“’Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ was already destined to become the movie event of the year, but few could have predicted this: The seventh installment in the series, started by George Lucas in 1977, is the best ‘Star Wars’ sequel yet and one of the best films of 2015,” according to the review in the San Francisco Chronicle.
“The ‘Star Wars’ phenomenon has become bigger than movies, capturing the imagination of the world. Fans have somehow kept the faith and grown in number, despite weak and worse sequels, and now, finally, their investment has been rewarded.
“Directed by J.J. Abrams, this new episode, opening Friday, is both grand and human scale. It features many action sequences — skirmishes, attacks, laser gun battles and hand-to-hand (and light saber to light saber) combat. But none of it is overdone, and none of it feels overstuffed or at the expense of the characters. It is what the first ‘Star Wars’ was, and what the series always was when it was at its best, a story about people caught up in troubles they didn’t look for, who rise to the moment.
“The film comes three years following the sale of Lucasfilm to Disney for a reported $4 billion. The sale gave Disney the right to take the story anywhere it wanted, regardless of its creator’s desires, and apparently Disney rejected Lucas’ own story outline for this film and two sequels. That’s a painful thought, like something out of a ‘Star Wars’ movie — a father forcibly separated from his offspring. But at least this time out, Disney is not the evil Empire. It’s hard to imagine any ‘Star Wars’ movie better than the one they’ve made.
“Needless to say, with two more films planned, as well as spinoffs, it’s quite possible that sooner or later this will become too much of a good thing, or even a bad thing. But as they do at the end of most ‘Star Wars’ movies, it’s best to rejoice at good news and let the sequels bring what they may.”
The rest of the article is here.