The Star Wars saga concluded on Dec 20 with the release of the movie The Rise of Skywalker. Starring Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, a CGI Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, and Oscar Isaac, the film has drawn nearly $800 million at the box office through two weeks against a production budget of $ 300 million. J.J Abrams directed the film.
The movie follows Rey (Ridley), Finn (Boyega), and Poe (Issac) as they lead the fight against the First Order and Kylo Ren. Fans had anticipated the return of the dreaded Emperor Palpatine, as they had heard his laugh in the trailer. They were correct, as Palaptine returned at the beginning of the movie when Kylo finds a Sith way finder (a cube with directions) that leads him to the planet Exegol, where he finds Palpatine alive.
The Emperor reveals that he created Snoke (Ren’s previous master who he killed) as a puppet to control the First Order and draw Ren to the dark side. Palpatine shows Ren a fleet of Star Destroyers and promises Ren this could be his if he destroys Rey.
Meanwhile, Rey, Poe, Finn, Chewbacca, and BB-8 (Rey’s droid) look for another Sith way finder to also find their way to Exegol. On the planet Passana (where Luke’s search for Exegol ended), they find Lando Calrassian, former ally of the Republic and friend of Han Solo. Through their force bond, Kylo finds Rey and confronts her, leading him to Chewbacca, a dagger they find with Sith code (which C3PO can not translate) and the Falcon being captured.
Rey, Poe, and Finn mount a rescue mission to retrieve Chewbacca and the Falcon, after first going to Kiljmi to unlock the restriction on C3PO’s programming, which wipes C3PO’s memory. The rest of the film involves the journey of Rey, Poe and Finn to defeat the First Order and Emperor Palpatine after Ren tells Rey she is the granddaughter of Palpatine, something that seemed possible due to Rey showing the ability earlier in the film to use Force Lightning.
The rest of the film is filled with lightsaber battles, drama and love. It is a fitting end to a decades old saga spanning generations. The running time is 142 minutes, but in each of those minutes you are on the edge of your seat, wondering what will happen next.
Rotten Tomatoes awarded the movie a 54 percent but 75 percent of Google Users liked the film, and it also got seven stars out of 10 on IMDB.
Teachers had mixed viewpoints on the plot. “The plot was OK, nothing terribly exciting or engaging. The middle part was slow, but the ending was better. The actors were fine. The spaceships were disappointing as I expected better ships,” science teacher Jacob Buxton said.
Science teacher Sanford Herzon agrees. “The script was terrible it would have made more sense if Rey was the granddaughter of Obi Wan Kenobi,” he said.
Students liked the plot. “It felt a bit long, but it was really good, and I liked the ending. The acting was good overall, my favorite part was when Rey killed Palpatine,” junior Jared Boyd said.