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Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Movie Review - Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Star Wars: The Force Awakens $$$ 1/2


135 Minutes
Starring: Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver, Harrison Ford.  
Director: J. J. Abrams.

            Star Wars is reborn. This is our first look at the franchise without George Lucas at the helm and in my opinion the future looks good for this iconic entertainment franchise. My only real complaint is that if you’re familiar with the previous films then the storyline will seem quite familiar. As a fan who attended Episode IV on opening night the latest film in the saga feels like a reboot—a really entertaining reboot. However, as a writer I see this as an opportunity to introduce the Star Wars universe to a new generation of fans with a blend of old and new elements.

            Star Wars: The Force Awakens has awakened hope for new life in my favorite franchise. I’m excited to see where it goes next. Here is how I rated Episode VII.

1. Fun – I enjoyed every minute of the film, even when the plotline covered familiar elements from the previous movies. You know it’s a good movie when you are waiting for a dull spot so you can take a potty break and you eventually just have to leave and hope you don’t miss anything great. I give it a full MB for fun.

2. Story – This is definitely the weak point for this film. Take episodes IV, V, and VI and roll them all into a single movie and you pretty much have The Force Awakens. Still, the variants on those elements are entertaining. I give a half a MB for story.

3. Technical – J. J. Abrams and his crew have put together a visually stunning space opera with some new aliens that we haven’t seen before. I give The Force Awakens a full MB for the standard state-of-the-art special effects.

4. Acting – While it was a pleasure to see the return of some familiar faces, Hans Solo (Harrison Ford), Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) and Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) it was the batch of new characters that made this film succeed. The outcast Rey (Daisy Ridley) is sure to capture your sympathy as you watch attempt to make a living as a scrounger in the graveyard of battles past. I look forward to seeing her in future films, both Star Wars and others. I simply loved Finn (John Boyega) as a stormtrooper with a conscience. I gave The Force Awakens a full MB for acting and engaging characters.

            Put all of that together and Star Wars: The Force Awakens scores 3 ½ Movie Bucks. A full-price ticket will not be money wasted. And you may want to consider adding it to your personal collection when it comes out on DVD.

                        Randy’s Rating System 

$$$$   = Full Price    See this movie right away and pay full price, it’s worth it.
$$$     = Matinee      Catch this as a matinee or other discounted showing.
$$        = Discount     Wait until this movie reaches a discount theater near you.
$          = Rental         Wait until this movie reaches your local video rental outlet.
0          = No Sale       Don’t see this movie at any price.


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