Thank Yahweh! We got a good STAR WARS sequel!!

December 22, 2015

Helloooooooooo!!! I love you!

There will be spoilers in here, so do whatever it is that you do with that. There will also be jokes and curses and probably weird sexual stuff thrown in there and all the usual stuff you get from me. I liked the movie as the title suggests. 

As luck would fucking have it, my excellent wife and I saw STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS on Thursday night. I know! Actually, I wrote most of this post on Friday morning, but thought I’d hold off on giving my thoughts a few days, so the world could see it and digest it by reading ONE BILLION other people’s thoughts about the damn movie – which are almost all the same thoughts anyway. *even nerdier voice than you’re already reading this in*  I think Rey’s Luke’s daughter. … YEAH, WE ALL KIND OF FUCKING THINK THAT!!! Anyway…

After living on this planet for 31 years, Danielle saw the STAR WARS OG Trilogy just a month ago. And she enjoyed them. And she didn’t have to wait 30 years to see a proper sequel to them and instead only had to wait a fucking month and didn’t have to go through all depression and hate that came from waiting for 10 plus years and then getting the prequels. Ain’t that some shit?

Yes, after 4 years of dating and owning a dog together and buying a house together and a year long engagement and MARRIAGE and then a month of marriage…

DANIELLE aka MY WIFE SAW STAR WARS!!

I’m mentioning this because it is amazing and I’m mentioning it because I think going through that experience with her and then me going back and watching Mr. Plinkett from Red Letter Media absolutely disembowel the prequels in his famous multi-hour absurdist and hilarious review of them (which starts here… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FxKtZmQgxrI), I believe I was in the exact right state of mind to enjoy THE FORCE AWAKENS.

I had reinvigorated my love for Star Wars once again and I had reinvigorated my hate for the prequels. And I was both optimistic and scared about how the movie would turn out. I was optimistic that J.J. Abrams was making this movie as a means to reset Star Wars back to where we left it and not whatever Lucas was up to with the prequels proving he could make an entirely CGI madness movie extravaganza from his living room.

So, yeah, we saw it! We saw it in a movie theater that featured a 400 pound man wearing a New York Giants hoodie who was drinking the biggest ICEE I’ve ever seen and he was… VAPING! WOOOOOO!!! That man don’t give a fuck.

I LIKED THE MOVIE!!!

I really liked. I didn’t love it, but I don’t think that was expected. In a way, it’s not “original” enough to be loved because I think it really was Abrams’ attempt to get the franchise back to where it was when RETURN OF THE JEDI ended and where we all were before the prequels happened. The prequels were so different and so bad that this movie’s goal was to get us back to sameness and that’s perfectly fine by me.

As about a million Buzzfeed and the like websites are pointing out all the similarities between A NEW HOPE and THE FORCE AWAKENS and it’s like yeah. It was purposefully done that way. The movie was trying to get us back to center. We had gone so far into the negative from the prequels and the story had gone in such a different direction with things like midichlorians and Yoda with a lightsaber and about a thousand other things that seemed to be aimed at undoing all the goodness and magic from the originals that we need something to bring us back to center and that’s what THE FORCE AWAKENS does and I think it did a great job at it.

Instead of really going through the plot or what have you… I want to hit on some characters or specific scenes that I would like the following movies to expand on or maybe it’s something I didn’t like or whatever. I’ve got some shit to say. These are the things that have been kind of gnawing at me, but overall I liked the movie a lot and I would highly recommend any and all to see it whether you’re a Star Wars fan or not – it’s a solid adventure film.

I BET NATALIE PORTMAN IS ALL LIKE “I COULD’VE DONE THAT!!!”

Finally, we have a great female lead again in the Star Wars universe. The original trilogy had a great female lead, one of the best female leads in Princess Leia. Then the prequels royally fucked up the whole female character thing – it wasn’t sexist because they royally fucked up every fucking thing that happened – and gave us a boring and impotent Padme. It wasn’t Natalie’s fault by a long shot though, she was just doing what the movie asked her to do and that movie was a shitty movie. I mean the great and gorgeous Natalie Portman easily could have played the role of Rey if Rey was the character for her to play back in the late 90’s.

