Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Star Wars Rise of Skywalker

Image result for star wars the rise of skywalker"   

Star Wars The Rise of Skywalker was, for me, a pleasant surprise. To say I'm not a fan of the sequel trilogy to this point would be an understatement, so I went into this one expecting to hate it, and guess what? I didn't hate it! I have some definite issues with it but considering the way the plot ping- pongs around, the fact that Rian Johnson was brought in to do Episode VIII and took some risks that were polarizing, with JJ Abrams brought back in to retcon elements of the previous movie- and wrap the entire saga up- this could have been a total train wreck. And in some quarters it apparently is considered a train wreck, judging from the reviews. But honestly- I think this is the best Star Wars movie of the sequel trilogy and the best Star Wars movie since Return of the Jedi

This one picks up a while after the last movie, and by bringing the main cast together (Rey, Finn and Poe) the movie definitely takes a step in the right direction. Just as Luke, Leia and Han are the heart and soul of the original trilogy, you need the three leads here from the new generation to bounce off each other a bit. No more solo quests, no more splitting everyone up! Let the personalities gel and roll off each other. And thank goodness they finally used See Threepio to full effect. He has some of the best lines in the movie, has a seriously affecting scene where he really brings the emotion that always underlies the character, and is such a refreshing change from BB-8 just rolling around and squeaking. 

Speaking of droids, the new one is a treat, and totally eclipsed BB-8 as well, at least for my money. The only misstep here is that Artoo Detoo is hardly in the movie, which seems like a crime. Still, I'm mostly happy with the droid work in this one, and while we're on the subject of returning characters, how about Lando? We didn't see a lot of him but he definitely carried the scenes he was in. And I was pleasantly surprised by how seamless the Leia scenes were as well. All in all, this movie surprised me again with character beats and genuine moments that made me feel like I was watching Star Wars. Whereas in the previous two installments I was frequently bored and mostly rolled my eyes all the way through.  

I've been pretty critical of JJ Abrams and the general way this trilogy has been handled- I mean, honestly, going in without much of a plan and letting each director wing it seems like a poor way to handle a billion dollar franchise. But this one hits enough of the notes for me to be able to enjoy it, even though I did have a few eye rolling reactions to certain things. The plot itself is silly, in my opinion, and one thing that did not work for me was the return of the Emperor. I'm a huge fan of how gleefully evil the emperor is in Return of the Jedi, and I felt like his inclusion here, while it could have been awesome, just didn't work. I love the concept of an almost undead Palpatine wanting to drain Rey's life force to further his immortality- cool idea- but the execution just didn't work for me. Not to mention the ridiculousness of thousands of planet- busting Star Destroyers just hanging out in some unexplored region. Next. 

So I just let go and let myself enjoy the movie without worrying about such nonsense and it worked for me. I'm really curious to see how I react after a second view. I hated The Force Awakens from the get- go, and even more the second time, and I did cringe every time it seemed like Abrams was calling back to yet another original trilogy moment- I mean, seriously, when the Millennium Falcon gets underway after hiding in an asteroid field and we see a ship following them. It's just excessive. But by and large, while I don't think this is a stellar conclusion to the Skywalker story, it's good enough- and sometimes that's enough. 


Stuff I Liked: 

Threepio. Like I mentioned above, they finally integrated him into the story and he made me laugh several times, just like in the originals. My favorite quote: 

"What a dreadful situation. Is everyday like this for you people? Madness."

Now that's Threepio. 

Rey has won me over. I've liked her since The Force Awakens but I also agree with those who say she's a Mary Sue. A little too powerful too fast, and they keep giving her powers that don't feel earned, but here we get the sense that she trained like Luke did on Dagobah, and honestly the idea of Leia training her? Golden.  

Leia as a Jedi. Brings the whole Yoda quote about there "being another" full circle. 

