Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker ★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

In the third film of every Star Wars trilogy, there is a moment where a character dies and we're not really given a good reason why or how they die. They just do. This happens twice in this film.

This was so weirdly disappointing. Like, it feels like there's no heart to this movie, just a desperate attempt to satiate insatiable fans and tackle as many plots (both recycled and new-but-lazy) as they possibly can. It feels like an entire season of a Star Wars TV show that was compressed into a film, with a script made entirely by dictating the live actions of two children playing with Star Wars toys, changing their motivations and powers whenever it's convenient.

They introduce new characters with no meaning or permanence past being a plot device, they use death as a tool of suspense without any real consequence or finality, they throw in dashes of romance like a spice with no concern for whether it feels right, and no one goes through any meaningful arc or has any experience that isn't just a series of actions to serve the story. We got two films of well-done development with Kylo, and it's all thrown away for him to turn good with little motivation, and then not have any more lines for the rest of the film. Even the opening crawl was weirdly procedural– they didn't care about explaining Palpatine's return or making it feel like an important event, they just start in media res with a "anyways, he's here." And on top of all that, they commit the cardinal sin of absolutely wasting Keri Russell. What the fuck!

I feel like I could tell halfway through the film that I wouldn't ever feel like rewatching this one. Easily my least favorite of the trilogy. And maybe my least favorite of the Disney era? At least Solo had cool war scenes and a neat train heist. This one was funny, though.

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