Daisy Ridley did great though. I thought she was captivating and emoted well and goofed around well and blah blah blah. She was a lot more physical than Leia because she was a lot more like Luke. And that’s because she’s the female Luke. Not another female Leia. The similarities are abound and I enjoyed it all quite a bit. In the end, a chick jedi as the lead is exactly the type of stuff this new trilogy needs.

I don’t have any gripes with Rey. I do want to throw out more the idea that the flawless Natalie Portman is sitting in some chateau in France and watching some DVD screener of THE FORCE AWAKENS and she’s just like, “I won a fucking Oscar. I was nominated for another Oscar. I could have fucking filmed a lightsaber fight. I could have used the force. Instead, I sat on couches and delivered the shittiest dialogue and in the most boring movies and in the end was killed and I never did anything expect be barefoot and pregnant.”

So, yeah, I think just like most think that Rey is Luke’s daughter. Some say, she’s Luke’s niece like Kylo Ren is Luke’s nephew. Well… sure, I guess that could work too, but the similarities that they are shoving down our throat between Luke and Rey are so numerous that she has to be his daughter. And I like that. My only concern, are we going to get some fucking force users who are not Skywalkers?

Whether it is the original trilogy or the prequels, we do see other people who are not related to the Skywalkers that can use the force. We got Yoda for one. Emperor Palpatine and Obi-Wan for two and three. And if we’re throwing those prequels in, well there are apparently hundreds of force users out there. Of course, the prequels fucked that up, but that is something I want to get into in this new trilogy. They are already showing us that hand with Snoke who I’m guessing has force abilities and there are the rest of the bros that Kylo Ren trained with under Luke that Kylo Ren seemingly killed off — those guys had to come from somewhere.

An idea, let’s get Rey on a Magneto/Professor X like mission or a Harry/Ron/Hermoine where she goes around the universe collecting up the force users. Flipside, the bad guys are trying to do the same thing. In the end, I don’t know… maybe the force users all work as one and can shield the planet from an attack or the space ships or something like wizards trying to shield Hogwarts or Neo using his force like powers to electrocute the Matrix baddies on their flight to the core. I’d like force users to actually do something together and use the force and not just die in a cgi battle with lightsabers.

It’s an idea. Sure, the “jedi” are dead, but people are born everyday in the Star Wars universe with force abilities, so let’s get on that shit.

THE FORCE SHOULD BE A BURDEN!!!

This is something that I’ve thought for awhile and I feel like Abrams may be tickling at in this movie, but I would like them to delve into how dangerous it is to have force abilities. It should be a mix between Spider-man’s “with great power becomes great responsibility” and Lord of the Ring’s “PRECIOUS!!!!!!!!”

Being a superhero shouldn’t be seen as easy and in most stories it isn’t. In Star Wars, they say time and time again that the Dark Side is seductive. He was seduced by the Dark Side. I would like them to really push into that. The idea that it is easy to be seduced by the Dark Side because you have super human abilities that generally speaking are super human fighting abilities and when you are in a war and you’re fighting someone and you’re using your anger and hate mixed with your super human abilities – you’re unstoppable. You’re the best solider anyone could ask for, and with that you start to fall deeper into that trap because as you revel in your power – you become evil.

That’s what I want. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. You get a taste for it and it’s so easy to allow that taste to grow. And as your thoughts grow darker and your obsession with using your power grows then eventually you find yourself dressed in black, killing your loved ones, and leading a Neo Nazi army to take control of the universe.

The above paragraph is more or less the storyline of the manga CLAYMORE. Women with giant swords hunt people-eating werewolves. These women have the werewolf power inside of them too to help combat those werewolves. Problem is, if they use the power too much then they’ll become a people-eater monster that is a million times worse than any one of those werewolves by themselves. They need to use the power to win, but they need to make sure not to use it enough. Ultimately, they find out that at some point they are going to use the power too much and it’s just a matter of time til they become one of those terrifying monsters. And the story goes from there, but I love Claymore and I love that story.

