Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force Awakens (2015) non-spoiler Review

Discussion in 'Reader Reviews' started by thing, Dec 16, 2015.

  1. thing

    thing Well-Known Member

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    Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force Awakens (2015)
    Directed by J.J. Abrams


    We finally return to the Star Wars universe in a film set 30 years after the events of Return of the Jedi with the republic co-existing with the remnants of the empire and the resistance still fighting to free the systems left under their rule. We have some great new characters and some older ones from the classic trilogy to keep things interesting.

    Firstly I will tell you that the film is well made with great design that harkens back to the classic films with good actors making use os fun dialogue. The whole film plays like an old school fantasy adventure and is sure to charm audiences of all ages. The lightsaber battles are much more visceral compared to the over choreographed ones on the prequels. The story answers some questions and opens up a lot more for the next chapters to address and also has one big heart wrenching and effective scene.

    However whilst this is a good film, I would not say it is a great one. The second half is quite messy from a story telling perspective and there are far too many lazy plot points scattered throughout. The trailers never showed the two big mo-cap cgi characters that were to be played by Lupita Nyong'o and Andy Serkis, both would have been better as practical or just a humanoid character but Nyong'o's was quite passable. However easily the worst part of the film was the design and execution of Andy Serkis's, Supreme Leader Snoke. One can only hope that they can repair this a little for episode VIII.

    In the end we get a new Star Wars film with plenty of heart and laughs that is perhaps a little too self referential and a little messy in the plot and execution at times but still a damned good time. A lot of supporting players are glossed over (Captain Phasma) but if nothing else you will be thrilled to see some great interactions between Han and Chewie as well as John Boyega and Daisy Ridley who really shine.

    7.5/10
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2015
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  2. thing

    thing Well-Known Member

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    Y'all got your tickets
     
  3. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    I got my ticket for tomorrow night.
     
  4. Dave

    Dave Pimp

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    Thursday night 10pm. Only going because it's Imax assigned seating so I don't have to deal with any nonsense.
     
  5. thing

    thing Well-Known Member

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    I will try and see it in iMax over the next week
     
  6. Steel76

    Steel76 Well-Known Member

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    Just came home from the premiere.

    First of all, I felt like 10 again, and was smiling and giggling like a little girl through most of the movie :D
    This really felt like a true Star Wars movie!

    I was REALLY worried, these last few days, that it would end up being a disappointment.
    But, for once, it actually surpassed my expectations.

    During the first third of the movie, I still was a bit worried, even though it was really good, but then it just got better and better.
    And the last third, wow!!

    Sure, it might not be perfect, but the original trilogy has it's faults as well, and I could never imagine, that all these decades later, I finally got the sequel I have been wishing for :)

    One thing that I really enjoyed, was the comical banter, between the characters. Something that was severely missing from those crappy prequels.
    But the movies mixes it perfectly with the darker and serious parts, and damn does this movie get dark in a couple of scenes.

    The set designs, the costumes, the practical creatures was top notch. There are a few CGI creations in the movie, but I'd say that at least 90% was done with costumes and puppets.
    There's also some really breathtaking locations in the movie.

    About John Williams score.
    My favorite era of Williams, are the stuff he wrote back in the 70:s and 80:s.
    The stuff that he's made during the last 20 years, hasn't been bad. But somewhere on the road, it felt like he lost his old-school touch.
    And the prequels (even though there was some epic tracks in there) never delivered the same style, as the original trilogy.
    But, DAMN, did he make an epic return in this one. The fun, the epic, and the playfulness is back.
    A few hint of the modern Williams, but most of it felt like a proper 80:s score.

    So how about Han and Chewie? Well, they are still the same characters we fell in love with :)
    Harrison Ford did a way better job, returning to Solo, than he did with Indy.
    You could tell he was having a blast on the set.

    Gonna go watch it a second time, later this week.
    But so far, here is my top 4 list. No, the prequels will NOT be included.

    1. Empire Strikes Back
    2. A New Hope
    3. The Force Awakens
    4. Return of the Jedi

    YES, it truly IS better than Return of the Jedi.
    There are some amazing parts in Jedi, but those god damned Ewoks, and the silliness in Hut's palace, etc, really made it the worst of the original trilogy.
    But that just MY opinion :)

    Actually, I might even enjoy part VII more than A New Hope, but I have to rewatch it a couple of times, before I can make that final judgment.
     
  7. thing

    thing Well-Known Member

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    I probably liked the first third the best and the last third the least.
    I thought Williams scoring was fine but less impactful or memorable than it was in the originals or even good portions of the prequels.
    Agree that Harrison was so much greater here than in Crystal Skull.

    1. Empire Strikes Back - 9- 9.5
    2. A New Hope - 8.5-9
    3. Return of the Jedi - 8
    4. The Force Awakens - 7.5
    5. Revenge of the Sith - 6.5
    6. Attack of the Clones - 5
    7. The Phantom Menace - 3
     
  8. othervoice1

    othervoice1 Well-Known Member

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    I noticed the reviews coming in to rotten tomatoes so far have been very positive - 94% positive right now
     
  9. thing

    thing Well-Known Member

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    yup 94% of the reviews have give in 3 out of 5 stars or better but the several negative reviews i read were quite valid.. it is pretty much a rehash of original trilogy ideas.. but a fun one
     
  10. soxfan666

    soxfan666 Well-Known Member

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    Saturday 10 am IMAX for me!!!
     
  11. Zombie Dude

    Zombie Dude Well-Known Member

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    Saw it last night. It's amazing! Was great to finally see a good Star Wars movie again. Can't wait for Episode 8.
     
  12. delicreep

    delicreep Active Member

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    Saturday, 3:30 at the new Alamo Drafthouse SF for me.
     
  13. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    It was fantastic. Loved the new characters, the story, the top notch effects etc. I cannot wait for Episode 8.

    BB-8 was the shit!
     
  14. Dave

    Dave Pimp

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    It was a fun two hours. Far better than eps 1 to 3. Didn't recapture the magic of the original trilogy but that is more due to the fact I'm no longer 8 years old.
     
  15. Zombie Dude

    Zombie Dude Well-Known Member

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    I think they definitely succeeded in recapturing the original trilogy's magic. The score, practical effects and familiar faces it all added to that Star Wars magic.
     
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  16. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    This right here.

    I felt like I was watching a true blue Star Wars movie again.
     
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  17. Workshed

    Workshed a.k.a. Villyan Shit

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    lol
     
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  18. Fistfuck

    Fistfuck Slowest to 2000 posts

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  19. russweiss

    russweiss Well-Known Member

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    I enjoyed this one as well. It made me feel nostalgic. Seeing so many people from the original series was truly a gift. Let's be honest though, did anyone not see what was coming up when Han Solo went onto the bridge? Saw this in 3D although the only really good effect was the close up of the imperial destroyer coming out of the screen. This film will probably be even more enjoyable upon further viewings. Looking forward to the next one.
     
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  20. Anaestheus

    Anaestheus Well-Known Member

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    Did anyone else have thoughts about 3D vs Standard here? Normally, I like 3D when it's good (Avatar, the Train Your Dragon movies, Oz) But, at this point, I find it distracting when not done well. I actually thought it got in the way of Fury Road the first time I saw that.
     

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