Rise of The Skywalker: Is it A Good Conclusion?

Star Wars: Rise of The Skywalker features several well choreographed lightsaber fights that are increasingly satisfying to the viewer.

Illustration by Max Schaefer

Star Wars: Rise of The Skywalker features several well choreographed lightsaber fights that are increasingly satisfying to the viewer.

Max Schaefer, Entertainment Editor

“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” came out this winter, just in time for Christmas. The supposed finale to the series came with low expectations, after Star Wars fans were disappointed by “The Last Jedi” in 2017. In some senses, the new Star Wars film ignores what their audiences were expecting, but in others, it is exactly what was expected: another beloved franchise turned corporate.

 Even to an unbiased onlooker, “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” reeks of being another corporate movie with little to no soul, with all quality only being focused on turning a profit. And that is exactly what it is. From the “Spider-Man” debate to the release of Disney+, Disney has made it clear that it does not care how people view them, because they know people will still continue to buy their products and watch their movies. “The Rise of Skywalker” continues to show this ideal. The movie follows the basic film layout, with a confusing yet somehow predictable love triangle between Rey, Finn, and Kylo Ren, and every trope in the film has already been done before in the previous films. The movie follows almost the same storyline as “Return of The Jedi”, but instead of drawing a neat little bow to conclude the trilogy, Disney leaves several windows open in obvious attempts to make the movie accessible to future spin offs and sequels. 

Again, one of the biggest flaws of this movie is its shallowness. The only truly developed characters in the movie are Kylo Ren/Ben Skywalker, Leia, and C-3PO, who is not even human. All of the other characters seem flat and unrealistic in comparison, with Finn rarely being an important part of the narrative despite being so prevalent in the previous two films. Rey, who the trilogy follows, should be the most complex character in the films. However, she feels like the exact same person as she was in the beginning of “The Force Awakens”, even up to the final battle of the movie. There are several mentions of her training, but no evidence is ever shown, even in combat.

On the positive side, “The Rise of Skywalker” is a thrill to watch. Just because it is a corporate money grab does not mean it won’t be fun. And despite the writing, the actors do a great job with what they were given. It does a great job of balancing anticipation and anxiety with comedic relief, and they know exactly where to put jokes in order to let them be appreciated to the full extent, never interrupting an intense scene or fight. One of the main problems that many fans had with the new trilogy was that the movies lacked the charm and feel that the original films had. But “The Rise of Skywalker”, despite several flaws, really feels like a Star Wars movie. The dogfights and lightsaber battles are more eye catching than ever, and keep the viewer on the edge of their seat the whole film. 

Overall, “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” may be another big business film put out only for money, but at least it is entertaining. Compared to other movies that came out in 2019, Star Wars is definitely a great movie to sit down and enjoy without a lot of thinking.