Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Thanas »

Lord Revan wrote:we should also consider that Yoda trained successful Jedi for generations so he probably had enough confidence that one "bad apple" didn't mean he was unable to train Jedi.

On the other hand it's implied that Kylo Ren/Ben Solo and his class mates were among the first Jedi Luke trained ever, having them be turned to the Dark Side or killed (for all we know Ben Solo wasn't the only one of Luke's students to join the Knights of Ren, just the most prominent.) would probably be a major blow to Luke's confidence.

Yeah but just running away and hiding - even with the empire having lost - doesn't come close to Luke's character. Something momentous must have happened and right now I cannot see it.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Mad »

Kylo saying he felt the call of the Light Side sounded odd. After all, Yoda implied it typically goes the other way: "Once you start down the Dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny." Once you start giving into the Dark Side, you have to resist the call of the Dark, that power. You don't just lose your resolve and decide "You know what, I don't want all this power; I'm good, and at peace."

So, my guess is that Luke, the redeemer, is actively trying to get into Kylo's head. The "call" is that of Luke's interference. Luke deliberately isolated himself so that can focus on getting his nephew to return to the Light. (Yoda watched Luke from Dagobah, so "exiled" Jedi don't just have to be sitting around all day doing nothing.)

(Then again, the alternative is that the Light and Dark sides require you to be all in to achieve maximum potential. This just brings up more questions, though, such as why a Light user can call a bit on the Dark Side to overcome a Sith, instead of weakening.)
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Paolo »

Questions and thoughts I have after seeing Force Awakens.

1. What is the current balance of power in the galaxy?
2. Is the First Order some sort of successor state to a fallen empire, a faction within a rump Empire, or movement within a resurgent one?
3. What did Vader start that Kylo feels he needs to finish?
4. How'd they get the massive starstuff lance from the Star Killer to split?

Overall, I liked it. I had some higher hopes for the backdrop and the execution.

1. I was looking forward to an Empire stronger than other. Not sure if the new novels foreclose such a setting, but one of my biggest personal problems with the EU was the fait accompli feel to the Battle of Endor. Not that it's inconceivable that the death of an emperor might even lead a galaxy spanning to significant ruin in short order. Just as a matter of storytelling, I find it satisfying to prolong conflict and unfavorable odds against the protagonists for as long as suspension of disbelief permits.

2. I'd hoped that "I will finish what you started" signaled Abrams' intent to explore the motives of his bad guys--or more importantly, the unthinkably numerous masses behind the viewpoint villains--aside from the corrupting allure of the Dark Side. Maybe it's hard to paint a picture of what motivates violent reformation on a galactic-scale. Still, even though Frank Herbert left the Fremen Crusades in the background, you had a sense of what people were fighting to achieve. Hux's speech is long on wanting to stick it to the Republic, very short on what the First Order has to offer beyond vague sputtering about "order."

3. Kylo, Snoke, and Hux may be the second coming of Vader, the Emperor and Tarkin, but they feel like Keystone Cops in comparison. I don't need the heroes to lose in order to be satisfied, but after some questionable pacing decisions and omissions the Star Killer's debut fell flat. Its destruction felt like a non-event; an excuse to set up Han's death and Rey's out of nowhere beat down of Kylo. Great villains, at the very minimum, make protagonists suffer handily for their happy endings. Aside from maiming one custodian and murdering some elderly guy mid-cheek-pat, these guys barely caused our heroes to break a sweat.