To be on the side of the light should be a constant struggle because ultimately the force by default will draw you to the dark side. To stay on the lightside, one must meditate, be emotionless, calm, defend and not attack, and basically limit yourself all the time. Maybe the idea is that Yoda was on the otherside of the galaxy in some swamp because he wanted to live as a Buddhist monk in solitude because he wanted to eliminate the temptation of the darkside as much as possible and that meant meditating in a tree fort instead of being apart of some war, which could bring out his darkside.

That’s something I hope they get into and I think they kind of are hinting at that with Rey going all calm-mode at the end of THE FORCE AWAKENS instead of getting angrier or more desperate during the fight with Kylo Ren. As well as, I think Kylo Ren hinted at this as he seems to need to pump himself up a bunch about hate and being angry, and even talks to Vader’s helmet about feeling tempted by the light and needing to stay angry at everyone – even the helmet in general I think is like a INCEPTION like totem that keeps him on track like yeah I need to keep hating and being angry and so forth. … which brings me to…

KYLO REN SHOULD’VE HAD MORE LINES!!!

I really liked Kylo Ren. I liked this idea of seeing a slightly molded piece of clay who is more along the lines of the Anakin Skywalker we should have seen in the prequels. He’s been trained some, but he’s not fully functional and with that – sure, there are mistakes. But he’s powerful and his goals may be more his own than about the Empire/First Order’s. I liked all that. I liked his look with or without the helmet and I think Adam Driver did a great job with the character. My problems and/or what I would have liked…

KYLO SHOULD’VE LITERALLY TOUCHED REY. 

Not like fingerblasted his cousin, although with all the hinted incest in these movies, but that’s not what I meant. When Kylo had Rey strapped to that interrogation slab, I desperately wanted a physical touch between Kylo and Rey for a variety of reasons. I think it would have added to the terrifyingness of human contact when one doesn’t want it, which is usually what happens in those types of situations and, at the same time, the idea that they could be family means that the human contact needed to be there almost even more. Plus, characters should touch each other. They make such a big deal about the good touch that Rey had like the hug with Finn or the kiss she gave Finn’s forehead, so there should have been a bad touch there with Kylo. Also, it’s the storyline that her powers are awakening and her powers get awakened when she senses and then touches Luke’s lightsaber. I wanted that same thing with Kylo. One could say, that the interaction with them in general is what was awakening her powers and it was, but I wanted just a simple touch to really solidify that connection and to truly bring those characters together in a moment on both the physical and mental level the way they are in the final clash. It is pretty much there, but just him touching her face or whatever could have also shown that he’s still human. He shows her his face, which he doesn’t need to, but he does. And then he feels compelled to touch her like he couldn’t help himself like he’s still seeking human contact. I would’ve have liked that moment.

KYLO SHOULD HAVE HAD MORE TO SAY. 

There’s the idea that Benecio Del Toro cut out like 70% of his dialogue in SICARIO and did something similar in THE WAY OF THE GUN becomes he thought his character would be more menacing and mysterious if he didn’t say nearly as much as the writer had originally intended. Sure. That works for Benecio Del Toro, but it’s not something that works across the board. For me, I think Kylo should have had more to say because I want him to literally enunciate the inner struggle and the anger and his feelings as to why he is doing all of this.

I’m not saying like soliloquies or really any additional scenes, but just some more dialogue when he was silent in the movie. I have two examples and they’re both at the end of the movie.

