On the one hand, the pressure on director J.J. Abrams must have been immense while making what has to be one of the most anticipated movies ever. The fans’ expectations of the new Star Wars movie were huge. On the other hand, he couldn’t have made Episode VII any worse than Lucas’ three prequels from a couple of years ago.
Unless you have been living under a rock, you should by now know that he did a fantastic job with The Force Awakens. Not only is Episode VII a great introduction to a whole new generation of Star Wars fans, he also managed to not just awaken the force, he also woke up the child in us that loved A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back and Return Of The Jedi back in the day.
Written by a trio of writers led by Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back, Return Of The Jedi, Raiders Of The Lost Ark), The Force Awakens not only offers fast-paced action, it also brings back the fun and lightheartedness of the original Star Wars movies.
The story takes place about 30 years after Return Of The Jedi, the third installment of the first Star Wars trilogy. Darth Vader might be out of the picture, but a new enemy has surfaced in the form of the First Order, led by Kylo Ren (Adam Driver). He’s hell-bent on locating a piece of information that leads to Luke Skywalker (who has disappeared from the face of the… umm, planets?) before the Resistance can find him. Other lead characters are the conflicted Stormtrooper Finn (John Boyega), a Resistance pilot named Poe (Oscar Isaac) and lonely scrap metal collector Rey (Daisy Ridley). Not only are these new characters instantly lovable, they also manage to hold their own alongside familiar faces like Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill and Chewbacca.
Speaking of those familiar faces, the first time you see Ford in the rusty Millennial Falcon? The scrolling text at the beginning of the movie? Those sound effects? Man, that’s pure nostalgia! Parts of the story might seem familiar as well, borrowing elements from A New Hope, the movie that introduced to a galaxy far, far away. But The Force Awakens is not just one big lightspeed blast from the past. Abrams combines the look and feel of the first Star Wars movies with today’s technology and the result is great. I think it’s fair to say that J.J. Abrams did the impossible. He (re)created a Star Wars movie that is everything we hoped it would be. It’s fun, it’s exciting and it manages to combine more intimate scenes with big blockbuster action and of course, plenty of lightsaber action!
Still can’t get enough? The Blu-ray version of Star Wars Episode VII – The Force Awakens comes with a bonus disc that contains a couple of deleted scenes, a full-length documentary and plenty of shorter features to keep you busy.