Saw this in IMAX 3D and enjoyed the experience of it as a movie. It has good action, sometimes witty and funny dialogue, and good suspense. As a Star Wars movie, and a continuation of my most loved (and sometimes not-so-loved) franchise of all time, it wasn't what I wanted it to be. But, I think if you take all the unmeetable expectations out of it, and just accept it for what it is, trying to ignore some of the annoying plot stuff, its actually pretty good.
Here's what I didn't like:
-Yes, bombs dropping in space... but maybe they were really heavy and that dreadnought had its own gravity... nope, that's just wrong.
-The Force went from being something that is used by a Jedi in some kind of controlled, yet symbiotic relationship, to something that is just present and seems to protect people that need to be protected. Stormtroopers aren't bad at aiming, they are just really bad at getting through the Force. See: Leia's outer space force pull, Rey somehow not slicing off multiple limbs while practicing and then fighting with a lightsaber, etc.
-On from the last point - the Force used to be this thing you had to train really hard to use well. Now you can seemingly get buy with pure bruce, um, force, and determination. How is Rey supposed to avoid the Dark Side? She's clearly got anger issues, so what gives? Shoot, even Finn in the last movie was seemingly able to channel the Force when fighting Kylo at the end since nothing else explains how he wouldn't have gotten sliced in half in 2 seconds flat since he was apparently a completely untrained swordsman.
-Snoke is just... lame. He's not Jar Jar levels of bad, just lame. Having no idea where this guy came from or how he created/took over the First Order lessens whatever impact he would otherwise have. Same thing for Phasma. She's the only female stormtrooper we know of and it is not apparent why she has that lofty position she has since she's pretty terrible at her job.
-How did Del Toro's character know about the cloaked ships? Did Finn receive a transmission about it? Also, props to Del Toro for surviving (or at least apparently surviving) the film, that's a rare accomplishment for him.
-Essentially neutering Poe after the opening sequence. I really like him as a character, but basically grounding him for 95% of the movie was not great.
-Ackbar being unceremoniously killed off.
Here's what I did like:
-Action sequences are great. I really liked Rogue One's action, and this one kept it up.
-It echoed the Original trilogy without as much of a straight rehash as Episode VII. Overall, as with Episode IV, the rebels/rebellion sees the middle movie as mostly a series of setbacks, which gives it a good amount of gravity. It sets up a major struggle in the final movie since the resistance is in a far worse spot now than the rebellion was heading into Episode VI - at least then they had a fleet, and Ackbar.
-Overall, I just enjoyed it.
It's okay to just like a movie right? Of course it is. I like it despite it's many, and somewhat deep, flaws. I liked it way more than any prequel - rewatched Episodes I and II with the girlfriend last night and barely made it through, and more than Episode VII. Basically, I liked it for the same reason as I liked Rogue One - I took it for what it was and not compared to what I hoped it would be.
Negativity has a way of building on itself, so hopefully people don't get too down on a pretty fun movie like this.
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