Matthew had a very Stars Wars oriented Christmas. Many of his presents were Star Wars themed: Star Wars toys, Star Wars shirt, Star Wars Watch, Star Wars change bank. I don’t know how children learn of the upcoming movie blockbusters, but Matthew was already speaking about Star Wars even before the movie came out. Of course they—the movie conspiracy people—timed the movie for Christmas. And so it followed that Matthew was primed for a Star Wars Christmas. Matthew knew some of the characters from the previous movies. I promised early this month to take him to the movie, and he was so excited.
Yesterday afternoon was the day of the movie. Before this he’d been to two other movies in movie theaters before. He saw the Minion movie over the summer as a Summer Camp trip and around Thanksgiving my wife took him to the recent Peanuts movie. My wife bought him popcorn and M&Ms, and I think he got the feel of being in a movie theater. Not bad for a six year old. I don’t think I saw my first movie in a movie house until I was a teenager. They do everything younger these days.
At two hours and fifteen minutes the Star Wars movie (The Force Awakens) was a bit longer than the other movies. I was worried he wouldn’t last through it. Before I get to the Star Wars movie here are a couple of pictures from Christmas. I didn’t snap him with any of his Star Wars gifts, but I did capture him jumping up in excitement after he opened something here.
And here he’s giving my mother a framed picture of himself as his gift to her.
As an aside since several of you ask about my mother, she’s been doing fairly well with her health except for her feet. She got some sort of infection which went bad and turned black on one of her side calluses that never seem to go away, and it had to be cut off in an in office mini operation. Luckily it didn’t get into the bone. The podiatrist had to take a good quarter inch deep, one inch length piece of flesh off. It was disgusting to watch, and I ultimately had to leave the room. She’s been in pain and she’s hobbling—she just refuses to stay off her feet—but it’s healing nicely.
So yesterday we saw the movie. We got there early enough to get prime seats and we bought popcorn and a strawberry smoothie. I wished I had a camera. I’ve been reluctant to get a phone with a camera but I can see how advantageous they could be. Matthew sat deep in his seat. His legs extended out because his knees couldn’t reach the edge for his legs to bend over, a bag of popcorn in his lap that almost reached his eyes, and his smoothie in the cup holder beside him with a straw twice the size of his cup standing like an antenna. Extending his right arm over the bag, his right hand would go into the popcorn bag and pick out a single piece of popcorn and then lower it into his mouth. Priceless picture lost, but I hope by writing that I have burned it into my memory.
As to the movie, Matthew loved it. (I’ll give you my review at the bottom.) He wasn’t bored once in those 135 minutes, and he even whispered at one point to me that it was “exciting.” He was disappointed to learn that the storm troopers are actually bad guys. He had received a storm trooper toy and had thought he was a “good guy.” I wonder why the storm troopers are in white. We knew the Darth Vader-like character was a bad guy. Matthew was also struck by the movie theater audience applauding when all the old characters made an appearance. Han Solo, Chewie, Princess Lei, Luke Skywalker, C3PO, R2D2.
Well if you haven’t seen it, here’s the trailer.
As to my review, here’s the bottom line: if you’re a Star Wars fan (and who isn’t?) or if you’re a kid you’ll love it. If you’re a discerning moviegoer, the movie is wonderfully made, but lacks a fresh story. It had all the clichés, and the plot—other than the lead hero being a woman—was nearly identical to the original Star Wars. I guess it’s tough coming up with a new story that would still be true to the subgenre that has been built up from the Star Wars movies. There was one scene, however, that did transcend. I won’t spoil it, but it was the scene where Han Solo meets his son face to face and tries to bring him back to the good side. The movie was well done, but the story is old. Two stars out of five.