The visuals, especially the Death Star wreckage on the moon of Endor. The rough seas and rolling swells, the sense of exploring all the old wreckage, that all was awesome. 

Finn worked for me here where he didn't in the last two movies. I can't even say why, he just seemed more real here. And I loved the fact that he found another refugee from the stormtrooper corps, and the idea that there are many such, not to mention the line about the Empire taking children to fulfill many roles.   

Stuff I Hated:

Poe. Hate may be a strong word, but Poe was disappointing to me. I liked the Rey/ Finn/ Poe dynamic, and the addition of Zorri Bliss (she was awesome, by the way) to his story made it much more interesting, but I just didn't care for his trying-hard-to-be-a-rogue-with-a-heart-of-gold shtick. Not everyone can be Han Solo. 

The Emperor, as I mentioned earlier. Just not executed well. 

Monday, December 30, 2019

Tuesday Tagline #


Night is the time for killing    

 Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week a new Top Ten list will be posted. Everyone is welcome to join. Link back so everyone can check out other bloggers' lists. It's a fun way to get to know fellow bloggers.

This week is the always awesome Top Ten of the year- the favorite reads of 2019.   

  No Exit

Rebel (The Extinction Trials, #3)

Girls with Sharp Sticks (Girls with Sharp Sticks, #1)

Two Can Keep a Secret

Killing November

The Robe: The Story of the Soldier Who Tossed for Christ's Robe and Won

Watching You


Return to Aldebaran - Episode 1

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Song Lyrics #29 Safety Dance

This week I'm looking at Safety Dance by Men Without Hats. I love this song! So upbeat and fun, even if the video looks like a Renaissance faire on acid. Or maybe that's why????    

So what do you think?   


We can dance if we want to 
We can leave your friends behind
Cause your friends don't dance and if they don't dance
Well they're no friends of mine
Say we can go where we want to
A place where they will never find 
And we can act like we come from out of this world
Leave the real one far behind 

And we can dance

We can go when we want to
The night is young and so am I
And we can dress real neat from our hats to our feet
And surprise 'em with the victory cry 

Say we can act if we want to
If we don't nobody will
And you can act real rude and totally removed
And I can act like an imbecile
Say we can dance 
We can dance everything out of control
We can dance 
We can dance 
We're doing it wall to wall
We can dance 
We can dance
Everybody look at your hands 
We can dance 
We can dance 
Everybody taking the chance
Safety dance
Oh well the safety dance
Ah yes the safety dance 

We can dance if we want to
We've got all your life and mine
As long as abuse it, never gonna lose it
Everything'll work out right 
Say we can dance if we want to
We can leave your friends behind
Cause your friends don't dance and if they don't dance
Well they're no friends of mine 

Say we can dance
We can dance everything out of control
We can dance
We can dance we're doing it wall to wall
We can dance
We can dance everyone look at your hands 
We can dance 
We can dance everybody's taking the chance 

Oh well the safety dance 
Ah yes the safety dance 
Oh well the safety dance 
Oh well the safety dance
Oh yes the safety dance
Oh the safety dance yeah 
 Oh it's the safety dance

Well it's the safety dance 
Oh it's the safety dance
Oh it's the safety dance 
Oh it's the safety dance 

Friday, December 27, 2019

Sunday Post #330


The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer
Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews
It's Monday! What Are You Reading is hosted by Book Date 
Well Christmas has come and gone. I hope all who celebrate had a fabulous holiday. I did a lot of traveling over the break so it was a little hectic but a lot of time was spent with family so that was nice. Christmas Eve I got to attend a nice service at the church I grew up in, and that meant a lot. And now it's almost New Year's! Does anyone have big plans? I'm thinking pizza and movies, maybe some games sounds pretty good. It will probably be a quiet New Year's around here, although you never know!   

Image result for peanuts new year gif"

Songs from the DeepThe Perfect Wife

Song of the week




Night Shift (Fiction Without Frontiers) by [Triggs, Robin]