Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
It's a suitable ending. In
this, the ninth installment of the immensely popular sci-fi series,
Director J.J. Abrams wraps up the saga nicely by re-introducing elements
from previous editions. If
you're a big fan, you'll be thrilled with the creative continuity.
But this one is still “stand alone” enough to enjoy even if you
haven't availed yourself to the whole epic.
And that's because the main character, Rey (Daisy Ridley) is
someone you just want to root for, not just because she's plucky and
determined, but because she's still trying to figure out who she is, even
while being thrown into situations that challenge all her skills and
Even though the original creator of “Star Wars,” George Lucas,
is no longer writing the scripts, the main ingredients are still evident.
“A long time ago, in a galaxy far away” is the kind of intro
that can produce both high-tech gadgetry, like spaceships and laser
blasters and interactive droids, but also revel in the foibles of feeble
humanity. So we have
unrequited romance, awkward flirting, and lots of dysfunctional family
dynamics. Another consistent
theme is the tension between galactic-sized warfare juxtaposed with very
personal, individualized emotional struggles.
And the weaponry can be as big and brutish as a spaceship-based
laser beam that can destroy whole planets, but also as hand-held and
elegant as a sword-like light saber.
But the most intriguing aspect is still the invisible Force, which
can be utilized in a positive way, complete with a zen-like meditative
aspect, where physical objects can be moved with mere mind control.
But, The Force also has a Dark Side, where a person can choose to
utilize these skills in a way that taps into anger, and greed for power.
This continues to be the most elusive and also the most tantalizing
concept in the “Star Wars” universe.
The main figure here, Rey, is aware that she has a considerable
gift with The Force, but she's also cognizant of the lure of the Dark Side
within her. And while she
tries to figure out why that is so, others around her are pulling her in
different directions. The
ostensible bad guy, Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), has an emotional connection
with her that literally goes beyond words.
What we don't see in this film is any semblance of a Jedi Council,
or the Jedi as Musketeer-like protectors of the virtuous weak against the
conscienceless powerful. What
we don't see here is any extensive training of teacher and pupil, either
on the positive side of The Force or on the Dark Side.
While there still seems to be an organized rebellion against the
Evil Empire (insert your metaphorical candidate here), in the end, it's
not about joining the tiny resistance so much as it is figuring out where
your loyalties reside, and who your friends are.
And maybe that's as sweepingly universal as it is uniquely
Yes, it's a suitable ending. And
now, can we please have the next installment soon?