Wednesday, 6 January 2016

The Inevitable Force Awakens post

Should the long-suffering people of North Korea ever have to hear proclamations from their supreme leader in the guise of a 50ft hologram, we can all blame J.J Abrams for putting the thought in Kim Jong-un's mind.... I got my draft card for the Star Wars film this afternoon and stepped up to fulfill my patriotic duty - but more about that in a moment. As the first act of The Force Awakens unfolded I wondered if Abrams and his team were being unduly reverential with the Star Wars legacy, such were the nods, winks and asides to the Original Trilogy, but as the film hit its stride, my suspicions eased when it became apparent that Abrams had pulled off the all but impossible task of making a Star Wars sequel entirely harmonious with the films that, sequentially speaking, preceded it. The Force Awakens answers all the questions asked of it - the screenplay is lucid, intelligent, and creative (the light saber duel in a snowy, twilit forest is truly spectacular), the cast incredibly able, especially the two very likeable young leads, and the magnificent futurist designs are complimented by some extraordinary and judiciously used CGI. I hasten to add that this is not a case of the seduction of the gullible - at least one CG-character I thought was ill-advised and I felt the otherwise reliable Domhnall Gleeson was guilty of scenery chewing, but these are minor complaints. As for that bit of patriotic business I mentioned earlier, it was a great thrill to see Ireland's own wild Atlantic island Skellig Michael in a pivotal scene late in the film. I was privileged to trod those same ancient, precarious steps as one character does some years ago...

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