A Review of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
After nearly 43 years the Skywalker saga has ended with the release of Star Wars Episode IX The Rise of Skywalker. The film had a lot to cover in it’s 2 hours and 21 minutes. Not only was this wrapping up the previous two films but also closing the book on what started in Star Wars A New Hope in 1977.
You may hear fans cry about how the movie was too focused on course correcting what Rian Johnson did in The Last Jedi. You may even hear how this is the greatest Star Wars film to ever be released. Just do one thing If you haven’t seen it yet. Go in with an open mind, allow yourself to be taken away to a Galaxy Far Far Away and find your inner child as you sit there taking in this film.
Movies are subjective and this one isn’t any different. Regardless of how we feel about it there is no doubt that there will be controversy and discussion. There was never a way that this film would appease everyone and that is very apparent in what we watched.
If you haven’t caught yourself up on all the films in Star Wars make sure you check out our ‘Look Back’ series for Recaps and Reviews of each film.
A Look Back ‘Star Wars The Last Jedi’
A Look Back ‘Star Wars The Force Awakens’
A Look Back ‘ Star Wars Return of the Jedi’
A Look Back ‘Star Wars The Empire Strikes Back’
A Look Back ‘Star Wars A New Hope’
A Look Back ‘ Rogue One A Star Wars Story’
A Look Back ‘ Solo A Star Wars Story’
A Look Back ‘Star Wars Revenge of the Sith’
A Look Back ‘Star Wars Attack of the Clones’
A Look Back ‘Star Wars The Phantom Menace’
SPOILERS FROM HERE ON OUT
The Recap is a work in progress. As I see it more I will update and make sure things are explained properly.
We find out in the Opening crawl that Palpatine has sent out a message across the Galaxy. His reign of terror is about to resurface and the Resistance, now the Rebels, is doing everything they can to stop this from happening
Meanwhile Kylo Ren is ona mission to find Palpatine and destroy him so nothing can challenge his power and being Supreme Leader.
Rey has been training since the end of The Last Jedi with the guidance of Leia. Despite Rey’s best efforts she finds herself succumbing to the dark from time to time causing her to question if she is ready to be a Jedi.
Finn, Poe and Chewy are basically Leia’s task force who goes out on missions. We see them in this film retrieving information sent by a mole within the First Order. As they escape from a team of Tie Fighters Poe nearly destroys the Falcon. When arriving back at the Rebel base oe and Rey have a bit of an argument about his carelessness with the Falcon and her, who is the best pilot they have, not joining them on their missions.
Due to the dire nature of the information obtained from the mole. THe Rebels have roughly a day to find a way to Exogol and stop Palpatine from unleashing a Sith armada on the Galaxy in which he has dubbed, The Final Order.
Rey, Finn, Poe, Chewy, C-3PO and BB8 all head to the planet of Pasanna in search of a Sith Wayfinder which will guide them to Exogol
Kylo Ren who found Palpatine on the Planet of Exogol, a hidden Sith planet, is tasked by the former Emperor to hunt down Rey and destroy her. He and the Knights of Ren begin their journey in finding her.
Using their Force bond Kylo is able to locate Rey and they dispatch to Passaana.
While on Pasaana Rey and company are aided by Lando Calrissian who tells them how he and Luke came to this panet years ago in search of the Wayfinder. They were following a man who had been working for Palpatine but lost his trail. However his ship remained on the planet. The same ship that Rey remembers seeing in her vision being left on Jakku all those years ago.
The gang head s to the ship but are chased by the First Order. They are able to stop those chasing them, but are sucked into a tunnel system which leads them to a hurt sandworm which Rey heals with her Jedi ability. Its in these tunnels they find the bones of the man Luke was tracking as well as a mysterious dagger with Sith writing on it. Unfortunately the only one able to read the text is C-3PO but his program is forbidden from translating it for anyone.
