Star Wars: The Force Awakens full movie review - JarJarAbrams is the Sith who destroyed the Star Wars franchise
I had high hopes for "Star Wars : The Force Awakens" (SW7). Unfortunately, JarJarAbrams did was he often does, namely "adopt, disrespect and destroy the work of others".
SW7 was absolutely horrible. No wonder Disney super-hyped the film and let nobody review in advance.
Anyone who cares about story, originality, coherence and consistency will find SW7 horrible. SW7 feels like it was written and directed by a simple-minded high-school student.
The good news: JarJarBinks wasn't a character in SW7.
The bad news: Someone with a JarJarBinks mindset wrote and directed SW7.
SW7 is an incoherent ripoff, reboot, remake mishmash of the original trilogy (OT), namely SW4, SW5, SW6.
SW7 is stunning in its lack of creativity and originality. The writers forgot the classic phrase is "history never repeats, but often rhymes". It would be fine for SW7 to rhyme with the OT, but instead SW7 simply repeats with minor irrelevant tweaks.
Most action in SW7 is simply action for action sake. Not because story, characters or the universe of StarWars demands the action, but because someone thought "this action should be cool". Much action wasn't set up or explained, and made no sense.
Some infantile mind (almost certainly JJA) wanted his DeathStar to be bigger and badder than those created by George Lucas. So the new DeathStar is 10 times larger... and explodes 7 planets at a time. Were those 7 planets established? Nope. Were their significance established? Nope. The new DeathStar weapon is charged by sucking all the energy from the nearest sun, then blasts 7 planets. This sure didn't make the new DeathStar more difficult to blow up. Sigh. Plus, why bother? Once you extinguish the sun, everyone on every planet in the solar system would freeze to death.
After two DeathStars were blown up in the OT, you'd think the empire would realize investing so much time, effort and resources into huge spherical space-stations was a bad idea. But no... that would require the writers actually imagine something creative and original, and dare I say "fresh and new". Nope. SW7 did exactly what a simple-minded child with no creative ability would do - create another DeathStar, only much more cumbersome and absurd.
BTW, why explode 7 planets simultaneously? Especially since the one planet that didn't get exploded the first time was the only planet that mattered. Made no sense whatsoever. Most planets in most solar systems cannot support life anyway, so the whole notion is completely absurd. But a simple-minded child only thinks "bigger and badder is better", and never wonders whether their idea makes any sense. Cue JarJarAbrams... brainless child in an adult body.
An enormous percentage of the SW7 story made no sense, contradicted what we know of the StarWars universe, or was completely unexplained and thus seemed like complete nonsense. I'll mention just one of dozens of examples to illustrate.
Rey is a compelling 20-ish tomboy without background (grew up alone on a desert planet, never knowing her parents). She gets caught up in the action of the story and flies off with Finn (a storm-trooper turned good) in an "old junker" spaceship (Han Solo's old spaceship). Amazingly, minutes later, after years of searching Han and Chewie find his ship and "steal it back". How convenient was that?
Later, Rey yanks Luke's lost light-saber out of the snow 30 meters away with the force (that she doesn't know she has, and while a Sith is also trying to grab it from much closer). Rey then handily beats the Sith in a light saber fight... with zero prior training or experience. So much for Jedi needing years of training. Even worse, Rey pulls the classic "Jedi mind trick" on a StormTrooper to escape from the new DeathStar... even though she never heard of "Jedi mind tricks" before.
Anyone who knows the StarWars universe has to think, "Are you kidding me"? How does this girl become stronger with the force than any Jedi who ever existed... with no training or prior connection to the force? This is beyond absurd, as is the entire story.
After a day reflecting, I speculated, "Maybe Rey is Luke's daughter, maybe Luke trained her, then maybe Luke stranded her on a desert planet much like Tatooine after erasing her memory". Such pure speculation could at least explain some of these absurdities, but nothing in the movie provided us any insight or reason to believe her abilities made any sense whatsoever. In fact, it directly contradicts what we know from previous films.
Incessant action and motion made locations seem small, contained, largely meaningless. All previous StarWars films, especially the prequels, presented the awesome grandeur and scope of the locations (cities, moons, planets, galaxy) the story and action were set within. Except for the empty desert where Rey lived, SW7 did none of this. Even when we quickly fly into the huge hanger in the new DeathStar we barely see anything (no establishing shots). SW7 doesn't feel set "in a galaxy", but "a few spots on 3 planets and the DeathStar", and logical connections between locations are rarely established.
The story has endless holes and lapses of consistency and continuity, not to mention utter absurdities (like huge dog leashes attached to tie-fighters inside the DeathStar).
The new characters were fine, and most acting was solid, even excellent sometimes (Han). However, the way Han Solo dies is utterly absurd and totally meaningless. Plus, he and Leia had ZERO chemistry (apparently they were long divorced, plus Leia ends up getting Han killed). The special effects were mostly competent, but were TOTALLY WRONG in style for StarWars.
SW7 does provide setups that could lead to good SW8 and SW9 stories. JarJarAbrams isn't writing or directing SW8 or SW9 apparently, so at least we might have "a new hope" for SW8 and SW9. Convince George Lucas to write the stories for all future Star Wars films.