  • When Kylo is looking for Han in that room and then suddenly decides to walk down that long bridge that happens to be there and then Han follows him out there… It may have seemed obvious that Kylo did that on purpose knowing he could draw his dad out of the shadows like that, but Kylo should have said that. Just a quick line saying that. Nothing more. It’s not just about spelling things out, but it’s giving the characters credit for making sensible moves with motives and not just random shit like walking onto a bridge that just so happens to be in this place.
  • More importantly, I would have liked Kylo to have been yelling/talking throughout the final clash with Finn and Rey. I really liked the stuff with Kylo beating his side with his fist and showing the blood splatter on the snow from his blaster wound. So many people focus on the idea that Rey was all of a sudden so good with the lightsaber and they seem to have quickly forgotten that Kylo was injured and bleeding from a shot from a blaster (which almost always kills people in these movies) to the gut moments earlier. For Finn, I wanted Kylo to be yelling at Finn about what insolence he is paying Kylo by even attempting to fight him with a lightsaber. How Finn is nothing to him. He’s toying with him. How Finn isn’t capable of defeating him. How he isn’t even fit to wield the weapon that only the truly powerful and worthy should. It would continue the idea that he is keeping his anger up, show how touchy the subject of jedi/force/lightsabers and all, and how he has a perverse obsession with jedi history. And I feel like against Rey it could have been similar where he’s yelling at her about how he’s dedicated his life to this and sacrificed and then she just fucking shows up and she has no respect for the power she has. It could be three or four line of dialogue in each of those duels, but I think they would have made his character much more colorful and his plight much more clear and terrifying and desperate.

At least, that’s how I view Kylo Ren’s character. I don’t know what they’re going to do with him, but that’s part of the motivation I feel like he should have.

What’s next?

A FEMALE STORMTROOPER?! HOW COO- … oh wait, she’s a coward. 

There was a lot of excitement and fanfare over Brienne of Tarth being brought on as the first female Stormtrooper. GOT’s Gwendoline Christie was going to be the first ever female Stormtrooper and her name would be CAPTAIN PHASMA and she had badass new slick chrome armor. People were fucking ecstatic over this.

My expectations were Captain Phasma was going to be the Star Wars’ Imperator Furiosa.

Wouldn’t that have been something? Like literally something. Like anything. Because what we got from Captain Phasma was nothing. People like to pick at these movies that they’re just in existence to sell toys. As for The Force Awakens, the toy one can ridicule is the pointlessness of Captain Phasma.

Finally, a female stormtrooper. And it’s in the movie that is giving us the first female Jedi, seemingly, and we do absolutely nothing with her. My question is why? Why is she in the movie? Why does she not do more in the movie or just not exist at all? I think either scenario would have been preferable than to what we got. I’ll assume there was more to her character and they cut it and rumors are circling that she’s to be in the next movie, but I didn’t need “additional” scenes – I just need Phasma in the scenes we have or just not in any at all.

First scenario… MORE PHASMA! The absolute obvious would be that when Finn fights the Stormtrooper with the electric police baton that it’s Phasma fighting Finn and not just another random ass Stormtrooper. This would have worked on so many levels!

  • When the stormtrooper spots Finn on sight and is clearly angered by him and doesn’t just shoot at him and instead wants to put a beating on him with this electric night stick and seemingly capture him to then torture him or reprogram him or whatever – wouldn’t that have made sense if it was Phasma and not just some rando? Wouldn’t Phasma who has seen his face, has spoken to him, has castigated him, and does believe in the process of attitude adjustments have been the perfect person to have thrown a blaster aside to fight to subdue and capture?
  • The electric night stick was cool I guess, but, again, wouldn’t it have been cooler and made more sense in the hands of Phasma? She’s got the different suit, gender, and is named CAPTAIN PHASMA. She should have a nifty weapon we’ve never seen before. Instead, she isn’t shown using a weapon at all.
  • If you’re going to go through the trouble of having a Captain Phasma and you’re going to go through the trouble of having a Stormtrooper do some cool fighting (instead of the norm of getting blown to bits by aimless blaster fire) then why the fuck wasn’t that Phasma?
  • Finn loses the fight, but gets away. Later, Finn gets ‘revenge’ on Phasma by getting her to drop the shields. It would have been actual revenge or at least satisfying if it was Phasma who beat Finn in that fight. Instead, we’re getting revenge on Phasma because she told Finn to put his helmet back on, which is about the only thing she appears to do in the movie besides wear that slick armor.

