(Spoilers for Star Wars: The Force Awakens ahead!)

(Also apologies for typos or errors, I wrote this between the hours of midnight and 2am.)

Let me just start by saying I love Star Wars. I’m not even an age-old fan; just started the series this year in the hopes of catching up to the release of Episode VII, The Force Awakens. Mostly, I’m here in support of a very lovely cast, some of whom I’ve admired for many years and simply want to put money behind as best I can. But that’s not to say I never expected to love Star Wars as much as the next person. I knew after I watched The Empire Strikes Back that that was an inevitability. Even the prequels – though flawed – are fun movies with pathos to some extent.

And it’s no surprise that I loved The Force Awakens upon seeing it in cinemas on opening day. I wasn’t going in for the visuals necessarily – I bought a regular digital screening ticket, foregoing IMAX 3D in favour of being immersed in the story first and foremost. It’s a narrative any Star Wars fan would be familiar with, as it combines the greatness of the original trilogy with elements of the light, visuals-heavy prequel trilogy. Everything was done superbly and entertainingly, just as fans had hoped.

However, something about the film still irks some people who thoroughly enjoyed the ones prior. That conundrum occurs in The Force Awakens‘ protagonist, Rey (played very skilfully by Daisy Ridley). Have I written a blog post vaguely similar to this before, a few months ago? Yes, but the fact that it’s still a trend means I’m just going to have to say my piece.

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When the blockbuster does it right

I’ve been watching movies regularly and maybe even fanatically for close to five years now. I’d like to think I’ve seen at least most of the popular stuff, even if I’m still literally a baby when it comes to certain niche genres, directors, etc.

I started with the ‘acclaimed’ stuff – many things on top 100 lists, a bunch of famous directors who aren’t renowned for making blockbusters but draw in a bulk of the film crowd. You know, people like Fincher and Anderson and Tarantino. Auteurs without the stress of being too weird or out there. Touching upon a few problematic directors along the way, such as select Allen movies, and just people I outright did not like, like the Malicks and Kubricks. Then there’s the move to the Von Triers, Winding Refns, and Bertoluccis.

All this is easily trackable; it’s pretty much a ‘film studies’ approach. I even took the kinds of classes where people sideeye you if your favourite film isn’t Magnolia and you’re not super into obscure documentaries. Just so I could learn more about the industry…or so I thought.

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