i may use these notes i jotted down after seeing it to someday write an article.
here’s my bullet list of what i hated;
sw ep8 issues
expository dialogue (stalling, escaping, etc). over half of the “dialogue” in this movie is the characters explaining to the audience what’s happening. egregious scripting that reads like scene footnotes. this is cinema; use cinema to tell the fucking story. INCESSANTLY treats the audience as if they are too stupid to understand what’s happening onscreen.
deus ex machina/repeated solutions/cameos resolving almost all conflicts (m.falcon, luke, chewy, rey). constant inexplicable character appearances resolve most plot tension. little investment/carry.
carrie fisher - platitudes, zero impact, nothing to do/say. entire inclusion feels like an homage/farewell. massively ineffective char usage. pitiable. it honestly looks like the film had to use the least awful of her performances in every scene she’s in. the space ghost scene was bizarre and added nothing to the character or world-building and felt completely out of place.
tone establishment. constant edits of hamill welling with tears amidst slapstick comedy doesnt work. film doesnt understand how to use comic relief or carry tone. most of the jokes are horrible and cringe-worthy. you honestly have to be trying extremely hard to not dislike the film to laugh at most of the attempted humor. the poe scene on the intercomm with the mom jokes was AWFUL. the physical humor is bad; the bb8 riding the at-at felt silly and forced; reminded me of the car chase in “indiana jones-crystal skull”. finn in the leaky water suit at the beginning... i kept asking myself if that was intended to be funny or what.
contradictory themes - finn is stopped from sacrificing himself because “love wins”, but laura dern sacrifices herself and the film treats it with reverence. this movie feels like it doesn’t know what it wants to say. several examples of this. amatuerish handling of themes.
no new relatability or conceptual exploration, and when it does try, the original films have already done a much better job than everything attempted here. only the novelty of new scenarios/tech/creatures (battering ram, monsters, etc) feel like the only somewhat meaningful contribution.
overly self-aware/referrential. again, almost no film tenet establishment of its own. 4th wall (rey joking about force-moving rocks, etc).
reverence of characters relies on knowledge of older movies. resting on laurels. the main characters do almost nothing despite their constant and overly dramatic appearances.
hilariously one-dimensional villians (and heroes). throwaway characters. snoke was exceptionally disposable and little motivation was given for his character. cgi target dummy. again, amateur scripting here.
side characters are handled awfully hamfisted (asian girl with fen, del toro, etc). new ensemble is cookie cutter, simplified, & immediately forgettable. the finn side-quest in the casino was utter throwaway, did zero for the story, cgi-riddled, and felt like something ripped straight from “phantom menace”. horrendous pacing/relevence issues here.
another thing that was obvious is they went out of their way to avoid sjw backlash. every creed, color, race, gender, religion, etc was represented and the movie made sure you realized it. the xwing pilot reveal edits looked like a jc penny catalog cover. it felt like there were more women pilots and officers than men.
glaring technical issues - newton’s law of motion, the rebel ship doesn’t need to burn fuel in order to maintain its speed. the bombers “dropped” bombs on the dreadnought when there’s no gravity or “down” in space. bleh...
this movie conjures up zero emotional investment by itself. every bit of potential adherence it might command relies on the original series’ strength. paint-by-numbers ‘action’ movie that is clearly molded by screen tests for max palability and lackluster canon extension.
almost all plot setups from the previous films get shit on - snoke, rey’s family, phasma, luke’s seclusion, etc. all shat on in absurdly uninteresting manner. it’s clear that this isn’t a film amidst a well-developed trilogy plotline; they are now just winging the story one movie at a time. terrible.
i learned everything i know from KC