Hello, Spongey here
I’m a bit late to this one but here we are. And I’m so sick of the discourse already that I want to blow through this intro. Basically, our Star Wars sequel trilogy is coming to a close.
Rian Johnson has some trilogy in the works but the main saga ends here. For a recap, The Force Awakens brought things back in style, being a lot of fun with solid new characters, even if the story was just fine. The Last Jedi made up for that with solid developments, bold turns and great character stuff. Granted, I am sick of certain people building up too much, acting like its some avante guard masterwork that is the only Star Wars that matters.
But the people who are still sending Rian death threats are worse so I can deal with that. Now we have the end, as JJ is here to finish what he started. As I said, I am sick of the discourse already, and I just want to dive in and finally be able to comment on this movie for myself and see how I respond to it.
Will it end the series on a high note? Will it be more like Force Awakens or Last Jedi? All I know is there’s no Baby Yoda so who cares. Let’s just do this.
This, is Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
(Spoiler free, of course)
No one’s ever really gone… Rey’s journey continues and the Skywalker saga concludes in Star Wars. …That’s the summary on my theaters website, it’s the best I could come up with.
Oh boy, this will be fun to talk about. I did like it…but it’s quite flawed and it sadly isn’t as good as I may have wanted, and it is the weakest of this trilogy. Much like Return of the Jedi was the weakest of that trilogy, but it was still great to me despite that. This was…simply good.
My thoughts are complicated. Some people are upset over some of what happens here and I was ready to dismiss them. Some people are so attached to Last Jedi that not being exactly that would be seen as insulting to them. I figured they were totally irrational.
I see…sort of understand them now. Not to the extent that I would attack the filmmakers or do anything the extremists did with Last Jedi of course. But I can see how people would feel certain turns are kind of insulting given what we had before and all that.
I’m gonna level with you and say that I want to give this 3 stars with a /’like” on Letterboxd, but I will have a hard time justifying that in this review, and you readers will wonder how the hell I could give it that given everything I say. …Yet I still will want to do so. Hey, be glad I’m not going beyond.
See the bind I’m in? Anyway, let’s start with the good. The good aspects are generally what you would expect them to be. It’s still vey well made with exciting action, top notch effects and great acting with the characters still being well defined and likable. After the last two, of course all that would be true. It’s almost hard to give it credit for that but I like enjoying things so I will still praise all those elements.
While some plot elements are mixed, they still do some solid things with them. Rey’s journey is interesting to watch as she deals with everything going on. It leads to emotional highs, and some of the expected “Holy crap” moments. And in general, Kylo Ren has cemented his place as my favorite part of this new trilogy. He’s threatening but complicated and his part of things made for the most interesting parts to me.
It’s still Star Wars so it still has solid high points and is still knows what people like abut the saga and captures that well in the final moments as well. Even with any misgivings, it’s hard to be hard on something like this what what it does well.
That said, it’s time to get into my problems. I know, for a movie I like I can usually dwell my positives more but this is a movie that is hard not to spoil so that does prevent me from dwell on certain things more. That and the positives are generally extensions of what I’ve said about these movies before or are positive aspects to things I am about to mention.
Also, there’s some enjoyable new characters, and C3PO gets some funny moments.
The biggest thing that is dividing people is how it handles certain things it reveals/does, especially compared to how they were done in the last movie. Yeah, just saying that may be a spoiler to some but I have to mention that they do certain things with certain beloved elements of Last Jedi so you get my problems.
Right from the text crawl, there’s something I wasn’t sure about and that set the tone for me. With certain elements, it does lead to some engaging stuff on its own, but it’s in service of things that I wasn’t a fan of conceptually. That’s the main thing, they do some solid things with these aspects, but the concepts will turn some people off and what they do isn’t so good that most of those people will automatically forgive it.
