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 Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)

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dr. strangelove
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Thu Oct 22, 2015 2:44 pm

I think it looks pretty great, and I'm cautiously optimistic. Looks like Abrams' style will do wonders for this, and I think he'll bring a lot of excitement and fun (no matter how shallow) to a film that desperately needs it... especially after the mind-numbing ineptitude of the prequels. And, the word from people who were (supposedly) at the studio sessions is that Williams' work is really, really good.

My biggest trepidation at the point is the casting. John Boyega and Daisy Ridley (especially) are both completely unknown quantities at this point. Casting two very young, totally inexperienced actors as the lead roles in arguably the most anticipated movie of all time is an awfully risky move. I really hope they do a great job, but I fear that this could easily turn into a Jake Lloyd/Hayden Christensen situation all over again.
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Thu Oct 22, 2015 6:48 pm

dr. strangelove wrote:
I think it looks pretty great, and I'm cautiously optimistic. Looks like Abrams' style will do wonders for this, and I think he'll bring a lot of excitement and fun (no matter how shallow) to a film that desperately needs it... especially after the mind-numbing ineptitude of the prequels. And, the word from people who were (supposedly) at the studio sessions is that Williams' work is really, really good.    

My biggest trepidation at the point is the casting. John Boyega and Daisy Ridley (especially) are both completely unknown quantities at this point. Casting two very young, totally inexperienced actors as the lead roles in arguably the most anticipated movie of all time is an awfully risky move. I really hope they do a great job, but I fear that this could easily turn into a Jake Lloyd/Hayden Christensen situation all over again.      

I thought Lloyd was very good....at playing a precious 9 year old tyke. Not the baddest intergalactic warlord of all time. The fault lies with George Lucas.
Christensen is capable of great work. He turned in Oscar-worthy performance in SHATTERED GLASS, but he's wasted in Star Wars because George Lucas writes and directs the character of Anakin as a petulant, love-sick teenager.

In fact, Lucas wastes almost the entirety of 3 films to finally get to the good stuff about Anakin, and even then it takes McGregor to half-way sell the fact that Anakin has turned evil. If it weren't for McGregor the entire last 15 minutes of ROTS would be wasted.

But I digress...

Boyega looks....unconventional. Not at all like an action hero. He looks pudgy. Maybe I'll feel differently when seeing him act. But right now he looks out of place in this film.

Ridley looks like a younger Keira Knightley, so she's got that going for her. But the whole schtick of putting out movies about young female protagonists in these roles typically cast with men is getting played out quickly. There simply isn't THAT much demand for such characters, but Hollywood is going to keep shoving it in our faces.

Not worried about Boyega or Ridley being too unknown for the movie; the brand will sell itself. Hamill, Fisher and Ford weren't all that well known when the original came out.
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Thu Oct 22, 2015 9:20 pm

Gravity's Silhouette wrote:

In fact, Lucas wastes almost the entirety of 3 films to finally get to the good stuff about Anakin

The Prequels could have been condensed into one three-hour movie. By necessity, they would probably have had to cut out that Jamaican alien everyone hates.
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dr. strangelove
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Sat Oct 31, 2015 2:50 am

An interesting tidbit that I came across the other day: Supposedly, Chris McQuarrie did some quick work on the script for the first Star Wars spin-off movie, ROGUE ONE (which is currently filming and set for a December 2016 release).

http://www.latino-review.com/news/hot-rumor-christopher-mcquarrie-polishes-rogue-one-a-star-wars-story

Pretty encouraging news, if true.
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Thu Dec 17, 2015 1:08 pm

My brother in law convinced me to go to the midnight premiere, so major spoilers here:

Spoiler:
 
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Sun Dec 20, 2015 6:19 pm

SPOILERS:

I kinda liked it in its own right, but I still feel that Return of the Jedi wrapped things up nicely. I understand why they killed off Han Solo (Ford was asking Lucas to do it 35 years ago after all) but it just feels like - and this admittedly sounds mightily queer - they had no right to kill off one of the primary original characters.