Chewy stashes the dagger in his satchel and they make their way to the ship outside. Rey feels Kylo’s presence on the planet and leaves to go face him. Chewy goes to retrieve her but is captured by the Knights of Ren. Rey destroys Ren’s Tie Fighter then finding out from Finn that CHewy was captured and is on the transport flying towards space.
Rey grabs onto the ship with the Force pulling it back down to the planet. Kylo uses the force trying to pull it away from her. Once again Rey allows the darkness to take hole and a bolt of lightning shoots from her had destroying the ship and Chewy aboard.
Babu Frik & Zorri Bliss
On the planet of Kijimi Poe knows of a droid smith who can reset C-3PO allowing him to reveal what the Jedi text on the dagger says. It is here we meet Zorri Bliss a spice smuggler who worked with Poe many years ago. We also meet Babu Frik who is the droid smith.
Once they hack into 3PO’s mind and get the information it is discovered that a second wayfinder is onboard the ruins of the second Deathstar. Before they head there though they find out that Chewy is alive and well on the Star Destroyer which followed them to the planet. The crew quickly makes there way there and rescues Chewy while Rey has a confrontation with Kylo through their Force bond. Rey is on the Ship and Kylo is on the planet.
When Ren discovers where Rey is he quickly goes back to the ship and confronts her, telling her that she is the granddaughter of Emperor Palpatine. That together he and her can destroy him and rule the Galaxy together. She refuses and gets on the Millenium Falcon which Poe, Finn and Chewy are on.
Arriving on the planet where the ruins of the second DeathStar lay. They come across a team of former Stormtroopers who defected and have been hiding out.
Rey goes to the DeathStar to find the wayfinder, which is within the throne room. Upon touching the artifact she sees a vision of Dark Rey and even has a battle with her. Frightened she is then confronted by Kylo Ren who followed her there. He takes the Wayfinder and destroys it telling her the only way she will get to Exogol is with him.
The final lightsaber battle of these two commences.
As the battle wages on Leia falls ill, although it seems she actually uses all she has left in contacting her son. This gives Rey and opening and she stabs Kylo. He falls and Leia dies. Rey upset quickly heals Kylo and then takes his Tie fighter to Ach-To.
Poe, Finn, and the group they came across head back to the Rebel base.
While on Ach-To Rey destroyes the TIe fighter she came on. She is heartbroken and scared. With the wayfinder destroyed she has failed her mission. She had no choice but to nearly kill Kylo and she believes Luke’s actions on hiding away and the Jedi ending was the right move. In this moment she throws her lightsaber towards the fire but Luke’s Force GHost catches it. “That’s no way to treat a Jedi’s weapon.”
It’s here Luke gives Rey her final lesson and explains that he was wrong. Learning from ones failures and moving forward. Rey explains she can’t because she is a Palpatine. Luke states he and Leia knew this. But the hope she held inside of her is what made them believe that she is the person to continue the legacy and defeat the Evil.
Luke reminds her that she has everything she needs to find Exogol and then lifts his X-wing out of the waters of Ach-To for her to use and get there. In his final act he gives Rey Leia’s lightsaber saying that she would have wanted her to have it.
Meanwhile at the second DeathStar, Kylo is standing contemplating his place in everything. He then harkens back to his memory of the final moments with his father Han Solo. And remembers that it is not too late to turn to the light. This was the final lesson his father ever taught him and he throws his Saber into the water and rushes off.
Finally, at the Rebel base Poe, Chewy and Finn find out about Leia’s demise. Poe is in charge now and must come up with a plan on getting to Exogol before the Final Order can be fully implemented. Without knowing where Rey is they find it impossible to come up with a plan. But thats when Rey begins sending coordinates to Exogol and they Rebels begin their planning.
While the fleet is small Poe believes once others see they are being led they will join in on the fight.
Lando takes the Falcon to recruit whoever he can while the rest of the fleet head towards Exogol to face down the Final Order. The plan is to destroy a transponder which gives the fleet the ability to exit the dangerous atmosphere of Exogol.
