Why Star Wars (Still) Matters
War[WARNING: MILD SPOILER BELOW]
So finally the most anticipated movie of 2015 is finally here.
Well, at least, ‘anticipated’ by some. Especially those who grew up with the original trilogy, and even the horrible prequels. I expect that everyone should be as excited as I am to welcome Episode 7: The Force Awakens. So I was initially surprised when many asked me on the Ask.fm platform, whether they need to watch any of the previous installments to make sense of the new Star Wars.
Welcome to 2015. Times have changed since the last prequel Revenge of The Sith appeared a decade ago. And apparently, MANY young people never saw Star Wars. And obviously, they could not fathom what was really the big deal that middle-aged men would shamelessly marched into the cinema in costumes and plastic lightsabers.
Does Star Wars still matter? Or, do we finally have to say goodbye to a mythology from a galaxy far far away, a long time ago?
After seeing it myself, I wanted to say that Star Wars still matters. Even to today’s Marvel-eyed young generation who are probably more familiar with Iron Man’s armor series than the Millenium Falcon. This is because The Force Awakens, much like all the previous Star Wars movies, is not so much about some alien conflict in distant place and time. Star Wars is, has been, and will always be, the story about us.
Pay attention to the characters, their angst, their passion, and their hopes. They all happen in our everyday lives.
Like Finn, the guy who must make important choice that defines his future. Because his past, what brought him to be now, does not necessarily dictate what he could be in the future. His is the theme of many of us, who are often haunted by our past and doubted our own power to change.
Or Rey, a survivor soul, abandoned and learned to fend for herself since little. It was when she learned to trust others that she discovered her new family. Hers is also a story of the strength and courage of women, not the slightest less than her male compatriots.
Han Solo and Leia Organa, once the blaster-wielding rebels who beat Emperor Palpatine in their youth, now must struggle to learn the art of parenting. And they must learn that raising and loving a child would be a far greater challenge than facing off entire Imperial army. And perhaps, demanded a far greater sacrifice – like many parents do.
Or Kylo Ren, the masked antagonist with serious temper problem. Perhaps, he will remind you of a friend who seems so angry outside, because he is hiding great insecurity inside. Perhaps, he will remind you of yourself.
Even the fascistic First Order, fashioned after Nazi party, also resembles today’s fear of ISIS. These are a group of people that desire to impose their values and way of lives upon the unwilling others, and any resistance will be dealt with swiftly and harshly.
Even we were given a glimpse of Luke Skywalker’s angst. Although much of what really happened is still shrouded in mystery, we were shown how the legendary savior of the galaxy must have felt so burdened that he exiled himself. Even the greatest heroes had their fears.
All these are the reasons why Star Wars still matters. In the fictitious drama of alien beings on alien worlds, their struggle is very much human. All the events in The Force Awakens may have happened a long time ago in a galaxy far far away, but their echoes are close to our hearts, today.
And this is why the saga will continue.
May The Force Be With Us. Always. 🙂