Before I get into it, I actually do not have the words to describe what I just watched. I mean that. For emphasis.
I would like to begin by saying Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Happy Festivus!
Disclaimer: Please note that I do not have any background at all on this TV special. I did not know it even existed. Someone had mentioned it on social media recently in light of “The Force Awakens” and the holidays. This is my review raw, cut, and uncensored.
The story takes place after “A New Hope”. Han Solo and Chewbacca are being chased and hunted by the Empire. Chewbacca needs to get home on time to Kashyyyk to see his family (his wife – Mala, his father – Itchy, and his son – Lumpy) for Life Day…
WAIT A MINUTE.
Did I just hear those names correctly? Itchy? Lumpy?
The TV special brings back all the major characters – along with the actors such as: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, and Carrie Fisher. Also starring are celebrities that were famous at the time this special came out in the 1970s.
The show begins with what life is like for Chewbacca’s family on Kashyyyk. The décor, especially the kitchen, is very 1970-ish Earth and not what you would expect the interior of a home on Kashyyyk would be. Forgive me, but for some reason I thought it would be similar to something like on Endor. But then again that’s just me.
Anyhow, we see what their everyday life is like. For example, Lumpy turns on a hologram which I perceive to be a form of entertainment. It is kind of “trippy” if you ask me… These miniature circus characters come out and dance or entertain the viewer… There is an option to make them life-sized…. which made the scene even more “trippy”. Also, let’s not forget the Julia Child cooking show that Mala watches…. The icing on the cake was some sort of virtual reality device that Itchy uses which appears to be their version of porn? Is that too harsh to state? Is this a true interpretation?
Eventually, the Empire sends its officers to Kashyyyk and enter Chewie’s home looking for him. One of the officers watches a music box of some sort with the band Jefferson Airplane actually performing for him.
This actually confused me.
It’s like merging worlds or something. Our world is crossing over into their “world”…. Just by the band performing in miniature size just adds onto the trippy-ness of the show.
In between, the show cuts to a cartoon to possibly speed up the TV special without using real actors.
Afterwards, the Mos Eisley Cantina makes an appearance as well as the Cantina Band! The cantina patrons become inebriated and Bea Arthur hugs a large rat while singing. Everyone in the cantina dances and sings while Bea Arthur dances and sings.
Turning back to Kashyyyk, Chewie and Han finally arrive and save Chewie’s son from a stormtrooper.
Poor Lumpy. The stormtrooper cornered him and wanted to kill him.
After they save the day, we see Han hug Lumpy. Han then said his goodbyes and hugged everyone. He professed his love that they are like family to him (Awww). Chewie has a heartwarming moment with his wife with Wookie talk and with staring into each other’s eyes. We see two Wookie’s almost kiss. In the next scene, the whole family hold up lights or candles. They are all wearing robes along with other Wookie’s and they float somewhere in space.
Princess Leia, Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, R2-D2, and C-3PO join the Wookie’s to celebrate Light Day. Princess Leia sings to everyone a grand song.
They lived happily ever after.
UNBELIEVABLE!! That is all I can say!
It was action packed from beginning to the end! I was wowed by it all!
The things that surprised me: Han Solo being murdered by his own son who I was also surprised about and the fact that Rey fought Kylo at the end… (Especially surprised with how strong she is in the Force). I have my suspicions about Rey – either she is Luke’s child or she is birthed by the midiclorians the same way as Anakin.
I thought Kylo was delusional, confused, and losing his mind. Remember that Darth Vader ceased to exist when he saved Luke from the Emperor…. He basically redeemed himself… So by Kylo talking to the burned helmet of Darth Vader asking for “guidance” and to finish what he started seems delusional. Unless he wasn’t told the whole story?
There are holes to the characters’ past which more than likely will be addressed in the next movie. Who are Rey’s parents? Why was she left on the planet? Who are Finn’s parents? Where is he from? What about Poe’s backstory? What the heck happened to make Kylo turn to the dark side? Who is the supreme leader?
So many questions…
What did you think?
I am a bonafide Star Wars fan. I have been since I was about 10 years old. Before Episodes I, II, and III, I was a fan when people forgot Star Wars – like the early 90’s. Return of the Jedi (ROTJ) is the movie that reeled me in. When I first saw Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford light up my pre-digital TV, I was taken in hook, line, and sinker. I enjoyed every minute of it. It wasn’t just the special effects, it was the STORY. The fight for good and evil, twins, a galactic empire, little bears, swords that lit up, the samurai theme, and the fact that a simple farm boy took down an empire and redeemed his father. It was just storytelling at its finest.
Yes, I eventually did watch The Empire Strikes Back and then Star Wars. In that order. Backwards. Hey, think about it. It was the 90’s and there was no Amazon so I had to get what I could get from the store.
Anyway, when Episodes I, II, and III came out, it was just ok to me. However, I did enjoy Revenge of the Sith. I really wanted to know how Darth Vader became Darth Vader. Basically I realized after Episode III that the entire six part movie was basically about the rise, the fall, and redemption of Darth Vader.
Since Star Wars has been part of my childhood, I do have some emotional ties to it. Therefore, I have tried to avoid watching any subsequent trailers after the very second US Teaser Trailer that came out.
I already have tickets to see it this weekend in IMAX. I saw J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek in IMAX and was blown away with the story and the camaraderie of the crew. I hope for the same feeling this Saturday…