But hey, overall The Boner Awakens is pretty entertaining and doesn't take itself seriously like the prequels did.
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Sun Dec 20, 2015 11:16 pm

Exactly. It puts the FUN back into Star Wars, whether it's the Falcon being pursued by TIE fighters through Star Destroyer wreckage or Han's wry 'You changed your hair' to Leia.
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Mon Dec 21, 2015 7:21 am

Where the fuck is Daniel Craig's Stormtrooper cameo in this film? I did not see any of them wearing tight blue trunks.
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Mon Dec 21, 2015 9:45 am

He's the one that shows Daisy Ridley his little finger.
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lachesis
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Tue Dec 22, 2015 12:06 am

Usually identifiable by being the least charismatic element on screen at any one time.
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Tue Dec 22, 2015 2:17 pm

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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Wed Dec 23, 2015 12:29 am

Oh yes.....and the most foul mouthed too tongue
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Wed Dec 23, 2015 11:38 am

I was able to tell it was Craig not just by his voice but by his body language. It's that sort of casual kind of movement he does a lot in his movies when he tosses something aside like his room keys or a Walther. He does that with a blaster when told to drop it.

Anyway, this was fine. I didn't end up loving it like many have, but I enjoyed it as a fun matinee space opera. Leads are good, Harrison Ford is more energized than he usually is in other recent films. Ridley works in that "becoming a hero" thing. John Boyega and Oscar Isaac have the right charisma. Carrie Fisher's face looks like a special effect. Chewbacca doesn't look right, he looks like he did in the REVENGE OF THE SITH where he was more fake looking. Dunno why they keep messing up that costume. Biggest gripe is that it cribs too much from the original trilogy, it never really expands the universe which at least the prequels did. I also don't like the literal cliffhanger ending. The first of each trilogy at least works as a standalone, leaving threads that will be picked up later, but whatever. Overall, it's just fine. It's easily the best thing Abrams has done, probably because he didn't work with his hack writing buddies this time, which I'm thankful for.

Rankings:
1. The Empire Strikes Back
2. Star Wars
3. Return of the Jedi
4. The Force Awakens
5. Revenge of the Sith
6. The Phantom Menace
7. Attack of the Clones
8. Caravan of Courage: An Ewok Adventure
9. Ewoks: The Battle for Endor

After all this, I'm finally going to watch THE HOLIDAY SPECIAL for the very first time. I'll save that for Christmas, with some booze.
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Wed Dec 23, 2015 12:40 pm

SPOILERS AGAIN:

Watched it a second time. Some of the dialogue (both substance and delivery) is glaringly bad, even by Star Wars standards. Case in point: Just about everything Carrie Fischer says.

Other examples I can think of:

"We will destroy the government that support the Resistance... THE REPUBLIC." (OK, Sideburn Nazi, we all read the opening scroll and I'm sure Supreme Leader Snoop knows you meant the Republic without spelling it out).

"Bring... her.... to... me." (Dramatic pauses combined with CGI which would've looked dated in the 90s do not foreboding create).

"You need a teacher." (And you need a nose job).

Also the send-off for Solo was truly lackluster. Even the Walking Carpet who basically has had no other friend for, what, half a century seems to move on pretty quickly. Not to mention Leia.

Like I said before, it's a fun film, but I don't think it'll be remembered for much. Nothing new was brought to the table.
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Wed Dec 23, 2015 6:34 pm



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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Thu Dec 24, 2015 6:48 pm

Makeshift Python wrote:
I was able to tell it was Craig not just by his voice but by his body language. It's that sort of casual kind of movement he does a lot in his movies when he tosses something aside like his room keys or a Walther. He does that with a blaster when told to drop it.

That was the exact moment I figured it out. I had forgotten he was rumored to be in the movie and it wasn't until that line where he confirms he's going to drop his gun and he walks off that I put it together. What's ever better is that 99% of the audience still had no idea it was him, so that made it feel like it was just a secret between me and the film.

