundreds of people now with plenty of ships. What happened to Kylo’s desire to let old things die? To create something new with the First Order? Instead, he’s given a Sith fleet, puts his helmet back together and goes on his way as before.

    And seriously, "that's not how the Force works!" ran through my head a LOT. Actually moving physical objects across the galaxy through “the Force” is new and would have been acceptable if they actually made a big deal about it. Instead, we are asked to roll with it. Let’s not even get into the new Force Healing. “Yay magic!”

    There were so many lazy shortcuts in this film and so many “let’s apologize to the fans” moments that they ran out of time to provide a well written story. They could have cut the early speeder chase and delved into the plot more carefully instead of packing this wall to wall with incident. This trilogy never felt like a logical continuation of the earlier saga and more like "additional episodes." These weren’t stories dying to be told or mysteries that begged to be answered. The First Order seemed to just kind of exist and I would have rather seen the seeds of it growing in TFA and gain power at the end of TLJ. None of this was planned, and each film seemed to be a reaction to the previous. The Empire Strikes Back was created to develop the characters and movie the story forward. ROTJ, while inferior, still brought the characters to their destinations. Even the awful prequel trilogy had a plan. This trilogy was done piecemeal and it shows, so I'm surprised I liked this film as much as I did. It absolutely is fun. But you know that writer guy? Friend of the Story Editor Minded dude? He was disappointed in this film. As a visual feast, it was wonderful. The characters were fun; Poe was never better, Rey had some wonderful moments and Finn felt like he mattered to the story. Lando was amazing, because he hasn’t changed! Unlike the Core Three who were seen as older and tired, Lando was still the Old Smoothie.

    Pause here to say "holy shit they kept Harrison Ford's appearance a secret!" And it hit me right in the feels. That was one of the most emotionally satisfying moments of the film and truly brought Kylo Ben full circle. Not sure exactly what that was...force ghost? Memory? Just Kylo going nuts? But it worked.

    Yet, the film was the very definition of "safe." Goofy fun with over the top cackling by the ever reliable, but still out of place Ian McDiarmid. I know "fans" hated Rose as much as Jar Jar, but did she really need to be minimized to such an extent? She was obviously meant to be Finn’s romantic partner in The Last Jedi, because he and Rey were obviously friends (Rey seems to have zero interest in him that way), but instead they shove her to the side and give him this other girl to pal around with. Rose was literally in less than two minutes of this movie. That’s a real slap to the actress and more pandering to the worst part of fandom.

    Another disappointment was the lack of resolution to where Luke’s saber from The Force Awakens came from. Maz's "story for another time" must really be waiting for that other time (I don't read EU stories, so if it ain't in the theaters, it doesn't count).

    If I didn’t know Carrie had died, I would have been fooled or only mildly confused at some of the stand ins. They did a wonderful job of getting her in there and putting a closing touch to her story. The “young Luke and Leia” effects were less successful. Still too “uncanny valley” but we didn’t linger on it, so it gets a pass. However, I really hated the constant “he’s/she’s dead. Not he’s/she’s not!” aspect of it. Chewie is dead! No he isn’t! Rey is dead! No she isn’t! I think the only reason Ben faded into death was to keep Ray and Ben from going back and forth reviving each other…

    Hux was the spy? Really?! His death was funny, but he’s been used for comic relief since TLJ, to his detriment. Here was a guy, as over the top as he was, who seemed to be jockeying with Kylo for control. Two powers of the First Order in competition with different goals. How awesome! By the time we see him here, he’s just a lackey and General Pride is the main F.O. bad guy. Had Abrams let Hux fill Pride’s role, what a fine arc that could have been. Nope. A “twist” and a laugh and he’s dead.

    John Williams really came through. He closed out his tenure in grand style. Some lovely themes in here and fabulous callbacks.

    Avengers Endgame did the "all the heroes come to save the lone dude" better than this did (seriously right down to the “on your left” style comms). Endgame brought me to tears. This film? Just chills, and that was because of the aforementioned John WIlliams.

    Seeing Leia and Luke at the end was lovely, but man, I really hoped for a "force ghost" line-up of all the main Jedi throughout the saga.

    This is the only SW film I don't have an urge to see in theaters again. It was fine. Fun and weightless. Give it more than a moment’s thought and it collapses. It smells like a rush job and it was. This is what happens when you don’t plan.

    I get it: "Lucas raped my childhood!! The prequels sucked!!"

    Whatever, at least he had some sense of imagination and originality. Whether he’s lost his shit or not, Star Wars’ first 6 films sprang from his brain and two or three are easily rewatchable. These last three were just using and reusing his ideas and when they dared to try something different, a vocal segment of diaper-rashed fans were outraged. And this film is the result. Fun. Pretty. But ultimately, forgettable. Disney is to blame for not wanting to do anything to truly further the saga.

    I know you'll think I'm being overly harsh. Probably even think that I have a JJ Abrams prejudice. I really don't, I just don't think he's God's gift to Star Wars. He's the guy who short cuts his way through other people's franchises, dropping callbacks and fan service to keep people happy without actually crafting a solid story. The Last Jedi is a superior piece of filmmaking. The Abrams films are nostalgia pieces and if that's all you're looking for in your Star Wars, then great. Me? I want building something new on the foundation not a recreation of the same old house.

    Anyway...

    Overall, I think history will judge the trilogies thusly:

    Prequels: awful with moments of greatness
    Original: Classic with moments of awfulness
    Sequels: milquetoast and derivative but fun and nostalgic

    This is a three star film at best. I’ll wait for the Blu Ray to watch it again.
     
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  6. Josh Dial

    Josh Dial Producer

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    Thanks for the link. That was a great interview.

