First off: THERE ARE SPOILERS BELOW!!!
So... just before midnight on Thursday my other half and I arrived at the Vue Cinema at Westwood Cross to find a crowd of Stormtropper onesie wearers and untrained lightsaber wielders. It was great to see such an enthusiastic crowd of over a 1000 fans in little old east Kent.
As the Lucasfilm logo came up and the opening scroll began, I have to admit that not only did a little thrill of excitement run through my body but a small tear formed in my eye. We were finally here... a new Star Wars movie.
My overall impression is positive. It was well-written, the acting was a major improvement over the prequels and there was plenty of action. I left the cinema feeling pleased that I'd seen a good movie.
Despite seeing a lot of complaints about Rey's characterisation, I really liked Daisy Ridley's performance, and thought Rey was a really strong character. Sure her sudden mastery of force abilities seems a little much but this is space fantasy. When it comes to the fun stuff I'm willing to let a lot go. Loved her interactions with BB-8 early on and really loved the Jedi mind trick scene with Daniel Craig's Stormtrooper.
Finn was not as annoying as I thought he'd be. He was actually quite a good addition to the series.
BB-8 was just as excellent as we'd been led to expect. LOVED him/it.
Han and Chewie. LOVED.
So yeah, all good right?
Well... no. This was not a perfect movie. It was not disappointing like Jurassic World was. But still... could do better.
My major, major issue is how meaningless Han's death was. The Starkiller base was destroyed. The threat over. There should've been more mourning. The biggest thing for me is when the Falcon returns to the Resistance base and Chewie and Rey disembark. Chewie walks straight past Leia, and Leia only has eyes for Rey who she hugs.
I'm sorry but... Chewie has just lost his best friend and Leia has just lost the love of her life. If Leia and Han were married then Leia and Chewie are basically family. Even if it has just been a quick embrace, I really cannot imagine Chewie or Leia NOT acknowledging each other at such a crucial moment.
I know. I know. Such a fanboy nitpick but... I love Chewie and he needs some loving!
R2-D2's coma was... meh.
The whole plot was such a rehash of A New Hope that it was a little dull.
Captain Phasma was the big disappointment in the movie for me. I wanted so much more. I hope we see her again and with a better story.
But these are nitpicks. Overall it was an excellent movie, I look forward to seeing it again. And again. And again.