In my first Start Wars Meatloaf post (2 out of 3 ain’t) bad I explored one of the ain’t bad parts with the three different Star Wars experiences I had over the holidays. This post will discuss the IS’s bad part. And also the questionable grammar (often found here, irregardless <– did that on purpose) and that Is’s bad part is the movie : Star Wars, the Rise of Millenial.
Now, before you say “Ok Boomer” (which is officially considered a suspendable insult on School property now in some parts of Canada) you have to realize that I love Millenials. I have one. Not in an ownership sense, but my son is now fourteen and in High School. So I have some experience.
Star Wars : The Rise of Skywalker teaches us, the viewer, that there are no such things as loss or consequences – not even in a galaxy far, far away. It is done this way as all things seemingly these days because loss and consequence are too triggering and traumatic to deal with or consider – not only in real life, but in our fantasy entertainment lives as well. Especially when you are talking to a new generation of fans.
Spoilers are starting here, if you haven’t already have seen the movie
That is not my sole complaint, but also how the force suddenly has become a power that is well, a super power. In the first 6 movies the Jedi – who have spent eons training and honing their skills – are strong, capable warriors. Many people strive to be strong and skilled which is why they buy 9mm ammo from Palmetto State Armory to help prepare them be better. Witness Order 66 for example where simple clone troopers wiped out most of the Jedi.
SW:TROS now teaches us that not only are Jedi super beings that can fly in space, Can hold flying spaceships with full thrusters from close range without breaking a sweat (as compared to how long it took Yoda to life a stationary X-Wing from a swamp) and disable entire fleets (hundreds and hundreds – simultaneously) of spaceships with their fingertips from miles away but they can bring people back from the dead.
So in no particular order, here are my complaints. These are solely based on what seems obvious that they didn’t sit down and sketch out the three movies – they had three different people make three different movies back to back to back without considering what it was going to look like at the end of it all. This created problems for writers and directors that they solved in lazy and unsatisfying ways.
I mean, look at Superhero movies – they can make 10+ connected movie arcs that end up making sense (in superhero ways) and you can tell that writers sat down with someone and sketched out at least a bare bones plot vehicle to get form movie A to movie C. A Roadmap of sorts.
- Palpatine is back. That is dumb, and lazy, to only serve as the birth problem. It was not even remotely hinted at in the previously two movies and not setup one bit. But, people were mad that Rey was just “a nobody” (revealed in prior movies), so let’s do this thing now instead.
- The idea that you can hide a thousand Star Destroyers – each of which have a weapon that is capable of destroying a planet (which took entire planet sized weapons before) with zero resources (or people, really? whose feeding and taking care of the crew?) on a planet that is impossible to reach without one of two existing wayfinder thingy majiggers is a suspension on top of a suspension on top of super fandom on top of a suspension of belief. It’s the one unreachable place in the galaxy. Except it isn’t.
- There were several opportunities for loss and meaningful sacrifice that were amazing opportunities to tie up wonderful characters and story arcs. They managed to f*c* all of these up. Basically they introduced several truly impactful moments and then undid them almost as quickly as they introduced them.
- C-3P0, perhaps made his most poignant and emotionally pulling line of his career when he had to make the choice to sacrifice his memory (for the stupid quest). He turned and said (when asked) “I am taking one last look at my friends”. He then had his memory wiped for the good of the group. This selfless sacrifice from a droid was powerful moment in the movie. It even set up some good comedy relief as he would run into people that he should know. Until, of course, R2D2 just gave him his memory back (Because he had it backed up, of course) and wiped out that moment that could have been great.
- Chewbacca gets captured and during the escape we are witness to Rey being able to hold a fully engined up spaceship from flying away – a bit of a graduation from rocks, and without any true training from a real jedi master – and during the struggle she accidentally does force lightning and blows up the ship (you know, force lightning can’t kill Luke, but it can blow up a ship, even if you have never done force lightning before – oopsie!) – but hey, we can’t have any known characters die so let’s bring him right back. He was actually on a separate, identical looking ship that left seconds earlier that no one noticed, even though only one ship was shown the entire sequence leading up to it. Having Rey having to deal with that grief and her decent into the Dark Side would be too mature to have to deal with. It would have strengthened their silly Palapatine subplot, but at least could have added some sense to it.
- The planet where they had to go to to get the information (and wipe) C3P0’s message was where Poe was from, and he ran into an old love interest who ultimately helped them – and she sacrificed her chance to get off the planet to help Poe and his crew escape. This is the planet that is ultimately blown up by the new stronger than ever Empire and Palpatine although they have been hiding on the unreachable planet with no resources for decades as a show of force. Of course, she and the friends they meet there ultimately survived magically and joined in the final battle. Because well, again, loss is too hard. Even on marginal characters.
