It’s been thirty years since episode six of the Star Wars saga, and fans were getting a bit sleepy waiting for this new installment. There were disturbances in The Force as George Lucas sold his company to Disney, and even more when it was learned that J.J. Abrams would helm it. Turns out there was nothing to worry about. The Mouse had things well in hand.
It’s a complex and deep story that reunites some old friends and introduces new faces. The old Empire has been replaced by the First Order, and it’s new agent is Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), who exterminates a rebel (now known as the Resistance) village where we meet pilot Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac) and his droid BB-8, and the reluctant Storm Trooper Finn (John Boyega), who becomes a major character in the story.
Scavenger Rey (Daisy Ridley) ekes out a living by rummaging through crashed star destroyers from the war, and she becomes deeply involved with Finn. During the course of their escape, they run into Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew) and Solo goes into a monologue that neatly wraps things up with a pretty ribbon, but this is only about halfway through the film.
Much action remains, as well as a reunion with Princess, now General Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher). The major subplot involves the First Order having a new super weapon which harnesses the power of a star. We also find out that Kylo is Han and Leia’s son, and a lot revolves about the hunt for a map to show Luke’s (Mark Hamill) location, which is hidden inside BB-8. There’s no shortage of chases, dogfights, and light saber action. Watch for the scene where Rey uses a power she didn’t know she had to get the best of a storm trooper guard, who turns out to be Daniel Craig (James Bond) in an uncredited cameo.
Even new fans will enjoy this speedy, action-packed adventure tale without having seen the previous films. One spoiler: this will be Ford’s last appearance as Han Solo—trust me.