Of all the franchises to come through Hollywood, the Die Hard films
Well, we now live in a world in which the first trailer for Star Wars: Episode VII has dropped. (Behold the primary document. Let us pretend you’re not the only person within the sound of this blog to not see it.) Are you feeling all right? Emergency food stores still OK? Email passwords still working? Good. Because others are chewing right through their charger cables, and here’s why.
Toldja so: SAAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNNND
Might be Tatooine, one the most central planets in the Star Wars universe. Might not. We don’t see those trademark twin suns. Then again, Luke Skywalker isn’t immediately trailer-present to gaze wistfully past them.
That’s… that’s a real person!
We here at Phactual called four of the elements seen in the most-viewed 88 seconds of Thanksgiving weekend, and this is one of them: A decreased reliance on CGI.
John Boyega is the first human face we see, and what’s exciting about that is that he’s a human face. It’s not an aggressively menacing alien. It’s not–worse– an aggressively adorable alien. It’s a person, and he’s wearing a real live set of stormtrooper armor. Is he a good guy? A bad guy? A bad guy we’re supposed to think is good? A good guy disguised as a bad guy but is slowly transforming to bad as he sorts out his ethical center? Some other film trope word problem?
All this is beside the point. The important part is that after three episodes of actors whose resumes include “rendered on a Mac,” including a whole entire army of clones, we’re going to see Moar Realness.
…but what. The heck. Is that.
This sucker already has a name: Soccer Ball Droid.
Some are enchanted by Soccer Ball Droid. How charming. How delightful. I want one. It’s adorable. And that’s the problem. As mentioned above, the cutesy pie tendencies of the prequels (and some rail against the franchise going all the way back to the presence of the Ewoks in Return of the Jedi) unnerve those who grew up on the original three movies. To those, Soccer Ball Droid does not portend well. Their charming droid quota was met six movies ago with Chewbacca roaring at a rapidly retreating MSE-6 on the first Death Star.
It’s a Solo!…Is it a Solo?
Human #2: Daisy Ridely, long rumored to be the daughter of Han Solo and Princess Leia Organa. She does bear a resemblance to Padme (Natalie Portman) of the prequels, her supposed grandmother, as well as a young Carrie Fisher.
Of course, John Boyega is said to be the other lead, but there are no reports that he has any original trilogy lineage. However, if he’s the product of Lando Calrissian and Leia, I hereby and preemptively declare this the greatest movie of all time.
Beat up and crappy is the new shiny
Here goes Daisey on her non-aerodynamic, clunktastic rustmobile. Approval ratings for her ride are through the roof amongst the old guard. The hallmark of the original trilogy was beat up and crappy: Struggling rebels and a totalitarian-oppressed populace don’t do shiny. This means… Something’s Happening. We have no idea what. But everything’s all battered and American Pickerized, and that makes it… well, here on Earth, it means a markup of about 127% on eBay, but in the Star Wars universe, it means slightly more action than a trade dispute.
This guy. And this guy’s lightsaber.
No idea who he is, but it’s a Sith, all right– that’s a red saber. Good guys in the Star Wars universe carry cool tones. They are nothing if not accessory-forward.
People are talking less about this guy than his weapon, which, frankly, I find disconcerting. Why the two emergency utility short blades on the side? What does he use those for? If it’s as an evil can opener, I will also hereby and preemptively declare this the greatest movie of all time.
Hear The Williams. And weep.
Phactual previously mentioned that John Williams is back to score the new film, and the official Star Wars account confirmed that the background music is indeed new rather than recycled from previous installments. Come on, this is 98% of the reason you woke up this morning.
Everybody’s favorite bucket of bolts
Just as hoped, that full-size set of the Millennium Falcon the web’s been weeping over won’t go to waste. Here’s the Falcon… swooping. It’s swooping around, but not a great deal else, but that’s fine, as swooping shows it to its best advantage.
…but WHERE’S THE ROUND RADAR DISH?! WE WANT THE ROUND ONE!
I shall now channel my inner yelly old woman who hands out those disgusting black and orange wrapped peanut butter candies on Halloween, and note that the Falcon‘s distinctive round radar dish–lost on a brush with the innards of the second Death Star during Return of the Jedi (that’s what happens when you let your friend drive)–hasn’t been replaced. Instead there’s a new-school boxy one, which might be more aerodynamic, but isn’t nearly as awesome on a tee shirt.
Granted, this movie is set thirty years after Jedi, and expecting the old high school class to look exactly the same is like becoming outraged that your 2015 Range Rover isn’t equipped with an 8 track. But goodness, there was no missing that dish when it came around.