I saw Star Wars The Force Awakens this weekend in IMAX 3D. It was amazing in many respects. If you're a fan of the series, do go see it, you will not be disappointed. I will not reveal any spoilers in this stream, but I will try to explain how I was also let down by it to a certain extent.
There are a number of films throughout the history of film and throughout my life that I've gone to see that were simply mind blowing. Mind blowing because they showed you something either in the visuals or in the story that they told that was completely unique; something that you've never seen before. While TFA has some of that, I think most of it was really just intended to instill a comfort that the series is in good hands and that a new generation will treat it with care moving forward. I'm OK with that. There are other things that I'm not OK with however. There were things that didn't sit well with me. Maybe some of these things will resolve after another viewing but I'm not so certain they will.
I realize that it's a fantasy series, but I want the science in some ways to be at least marginally believable. There are a few things in here that are a bit too far fetched even for a fantasy series. Maybe I'm old and getting a little crusty. Maybe I should shut up and just enjoy it for what it is. I'll wait a few weeks before going into some of these points in detail, but I'm curious to see if others pick up on some of these things as well.
There will again be no spoilers, but I felt as though the story was way too formulaic. Almost as if it was so concerned about upsetting the loyal followers that instilling a sense of comfort meant relying way too much on familiar story devices and plot structures. Perhaps the series has painted itself in a corner in that way, or perhaps I was so blown away by what JJ did with his Star Trek reboot that I was expecting something similar here; that he remain faithful to the original series as possible, but go outside the box a bit and take us into some really new territory.
It raised far more questions than it answered. I realize that in a continuing saga you need to leave some things unresolved so that you can address them in later installments, but I think a bit more background or support for some of the things that they're laying the groundwork for could have been done.
Went to see it again last night. I don't watch a lot of films in IMAX 3D, but after watching the film again last night in just a regular 2D 4k theater, the visual effects felt more real and didn't distract as much from the story. While I still left with some of the same concerns that I'd voiced earlier, I enjoyed the film quite a bit more the second time around. I also left with the feeling that 3D isn't something that I'll seek out much in the future. It seems as though it distracts me too much from the story.