Craig is the star of two of the biggest films of the year, so he's doing pretty well. I'd like to see his character come back in Episode VIII and really get fleshed out more. I felt like we just scratched the surface with his character; need to know more about his backstory...what drives Stormtrooper #5 to kill people? Why does a Stormtrooper choose the life of a killer? What were his parents like? Or was he an orphan? The Empire feels like they make the best recruits. Was Stormtrooper #5 ever in love? Was his heart ever broken and that's why he's been unable to cope emotionally with conflict later in life? Maybe #5 had a step-brother who felt like his daddy loved #5 better, and this step-brother went on to create an evil, galactic empire in order to ruin #5's life by killing his family and friends and loved ones....Awwww, snap! Nobody's going to believe any of that. Who would write such shit anyway? Even Lucas knows better.

Quote :
Anyway, this was fine. I didn't end up loving it like many have, but I enjoyed it as a fun matinee space opera. Leads are good, Harrison Ford is more energized than he usually is in other recent films. Ridley works in that "becoming a hero" thing. John Boyega and Oscar Isaac have the right charisma. Carrie Fisher's face looks like a special effect. Chewbacca doesn't look right, he looks like he did in the REVENGE OF THE SITH where he was more fake looking. Dunno why they keep messing up that costume. Biggest gripe is that it cribs too much from the original trilogy, it never really expands the universe which at least the prequels did. I also don't like the literal cliffhanger ending. The first of each trilogy at least works as a standalone, leaving threads that will be picked up later, but whatever. Overall, it's just fine. It's easily the best thing Abrams has done, probably because he didn't work with his hack writing buddies this time, which I'm thankful for.

I'm going to see it again, which is more than I can say for SPECTRE.

What worked for me? Han and Chewie were on point; almost like no time had passed. Good humor brought back like "You're cold???? (probably got the biggest laugh, along with Solo's comment about Leia doing something with her hair); none of the juvenile Jar-Jar Binks style humor (like stepping in Bantha Fodder doo-doo jokes).

Adam Driver/Kylo Ren: WOW! What a worthy follow up to Vader. Never really thought it could be done, but where Lucas hid Vader behind a mask until ROTJ, Driver gets to full-on act with and without the facemask. His conflicted confession to Han had the entire theater quiet; you could have heard a church mouse drop. I was on the edge of my seat, and must admit, I was a bit watery-eyed when Leia asked Han to bring her son back, and when Han demanded to see his son without his mask on, pleading with him to turn his life around. Heavy stuff. Abrams got more emotional connections between Driver and Ford in one scene than Lucas could get out of Christiansen/Portman in two movies. The difference is night and day.

Daisy Ridley might grow on me; she's come into this role at a bad time when being a kick-ass female lead action star is no longer unique and special.

Boyega left no impression on me. Don't really see what the casting director saw in him.

Carrie Fisher looks remarkably different. She *looked* good, but when she opened her mouth she sort of came across as butch, gym teacher...sort of a raspy, smoker's voice. But I did feel for her character and what has happened to her and Han and the reason for their separation, and she and Ford totally sold it. I haven't been emotionally invested in a Star Wars film since...oh, 1983 eh???

Question: does anybody do jail time in Star Wars? Vader kills millions of people, has a deathbed conversion, and is immediately redeemed and becomes a smilling ghost alongside of Yoda and Obi-Wan. Kylo Ren kills millions of people and Leia wants Han to "bring my son home". Does anyone ever pay for these crimes?
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Sat Mar 05, 2016 1:14 pm

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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Sat Mar 05, 2016 10:49 pm

Ah yes, Malcolm Tucker's SW summation. Hehehe.
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Sun Mar 06, 2016 4:37 am

Blunt Instrument wrote:
Ah yes, Malcolm Tucker's SW summation. Hehehe.

big laugh
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PostSubject: Re: Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (December 2015)   Sun Apr 03, 2016 4:31 am

Finally saw this. I don't particularly care about any of the previous Star Wars films yet I loved The Force Awakens.
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