The flip-side is no Phasma, which I think would have made more sense too.

  • Finn takes off his helmet. A regular run-of-the-mill stormtrooper sees this and tells Finn to put his helmet back on and that he should go back to reconditioning if he’s having problems. Why is this better than Phasma? Because Finn doesn’t do it. Finn disobeys. It’s not a big deal of Finn disobeys some schmuck stormtrooper. Even better, it’s not like some schmuck stormtrooper would like follow Finn to get reconditioned or check-on whether or not he did it. Some schmuck stormtrooper would say something then get back to what he was ordered to do and that’s it and then Finn can go along his merry way of disobeying and not possibly being followed. Phasma saying to him to go do something and then her just blindly assuming he did it seems unlikely because a CAPTAIN would make sure shit got done, right?
  • Finn, Han, Chewie jump one or two people in the uniforms who work in the shield generator control room and they force them to power down the shields. Seems likely. Seems less likely that they could do that so easily to CAPTAIN PHASMA. There are hundreds if not thousands of men (and now women) walking around the Starkiller base who are just in uniforms and seem to operate control panels and shit all over the base. They take some meek officer(s) who has zero combat training and scare the shit out of them with Chewbacca and force them to power down the shields or Chewie will rip their arms off (reference to A NEW HOPE, right?). Instead, in a gigantic fucking base filled with countless baddies – they fucking dumb luck stumble upon PHASMA and overpower her and get her to do shit with the simplest of ease.

Either have PHASMA be cool and do shit or not have her at all. The in-between is just mystifying.

WHERE’S LUPITA? Oh wait, was that orange lizard Lupita?

People were pretty psyched when they announced that Oscar winning actress Lupita Nyung’o.

But what the hell happened from there?

Well, Lupita was turned into a sassy orange lizard who has sight problems and seems to bus tables at the bar she’s owned for a 1000 years. Well, that sucks. MAZ does pass along some information I suppose and there’s no explanation as to why she has Luke Skywalker’s light saber, but yeah… that’s it. There’s a scene in the trailers where she hands the light saber to Leia, which isn’t in the movie, so we can easily assume that some/much of her character is on the editing room floor. But who cares? Why did they turn her into a CGI orange lizard?

To begin with, Lupita has become a recognizable face and it’s a pretty face. She’s got a pretty body too. I’d hazard a guess her pretty face and her pretty body would not only have looked good along with all the other pretty faces and pretty bodies that were hired to round out this movie, but it sure as hell would have been better to look at than a damn grandma orange lizard with Coke bottle glasses.

Also, I guess there’s a joke to the idea that some bar that’s been around for a 1000 years that Han hurriedly tells us is a whacky place would be run by an old grandma orange lizard with shitty eyes, but wouldn’t it have been better if a sultry woman with obsidian skin ran the place and more or less had all these tricksters and villains wrapped around her finger? I think so.

And why even hire Lupita if she’s going to be some ugly CGI character? She doesn’t have a memorable voice that we all know and have nostalgia for. Shouldn’t an actress who can do character voices have played the part or at least if they’re going the root of seemingly trying to cast a soulful black woman’s voice then how about an older black woman with an older black woman’s voice that could have done justice. I mean I can’t think of anyone that deserves to be represented as an ugly orange lizard, but get an impressive voice behind it and have Lupita play an X-wing pilot or something instead of fat Greg Grunberg (sorry, Greg Grunberg).

Not to mention, that the J.J. Abrams was really patting himself on the back about all the practical effects they were using in this movie and then when it comes time to have an alien – boom! – shitty orange CGI thing-a-ma-jig. Same goes for Lord Snoke. Maz and Snoke were the two characters that most reminded me of prequels crap and they easily could have been played by actors and they weren’t for whatever fucking reason. I’ll get to Snoke next.