4. I hope the next film makes up for Phasma spending the majority of her screen and speaking time either berating Finn about his helmet discipline or sneering at her captors.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by ray245 »

This movie, especially the final battle lacks any form of tension. I do not feel worried that the rebels is going to lose the fight at any point in time. Unlike the battle of Yavin, where you got worried with every pilot being killed off, I don't even care about how many X-wings were destroyed.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Channel72 »

So, anyway, given that Rey mentions it.... do we now have canonical confirmation that the "Kessel Run in 12 parsecs" thing is, in fact, not supposed to be a technically-inaccurate boast by Han Solo, but actually some kind of real accomplishment?
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Gaidin »

Channel72 wrote:So, anyway, given that Rey mentions it.... do we now have canonical confirmation that the "Kessel Run in 12 parsecs" thing is, in fact, not supposed to be a technically-inaccurate boast by Han Solo, but actually some kind of real accomplishment?
Insofar as I remember, the Kessel Run for smugglers was you flying dangerously close to Black Holes so your ship had to maintain some level of power output to avoid getting sucked in. While the black holes part hasn't been reconfirmed, that basically means the shorter the distance, the more power the ship has for its speed. Hence the distance measurement instead of speed.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by AndroAsc »

I am going to rant on the absurdity of minimalism and the even more absurb explanation in the new so called canon. As far as we know, the imperial renmant control the inner rim, the developed established planets and a smaller territory. The new republic control the outer rim, larger territory and less developed and established planets.

Given the obvious balance of power disparity between the rebels vs empire in ROTJ it makes no fucking sense for the rebels or republic to disarm by 90%. In fact I would argue it make sense to demand the imperials to disarm by 90%, given that the empire has at least one order of magnitude more military forces than the rebels.

The current political situation is absurd. Here is what it translates to in our geopolitics. The rebels (ISIS) took out the nuclear capability (death star) and the president (emperor) of the US (empire) and seized control of half of the US (mainly the central region where most of the population don't live). In response, a peace treaty between what remains of the US and ISIS is that ISIS disarms by 90%, and US retain control of Texas, the West and East Coast, and there is peace between both factions.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Gaidin »

AndroAsc wrote: The current political situation is absurd. Here is what it translates to in our geopolitics. The rebels (ISIS) took out the nuclear capability (death star) and the president (emperor) of the US (empire) and seized control of half of the US (mainly the central region where most of the population don't live). In response, a peace treaty between what remains of the US and ISIS is that ISIS disarms by 90%, and US retain control of Texas, the West and East Coast, and there is peace between both factions.
Mind telling me what happened during at least most of the 30 years or would you like to throw a few more wild ass guesses with some more crazy analogies out there?

Since you seem...you know...in the know.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Borgholio »

Gaidin wrote:
Channel72 wrote:So, anyway, given that Rey mentions it.... do we now have canonical confirmation that the "Kessel Run in 12 parsecs" thing is, in fact, not supposed to be a technically-inaccurate boast by Han Solo, but actually some kind of real accomplishment?
Insofar as I remember, the Kessel Run for smugglers was you flying dangerously close to Black Holes so your ship had to maintain some level of power output to avoid getting sucked in. While the black holes part hasn't been reconfirmed, that basically means the shorter the distance, the more power the ship has for its speed. Hence the distance measurement instead of speed.
Either that or it's a boast he used so often that it became legend right along with him and the Falcon. :)
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Gaidin »

Borgholio wrote: Either that or it's a boast he used so often that it became legend right along with him and the Falcon. :)
Well, I mean, there's also got to be a culturally legitimate reason for people to accept a distance measurement for the Kessel Run. This person does it on his ship in 20. That one does it in 15. But Han does it in 12! Does he really? Who knows, but he's said it so often, and he has a ship that goes .5 past lightspeed, so it just might be believable to anybody that knows anything about the Falcon's drive.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Lord Revan »

Gaidin wrote:
Borgholio wrote: Either that or it's a boast he used so often that it became legend right along with him and the Falcon. :)
Well, I mean, there's also got to be a culturally legitimate reason for people to accept a distance measurement for the Kessel Run. This person does it on his ship in 20. That one does it in 15. But Han does it in 12! Does he really? Who knows, but he's said it so often, and he has a ship that goes .5 past lightspeed, so it just might be believable to anybody that knows anything about the Falcon's drive.
I loved the scene where they said with Rey saying 14 parsecs and Han yelling 12 annoyed that not only did Rey think it was a myth and she couldn't even get the story right.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by bilateralrope »

On the subject of Hosian Prime being in the same system as the planet we saw it exploding from: The explosion took up more room in their sky than our moon does in ours. Just being in the same system wouldn't be enough. Have a look at Mars or Venus in our sky. They are just points of light. If they got hit by Starkiller base, I doubt anyone on Earth would see anything more than the point of light being brighter for a bit, then going out. We certainly wouldn't see anything that takes up more of the sky than our own moon.

