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Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. The Last Episode?

Updated on February 18, 2020
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"The Rise of Skywalker" poster at the Bow Tie Cinema in Reston, Virginia, December 21, 2019. The Rise of Skywalker theatrical release poster.
"The Rise of Skywalker" poster at the Bow Tie Cinema in Reston, Virginia, December 21, 2019.
"The Rise of Skywalker" poster at the Bow Tie Cinema in Reston, Virginia, December 21, 2019. | Source
The Rise of Skywalker theatrical release poster.
The Rise of Skywalker theatrical release poster. | Source

Basic Information

“The Rise of Skywalker” is Episode IX in the Star Wars saga. This is supposed to be the last Star Wars episode. That appeared to be the case for Episodes III and VI. The Rise of Skywalker cost about $200 million to make. That is almost 40% less than Episode VIII. It grossed over $177 million in its opening weekend in the United States.[i]

The film can be seen in IMAX 2 or 3 dimensions (3D), 3 dimensions, and 4DX 3 dimensions. I watched the movie on a regular screen in two dimensions at 10 AM. Despite being the first matinee, the auditorium was more than ½ full. The audience applauded at the end of the movie.

Many scenes should look spectacular in IMAX. There are a couple of sequences that were apparently put in the movie specifically for the 3D effect. This article contains some spoilers for previous Star Wars episodes.

Episode IX makes many direct, indirect, and passing references to previous Star Wars episodes. “The Rise of Skywalker” might be difficult for someone who has never seen previous episodes to follow or appreciate.


[i] International Movie Database, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2527338/reference, last accessed 12/27/19.

The Plot

Rey (Daisy Ridley) is continuing her Jedi training with the assistance of General Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher). The First Order and The Resistance inflicted serious losses on each other in previous battles. Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), who Rey defeated in previous encounters, is now being trained by Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid).

The Emperor has assembled a powerful armada of Star Destroyers. The First Order will become The Final Order. The Final Order will ruthlessly annihilate any resistance.

Poe Dameron becomes the leader of The Resistance by default. General Lando Calrissian (Billy Dee Williams) arrives and gives encouragement to Poe. An unknown mole inside The Final Order passes valuable information to The Resistance.

This sets up a major battle to determine the galaxy’s future. General Calrissian convinces Poe to use the, if you lead others will follow, approach. Will others join The Resistance? Will Rey defeat Kylo Ren, Emperor Palpatine, and the allure of “The Dark Side”?

Rise of Skywalker

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Themes and Thoughts

One scene is taken from the Aesop fable, “The Lion and the Mouse”. One meeting is reminiscent of the meeting in Episode IV[i]. As with the meeting in the original “Star Wars”, the “Rise of Skywalker” meeting indicates the high-ranking bad guys are vying for position. These and other scenes that are similar to previous episodes are either to remind fans of previous episodes or a case of sticking to a formula that worked in the past. The climactic battle involves simultaneous battles between spacecraft, a small commando force attacking a critical target, and a light vs dark side confrontation. The 3-venue battle is similar to the final battle in “Return of the Jedi”. Having an overwhelming force that can be defeated by taking out a single target has been used in Episodes I and VI. “Independence Day” and other movies have also used this premise. The “Rise of Skywalker” battle contains some elements reminiscent of “Avatar”.

The Episode VI premise that if Luke Skywalker killed Emperor Palpatine it would turn Luke to “The Dark Side” annoyed some fans. Episode IX gives a detailed explanation of the premise.

Episode IX, as with the original trilogy finale, is a story of redemption. Some fans didn’t like the redemption in Episode VI. Will fans accept the redemption in “The Rise of Skywalker”?

In previous episodes Storm Troopers tended to die quietly. In Episode IX they let out dying groans. Judging from the sounds roughly half of the Storm Troopers are women. Imperial Storm Troopers were clones.[ii] The First Order Storm Troopers are conscripts. They are humanoid. Many of the sentient beings in the Star Wars universe won’t fit into the one size fits all Storm Trooper body armor.

In many movies, nature rather than nurture, is what causes someone to excel. Episode I established the amount of Midi-chlorians a being has determines their potential capabilities in using “The Force”. Following this premise, Rey’s lineage explains her ability to excel in everything. Will fans consider this explanation adequate? Are some fans holding Rey to a different standard than Luke and Anakin Skywalker? Luke was a farmer with pilot skills who proved an expert fighter-bomber pilot on his first mission and without combat training? Anakin was a young boy who was also an expert combat pilot on his first mission.

