Well, I guess I have to give a synopsis because my Uncle Grant hasn't seen The Force Awakens, so this takes palce about the same amount of time between two years ago and the events after Return of the Jedi. Princess Laia Organa and Han Solo had a child, but he's now associated with the Storm Troopers, who have grown to a size that would make Kim Jong-Un flinch. We focus on these two outcasts, Rey, who lives on the desert planet of Jakku eating freeze-dried bread waiting for her family to bring her back home. Despite the fact they've been gone for years, Rey is so sure they'll be back and right there to pick her up that as events unfold, she wants to stay there. Events like meeting the betraying Storm Trooper FN-2187, who's just had it after a friend of his is killed on a mission that wasn't worth his life, and he sees under his helmet the same brutality the people of the planet go through at the hands of his kind. The mission was to retrieve a map code that leads to the one and only Luke Skywalker, who has been missing for years somewhere in the galaxy and he's the only remaining Jedi and, possibly anyway, the only person who can reconquer the world. But maybe we have some new Lightsaber swordsmen at the helm.
So, I can understand the appeal of this film. I had no idea A New Hope was made back in the 70's. I must have first seen it as a toddler and with my light iflm knowledge I never would have guessed. But I still haven't seen the prequels and I'm not obsessed with knowing the name of every planet the cameracrew have created. And when I watched this, I wasn't interested in how well it would have fan service to the original trilogy. I just wanted to have a great time. And how do I put this delicately? My dad was eight years old when A New Hope came out. This is before VHS's and DVD's, keep in mind. And he rewatched that movie at the theatre each day for an entire week. And by the time the credits rolled the first time I saw it, I had the same desire as him. This movie is wonderful, reminding us in the best way why Star Wars is not popular just because of its fanbase and is not out of juice.
Daisy Ridley and John Boyega are perfect as the new stars in the spotlight. The fact that Ridley wasn't a big star when she got the part and can play a fiery, independent, fearful person like Rey is astounding and inspirational for authors everywhere. John Boyega has an instant charm as FN-2187 that makes you immediately want to be his best friend. And the original trio and everything they do was a delicious treat even for me.
Ever since I was born; probably later, I can't really give statistics, but ever since I was born, there are blockbuster movies with action that might be too hectic that it makes you nauseous, or so colourless and lifeless there are school assignments you might think about in the back of your head with more tension. Every action scene, from Rey climbing on an enormous storage wall to sneaking around the planets and starships to operating a delightfully fully-returned-to-form ship around Jakku, is the real deal. It's hands-on, focusing more on the characters rather than the lightsabers and guns but not so much so that we don't feel the gravity whenever there's a shot, which usually end up fatal.
The villains are also superb. Do I remember all their names? Well, no. I have a short attention span sometimes. But as they're on screen, I was reminded of the Death Eaters from Harry Potter, a legion of soldiers and killers that will have an epic showdown between the protagonists in the coming movies. Every antagonist has an atmosphere of mystery to them, thinking there's more of them beneath the surface.
Lastly, the movie makes some daring decisions. There are tragedies that show how movies can actually hit you to the spine even if you watch dozens of them a month. There are also some abilities some characters learn to possess, and they're decisions that could easily spoil the rest of the new series. For instance, a character might end up too superpowerful, or have so much potential that not doing it at any possible time would seem cheesy, or maybe some people might even end up as such huge fans of the idea that they'll want as much of it as possible.
Oh, I almost forgot, and this movie's long but you don't feel it. In fact, I thought a while in it was going to end on a certain cliffhanger about an invasion they talk about, but they actually keep it up and go for it. These days, most movies would stretch its running time with back stories and save whatever they talk about for the next instalment. Not this one. But we still get a cliffhanger that causes the force to have to be with us so we don't decide to hack into Lucasfilm's mainframe to see as early a tape of The Last Jedi as possible.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens was the biggest movie of the year back in 2015 and shows us that anyone who doesn't like the Star Wars movies has very bizarre taste.