I was ten years old when the first Star Wars movie was released and I still remember my mood when I left the famous Grand Rex movie theater in Paris that 22nd of October 1977. I was thinking to myself « this is going to change forever SciFi movies »... But I was not young, naive or blind enough to miss the fact Star Wars was only the regular princess/prince/felon tale with a stars' and space fighters' background.

  • the first hero is the lost son of the villain
  • the princess is the lost daughter of the villain
  • the princess is the sister of the first hero
  • the villain's army is trying to rule the world and the villain has magical powers
  • the first hero recovers the sword of his father
  • the second hero is a ruffian but he will eventually save the world and marry the princess
  • the villain abducts the princess and keeps her in custody in his space castle
  • the two heroes attack the space castle to deliver the princess
  • the first hero will eventually destroy the space castle, source of power of the villain threatening the world
  • and so on.

It's nothing but a space Grimms' tale.

Spoiler alert: don't read further if you haven't seen Star Wars episode VII and plan to see it in the near future...

I saw Episode VII yesterday with the kids and enjoyed it a lot while I was in the room. But when I left, I started thinking about it:

  • the new princess is clearly from the family of the former villain and the lost first hero
  • the new princess recovers the family's sword
  • the new second hero is a renegade from the new villain's army
  • the new third hero will eventually attack and destroy the new space castle
  • the new villain is the son of the princess and original second hero
  • the new villain's army is trying to rule the world and the new villain has magical powers
  • the new villain abducts the new princess and keeps her in custody in his space castle
  • the new second hero and the original second hero attack the space castle to deliver the princess
  • the space castle, source of power of the villain threatening the world, is eventually destroyed

Ah that sense of déjà-vu. Where are the originality, the darkness, the characters' complexity seen in the Revenge of the Sith, gone?

All in all, The Force Awakens leaves me very mixed feelings. A good show, a bad Star Wars. Even Harrison Ford totally lost his mojo and did not play well at all. And the final scene made me think J.J. Abrams lost it too, the theatrical intensity of the scene being abysmal (should have ended on Luke taking the saber, closer view on his hand pressing the button, glowing light of the saber turning on screen-wide and sudden black with The Force's music). Ten years after the Revenge of the Sith, I was expecting something that would renew the SciFi/space heroic fantasy genre. It's very far from it.