Movies

'The Force Awakens' Has Changed Star Wars Forever

Mihaela Ahchieva 2016-02-29 02:30:38
'The Force Awakens' Has Changed Star Wars Forever

A hit with audiences has been the movie Star Wars: The Force Awakens. To top it all it is already one of the highest-grossing movies of all time. It features great visuals, snappy dialogue, and a likeable cast of young actors such as Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, and Oscar Isaac. Particularly taken with the character Rey (Ridley) was children’s book editor Jordan London.

“I think Rey is fantastic,” London says in Episode 183 of the Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast. “She’s everything I imagined a female Jedi to be when I was running around a forest when I was nine.”

“This movie did something to the original trilogy that can never be undone,” he says. “I think it changes the original trilogy in ways that the prequels and the Expanded Universe—as complex and controversial as they are in some ways—never did.”
 
He’s concerned that in particular The Force Awakens has simply transformed the Star Warsfeature films from a unified story with a satisfying ending into just another serialized sci-fi franchise like Star Trek or the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
 
“Star Wars is the modern myth,” he says. “It’s the epic that you can use to teach narrative structure, because it fits it so well. And the thing that made me so mad about this movie is, how do you tell the story of Star Wars to your kids now? You say, ‘At the end all the heroes that you loved lived happily ever after … and then two hours later [they didn’t].”
 
Still, Jordan London admires the way that The Force Awakens subverts our ideas about happy endings.

“There’s definitely a trend in the stories that have been told in the last decade that take a look at villains from another perspective, or tell stories after they end,” she says. “Because life goes on and it’s not always happily ever after. And I think that says something about our society today, that we’re willing to see what happens after, and that it’s not always pretty.”

Here are some highlights of an interview with wired.com and  Matt London and Jordan London.

Matt London on the target audience for The Force Awakens:

“I can tell you exactly who the movie is for. The movie is for a juvenile adult, somebody who’s loved Star Wars their whole life and is now a grown-up, hates the prequels, and wants a Star Wars that’s just for them. And it panders to that audience from start to finish. The moment that really resonated with me the most is a little bit before the mid-point, when Rey and Finn are connecting on the Falcon for the first time, and they’re going, ‘Han Solo the rebel general?’ ‘No, I mean Han Solo the badass smuggler!’ ‘Luke Skywalker? I thought he was just a legend, but oh man he was the coolest guy who maybe doesn’t exist in the whole galaxy!’ These are 20-something fans of Star Wars cast as the stars of Star Wars. It’s the most Mary Sue experience of that universe that I’ve ever seen—and that’s including many, many fan films that I’ve seen.”

John Joseph Adams on enjoying The Force Awakens:

“I had fun with it. I enjoyed Star Wars for the first time in a long time, whereas after the prequels I wasn’t sure that I ever would again. It retreads a lot of stuff from the original trilogy, and it has a lot of winky things in there, but it didn’t bother me for whatever reason. J.J. Abrams ran with it, and I went along for the ride. I think it’s because I really enjoyed all the characters. It’s kind of the same thing he did with the Star Trek reboot, where I didn’t really like the plot, and the scientific stuff was ridiculous, but I still enjoyed the first one because I really liked what he did with the characters. And I felt like he was doing a similar thing here.”

David Barr Kirtley on George Lucas:

“This movie actually made me appreciate George Lucas more. Because with the prequels, it’s hard to imagine how the execution could be worse, but it’s an ambitious project. He’s like, ‘I’m going to show you how a cute little kid with all this promise turns into a villain, and I’m going to show you how a democracy falls and becomes a dictatorship.’ And I think that’s a story worth telling. I wish he had told it better, but it’s ambitious, it’s trying to say something. I thought Lucas just had these weird, idiosyncratic things that make him so that he can’t create likeable characters anymore, and once he was out of the picture things would improve a lot. But with this movie it’s gone too far in the other direction. Now it’s all about the likeable characters, but it’s not saying anything and it’s not ambitious in any way at all.”

Photo: independent.co.uk.

 
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