Pretty much most blogs on movies are talking about the biggest and most anticipated blockbuster for some years. Most movie reviews have turned in their copy and told the world what they thought of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which opens up a new, exciting but introspective chapter in the disordered never peaceful world which transcends galaxies and is fought between this awakening force and the dark side. This post does not wish to simply join the bandwagon and enter the mainstream of rave, five star reviews and score a few more hits.
It wants always to do things differently, off the beaten track, if you will, and give readers something fresh to think about. It strives to never beat about the bush. But the chances are also quite good that many readers out there, in this galaxy, or from another, may well relate to what is about to be shared here. If that is the case, the editors of this forum would like to invite those readers to post their comments and, if you can pardon the cliché, start a conversation. But try to keep your words respectful and, by all means, take sides, whether on the side of The Force, or gravitating to The Dark Side.
The writers here have chosen The Force. They believe in the philosophy of a force for good. They also believe that no matter how chaotic the galaxies have become, good always triumphs over evil. And to become essentially a good person or build an honorable and serving society, they somberly reflect on what it takes to achieve this. This is why they still revere in the qualities and gifts of General Luke Skywalker and his long-departed Jedi masters, Obi-wan Kenobi and Yoda.
But for some reason or another, movie fans seem to have an attraction for villains. This has been the case for the last twenty or more years. In the olden days, most moviegoers, young and old, always rooted for the heroes and cheered raucously when the bad guys were finally slain, usually at the end of the film. While the tradition between good and evil has continued since George Lucas first penned his Star Wars stories, it may well be that the leading warrior on the Dark Side, Darth Vader, set a trend. It is up to readers here to mention the names of other characters, the villains, that is, who have enticed movie watchers to develop a soft spot for them.
The character of Darth Vader was a tragic one in the mold of Shakespeare’s original tragedies and perhaps even the Greek classics which preceded the bard’s tales thousands of years before that. Darth was originally Anakin Skywalker. Followers would have to wait until the second installment of the Star Wars saga, The Empire Strikes Back to learn what they always suspected; that the evil dark lord was indeed the father of everyone’s hero, Luke Skywalker.
The writer of this post has not yet seen the new chapter in the Star Wars saga, not on purpose, mind you; he simply did not have the time. I have read a few reviews and so far these excellently composed remarks have been consistent and without spoilers. The rave reviews all seem to agree that this is one magnificent piece of filmmaking from JJ Abrams who has shown that he has been a fine student of master filmmaker, George Lucas, and appears to be the rightful heir to carry the Star Wars franchise into the new generation.
The holiday season is always the perfect time to launch new blockbusters. So, Star Wars: The Force Awakens breaking all box office records across the United States and Canada should come as no surprise. Also, the merchandise has added to the coffers of George Lucas and others to the tune of billions. It also seems as though little kids’ fathers, middle-aged men in their forties mainly, have shown more enthusiasm for the toys on offer, mainly the dolls. And you don’t need to be a Jedi sage to work out just who is the most popular doll-like character here.
To close off this unconventional take in response to the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, I’d like to share three anecdotes with you. It begins in one family’s lounge far, far away. A young girl of nine has been gifted with two dolls; one white armor-clad Storm-trooper and the black, cape-clad figurine impression of Darth Vader. For some reason or another, as children at this age sometimes do, the little girl was showing signs of boredom at the sight of these two villains. But her forty year-old father was salivating and waiting to take her place on the carpet.
Just a week earlier, his wife had taken him to see the movie premiere. Not twenty minutes into the opening scenes of the show and most unbecoming of a man his age, this man began to cry. He cried nostalgic tears of joy, rolling back the years to his own childhood. And yet he was barely an infant when the very first Star Wars battleship rumbled over our heads way back in the seventies. The digitized and computer graphic special effects of today’s films, even though most of Abram’s production is as authentic as it can be in comparison, somehow just cannot match the epic opening and closing scenes of the original.
It’s safe to argue that most folks, whether old enough as kids, or as grown-ups, who had seen the original Star Wars and every movie since then, would agree that for its time, Stars Wars was the best of the lot.
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