Star Wars – The Force Awakens – Parental Review
REVIEW – 4/5 STARS (With reasons…)
I battled back and forth about writing this review opening night. The main reason that I didn’t, was simply because I needed to sort through it all and not write from a ‘fan high’ perspective. Overall, I thought the movie was great. But there were a few things that popped into my head while watching it, that I shoved down to make room for the ‘drool’ factor during my opening night enjoyment.
Remember. This review has some major spoilers. So please don’t read it, then complain I gave stuff away. You have been warned.
All in all, I enjoyed the movie. But all through the film, I kept thinking; I have seen this before. Yeah, it episode IV… The plot is exactly the same. Large timeline we know nothing about except well placed ‘hints’, a new Death Star, hidden plans in a droid, only one ‘spot’ can be taken out to destroy the death star, must bring down the shields first, your favorite ‘old guy’ gets killed… Not only is it almost verbatim in plot-line. There is also only ‘one’ jedi left in the universe, there is a secret reveal about a ‘Father’, and the Millennium Falcon saves the day. Oh, and I do have to say. When Ren finally takes his mask off? That IS a huge let down. I was expecting this crazy, intense bad guy? Instead, I got a whiny emo sissy who threw temper tantrums.
If I wanted to be cynical, I could use all this to give a solid 1/5 star review. But believe it or not, all the above actually works. I’m not entirely sure how, but it does. Maybe it’s because the movie is simple. It is easy to understand, quick moving, and doesn’t even once hint at giving me a Jar Jar? On top of that, I felt like the movie was giving homage to the original trilogy, but in a way that reminds us that evil still exists in the universe and can be destroyed the same way, just with good people behind the helm. (See what I did there? Helm? Ship?? heheh.)
The movie flowed nicely, moved quickly, and set up some very likable new characters. It left some good questions though. Does Finn (Storm Trooper Ex…) have use of the force? How did Rey so quickly adapt to using the force? Is Han Solo really dead? (Yes, spoiler…. if you didn’t figure it out by now.). What exactly happened that caused Luke to run off and hide?
So here are the review details!
Language: Mild, if any. Some angry outbursts, some definite ‘hate’ flowing. But nothing that stood out to me as an issue.
Violence: Yes. Sci-Fi violence, mostly. A lot of stuff blowing up and people flying all over the place. Very mild actual ‘graphic’ violence.. and the graphic violence that was there, was done in a way that it was hardly noticeable unless you were specifically looking for it. It also kept things from lingering. There was no large amounts of violence on the screen for long periods of time. SPOILER AGAIN: When Han Solo dies, it is noticeable. Not graphic, but if you have sensitive kids, they may find it tough to watch.
There is a spot on the Falcon where aliens escape from their cage. These aliens have large tentacles and can eat people whole. While not extremely graphic and somewhat comedic for adults, this is about a 60+ second scene that may frighten some kids.
Sexual Content: None
Theme: The theme is good over evil. Light over Dark. The basic theme of all the Star Wars movies. there is a general feel good attitude and lots of quick comedic moments to help keep it from getting to heavy. But it is emotional. This is a great start to a new series, and introduces some awesome characters. Characters that do right even when it is hard, because they care about the people they are with.
The opening scene to the movie has some heavy emotional moments which cause are new favorite Storm Trooper to question what he is doing there. That questioning is what makes the movie work… it shows a quick look into what can save the Galaxy from the “First Order”.
If you, as a parent, have any questions. Please post it in the comment section, we would love to answer!