I watched this again, or rather furiously fast-forwarded through most of it, because a friend on Twitter mentioned a supposedly awesome lightsaber fight in the…Sith throne room…I guess? It was all right (where have I seen that color scheme and set before…?) and I thought to myself that I much preferred Ahsoka Tano’s face off against Darth Vader in the animated Star Wars Rebels. It’s shorter for one, and just as “nicely shot.” The cartoons are less self-important, more moral, more fun, prettier, and only 24 minutes long, as befits the child-sized ideas in these movies.
I also vastly prefer Tano to Rey, a character I find insufferable in a number of ways. Luke and I have something in common. I don’t care much for Daisy Ridley’s two-note performance, either. I feel sorry for her. She’s basically been asked to reprise a more beloved male character. I’m guessing she wasn’t asked to do it so cheerlessly, though. Or maybe she was.
Speaking of Luke, I enjoyed Hamill’s self-conscious performance much more this time, as he seemed to be the only one on set with both a sense of humor and perspective. The character has the right idea, after all. Can we just burn it all down, already?
Anyway, I grimaced as hard but didn’t laugh as much at Laura Dern’s ridiculous, purpled appearance. I still don’t know what Adam Driver is doing in this movie. But I’m going to need to watch Paterson again to help wipe the memory of him in it out of my mind.
The only moment of real filmmaking and storytelling grace for me was Leia saving herself, gliding through the iciness of space alone to slap her hand against a porthole. We’re never shown all the other bodies drifting around her. That’s the Star Wars series’ central absence, really, its core emptiness.
Balance in the force? What a crock of shit.