Monday, December 21, 2015

Why ‘The Force Awakens’ not that different from 'A New Hope'

Despite all the fanfare and positive reviews, I will be one of the few who is unimpressed with the new Star Wars, the plotline specifically. The acting and visual effects were fun to watch but in terms of the story wise, it is not really groundbreaking. In fact, it's like JJ Abrams pulled a “Star Trek Into Darkness”, where he modified the existing plot of an earlier movie.

Instead of Wrath of Khan, this time, it's A New Hope. The similarities in the plot are too numerous for coincidences. Some examples include:

(WARNING: MAJOR PLOT SPOILERS AHEAD. TURN BACK IF YOU'VE NOT SEEN THE MOVIE)

1. The movie starts off with the bad guys attacking the good guys in search of a piece of vital information, led by a dude in mask...



2. Faced with little choice, the good guys had to hide the piece of information in an unsuspecting droid...



3. The droid is then found by an unsuspecting native on a barren desert planet. The native doesn't really seem to belong to his/her hometown. They also happen to be good pilots...



5. To escape the planet, the protagonists had to board the Millenium Falcon, which at first did not seem impressive to the main character...



6. One of their stops includes a cantina, with aliens playing music in the background.



7. The bad guys are operating out of an immense space station that is capable of destroying planets (which the bad guys promptly demonstrated).



8. Along the way, the ragtag bunch of heroes had to rescue a damsel in distress from the said space station.



9. The heroes are part of a small group opposing the bigger power. The names of their group are like synonyms of each other (Rebel vs Resistance).



10. During the climax of the movie, the heroes later learned that the group that they belong to will be destroyed in a certain time limit by the space station unless they destroy it first.

11. Luckily for them, there's one weakness of the space station that they can take advantage of using, where a chain reaction will destroy the whole space station. This attack can only be attempted using small fighters like the X-Wing.



12. And of course, there was an unexpected death of the father/mentor figure, killed by the masked villain, while our heroes watch helplessly from the sides.



13. And sequels, there will be.


Honestly, I don't think Force Awakens is that bad, it's just that the movie isn't exactly groundbreaking. It feels as if JJ Abrams was doing more of a fan service by bringing bits and pieces from the previous movies (like the comment about Millenium Falcon and the Kessel Run), which I suppose are there to make fans go, “Oh, I know that, I know that!”

Like I said, similar to Star Trek Into Darkness.

There are numerous unanaswered questions as well, which we have to spend the next two years waiting in agony before we can have some answers. I just hope they won't use back the similar formula here. I want to see an expansion of the universe, not merely a rehash.

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