The Force Awakens (contains spoilers)

If you’re reading this and you haven’t watched the film yet, stop and go watch it. I’ll wait. No really, go watch it. I’m not going to hold back under here, I’m still buzzing after seeing it and I don’t want to miss things by trying to avoid spoilers.

Also, I’m placing it behind a cut, so don’t read it unless you really want to…

You’ve watched it now, right? Great. I’m just going to write some things and maybe coherency will happen later.

  • The crawl. Maybe it was the 3D, but I swear it was heading straight away from me and I was off to the side. If it was the 3D, that’s some of the best 3D work I’ve ever seen right there.
  • Not a clean white ship coming out of space, but a dark shadow over a planet – unexpected, dramatic, brilliant.
  • No build-up, straight into the action.
  • X-Wing rear cannon
  • Run BB, run!
  • Force Stop. That’s what I’m calling it. I was expecting them to drag someone in front of it before releasing it. Kylo Ren is really powerful.
  • Rey immediately presents as a no-nonsense, capable, independent woman who doesn’t want to be involved in the adventure and just wants to go home
  • Finn (FN-2187) is a straight up coward who throws off First Order conditioning and runs away
  • Poe is the shining star of the Rebellion, but good-natured enough that you don’t mind.
  • Finn and Poe’s first conversation – “You need a pilot?” “No, I’m helping you because it’s the right thing to do.” “You need a pilot.” “I need a pilot.”
  • Deus Ex Poe – off-screen return from the grave was a little annoying, but expected
  • “That ship? It’s a piece of garbage!”
  • “Chewie, we’re home.” How long have they been looking for the Falcon?
  • The lightsaber flashback/flashforward
    • Incidentally, how did the lightsaber end up there? It was lost on Bespin and that story is conveniently “knowing smiled” at
  • Kylo Ren throws rage-filled tantrums – at least he isn’t murdering every officer who annoys him a little.
  • Kylo Ren is a stroppy teenager, that explains the tantrums. Was a little disappointed, but having considered it, it works really well.
  • Did like how they were initially really careful about saying it was a map leading to Skywalker and it was the new characters who assumed it was a map to Luke, leaving both the ideas that Kylo Ren might be Luke and that Rey might be the referred-to Skywalker intact for much of the film
  • Han trying out Chewie’s bowcaster with glee. I think Harrison Ford wanted to play with bigger guns.
  • I was on the edge of my seat waiting for Han to say “Jacen”. That he said “Ben” (I think) was almost as good.
  • Homages to original trilogy
    • Trench run
    • Bigger Death Star
      • Did kinda wonder where this came from/how exactly it worked
      • Also how everyone could simultaneously see the light in the sky
      • Also how it took out planets in other systems within minutes
      • Also how they could see five different planetoids exploding from another planet at that scale with normal eyesight
      • I was waiting for a “energy is routed along hyperspace” explanation or something, but nothing
      • Does seem like we had a bigger Death Star for the sake of a bigger Death Star to blow up
      • Nice touch that it didn’t actually blow up but the star regenerated from the stored energy.
        • How was this thing supposed to work again?
    • Garbage compacter
      • Han’s face when he has the idea
  • Giant hologram doesn’t look like hologram on first impression so I thought we were dealing with a giant alien.
  • Lightsaber fights! Kylo Ren’s lightsaber is as I suspected not a stupid design, and rather ingenious and cruel.
  • Kylo Ren’s obsession with Vader
  • Sernpidal all over again. I thought we might have lost both of them this time.
    • That “will he, won’t he?” moment where you just don’t know which way he was going to go.
  • Initially thought JJ had made a mistake at the end when it didn’t cut out with the hyperspace jump. Really moving scene with Luke instead.
  • Didn’t quite cry. Came very close.
  • Spotted an error in the credits: “Third Asssistant Manager”
  • The trailers were brilliant in their ability to show us scenes from the film while giving no real clues to the context – I can’t think of a single trailer scene that went the way I expected in the film.
  • The film is great at acknowledging the past films while setting up its own path for the future. This isn’t just a follow-on, it’s a new era and the old heroes are firmly in the background.
  • Practical effects, puppets, and physical representations enhanced with CGI rather than just CGI. Having watched all five previous films before watching TFA, the CGI has dated badly while the practical effects from the original trilogy are still amazing.
    • Yes, five films. There are two good parts to The Phantom Menace, and I wasn’t going to waste time watching the entire film just for pod racing and the Darth Maul fight.
  • Don’t think they used Duel of the Fates for the big lightsaber fight – not sure if that was a mistake or not. On the one hand, it’s probably not that portentous a fight. On the other hand, Duel of the Fates is awesome.
  • Hands down better than the prequels.
  • Who’s behind the First Order? Why isn’t the next film already out? Why couldn’t I go straight back in to watch it again?

Edited to add (13:00):

  • I’m now booked in to see it again!
  • Just remembered that Luke’s hand was retrieved by the Empire and used to create Luuke Skywalker, his insane Dark Jedi clone. Wouldn’t it be interesting if JJ is using parts of the Thrawn Trilogy as sources for what he’s doing, despite the insistence that they’re chucking out the existing EU canon? If Luke could escape the fall, why couldn’t his hand? Couldn’t it be possible that Snoke is an evil Luke clone twisted by the Dark side?

One thought on “The Force Awakens (contains spoilers)

  1. Got a lot to agree with in there – but none more so than “Jacen/Ben”. 🙂 I’m torn between being glad that there’s no Thrawn post-credits sting, or any other EU references (yet, at least), and being a little sad that it was all dropped so quickly and easily… but it is what is, and I call it a good start. 🙂 I’m very definitely looking forward to finding out more about everything that wasn’t addressed…

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