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Star Wars: The Force Awakens – 43% Recycled Content

[Spoilers, don't read if you are like me and took forever to watch the movie...]

Finally got around to watching Star Wars: The Force Awakens and while I enjoyed it, I was pretty disappointed to discover it had so little new to offer.  The story was just another "orphaned young person on a desert planet discovers they are a Jedi" combined with "bad guys have an ultimate weapon that the good guys blow up" .  Of the seven movies, three (43%) have been about the former and three (43%) have been about the latter.   Seriously?  I just can't believe that with all the creative people involved in this project they couldn't give us some new amazing story that borrowed less from the past.

Other annoying things...  The central character Rey discovers she has Jedi powers, and then without any Jedi training at all, mere hours after discovering this, is able to defeat the big baddie, Kylo Ren, who has presumably been developing his talents and training in lightsaber combat for some years.  Ugh.  And I didn't quite get Fin.  He could have been more interesting than he was.  His comrade storm trooper is killed, this freaks him out, he refuses to shoot some villagers, and within an hour or so, his time, he's slaughtering dozens or hundreds of his former comrades as he tries to escape and yippying for joy.  Many of those other stormtroopers were presumably just as pressed into First Order service as he was, just as indoctrinated as he had been, and yet he seems to have not the slightest twinge of compassion for them or their situation.  It just seemed weird.

And I think mostly what I found disappointing was that the entire movie, right from the first few minutes, sets itself up for a sequel.  The entire movie is about trying to find Luke Skywalker to try and balance the force again and as the minutes count down it becomes abundantly clear nothing meaningful is going to happen in that direction within this movie.  I'm not completely stupid, I know there are more movies coming, but this movie just didn't feel like it was about very much, at least not much that was novel, and that's a real pity.  It just felt like I could have skipped this movie entirely, seen the next one and missed nothing.

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