The screening of the film, which we Star Wars fans have been looking forward to for years, started punctually at 00.01:80 a.m. When the typical scrolling script wandered across the cinema screen, the joy on the part of the fans could clearly be felt: At last Star Wars again, for many visitors even the first Star Wars in the cinema. Whether you are a hardcore fan, sci-fantasy fanatic, old or young, the feeling of being able to experience Star Wars in a midnight premiere in the cinema connected generations. I heard a lot of positive voices beforehand, ranging from “great” to “the best Star Wars movie since the XNUMXs”. But negative reviews also wanted to warn overly euphoric fans and save them from disappointment. Unaffected by this, I wanted to form my own very personal picture of the new Star Wars film. You can read my review in the following blog article. May the force be with you!
Where everything began
What director JJ Abrams with Star Wars - The Force Awakens created is nothing less than a masterpiece that should be nominated as a nominee for the next Oscar awards, at least in the categories of best effects, sounds and costumes. But first things first: Let's start at the very beginning, on the remote desert planet Jakku ...
Star Wars - The Force Awakens starts furiously and throws the fans right into tough action that you wouldn't necessarily expect from a Star Wars film. In search of a secret map fragment, Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaacs) goes to the planet Jakku with his droid BB-8. The first shot shows him and Lor San Tekka (Max von Sydow) handing over the data pen that contains the map to the secret whereabouts of Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill).
That the henchmen of the First Order are also looking for this fragment should not come as a surprise to most of them. Shortly after the handover, stormtroopers, led by Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), land in the small village on Jakku. What follows is an action-packed, gloomy fighting, the end of which is no less than the dismantling of Lor San Tekka by Kylo Ren and the mass murder of the village population. This entry shows how serious JJ Abrams was with the Star Wars franchise. Concerns that Disney would turn Star Wars into a children's film series were resolved after just five minutes. Stormtroopers FN-2187 alias Finn (John Boyega) also made their first major appearance in the battle mentioned. John Boyega breathes humanity into the faceless stormtroopers that makes the viewer shudder at the number of soldiers who fell during the film. This emotional trick is obviously good for the film and creates a credible connection between the film plot and the audience. Watching Finn's transformation from a young storm troop soldier to a heartfelt resistance fighter is refreshing and fits perfectly into the Star Wars universe that fans want.
Many minutes of the film revolve around the scrap collector Rey (Daisy Ridley) and her daily struggle for survival on the barren planet Jakku. Die-hard Star Wars fans immediately realize that such a sad character has to play a truly epic role. Daisy Ridley's concerns about not being up to the task were baseless. She embodies her character dynamically and with a strong character, so fans should be happy about exactly this character that the scriptwriters have worked out. Rey finds and saves BB-8, which from then on makes its way into the hearts of the audience.
When the Millennium Falcon makes its grand entrance after another attack by the First Order, it becomes clear why Star Wars films are simply even better in 3D. The flight maneuvers are breathtaking, the change between cockpit and full view is fantastic and catapults the viewer into the middle of the air battles. The 3D effects work particularly well because JJ Abrams consistently dispenses with unnecessary gimmicks in the third dimension and places the effects where they reach the audience. Otherwise, the director remains true to the line of the classic trilogy: Star Wars - The Force Awakens is not very colorful, gloomy and dirty.
Since the Millennium Falcon is not the Millennium Falcon without Han Solo and Chewbacca, it did not take long for the two long-serving veterans to appear for the first time. Han Solo gets a comparatively large amount of screen time, which is why that should only become apparent later.
I have to admit, the villains of the third order weren't very scary at first sight, remained pale, although Kylo Ren looks threatening with the mask on. General Hux (Domnhall Gleeson) initially has little strong appearances. That changes at the latest with his “hate sermon”, which shows the character of General Hux in all his brutality and cold-heartedness. The whole scene is made even more threatening by the borrowings that JJ Abrams and she made from scriptwriters at the hateful events during the Second World War. When thousands of stormtroopers throw their left arms in the air in perfect synchronicity, one or the other spectator may have had a queasy feeling in the stomach area. The wonderfully animated Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis) remains mysterious throughout the film - that leaves room for exciting details in future films.
The moment that changed Star Wars forever
It must have been about half-time when the moment came on the big screen that shook the Star Wars universe to its foundations. That Han Solo (Harrison Ford) the father of Kylo Ren is quickly clear and is clearly mentioned. What takes place within the Starkiller base is nothing less than a moment of shock that silenced the cinema and that no Star Wars fan would have wished for: Kylo Ren kills Han Solo - in an oppressively togetherness, calm attitude that reflects the inner turmoil by Kylo Ren expresses and obliterates. From this point on, at the latest, Kylo Ren is a hated villain.
Rey is the tragic figure who lost everything to gain everything. She discovers her ability to deal with power, improves within the first film and, as the new pilot of the Millennium Falcon, becomes a worthy replacement for Han Solo. Her fear of responsibility subsides and culminates in an awkward lightsaber duel with Kylo Ren, who previously took out Finn. Anyway, Rey seems to be something of an all-rounder, reminiscent of the young Luke Skywalker. The meeting of the two at the end of Star Wars - The awakening of the Power builds up a good arc of suspense, which makes the time for the follow-up film seem infinitely long. The mystery of Luke Skywalker's whereabouts is cleared up, but more questions remain than answers.
Unlike some critics, I don't think Star Wars - The Force Awakens is a remake of A new Hope, but for an extension of the ideas from the very first Star Wars movie. For me it is Star Wars - The Force Awakens the film that George Lucas had always wanted to make. JJ Abrams accommodates countless Easter eggs in his work. For example, when Finn accidentally turns on the Dejarik table in the Millennium Falcon and Chewie speaks out loudly or Finn briefly holds the flying training ball in his hands that Luke Skywalker used for his first training sessions with the lightsaber. Even lines of dialogue were taken over in full, as an homage to the classic trilogy. If the Starkillerbase is ready to fire in 30 seconds, or General Hux gives the order to “fire when ready”, then Star Wars fans have truly arrived at home.
By consistently foregoing experiments, JJ Abrams revives Star Wars. He inspires the fans with the most modern film technology without putting the CGI in the center. The computer-generated images simply look sensational, but always fit neatly into the film. Abrams uses Lense Flares with caution; viewers see bright colors where it seems appropriate. The entire film exudes a dirty charm, it makes Star Wars all grown up without having to forego the typically humorous interludes within the action sequences. Abrams directing in Star Wars - The Force Awakens rather reminds of his work Super 8, than on Star Trek - And that's good.