It would be wrong to say that Star Wars: The Force Awakens was anything less than the most anticipated movie of all-time. Never has a film awoken such a massive amount of hype as this film has been able to and factoring the abysmal prequels, we have been waiting for this film for nearly thirty years.
Despite not being a Star Wars fanboy, I was just as excited for this movie as the next guy and needless to say my expectations were met just as I expected them to. Because once the iconic John Williams score swelled and the new scroll of text ascended upon the screen, I got goosebumps and felt a wave of nostalgia wash over me. Finally, Star Wars was back.
I’m not even going to mention the basic plot for this film because I myself, went into the film knowing almost nothing about the plot and even though just about everyone on the planet has seen this film, I wouldn’t want to take any chances incase someone who hasn’t seen it reads my review.
But getting back to the film, I love it. I have never been the biggest fan of J.J Abrams as a filmmaker and he has tendencies that make his films really annoying at times, but boy does he do a great job here. Abrams, along with Lawrence Kasden is able to construct a film that is extremely entertaining and one that feels both nostalgic and wonderfully fresh. The story works really well. I thought it had some great heart and humor and engaged me on an emotional level as well. There are moments when you feel that the story hinges on and rehashes some elements of the original, but still more than manages to stand on it’s own.
Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac and Adam Driver lead the new generation of torch bearers for the franchise, joining Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew and Mark Hamil, and while it’s wonderful to see all the old characters back, it’s the new ones that really stand-out, especially when it comes to the performances. Daisy Ridley and John Boyega are fantastic as our two protagonists Rey and Finn, in two of the biggest breakthrough performances of the year. Oscar Isaac brings charm and charisma in his supporting performance as X-Wing fighter pilot Poe Dameron, Harrison Ford brings even more charm and charisma reprising the role of Han Solo and Adam Driver gives us one of the best and most intriguing villains you’re ever likely to see in Kylo Ren, and probably the best performance of the film as well.
The effects have a real dramatic heft for once. Gone is the cheap digital look of the prequels and the use of practical effects really shows. The action is truly relentless and every set-piece feels necessary with a real epic feel to it.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens is easily one of the best films to come out this year that more than lives up to it’s expectations and reinvigorates the long dormant franchise. Most importantly though, it feels like a Star Wars movie.