***Spoiler Warning: This post contains major Spoilers for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. ***Spoilers
It’s only been about a month since the release of the new Star Wars movie The Rise of Skywalker, and already people are complaining. I personally have not been able to go online without seeing everyone’s “20 bazillion reasons why the new Star Wars movie sucked.” After leaving the theatre, many people took to the internet to share how the film hadn’t ended the way they wanted it to. It’s like constantly hearing about how terrible the last season of Game of Thrones was all over again. Still on the fence about how you feel? Lucky for you, I’m here to explain why The Rise of Skywalker was actually a very good ending to the newest Star Wars trilogy.
First of all, I think one of the main issues with people who don’t like the movie is that they had predicted the whole film. From who Rey’s parents really were (Obi-Wan Kenobi is a Jedi, guys!! No. Kids.) to literal plot lines of the movie, fans were sure they knew exactly what was going to happen. It’s a lose-lose situation. Maybe it does turn out the way you predict it, but the movie then becomes boring and futile. Or on the flip side, it doesn’t turn out the way you predicted, and now you’re disappointed. Rise of Skywalker was never going to turn out the way fans predicted. That would be silly! The whole point of going to see a movie is to have a new experience with characters in a way you didn’t expect. I actually really enjoyed some of the surprises in the film. When we thought Chewie died, for instance (Yes. I really did believe it at the time, I’m gullible, ok?! I thought because it was the last film they were ready to kill some people off…). I definitely didn’t expect it, and J.J. Abrams succeeded in making me very emotional.
The same goes for Leia’s death. We all knew it was coming, but not how. I love the way it ended up being done, with her sacrifice allowing Ben Solo to emerge once more. It was, I think, the best way she could’ve gone. I was seriously afraid the writers were going to have her go on some sort of mission and never return (which would’ve been a bit of a copout if you ask me). Poe’s backstory was a nice plus as well; I had definitely been wondering where the heck he came from. All the unexpected scenes sprinkled in the new movie made me love it even more.
I know I’m in the minority here, but I actually really liked how Kylo/Ben’s story turned out. I always liked him as the main antagonist, but I also really enjoyed the scenes in The Last Jedi with him and Rey connecting through the Force. I always felt like there was a romantic connection between them (even though most people still think I’m crazy), and I was pleasantly surprised when the writers had him switch to the Light side. I guess I probably should have expected it, seeing as Darth Vader was his grandfather. Also, can we talk about their whole Force Dyad connection? I thought that was so cool. Their connection allowed them to do things I’ve never seen Jedi do before, like when Rey somehow transferred one of her lightsabers to Ben. I was extremely sad when he ended up dying, but the way he went was done really well. He gave Rey his life force so that she could survive, which just proves that he knew how to be a selfless person. The emotion that Adam Driver put into that scene was amazing. Overall, Ben’s story development definitely contributed to my love for the movie.
Something I really wanted to address was Rey’s storyline, more specifically where her story began and ended. I saw a post the other day that had read something along the lines of “So Rey started off as a lonely girl with no family in the middle of the desert and goes through everything just to end up alone in the desert again. Nothing changed.” I wholeheartedly disagree with this. I think the very point of having her story bring her back to Tatooine is to display the changes that she went through. She may have been related to Palpatine by blood, but now she has found a family in the Skywalkers. I think Rey finally understood by the end of the film that it isn’t where you come from that defines you as much as the experiences you go through. The ending in Tatooine gives her, and viewers, a sense of closure for the trilogy.
So overall, I think that The Rise of Skywalker was a success. I think that Pilou Asbæk, who plays Euron Greyjoy in Game of Thrones, made a really good point, speaking at the Golden Globes: “It’s like a break-up. And Game of Thrones broke up with millions of people all over the world, and they got upset.” Obviously, we are all sad that this trilogy is over, but in my opinion, there was never going to be a perfect ending. However, it came pretty close to me. We got to learn a little more about all the old characters, and some new ones as well, witness Leia’s final moment, and see Luke again. The best part of all was when we got to hear all the original characters’ voices in Rey’s head before she killed Palpatine. Personally, I don’t think that the writers could have done much more to include everything they needed to in order to satisfy fans. It’s time to look forward to the Obi-Wan Kenobi series on Disney Plus, and another trilogy taking place waaaayyyy before Palpatine decided he wanted to take over the world.