How to FIX The Force Awakens

Ok. Allow me to start this article off by saying—I LOVED THE FORCE AWAKENS.

I thought it was fun, fresh and a worthy addition to the Star Wars canon.
I think it pays respect to the established world and characters while introducing and effortlessly handing over the franchise reigns to new characters.
The things that work REALLY well in the Force Awakens are the characters- their arcs, their development their interactions with each other, it’s all really really good cinema.  You believe their comradery, you root for their causes and want to see them succeed.

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Creed Dazzles, Uses Emotion to Knock You Out

I watched a movie over Christmas weekend. It was the seventh film in a series, meant as a sort of soft reboot, using older actors from the previous films to help tie the new characters in. Sure, some of the beats of the film were repetitive, but the formula was there and it was oh, so comfortable. Plus, the film had a great musical score.

Yes, if you read the headlines of this story, you know I’m not talking about the new Star Wars film, but Creed. With all due respect to that galaxy far, far away, Creed may be the part VII film I enjoyed most this year. I say only “may” because Star Wars was good and I’m not trying to knock it. Yet Creed connects you to great characters and, grounded in the real world as it is, it draws you in heavily during the film and sticks with you long after you leave. Star Wars gave me the same feeling, I suppose, but only in the “this is a wonderful fantasy” sort of way. Creed made me more interested in my own life, my own relationships, and my own ability to be at my best. Creed has everything that made the original Rocky films so great and so legendary.

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Rewatching Empire Strikes Back: A Legend

The first scene of Empire is burned permanently into my mind. A probe droid, launched from a Star Destroyer, lands on Hoth in a snowy explosion. What follows afterwards is an entrancing two hours that out-does the original in every way and truly made the Star Wars phenomenon.

I’ve written in previous Star Wars film reviews that George Lucas isn’t the best filmmaker, but is an incredible storyteller. He outdoes himself in Empire, the best space fantasy to have ever been created. What other film combines spaceships, robots, and aliens with wizards, monsters, and bounty hunters?

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