Rey’s Final Test
Rey shows up on Exogol and finds Palpatine near the Sith throne. Thousand of Sith (I believe this is the species of Sith) surround them in the distance. Palpatine explains to her that he never wanted her dead, but wanted her to strike him down so his essence could take over her body and she would become the ruler of the Galaxy. She refuses this and a fight with his guards ensues.
Meanwhile Ben Solo shows up and makes his way towards Palpatine and Rey but is confronted by the Knights of Ren. Without a weapon he struggles to take them on.
Rey senses that he is there and through their Force bond hands him Luke’s lightsaber and she uses Leia’s. Ben, in amazing fashion, dispatches of the Knights and rushes to Rey’s side who easily eliminated the guards.
Palpatine realizes that the Force bond of the two is powerful enough to restore his life and sucks the energy from the two of them who are knocked unconscious.
The Rebel fleet is already at war with the Final Order and all seems lost. That is until Lando shows up with THOUSANDs of support ships and things begin to turn around in their favor. That is until Palpatine in his new found power begins to disable the Rebel ships by shooting lightning into the sky above.
Ben comes to and attempts to face Palpatine but is thrown into a pit. Rey then comes to and goes to face down her grandfather. He directs his lighting at her and she deflects it with Leia’s saber. That not being enough she grabs Luke’s saber and pushes the lightning back at Sidious killing him once and for all. Due to this she has expelled all energy and life that she had and falls to the ground and dies.
Ben climbs out of the pit and sees Rey laying dead on the ground. He rushes to her and embraces her. Realizing what he must do he uses the same healing ability that Rey used on him to bring her back to life. When she comes to they kiss. Ben, who expended all of his energy dies and disappears becoming one with the Force.
The Rebellion above destroys the Final Order and peace is restored to the Galaxy. (WE DO SEE EWOKS!!!)
Finally, Rey heads to Tatooine and goes to Lars Homestead. It is here she buries Luke and Leia’s lightsabers. She pulls out her own constructed blade and ignites it (It’s yellow). As she stands there an old woman asks who she is since there hasn’t been anyone there for many many years. She responds Rey. She looks into the distance sees Force ghosts of Luke and Leia and says. Rey Skywalker.
Her and BB-8 look into the distance at the Twin Suns setting and the film ends.
The Rise of Skywalker is an action packed spectacle that doesn’t let up. While the start of the film is filled with exposition to get everything on track. It quickly jumps into the action and never stops.
While there are surely those who will dislike the film. Mainly those who are die hard supporters of The Last Jedi. This is really a film made for the fans who have dedicated their lives to a majority of 43 years of the saga’s existence.
I can’t say that there are not issues with this film no movie is perfect but, the only way we would have gotten a more satisfying finish to the Skywalker saga is if it didn’t end. Which if you ask me It isn’t over…. Isn’t that right Rey SKYWALKER?
Palpatine’s addition to the movie did not feel forced or unneeded. However, a more satisfying explanation as to why he was just hangin in the shadows for 30+ years would have been nice to see. Something we will undoubtedly get in a comic or novel over the next couple years.
The dynamic and chemistry of the three protagonists is absolutely on-point and begs to question why they waited three movies before having them all together. Finn and Poe play so well off each other and Rey fits in nicely with the two of them. Is it as memorable as Leia with Luke and Han? Not a chance, but still enjoyable.
I hate to see the Skywalker saga “end” but when you look at it now with only Rey, Finn and Poe remaining, in regards to Saga characters, I’m not sure we need to see a continuation. But I wouldn’t be against episodes X, XI & XII ten years from now.
I would Love to go more in-depth with the film but there is quite a bit to unpack with this movie. I look forward to watching it again, which I will be doing at least two more times over this weekend. So, be sure to check out my Podcast Shootin’ the Sith next week when I dive a bit more into the film and how it truly impacts Star Wars as a whole.
One thought on “A Review of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”
If the Rebels beat the Empire, would the First Order now be the Rebels?
How do they breathe on every planet?
What was the point of them wasting 80 minutes of the last movie on nothing?
Was Hoth made of cocaine, and that’s what really did in the Princess?