The same applies to Vulcan exploding in ST9. Just being in the same system isn't enough to explain the visual. They would have to be unusually close. Probably with one in orbit of the other.
Thanas wrote:Yeah but just running away and hiding - even with the empire having lost - doesn't come close to Luke's character. Something momentous must have happened and right now I cannot see it.
The movie stated that Luke was searching for the first Jedi Temple. Maybe he wasn't running, maybe he looking for information about the first Jedi to see how they handled training students so that he knows how they avoided his mistake.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Galvatron »

Channel72 wrote:So, anyway, given that Rey mentions it.... do we now have canonical confirmation that the "Kessel Run in 12 parsecs" thing is, in fact, not supposed to be a technically-inaccurate boast by Han Solo, but actually some kind of real accomplishment?
I think it was both a real accomplishment and the old EU explanation for it is bollocks. IMO, Obi-wan's scripted reaction was to the implausible boast is that this scruffy looking smuggler could own a ship that fast and/or famous.
bilateralrope wrote:On the subject of Hosian Prime being in the same system as the planet we saw it exploding from: The explosion took up more room in their sky than our moon does in ours. Just being in the same system wouldn't be enough. Have a look at Mars or Venus in our sky. They are just points of light. If they got hit by Starkiller base, I doubt anyone on Earth would see anything more than the point of light being brighter for a bit, then going out. We certainly wouldn't see anything that takes up more of the sky than our own moon.

The same applies to Vulcan exploding in ST9. Just being in the same system isn't enough to explain the visual. They would have to be unusually close. Probably with one in orbit of the other.
Agreed. Maz Kanata's planet was obviously a moon of Hoznian Prime. SoD-approved.
bilateralrope wrote:
Thanas wrote:Yeah but just running away and hiding - even with the empire having lost - doesn't come close to Luke's character. Something momentous must have happened and right now I cannot see it.
The movie stated that Luke was searching for the first Jedi Temple. Maybe he wasn't running, maybe he looking for information about the first Jedi to see how they handled training students so that he knows how they avoided his mistake.
Indeed. That would also explain how Luke survived there. That island must have some hidden, underground facilities that could sustain him.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Borgholio »

Gaidin wrote:
Borgholio wrote: Either that or it's a boast he used so often that it became legend right along with him and the Falcon. :)
Well, I mean, there's also got to be a culturally legitimate reason for people to accept a distance measurement for the Kessel Run. This person does it on his ship in 20. That one does it in 15. But Han does it in 12! Does he really? Who knows, but he's said it so often, and he has a ship that goes .5 past lightspeed, so it just might be believable to anybody that knows anything about the Falcon's drive.
Is the part of the EU that confirmed the 12-parsec explanation as legit still canon? I can't seem to recall specifically what part of the EU it came from, but if it's no longer canon, then do we fall back on what the script says, that Han was trying to bullshit Obi Wan? I think that would be the simplest explanation.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Gaidin »

Borgholio wrote: Is the part of the EU that confirmed the 12-parsec explanation as legit still canon? I can't seem to recall specifically what part of the EU it came from, but if it's no longer canon, then do we fall back on what the script says, that Han was trying to bullshit Obi Wan? I think that would be the simplest explanation.
The reason they accept distance is unknown officially now. We just know they do.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