Chances are at least one creative decision will bother you if you especially loved what they were doing with it previously. That is to be expected in any movie that makes certain choices but that especially applies here. For me, one thing near the end is what I disliked the most, with what they do with one character that I really loved what what they were doing with up to that point.
But even that has some small aspects to it I appreciated given it could have been worse, but it’s not enough to make that decision worth it to me. The one they spend the most time did lead to a solid story but it is still a turn that I didn’t feel was needed, given what was established before.
Of course, a good chunk is in response to some of the Last Jedi backlash and that does kind of suck given I feel the parts detractors railed on the most did not to be fixed, in my opinion. Honestly, I’m more bugged by Rose getting the shaft here. #RoseDidNothingWrong
But I can see why thought some reveals would make for a good story, so this again leaves me in a bind. Honestly, I now see why some fans did get upset with some of what Last Jedi did. I know what it’s like to see certain things/characters you love go in a direction that is not what you wanted. I do feel that here it didn’t lead to a more interesting story than if they played it differently, and that’s the big difference to me.
That and I ain’t gonna attack the filmmakers or go on for two plus years, but you know me, I don’t do that stuff here. I can see why some feel this movie is an insult to what came before and why certain reactions are fully negative. And yet…I still would call this a good movie.
If I was popular enough to get comments, I know tons of people would tell me to simply admit the movie was not good to make things easy on me. I totally understand that but…I can’t say that because I did like it overall. It’s a lot like Force Awakens where it is better as a fun Star Wars adventure with some complex moments that are pulled well, than it it as a deeper experience.
That’s not ideal for the end to a whole saga. Especially since they make certain decisions I don’t like, while I’m perfectly fine with simply playing it safe. Again, I really like Return of the Jedi despite it being sloppier than the rest of the trilogy! And yet, this would be a fresh review on Rotten Tomatoes.
Because at the end of the day, I enjoyed the adventure and liked some of what they did here and still liked seeing where the characters went. And the final moment was a nice cap overall. I’ve liked movies despite major problems before but this was a new level for me.
I’m glad for the especially solid highs, as while they made the entire movie hard to pin my full rating for, it did make it easier to justify going the route I am taking. As a whole, Rise of Skywalker gives us a nice end to the saga with the usual great effects and action, with good acting and characters (plus the always amazing John Williams score) but the ways it deals with elements from the previous movies leave me mixed.
It’s a mixed bag to say the least, and I am disappointed they couldn’t go out with a bigger bang that made it easy to love. I get why people are being harsher but my better nature has to take it over and say that the was movie was good, but not exactly THAT good compared to what I wanted and even on its own.
But even with all that, it’s still Star Wars so it still has a special place with me and there’s a fair amount to like in execution. I wanted to really like it to stick it to certain complainers as the kind of people attacking this movie are the people I can’t stand but eh, sometimes people like that can have a point.
Just don’t be too be annoying or jerk-ish when it comes to expressing you distaste, okay? So yeah, this movie has plenty to enjoy as a the final chapter of this saga, I just wish it was better and didn’t do some of what it did.
…At least we can agree that the Holiday Special is awful.
Also, they’ve been sending out warnings about flashing lights, and they are right do so. Especially they were mostly in dialogue scenes where you gotta pay attention! It’s telling that they aren’t fixing this (even though they did with Incredibles II) so that no one has to worry about seizures…but they will patch up the effects on Cats so that a hated movie looks slightly better.
…Well, that was something, sorry this was ramble-y and that you will question my tastes even more given what I said Hopefully tomorrow we’ll have it easier, as Blue Sky turns Will Smith into a pigeon.
See ya, and may the force be with you!
Not a bad review. I have to agree. The movie was good but not great. I just wish the movie was longer so there could’ve been more time spent on characters who felt underutilized.
Pingback: 30+ more Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Reviews – the future of Star Wars is on Disney Plus + All 9 Films Ranked – Movies, Movies, Movies
Pingback: Spongey444: Gremlins And Star Wars | Red Ribbon Reviewers