[i] The episode numbers in Star Wars was in the “Star Wars” universe chronological order. The original “Star Wars” is Episode IV.

[ii] It wasn’t established until the second trilogy that it was revealed the Imperial Storm Troopers were clones.

Redemption in Episode IX

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Nature vs Nurture

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Is Rey juded different from Luke and Anakin?

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This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2019 Robert Sacchi

Comments

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    • Robert Sacchi profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert Sacchi 

      16 months ago

      Thank you for reading and commenting. Have you not had the opportunity to see the movie or have you given up on the franchise?

    • rdsparrowriter profile image

      Rochelle Ann De Zoysa 

      16 months ago from Moratuwa, Sri Lanka

      I have watched few star wars movies but not this one. Interesting to know a about this. Take care and God bless!

    • Robert Sacchi profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert Sacchi 

      16 months ago

      Thank you for reading and commenting. The Rise of Skywalker grossed over a billion worldwide. The downside is it made a billion less than The Force Awakens.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      16 months ago from Houston, Texas

      I have not seen the last Star Wars movies, including this one. As to its being the last of a series, time will tell. It all depends upon how much money the film made, as you indicated at the top about the previous ones supposedly being the last.

    • Robert Sacchi profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert Sacchi 

      16 months ago

      Thank you for reading and commenting. Since it's a recent movie I didn't want to include a possible spoiler. You do make a good point about ancestry. I disagree with you about a dispersal in Episode 8 ruining the movie. If done right it could be a segway for many movies that involve different bands of resistance fighters. With such movies the resistance doesn't have to win every time. It would also be closer to how resistance fighters operate on our planet.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 

      16 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Robert

      Great write up of the movie. I enjoyed it as it was a lot better than episode 8.

      Episode 8 I couldn't believe how dumb the resistance was portrayed as being (They used the stupidest tactic possible and would have stood a much greater chance had they dispersed through the Galaxy, but it would have ruined the movie!)

      There is another twist to the movie you haven't mentioned here, and to me that makes the movie worth watching, a very interesting twist that I wasn't expecting, and it concerns Rey's ancestry!

      I think the first story is finished, but it's opened the door for other stories like 'Rogue 1' and others.

      I don't think there'll be another 'Star Wars' but other linked stories I can see coming down the line, bearing in mind that George Lucas is in his seventies.

    • Robert Sacchi profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert Sacchi 

      18 months ago

      Happy 2020. Yes, Lucas showed how to make an entertaining movie and franchise.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      18 months ago from UK

      I agree. It looks like the franchise will roll on for at least another generation. I still remember being impressed by the first ever film. Happy New Year.

    • Robert Sacchi profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert Sacchi 

      18 months ago

      Thank you for reading and commenting. I can't see them not making more "Star Wars" movies. There is just too much money to be made.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      18 months ago from UK

      You have given the latest film an interesting analysis. Do you think there will be more to come?

    • Robert Sacchi profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert Sacchi 

      18 months ago

      Thank you for reading and commenting. It seems hard to keep up with the francise. "Rise of Skywalker" has already turned a profit. The Howard Stern concept of milking things for all their worth seems to apply to movies. Since "The Last Jedi" made over a billion more than it cost to make it doesn't make sense for any organization, even Disney, to walk away from that kind of money.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      18 months ago from USA

      I also quit watching Star Wars, although I did see the last one with Carrie Fisher. So much had happened since I had last watched a Star Wars movie that my husband and daughter had to catch me up with explanations of who certain characters were, motives, relationships, etc. They’ve taken this series way too far but I guess if there is still a fan base that’s okay. I enjoyed reading your descriptions. They helped to fill in some of the blanks.

    • Robert Sacchi profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert Sacchi 

      18 months ago

      Thank you for reading and commenting. That's why I put in so many poll questions. It seems there are a lot of people complaining about the direction of the franchise. The Last Jedi made over a billion in profits so somebody must still like the franchise.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      18 months ago from Sunny Florida

      i quit watchig Star Wars a whike back so I haven't seen this one. I heard that some peope didnot like it. I liked reading your themes and plots however, as it eplained the movie.

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