    I don't see any reason to take Chris Terrio at anything other than his word. Frankly, that interview increased my opinion of The Rise of Skywalker, and actually increased my opinion of Johnson's decisions in The Last Jedi (which had diminished on re-watches).
     
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  7. Cranston37

    Cranston37 Cinematographer

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    Another point I’m trying to resolve - didn’t Rey basically murder everybody on that transport, even if it was accidentally?
     
  8. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Hell, she was killing stormtroopers throughout the movie.
     
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  9. Message #529 of 828 Dec 30, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2019
    dpippel

    dpippel HTF Premium Member
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    Speaking of which what, exactly, is the point of the Stormtroopers' armor? It doesn't stop shit. Hit 'em in the helmet with a wooden staff and they crumple. Hit 'em with one simple laser blast ANYWHERE and they drop like a sack of potatoes. You'd think that the armor would protect them from the most common weapon in use. What's the reason for wearing it, other than as a fashion statement?

    It's like their, uh, aim. Reminds me of Kenobi's statements in the first film after he and Luke discover the sandcrawler and the dead Jawas. I'm paraphrasing here - "And these blaster points. Too accurate for Sand People. Only Imperial Stormtroopers are so precise." Then, for the rest of the film, said Stormtroopers fail to hit a single thing they shoot at.
     
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  10. Cranston37

    Cranston37 Cinematographer

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    Well sure, but in those cases she was probably being shot at or at least was in some danger. These guys were just leaving. For all we know there were innocent people on there like Chewie otherwise would have been. Small thing to point out on my part I know, just bugged me...
     
  11. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    Pretty sure they were all First Order baddies.
     
  12. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    Thank you for sharing that. It didn't make me like the movie any more, but it did increase my appreciation of the thought that went into it. Terrio was pondering their approach from all of the right angles. I think there were a lot of very defensible choices that he and Abrams made. I just wish the final product hadn't been bogged down with so much crap, so many trinkets tacked on.

    Also, the whole point of that sequence was that Rey lost control. She went further than she meant to, and felt horrible about it.

    My problem with it is that it's a cheat. The audience isn't shown how Rey confused Chewbacca's transport with another one, so it feels like a hand wave. The movie wanted a shocking moment, but it didn't want to live with the consequences. Either Chewbacca needed to really be dead, or the movie shouldn't have played the beat at all.
     
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  13. JimmyO

    JimmyO Berserker

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    Did Leia actually act like a trained jedi with saber skills in either episode 7 or 8?

    I sure don't recall any hint of that. Of course, the answer is, that was never even imagined by anyone for those two films, and J.J. invented it for TRoS (aka the apology film). The only hint we got of Leia having any force skills at all was her Mary Poppins flight from space, and the occasional 'sensing' something in the force when someone she knew was deceased.

    I found that to be one of the most difficult things to accept. Also when showing the footage of Leia training, I couldnt make out the faces that well. It was Luke training Leia, right? So this would have had to have happened between ep 6 and ep 7. That would mean that Leia would have been trained with these skills long ago...but these skills were never used in any battle situation. In Ep 8 she just sat on a box towards the end of the movie and lamented "this is the end" - how helpful this jedi is!

    That whole mumbo jumbo about how she didnt want to complete her journey was just silly. Force sensitivity is not something you get out of a vending machine. It's a gift. As the leader of the rebellion, would she not see that this gift is incredibly valuable and would be used to advance the cause? We mostly saw her sitting in the command centre of the battle du jour, watching screens and looking sombre.

    I don't get why it was necessary to add ANY of this. She was better left as a force-sensitive individual who didn't quite grasp the force, never learned to control it, and was limited to 'sense'.

    Ugh.
     
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  14. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    I'm sorry Adam, but I disagree with you there as I'm not a person that holds it against a movie for having a so-called "cheat".
     
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  15. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    I actually liked that they touched on that aspect of Leia's skills. For me, it worked and I accepted it.
     
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  16. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Rocket Science Department
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    What Obi-Wan told Luke was true... from a certain point of view.
     
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  17. AshJW

    AshJW Screenwriter

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    And it is interesting to see how Guinness played that scene. He hesitated before he came up with his point of view. It fits perfectly with the later installed idea of Vader being Lukes Father.




    I’m pretty sure there were not only baddies on that transport but prisoners as well.

    I would have preferred that they didn’t reveal right away with the next scene that Chewie isn’t dead. The impact would have been stronger if we as the audience would have also thought that he is dead. At least for 20 minutes or so.
     
  18. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    I'm not so sure about that as they were out in the desert in the middle of nowhere. Those transports with stormtroopers were sent specifically to look for Rey and her group. I don't remember seeing any other prisoners besides Chewbacca.
     
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  19. AshJW

    AshJW Screenwriter

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    Yeah, you’re probably right.
     
  20. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    For whatever reason, the Chewie thing doesn’t bother me - I never believed he was dead even when it happened. I felt for Rey because her losing control was real, but I didn’t buy that the big guy was gone.

    I was more annoyed with the C-3PO revival. I feel that’s a character that’s been done to death, who is constantly written in to films and scenarios because he’s a well-known character and not because the film really needs him. Sort of the way TV shows have to find roles for their regular cast members even when their storylines have concluded because they’re still under contract. That 3PO was going to sacrifice himself felt meaningful and fresh for the character, and I wish they would have allowed that to be the end point for him.

    It felt like the good guys didn’t have to face any consequences for their choices or sacrifice anything to win, and that for me robbed the movie of some gravitas. It also felt like there were story elements that needed more room to breathe, so to have a whole chunk of the movie be about C-3PO making a sacrifice when it turns out he doesn’t just filled time that could have been better served deepening other parts of the story.
     
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