- Ben dies to the hands of Rey because Rey killed him to get the last thingy that exists to get to the unreachable planet to kill the ultimate bad guy that shouldn’t even be there to begin with because vengence because she killed Chewbaaca because of her evil dark side tendencies now that she is reborn as Palpatine’s grandaughter somehow. But wait, she heals him, because that is a new force power that you don’t need to practice or understand and is super powerful – even though it is hinted at in prior movies that stopping death is purely a dark side thing. By Palpatine, the younger, handsomer, less dead version of him.
- Ben dies a second time. Thrown down an endless cavern. Except well, next bullet point.
- Rey dies in the end. A fitting sacrifice for a
parentless child of the force– the daughter of the strongest dark side force user ever to dieever to be reborn / turn immortal / to be killed again (wait will he come back??) Of course she is brought back to life by the new force power (healing) that Rey found she had and never taught to anyone but Ben can do it now too because he was brought back to life by it (see last bullet point) BUT he really dies – HE REALLY DOES! Because after he did it she can’t do it back to him (this time?) because well, why not? I mean, she already did it once. Just do it again. And then you can have little Skywalker babies. But no, someone she forgets how to do the force power that brings people back to life because finally its an inconvenient plot point.
- Which is a good thing – because for some reason if she was to kill the Emperor he would take over her body and he would live again. Except that is exactly what did happen (they killed him) but for some reason that didn’t happen this time.
- Those are just the medium to large ones. There are like, tons of little ones too.
So instead of having C3PO’s mind wiped (could have used him in future movies that way as an interesting plot point), Chewbacca dieing, some minor characters dieing, Ben dying, and Rey dying – all of which would have made for a more satisfying ending to the mess of a movie triology as it really was no one died and on one was lost except for red shirt star trek types.
Basically, all the things that could have and should have happened were undone because the trilogy had no sensible roadmap from day one, and ended up being one that things happened that didn’t matter. The movie might as well not have happened.
What was once an epic tale of light vs dark – good vs evil – the story of the little girl / guy against all odds turned into the most rediculous mish mash of stupidity and senselessness. It’s a sad fate for a wonderfully created galaxy that had captured the imagination of generations. I am not even a rabid Star Wars fanboy, I just like my movies to make me feel something and make some sort of sense (and have some sort of congruity)
It’s shit, really.
10 comments / Add your comment below
This reads like a drunk uncle rant. I love it!
I wonder how that would of turned out if I was really drunk…
Pretty much this. I have my own rant going up on my blog tomorrow (probably) if you want my full thoughts, but I largely agree. My one very small quibble is that I do think Ben’s death makes sense in at least a basic logic sort of way. The Force healing is established to require sacrificing some of your life force, and he’d already been drained by the Emperor moments before, so he had little left to give.
That said, it’s still a stupid decision to kill him off. It’s a shameless retread of Vader’s sacrifice at the end of Return of the Jedi, and it’s a poor ending to his character arc, because in the final accounting I think he’s the only one in the trilogy who actually had a compelling arc. Really, he’s the hero of this trilogy. He wanted to actually change the galaxy for the better and get rid of the corrupt systems that kept the war alive (although he went about it in unjust ways, admittedly); Rey just wants to genocide the other side and re-establish the Jedi so they can repeat all the mistakes that led to this mess in the first place.
I am very much looking forward to reading yours.
There was a shot showing the two ships in the desert side by side, but even so — exactly right on the resulting impact of having this (and everything else remotely close to potential for emotional impact) torn away.
Fantastic write-up Isey, nailed the feelings around it utterly.
Clearly that detail isn’t important in a post where I talk about details not being important! *grin* Nice catch, I think I was just so angry at that scene I blocked out the second one ;P
The sheer randomness of having Palpatine suddenly back from the dead with a huge fleet of ships and hundreds of thousands (?millions?) of followers conjured pretty much out of thin air (both within the fictional universe and in terms of how the movies seem to have been developed) irks me more and more as time goes on.
I keep waiting for it all to be just a bad, bad dream of Rey’s. The entire thing. And it turns out that she really, really just is a non-force sensitive junk collector. The ending made me even more mad. Leia had NEVER BEEN TO TATOOINE. She was never even a Skywalker that way. She didn’t know the uncle. Was just another stupid on top of stupid. GERARARGAREAGARAG
(that felt better)
I know this is a totally random nitpick, but millennials are people born in the 80s and 90s. As someone who is a millennial by that definition it’s a bit weird to see people use it as a synonym for “annoying young people today”. We’re old enough to complain about “kids these days” ourselves, thank you very much. 😛
I don’t blame the young people, just the colonial corporate structures that trigger their well being and mental capacity to exist in such a unfair, cruel , and unjust society we have created in the west.
I remember a teacher friend of mine explaining that they were considering launching a “deferred success” program in school for kids who weren’t doing well because the trauma of holding a student back would scar them for too long and it was more important to move them along (deferred success) to stay with their peer group instead of actually identifying what is making them struggle to learn and correcting that problem instead.
And that was with the late 90s millennial group so that’s is where I play my crotchety old Boomer card in tongue in cheek posts! 😉