My totally serious, iconoclastic Star Wars review

It occurred to me that with all the excitement of the end of the year I forgot to provide my personal review of The Force Awakens. Well here it is, and this is totally serious.

I had high expectations for Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens. This movie was supposed to bring me back to my childhood and not only rekindle that childlike sense of wonder, but also make up for all the shitty things that happened in said childhood. Did it do that? No. It utterly failed, I’m still an adult, and I still never owned my own copy of Strider for my Sega Genesis. For this, J.J. Abrams is literally Adolf Hitler, and I hereby declare the prequels, and in particular The Phantom Menace, as better than The Force Awakens.

I have other gripes as well…

First of all, the movie is a total rip off of Episode IV. In no way will I think on the fact that Episode IV was a rip off of several other film genres plus WWII. Nor will I consider all the things which were totally different in this movie compared to Episode IV. I will also not consider the fact that for many young people, Episode IV looks “lame” and thus this gives them an opportunity to experience a story with similar beats to the 1977 original yet in a visual style they can better appreciate. I’m very sorry, but Star Wars was made for me personally.

I also refuse to accept the argument that Episode IV’s success was largely due to a very reliable formula, and that perhaps Abrams was trying to get the new trilogy back on track after the former disasters/now masterpieces that were the prequels. I’m sure the next two films will be total shot-for-shot remakes of Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. I bet J.J. Abdolfhitler will even bring Vader back to life.

Kylo Ren is so emotional and whiny! Not like Luke Skywalker, who certainly never got whiny and emotional just because he was told he had to work another season on his uncle’s farm. In the beginning of the movie I automatically decided that Kylo Ren is the next Vader, ergo he must act more Vader like. It’s not like this could be the beginning of some kind of character arc whereby Ren learns to control his emotions and increase his power, for better or worse. That’s impossible.

There were too many boom mics in the shots. Some scenes are nothing but boom mics.


So there you have it. My review of the worst film ever made. They should have slapped the opening titles and text crawl on a copy of The Room and made that Episode VII.



14 thoughts on “My totally serious, iconoclastic Star Wars review

  1. gbd_crwx

    Episode IV looks lame, what about the final light-sabre fight in return of the Jedi? The Music manages to cover it but it is quite obvious that Vader takes a dive at the end. 🙂

    Btw, it is quite obvious that Leia cheated on Han, considering what ben Solo looked like.

    1. Callum C.

      Being honest, the light saber fighting in all the Star Wars movies kinda sucks (bearing in mind I haven’t seen TFA yet). In the original trilogy it’s much too clumsy; in the prequels it’s much too choreographed. In both the fighting feels unmotivated and drawn out. The few good exchanges are the exception rather than the rule.

      In a convincing swordfight, you should see quick but (generally) well-planned combinations of attacks and counters. You’ll rarely see any more than five blows exchanged before either one fighter is hit or both fighters flee the exchange and try something else.

      In a movie I’ll forgive a little embellishment in the name of adding drama, but both fighters should generally have recognizable objectives for the actions they take, and they should look like they’re actually trying to hit each other.

      1. Jim Kovpak Post author

        I think you’ll be pleased with the dueling in the new one. It seems Abrams must have watched Plinkett’s review of the prequels and went for something much more toned down, yet still intense. The prequel fights weren’t intense; they were ravers twirling giant glow sticks at extremely high speeds.

      2. gbd_crwx

        It’s theatrical fighting of course, which will be a lot of hitting the opponents sword. The one in death star 2 is especially obvious. I agree that the ones in the prequel trilogy are a bit over the top but I guess influence from the east from red pants-fighting might have had something to do with that.

        Btw, why doesn’t Darth Vader use his death grip on an opponent balls in a fight instead at the throat is also beyond me. it worked in space balls, didn’t it?

      3. Jim Kovpak Post author

        Lightsabres can be problematic because naturally simply touching them can be disastrous. Still, we can see how in the prequels, characters are often twirling their lightsabres in such a way that they don’t even look like they were ever attempting to hit their opponent at all.

        When it comes to regular swordfighting, I think good stage-fighting is when they look like they’re aiming for each other and not the opponent’s sword.

        As a side note, I recommend watching videos on Youtube of historic fencing and HEMA(Historical European Martial Arts). Many of these techniques could be used to design more realistic stage-fighting with real tension.

        Oh wait…I forgot. Hollywood doesn’t do tension anymore.

      4. gbd_crwx

        Watch videos of historic fencing and compromise my star wars experience? I understand your points though, I had something similar watching a James bond Movie where losing the compressed air on a truck caused it to lose it’s brakes instead of locking up.

      5. Callum C.

        I’ve actually done HEMA for a year and a half and the first thing that popped into my mind when re-watching the original trilogy was “pull your god damned hands back unless you’re attacking”.

        Lightsabers have no handgards (well… mostly) and as Jim said, they pretty much destroy anything that they touch. And yet in spite of this all combatants go into guards with their hands stretched out in front of them. Even Darth Vader and Obi-Wan, who should theoretically know better, and even Luke in VI who should *definitely* know better.

        What you actually want to do is hold the weapon above your shoulder or over your head and stand out of distance, then use an attack and a passing step to get into distance. This will force your opponent to respond, hopefully with a parry, which you can exploit to land a hit. If you insist on keeping your weapon out in front of you, keep your hands back.

        Here’s some good competitive fighting:

      6. Jim Kovpak Post author

        That was my whole problem with Kylo Ren’s handguards when I saw the first teaser. Because of the lightsabre’s nature, you don’t want audiences to think about the lack of handguards and what that would mean.

      7. Callum C.

        Yeah, when you swordfight without hand guards, it becomes a game of wrist tag. I wouldn’t fight with a weapon that didn’t have at least a crossguard, so I am happy to see someone use one, but it does sort of raise the question of why other weapons don’t have them (I know, I know, unstable crystal, exhaust ports, etc.)

        I dunno if you know of ScholaGladiatoria/Matt Easton (if you don’t… watch his stuff!) but it seems that the martial arts community agrees with your opinion on TFA to some extent.

      8. Jim Kovpak Post author

        Matt’s the main guy that runs the Youtube channel right? I used to watch a lot of his stuff. It’s a pity I don’t live in the UK, because I’d love to learn Victorian sabre and Middle Eastern sabre(e.g. kilic) fencing.

      9. Callum C.

        There are HEMA clubs all over these days. Some good ones in Poland, Slovakia and Hungary, AFAIK. And in North America, obviously.

        I dunno if HEMA is that big a thing in Russia, although some Systema groups use swords. Russia is more into ACL/HMB, which is where large groups of grown men put on lots of armour and try their best to give each other concussions with vaguely sword-shaped clubs.

        (this isn’t how you actually fight in armour).

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