We’ve finally made it to the end of The Skywalker Saga, if you’ve kept up, congratulations!
Just like the last movie, The Last Jedi, I thought that my original opinions on this movie would change after a second viewing, that perhaps I was too harsh the first time around and I’ve let others guide my bias.
I can confirm that, no, my opinion is still the same...The Rise of Skywalker is not a good movie.
My first initial thought is that the movie is just trying to accomplish a lot and none of it works seamlessly.
The movie acts like it wants to be so many things without actually picking just one genre, and sure, a movie can have multiple genres, but it has to pull them off; The Rise of Skywalker does not.
There are scenes in deserts and underground treasure hunts that make me think of Indiana Jones, small jump-scares and rising tensions that give me some horror movie vibes, moments where the movie wants to be a comedy but also a serious action flick.
But the main problem is the movie can’t tell if it’s a reboot or trying to do its own thing. They use many new elements and yet constantly try to remind you of the past, whether that’s bringing in old characters like Lando or entire battle stations like the Death Star.
I think if the movie chose one or two genres, they would have been fine, but trying to juggle all this stuff around and crudely putting it together doesn’t work well at all.
Another problem I had with this movie was the script and overall plot, I know the actors tried their best and honestly, I don’t blame them, they’re the best part of the movie experience.
However, too many lines felt clunky or something no person would ever say. I’m not sure they knew what comedy was because there weren’t many things I found funny; I think the funniest character was C-3PO.
The droid had some of the best lines and slapstick during the two and a half hours, which by the way, felt longer.
The whole plot point that Rey was a Palpatine the entire time felt like it came from nowhere, it felt like it was specifically created solely for this movie regardless of what the other two films had set up.
The addition of Rey calling herself a Skywalker also felt like a weird choice, I get where they were going with it, they obviously want to keep the name alive through other characters. But that should have been Kylo who kept it, because after all, he is an actual Skywalker.
Either character remaining as they were could have worked, if Rey lived on then she should have remained a Palpatine and brought a new meaning to the name. She could have proven to people that their name didn’t mean hate anymore, similar to how the name Skywalker changed.
On the other hand, if Rey had died and Kylo remained, he could have gone as Skywalker or Solo and redeemed himself by defending the galaxy. This would have given him a redemption arc and in general his story is far more interesting than Rey’s.
He’s a much more compelling character no matter how much I like Daisy Riddley as Rey.
And once again, I do like the characters, but with a better script they could have been amazing.
So, the Emperor is back...yippie!
Who saw this coming? When was there ever a hint that he was still alive, especially during the sequel movies?
Much like the knowledge of Rey being a Palpatine, the Emperor coming back was just dropped onto the audience out of nowhere. It doesn’t really make sense, nor does it feel believable, and in a world of aliens and walking carpets, it’s hard to find something unbelievable.
Seeing the force transfer life from one being to another makes sense and feels weird how we haven’t really seen anything like that before in the movies. My main issue with this, however, is I believe they only introduced such a concept so they could use it to save Rey at the end of the movie.
Without some life-giving how would she survive?
It’s a cheap trick, but I’m not surprised by this movie.
One complaint I had for most of the sequel movies was the lack of aliens and let me tell you I think they heard me because there was way more creatures in this movie than the other two combined!
Carrie Fisher, bless her, even though not physically in the movie is still stunning. The technology used is mind-blowing and we would soon see later improved on, now I'm not one for bringing back the dead, but by reusing retaped lines and body doubles, they made it work.
Sometimes her lines don’t quite fit the tone or direction of the conversation, and her in-character death felt a little lackluster, it was just nice seeing her, real or not.
Additional appearances from characters like Luke and Han are nice, though I wish Luke wasn’t the Jedi that Rey turned to. The man's only been dead for one movie and you’re already bringing him back!
The ending with the voices of the Jedi from the previous movies was a nice touch, amongst the voices you can hear Master Yoda, Qui-Gon Ginn, Obi Wan Kenobi, Luke Skywalker, Anakin Skywalker, Mace Windu and many more.
Characters like Poe, who was one of my favourites, seemed to be a completely different character in this movie. He was rude, annoying, emotionless and just irritating to watch. Oscar Isaac did a great job working with what he had, and his presentation of the character makes it bearable to watch, but the script did him so bad.
Another character deeply affected by the poor script was Fin, his obsession with Rey is amplified no matter how many love interests are thrown at him. It’s clear he’s one with the force yet nothing happens with it, he has a good relationship with Poe but again, it goes nowhere.
His friendship with Rose his nonexistent, said character is barely seen on screen along with the LGTBQ+ couple which you can catch for one scene at the end of the movie. Wow, Disney is so progressive.
Lando was added for no reason other than to make fanboys happy and to get the everyday person who might have seen a Star Wars movie into a cinema seat.
No discredit to the great John Williams, but the movie’s score is nothing special. I’ve been repeatedly listening to it in the hope even one song would stick out, but nothing does compared to previous movies.
The special effects are great as always, some planets are fun looking, mainly Kijimi. They seemed to resort back to my original complaint from the Force Awakens where every planet just looks like something you could find on Earth; it’s boring.
An overall criticism I have of the modern franchise is the treatment of Stormtroopers and this movie solidifies that for me, they’re treated as a joke. The first movie did somewhat better at this, having the opening scene be this hostile war zone, seizing towns and killing the villagers.
In the Rise of Skywalker, we see them whizzing around on jet packs because “They fly now” and go crashing into the rocks like morons. There is one scene where a trooper spins loops in the air before screaming a cartoon yell and crashing into the rocks like Wile. E. Coyote.
How the mighty have fallen.
The Rise of Skywalker is a disastrous movie, no wonder the cast were apprehensive about it during interviews. Some scenes are ok, but the plot falls through and the script doesn’t help save it, the only redeeming qualities are the cast and the costumes, but they’re not enough.
The film does a poor attempt at being a sequel to not only the original trilogy but even the movie that came before it. It’s clear there was no plan when forming these three movies and it shows, hopefully the next bunch works well.
And I do have confidence for it, especially with the rise of the Disney+ show, The Mandalorian, and that director Taika Waititi is directing the next series.
The Rise of Skywalker gets a 2 out of 5 they fly now from me.
The Rise of Skywalker is streaming on Disney+