Monday, January 4, 2016

Star Wars: The Dork Awakens

A (not so terribly) long time ago in a galaxy (not so very) far, far away...

A sister and brother were born. Their sad, beautiful mother died in childbirth and to protect them from a father who had become an evil lord (and was just evilly whiney prior to that) they were sent to a home in California. They were raised, not as twins, but as siblings who were two years apart. The "Sky" was dropped from their name (for safeguarding purposes and all.) 
Leaving it as merely Walker.

This may or may not have been the fantasy that filled much of my childhood imaginings. I mean, my last name WAS Walker. And my brother and I? Well, the force was strong with us. Let me tell you.

So imagine my surprise when I texted him after seeing The Force Awakens and said: STAR WARS!!!!! And he responded back with: Yep. Star Wars!! 

I should have known by the not-all-caps response. And the two exclamation points instead of four. But I kept pushing: Did you see it?? Did you love it!?
He replied: Yes and I really liked it. But am I allowed to be a little disappointed?

No. No you are not. And I will tell you why. 

Because I didn't love Episode I-III (I know, I know. My true fan rating just went way down.) And I wasn't even super excited for Episode VII. (I mean, Yoda is dead. How awesome could it be?)

But...It. Was. Fabulous. 
And sure, maybe a little (lot) reminiscent of Episode IV. But do you remember what happened with New Coke?? There's a reason they stopped making it. 
A very good reason.

So what did I love about it? Well, kind of everything. (Just ask my husband, whose arm I hit excitedly and repeatedly through the entire movie.) But a few things in particular:

The Old Gang
What can I say? I love them all. 
You can regard your Henry all you want. You can chase your Fugitive. Hijack your President Marshall. You can dig your Indiana Jones. For me? There is just one role that Harrison Ford was born to play. Han Solo. He just was. 
And sure. I sat there just like everyone else trying to figure out just how old Carrie Fisher actually is. But just like I have learned not to judge how people parent, how dirty their house is, or how many pairs of black boots they I continue to get older, I have learned not to judge how people age. I mean, we can't all be Chewie.
C3PO? Just as obnoxious and robotically annoying as ever. (Contented sigh.) 
And, yes, the absence of Yoda was keenly felt by me. But as far as I'm 
concerned, no Yoda at all is still better than computer-animated Yoda.

The Falcon
Am I giving anything away here? Well, too bad if I am. You should have already seen it by now. 
I had a Ford Festiva once. I think it cost me $500. It ran and ran and ran and ran. And ran. It got me from California to Utah and back more times than I can count. 
Did it shake when I went over 50 miles an hour? Like Oola, the Twil'lek slave dancer. 
Did the driver side mirror have to be duct-taped on more than once? You bet your Jabba the Butt it did. 
But it never once broke down on me. Not once in all the years I had it. And I bet if I were to come across it now, half buried in the sands of the distant planet of would still get me across the hyperspace route of the I-15. It may take a little longer than twelve parsecs. But it would get me there. 

The Stormtroopers
When I was a kid, we had one of those tall metal wall heaters in the hallway. I don't remember anymore if it was me or one of my siblings who used to have nightmares about Stormtroopers emerging from it in the night. (I think it was a younger sibling. I mostly had nightmares about how my dad would bogart it every morning while the rest of us would hover nearby shivering.) Regardless of who it was, the truth is...Stormtroopers were scary. And somehow, 30+ years later, they still are. There have been a few small tweaks here and there. But essentially, the uniforms are the same. The blasters the same. They don't need a sleek updated new look. Because a legion of synchronized, marching, anonymous, evil soldiers? Still scary as hell. Which just tells you how awesome the original series was in the first place. 

This far from covers all of the things I loved about the movie. Whiney new bad guy: Loved. Oscar Isaac: Loved more. No Jar Jar: Loved the most. 

But the best things were the things that reminded me of the movies I loved as a young Jedi-wannabe. Light speed. Droids. X-Wing & TIE Fighters. Jedi mind tricks. The score. Oh the score. It gives me goosebumps still. 

I recently saw one review that said that it is ridiculous to bill this movie as a sequel when it is merely a remake.

I have just four words for you, Star Wars-hater guy:

If it ain't broke...

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