The last thing I’ll say, but they go through all this mess to make a brand spanking new CGI character … and … I hate to say it … but … I mean aging is the worst … but … I mean how could you not make the correlation … and it’s not like Harriso- … Maz looked like Leia. Am I the only one who thought that? They were like the same height, they got a similar old woman look, and it was even worse that they both were interacting with Han Solo. It was creepy and someone should have seen that and not made Maz look anything like Maz.

Take a second and look up “Lupita Nyong’o mohawk”. That’s how Lupita should have fucking looked in this damn movie. They should have just had Lupita with that blonde mohawk and at most then CGI-ed robot legs or arms on her and called it a fucking day. Also, would have made more sense as why Han loved Maz’s so much because he’s a space perv and probably banged Maz.

SNOKE? Fuck Snoke. 

I didn’t like Snoke. I didn’t like him mainly because he was a shitty CGI character. Not shitty like CGI characters are all shitty. Most CGI characters are shitty, but I meant shitty like it looked shitty. Snoke looked like bad guys at the end of I AM LEGEND. He wasn’t intimidating or anything. Also, I don’t know what was going on with his head at all or why someone would want to listen to the clearly creepy evil alien man(?) who appears to have holes developing in his face.

If they’re just going to have a guy who is sort of grizzly looking with a ripped up face then why go through all the fucking trouble of putting little dots all over Andy Serkis’ face and then putting that into a computer and then blah blah blah COMPUTERS. I have a quick fucking fix and it’s called make-up and it’s called FREDDY KRUEGER.

Seriously, there have been Freddy movies as long as I’ve been alive and I’ve been slightly terrified of him that whole time too and the sight of him still turns my stomach a bit til this very day. Was that CGI? You want a person with lesions or cuts or holes or whatever going on with their face? Take a Freddy mask and fucking paint it grey or whatever color instead of the red and orange it is now. I mean a grey skinned Freddy Krueger wearing a black cloak and known to have Jedi powers is fucking scary shit and would be a fuck ton better than dumbass Snoke. Fuck you, computers!

I’m sorry, computers! I love you! It’s not your fault they made you make these characters!

ENOUGH WITH FUCKING DEATH STARS? 

If I’ve learned anything from watching Star Wars movies, the first step to becoming a true galactic empire is to build a giant circle that blows up other circles. Of course, the second step is OH FUCK! THEY BLEW IT UP! AGAIN?! THIS IS THE THIRD FUCKING TIME NOW!!!! DAMN IT! DO YOU KNOW HOW EXPENSIVE THOSE CIRCLES THAT BLOW UP OTHER CIRCLES ARE?!!!!

I know that The Force Awakens is more or less just getting us back to square one again in the Star Wars universe – and I’m cool with that – but if I see another fucking Death Star again I’m going to fucking lose it. It’s not compelling or interesting or dramatic in the least bit. We’ve seen two of them bite it and seeing it happen a third time is just stupid. The first time you see Tony Hawk pull off a 960 on a half-pipe, it’s bonkers. The second time, it’s like he’s proving how good he actually is by accomplishing the impossible not by accident, but by practice. The third time? Go fuck yourself, Tony. Go learn a new fucking trick and by trick I mean not stealing your best friend’s wife, which you may have done more times than the damn 960 at this point (Google that shit!).

I want a new bad guy plan.

I want a new bad guy plan, so desperately. I want a plan that doesn’t simply involve building an enormous central cannon hidden on or in an orb. The next movie(s) better not fucking talk about Death Stars ever again. If anything, there should be a moment where someone says that they should build another Death Star and someone else freaks out and is like WHY?! SO THEY CAN BLOW IT UP AGAIN!?!?!?! And fucking just lose it on that guy.

Anyway…

Those are my main thoughts about THE FORCE AWAKENS.

Sure, I have some more like how the tone of the movies is all over the fucking place and maybe one day they’ll figure that out, but they probably won’t. It’s got slapstick and cute robots one second, killing dad with a laser sword through the heart the next second. It’s all over the place, but whatever.

Thanks for reading this. I love you.

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