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AndroAsc wrote:The current political situation is absurd. Here is what it translates to in our geopolitics. The rebels (ISIS) took out the nuclear capability (death star) and the president (emperor) of the US (empire) and seized control of half of the US (mainly the central region where most of the population don't live). In response, a peace treaty between what remains of the US and ISIS is that ISIS disarms by 90%, and US retain control of Texas, the West and East Coast, and there is peace between both factions.
Since this was the Galactic Civil War, perhaps a better analogy would be the US in the time of the Civil War. The Separatists were pretty much stand-ins for the Confederacy, so we'll run with that. Abraham Lincoln, instead of being the paragon of virtue he's portrayed as today, is instead completely corrupt and amoral, dabbling in the lost arts of alchemy to extend his lifespan. He wins election just before the war, as he did IRL, but during the war he goes far beyond just suspending habeus corpus, instead calling a Constitutional Convention with the remaining Union states that places supreme authority in the executive branch "for the duration of the War."

I think you can see where this is going already.

The South is defeated much as IRL. After the end of the war, Congress attempts to remove Lincoln's authority. He responds by declaring all members who voted against him traitors and seccessionists, and dissolves Congress, forming the United Empire of American States. The Congressional leaders who managed to escape capture form a Rebellion with the support of Texas. Eventually, by the 1890s or so, Lincoln gets tired of the harassment from the Rebellion, and has a giant railway gun commissioned to destroy Austin, wiping out the entire state government in an afternoon of shelling. The Rebellion discovers the location of the gun, and sends their best team to destroy it as it begins moving toward their headquarters.

The loss of the gun just infuriates Lincoln, and he sends the Union Army to sweep Texas and destroy the Rebels once and for all. They narrowly manage to escape to California, losing most of their equipment along the way. Lincoln, realizing this, commissions the largest battleship ever built, mounting an improved version of the railway gun. The Rebels find out, hurriedly outfit as many fast clipper and steamships as they can with the heaviest weapons available, then depart for Norfolk in the hopes of stopping it before it can steam to San Francisco.

Lincoln happens to be at Norfolk when their ramshackle fleet arrives, and takes command of the incomplete battleship (which just had the gun fitted). The fight is intense, with the gun under Lincoln's direction wiping out a good portion of the attacking fleet. At the last minute, a team of saboteurs manages to climb aboard the battleship, planting explosives inside the main magazine. The battleship explodes catastrophically, killing Lincoln and setting the entire naval yards on fire. The remaining Union ships sound a retreat for New York, and the Rebel clipper fleet then sails for Washington, which surrenders after a brief siege.

Several weeks later, the rest of the Union fleet returns from New York with reinforcements, driving the Rebels off. The balance of power uneasily goes back-and-forth between the two coasts as both sides struggle for domination - the Imperialists vs. the Constitutionalists. After years of this fighting, and a massive naval engagement off Cuba that ends poorly for the Union Navy, the Imperialist leaders call for a truce and negotiations. Tired of the constant war, the Constitutionalists agree, and negotiations begin. Under the terms of the resulting agreement, both sides agree to reduce their armies by 90%, and a new United States is established west of the Mississippi, while the Empire retains control of the eastern side.

This doesn't sit well with some of the original Constitutionalist fighters, who argue that the terms of the agreement are unconstitutional as the States cannot be divided. They establish new bases of operations inside Imperial territory, and begin harassing them with guerilla attacks.

Around the same time, the KKK experiences a revival among Imperials dissatisfied by the peace treaty. Years go by, and in the 1930s the nuclear bomb is theorized. The Empire begins developing it, with the KKK piggybacking off their efforts, and by the 1950s they have a working copy that can be delivered by a ballistic missile. By this time San Francisco is the new capitol of the United States, and the KKK hatches a plot to destroy San Francisco with the new weapon, which completely takes the United States by surprise, destroying not only the seat of government but also Naval Base Alameda.

