‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens” comes to Southern next week

The latest Star Wars film will be shown on campus April 21 and 22.


The latest Star Wars film will be shown on campus April 21 and 22.

The loudest sound I have ever heard was the scream that went up in the movie theater at 7:00 p.m. Dec. 18, 2015 when the words STAR WARS zoomed away from the screen. 

It was something many people thought they’d never see in a theater again. Star Wars was not just one but two eras of film that we thought were long gone and for once in my life the hype did not disappoint. 

“The Force Awakens” is episode seven in the franchise, but it is filmed so as to be both a tribute to the fandom and gateway for new viewers to enter the series. 

The iconic title crawl gives just enough to set the stage, telling us the famous hero Luke Skywalker has gone missing and the embittered descendants of the conquered Empire are gearing up for a new war. 

The story follows Rey, a girl surviving on a far away world awaiting the return of her family, and Finn, a man rebelling against his indoctrinated upbringing within the First Order’s stormtrooper legions. 

With the help of a mechanical friend named BB-8 and a famous ship the two flee the grasp of a fascist military, meet up with legends of star born history, and finally end up aiding the Resistance in bringing down the ultimate piece of the First Order’s war machine: Star Killer station, which can destroy any planet in the galaxy. 

Conceptually the film is very similar to the original Star Wars: A New Hope. 

It is not however a reboot, or a remake or even a copy, it’s like poetry with repeating stanzas. 

Our villain, Kylo Ren, idolizes Darth Vader as the pinnacle of all the Empire was. He aspires to be Darth Vader, but lacks Vader’s experience and control. 

The film is beautiful to watch with truly stunning visuals. The director, J.J. Abrams, sought to remove the dependence on CGI that the prequels devolved into. The fast pace of the film keeps you on the edge of your seat. 

The film also has the most diverse cast of any Star Wars film. A personal favorite is the first female Star Wars villain, Captain Phasma, who is played by the magnificent Gwendolyn Christy of “Game of Thrones.”

“The Force Awakens” is the first in a new trilogy, with several stand alone Star Wars films starting with this year’s “Rogue One.” 

I’ll be looking forward to that and to Episode VIII, due out next year. 

If this is a sign of what is to come I can say that my faith in the franchise has been officially restored. 

Get the film on DVD or Blue Ray today, or catch it on campus at Phelps Theatre April 21 and 22.