gratitude-a-thon day 770: In a galaxy far, far away

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I finally saw it. Star Wars (nothing, but Star Wars). It only took us three tries, plus a set of tickets we couldn’t use because Jake hurt his back. But last night, in the plush seats at Super Lux, we went to a galaxy far, far away. And it transported me back to another time, when C3PO and R2D2 were stunningly original, and nobody talked about anything but Luke and Darth, and every little boy wielded a light saber.

My daughter did not see any of the other Star Wars installments, so I was worried she might really hate it, but in the end, it was my son, a huge fan (and light saber warrior) who was disappointed. The hype ruined it for him, as hype often can (Ally, surprisingly LOVED it–so I guess it holds up on its own as a movie).

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I admit to having been worried that all the chatter might have ruined this movie for me, too. How can anything stand up to the stellar reviews, the $1.39 billion dollars it’s made, the shattered box office records. But from the moment the yellow letters scrolled up the screen, I was smiling.

Faithful to the past movies, The Force Awakens gave us some new characters, and there were all very likeable. Rey, a Keira Knightly look-a-like, was brave and adorable, and I’m sure will be back. Her love interest, Finn was also a new addition, and a good one. I really liked the new character named Poe, too,but he didn’t get much screen time. Hopefully he’ll hit it in future films.

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It was great to see the droids again, and fall in love with a brand new one, BB8. I am amazed at how this franchise has been able to generate genuine affection for these robots. Two round balls never communicated so much emotion. Seeing Harrison Ford reprise Han Solo was like old home week. And the reunion of Han and Leia, now a general, talking about their son, and how to retrieve him from the dark side, was satisfying. The bar scenes weren’t as shocking or entertaining as the first time, but still enjoyable, and seeing Wookie again, was like seeing an old friend (who should probably get a haircut). John Williams does it again with powerful and iconic music. I know that he has written some amazing stuff, but is there anything quite as listened to, parodied, or hummed more than the Star Wars theme?

I had stars in my eyes, by movies end. J.J. Abrams hit one out of the park, I mean, galaxy. May the force be with him for the next installment.

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