Which is about where things are at as of the end of Episode VII.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

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Galvatron wrote: Indeed. That would also explain how Luke survived there. That island must have some hidden, underground facilities that could sustain him.
So when he found it, did he go back and put the map in R2D2 and then disappear? Possible, but that doesn't seem to be in the spirit of what the characters say.

Whichever way he did it he has to have went to one place and stayed there after he "disappeared" for the left behind map to be relevant.

Why the fuck is it left to the audience to tie themselves in knots about what should be a trivial detail when a second of expository dialogue could fix this? JJ, thats why.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Channel72 »

A nice "world-building" touch would have been to mention that Starkiller base was mostly built by the Empire, as another secret project, before they were utterly defeated at Jakku. Then the First Order sort of just picked up the project and completed it, with many of the Imperial engineers being recruited into the First Order. That would help explain how this seemingly smaller organization is able to create something that requires much larger scale engineering than the Death Star.
Galvatron wrote:Agreed. Maz Kanata's planet was obviously a moon of Hoznian Prime. SoD-approved.
If that's the case, then presumably the destruction of Hoznian Prime would have wreaked some serious havoc on the orbit of Maz Kanata's planet, making it uninhabitable within a short time period.

I wish we could just edit out that scene.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Lord Revan »

well we know most of the map is in "imperial records" they're just missing the critical piece for all we know Luke as able to "fill" the map in the time between ROTJ and TFA then removed the important part from R2's memory to hide the location but kept the piece in case had to visit that location.

We don't have the whole picture yet after all, unlike ANH we know there will episode 8 so TFA can have unanswered questions since you give the answer later.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Gaidin »

Channel72 wrote:
Galvatron wrote:Agreed. Maz Kanata's planet was obviously a moon of Hoznian Prime. SoD-approved.
If that's the case, then presumably the destruction of Hoznian Prime would have wreaked some serious havoc on the orbit of Maz Kanata's planet, making it uninhabitable within a short time period.

I wish we could just edit out that scene.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by RogueIce »

Crayz9000 wrote:
Vendetta wrote:we don't care about a planet full of randoms because they're not part of the drama.
Well said.

When I saw the ecumenopolis the first time, I immediately assumed it was Coruscant. Then I saw the moons around it, which seemed out of place, and it was eventually clarified. They obviously tried to draw some sympathy by showing random doomed people on the ground reacting to their fate, but since we had no clue who they were, other than random official placeholders, there was just no emotional connection to them.
That one black woman who was kind of the center of those scenes was apparently supposed to be a minor character and have some kind of thing about trying to drum up support in the Senate for Leia's Resistance. She's in the novelization as such, anyway; and I imagine that shot with her being the center of attention is probably a remnant of her subplot now left on the cutting room floor for whatever reason.

I will say this isn't 100% certain, at least with regards to her supposed role in the movie itself. Just something I read from discussions around the web.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Elheru Aran »

I don't have a huge issue with how they shot that particular scene. A scene of the chick talking to the Senate and all would have been useful in its own way... but how? It would've padded the movie and made it a bit longer without really driving the plot of the primary characters, it only adds some background depth.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Patroklos »

It would have made you give a shit about the New Republic and the destroyed planet/moons. The main reason why the Empire was such an evil villain, and why we understood the destructive capability of the Death Star as really menacing, is because we cared about Alderaan through Leia.

It also, tangentially, would have made me care about this new PMC "Rebellion" maybe. It would take a lot of work for that to happen since Its nothing more than the Spock crutch repeated.

I have to point this out again, the New Republic gets two non-trivial (maybe total, but I am allowing for my memory being off) mentions the entire movie, and one of those was Hex naming it as a target out of nowhere mere seconds before he kills it, and zero of those are after its destruction.

