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Saturday, October 26, 2019

Force in Focus: The Rise of Skywalker Final Trailer


The final Rise of Skywalker was released earlier this week, and while it is still pretty light on plot (in terms of revealing anything concrete about what is happening in the movie), it is packed with tons of great images and intriguing moments. Here are five such that caught my eye and piqued my interest.

Frozen Star Destroyer 


I'm a sucker for cool Star Destroyer shots, and this one, of an Imperial-era ship breaking free of, presumably, ice, is pretty cool (no pun intended). It also calls to mind the Lusankya, the Super Star Destroyer-turned-prison buried underneath various levels of city on Coruscant that busted out and flew into space in one of the old Expanded Universe's Rogue Squadron novels.

Spaceship Porn


The previous trailer got me all excited by the prospect of a mere B-wing in action; here, we get a veritable armada of familiar capital ships, from the Falcon to the Mon Cal cruisers to a Hammerhead corvette from Rogue One to something that sure looks like the Ghost from Rebels. All in all, this movie seems primed to deliver the huge capital ship space battle I've longed to see in a Star Wars movie.

Saying Goodbye 


I haven't yet quite fully embraced the marketing hype of this being the end of the Skywalker Saga. Sure, yes, this is the last time we're probably going to see any of the OT characters in a movie, and maybe even the last time the Sequel Trilogy characters are all together. But we know there's going to be more movies, and TV shows, so this isn't quite the "end" of Star Wars like it was, say when Episode III was released. But this moment from Threepio, one of the saga's Greek Chrorus characters, taking one last look at his friends, well, that revs the feels in exactly the way the marketing wants me to feel.

Space Horses


I love it when Star Wars leans into its Western roots, and it's kind of amazing that, in all these years, we've never had a moment like this before, with the heroes riding into battle atop trusty steeds (also, I'm pretty sure they're racing across a Star Destroyer, which is awesome).

The Force Will Be With You...Always 


Luke's closing voiceover is pretty standard trailer stuff, but what gets me here is the realization (after watching the trailer a second time), that it is Leia who adds the "always" to the end. Given the passing of Carrie Fisher, and Leia's likely fate in this film, well, here come those feels again...

3 comments:

  1. I still haven't warmed up to THE LAST JEDI... not for all the inane anti-"SJW agenda" reasons you often see out there, but simply because it wasn't what I, personally, want from a STAR WARS movie* -- but I'm nonetheless looking forward to RISE OF SKYWALKER, if for no other reason than to see Ian MacDiarmid chew up the scenery as Palpatine one last time.

    *I've seen it said that I should embrace THE LAST JEDI precisely because it challenged my expectations of what STAR WARS should be, but I'm a pretty straightforward guy. I don't watch STAR WARS to have expectations challenged. That's for other movies and TV shows. I watch STAR WARS to see my expectations realized and occasionally exceeded -- something Lucas always did, and something JJ did quite well, if a bit derivatively, in THE FORCE AWAKENS.

    (In other words, all I wanted from THE LAST JEDI was to see Luke as a wise, seasoned Jedi master engage in a kickass, no-stunts-barred lightsaber battle like we used to get from the prequels, and I was monumentally disappointed with what I got instead.)

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  2. all I wanted from THE LAST JEDI was to see Luke as a wise, seasoned Jedi master engage in a kickass, no-stunts-barred lightsaber battle like we used to get from the prequels, and I was monumentally disappointed with what I got instead

    You know, that was my initial reaction as well, but the more I thought about it (and rewatched it a few times), the more I realized that what we got, in terms of a big Luke fight at the climax of the film, was so in line with what Yoda taught him in EMPIRE, about a Jedi only using the Force for defense and never in aggression (all throughout that "fight" with Kylo, Luke never once acts aggressively - he only moves/reacts when directly threatened - and the whole thing is designed to buy the remnants of the Resistance time to escape ie he's acting in defense of his friends), and also ties in so nicely with broader point Lucas was trying to make with the Prequels (that the Jedi, as cool as all the Prequel fights were, had lost their way by becoming generals/soldiers and institutional rot/complacency had led to Palpatine rising to power and nearly wiping them out right under their noses), that it was the absolute perfect end to Luke's story, that he saved the day not using the cool whizbang lightsaber stylings of the Prequels* but via the teachings Yoda adopted after being humbled by the Jedi purge.** It seemed like the perfect way to circle the square of the Jedi philosophy being about non-violence and a lack of aggression while at the same time the Jedi are the stars of action movies where they have superpowers and laser swords.

    *Granted, it's still a movie, so I *want* to see *some* cool whizbang lightsaber battles (and LAST JEDI had one at least in the Kylo/Rey/Praetorian guard sequence), and I'm hoping we get more in RISE OF SKYWALKER, but this line of thinking has helped me come to peace with (and genuinely appreciate) at least not getting a cool lightsaber fight out of Luke before the end, as much as that was something I desperately wanted going in.

    **Not that any of this is intended to try and change your mind about LAST JEDI, because really, it's your opinion and it's not like I have something to gain by convincing you to like it more or whatever. Which usually goes without saying but with the discourse around LAST JEDI being what it is, I feel like it's worth pointing this out. :)

    I've seen it said that I should embrace THE LAST JEDI precisely because it challenged my expectations of what STAR WARS should be, but I'm a pretty straightforward guy. I don't watch STAR WARS to have expectations challenged

    Heh. In the comment thread of whichever post it is where people are weighing in with thoughts on Hickman's X-Men stuff, I almost responded to one of your comments about his run to say that it's doing something very similar to that with the X-Men, in terms of challenging expectations, and then I realized that would be more of a bug than a feature for you anyway. ;)

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    Replies
    1. You make some excellent points about THE LAST JEDI basically embracing not only Yoda's teachings, but also the lessons George Lucas was trying to impart about the Jedi with the prequels. And rationally, that makes sense to me. But I just remember watching the prequels (and THE CLONE WARS) and being enamored with their versions of Jedi-as-action heroes. So it's totally emotional, but I really wanted Luke, the big hero of the original trilogy, to have one of those insane flippy/Force pushy fights like Obi-Wan and Anakin (and my fave, Qui-Gon) used to get into all the time.

      And yes, I'm admittedly pretty set in what I expect from anything and how I want it delivered. There are reasons I mostly only read older comics these days, and one of them, though I never really thought of it until now, is that I basically know what's going to happen going in. No surprises!

      G. Kendall once said on Twitter that he believes comic book fans are open to accepting new characters until somewhere around age 16 or so, and I found that a really intriguing theory. I would extrapolate that to apply to any additions to the mythos. Like, once a fan reaches that point (and it could be later for some or earlier for others), what they know becomes "canon" and anything after is glorified fan fiction. It totally explains why, when I was a teen reading X-Men and Spider-Man, I saw all these "older" fans (probably only in their 20s or not far past) scoffing at the stuff I liked -- and now I'm one of those older fans who can't understand modern comics' appeal to young people (or even moreso, people my own age).

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