Think about that, the only motivation we have for the bad guys up until the little parade scene is this map. In a new hope they had the DS plans, which obviously are related to the ending scene and those plans are always the intermediary objective to the true plot of the movie which was the DS destroying the rebel base. Neither side ever loses sight of that end goal (destroying/defending the Rebel base). In this movie its map, map, map, map, destroyed some planet we have never heard of, map, map, map, destroy starkiller base, map, map, find Luke sky walker. The entire Starkiller base and the destruction of Hosnian Prime (do they even name it in the movie, how the fuck are we supposed to care about this again'?!) are side plots. The 45 minute grand finale of the entire movie has nothing to do with the main motivations of any character in the movie.

They had to rescue Rey you say? Well apparently that's as trivial as ordering a pizza, Han/Finn/Chewie/Rey could have done exactly what they did, only this time just waltz out of the joint instead dicking around with the shield generator of setting charges.

Also on the shield. It is now impossible to trap anything under a shield because while it may be difficult to anticipate when to come out of hyperspace to pull Han's trick off (think about how insane the math would be to do that, and then note Han just guesses to pull it off), if you start on the surface its pretty easy to do the reverse. Thanks to this, warfare in the SW universe should really boil down to opposing shielded planets lobbing missiles at each other through hyperspace from under their shields, each trying to squeeze their navigation equations to get a lucky jump out under the oppositions shield.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Channel72 »

Patroklos wrote:It would have made you give a shit about the New Republic and the destroyed planet/moons. The main reason why the Empire was such an evil villain, and why we understood the destructive capability of the Death Star as really menacing, is because we cared about Alderaan through Leia.
Yeah, sort of... Leia doesn't really seem to care much about Alderaan a few moments later, and they never talk about it again. She's back to sassy Princess mode two minutes later. The main reason we care about the destruction of Alderaan is because it demonstrates how evil the bad guys are and how critical those Death Star plans are, and it also demonstrates what they can potentially do to Yavin IV during the final battle sequence. It's more or less the same idea in TFA, but I agree that the whole Starkiller Base subplot feels somehow disconnected from the rest of the movie, most likely because, as you said, the whole thing has been about the map, up until after they have the battle on Maz Katana's planet, after which there's suddenly this new urgency about dealing with Starkiller Base. Honestly, it probably would have been better if the end of the movie was just like a rescue operation to get Rey - but the problem is we need some kind of ending space battle.
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Re: Ep7 Reviews (Spoilers)

Post by Patroklos »

A possible solution is not having Starkiller base have anything to do with this movie. They find the location of Rey is being held and the grand rescue mission DISCOVERS Starkiller base, setting it up as the main event for the next movie. The space battle (an actual one, we don't get one here), could be the Rebels desperately trying to salvage the rescue after unwittingly jumping into the enemies headquarters. The big battle wasn't anything more than two dozen X-wings anyway, a squadron accompanying a rescue mission as cover is pretty plausible. The big battle is between the X-wing squadron and the new Star Destroyer to make a hole for th Han and Chewie to get to the surface by a less retarded means (like maybe flying down the tube of a space elevator? Anything really. Hell just give the planet a theater shield around the part with he actual exposed weapon just like Hoth), and we get some cool Rogue Squadron/X-Wing vs. TIE Fighter against a capital ship action amounting to the small stakes the movie calls for. Maybe Rey is on the Star Destroyer, and we have a duel Han/Chewie break in while Rouge Fights it, blowing up the SDs shield generator on the way out for Poe to give the coup de grace via a torp into the command deck. Kylo escapes last minute via an escape pod with the map he did get from Rey (oh oh like the reverse of C3PO and R2!) so we know he is coming for her and Luke in the next movie.

Why mount a rescue mission for Rey, some random salvage girl? Because Leia explains privately to Han, in the movies big reveal (because we all know Kylo was Han/Leia's son from the beginning), that Rey is Lukes daughter and we unwittingly put her in danger searching for this map. After the rescue there is a scene of Leia meating with some New Republic Senators showing them images of Starkiller from the rescue, telling them "See I am not crazy, the Empire really is STILL a threat (because they did think she was crazy, and was operating against the wishes of the New Republic because of that) Same Rey finding Luke scene at the end. Fin.
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