It’s very easy to admit that this was a well-done fan edit that added a lot more feeling and emotion to the original scene since Rey being ‘all the Jedi’ took on a new meaning as at least four of them showed up in the form of Force ghosts to help bolster her already flagging power reserves and take down Palpatine in a storm of his own Force lightning. Personally this fight could have been a little better since it was the final fight against one of the most evil and vile beings in cinematic history, but all in all it wasn’t the worst to ever grace the big screen since the effects were still pretty impressive and the fact that Palpatine was blasting the Rebel ships out of the sky with the power of the Force was even more so. It does feel though that this scene could have used more, perhaps a few more Sith warriors wielding lightsabers to really give a punch to the final fight, or perhaps the Knights of Ren actually stepping up and doing something other than getting taken out with relative ease by their former leader. Rise of Skywalker was to be the end of a saga that will hopefully bring forth a way to expand the universe in a way in the years to come, but at the same time it felt almost like a sigh of relief versus the triumphant roar that a lot of people were hoping for. Being a dedicated Star Wars fan I’ll say I liked the movie and that it was actually a bit more enjoyable than The Last Jedi, but something about these movies just didn’t bring the punch that was really needed.
Return of the Jedi had this, Revenge of the Sith had this, but they also had George Lucas at the helm as well, which appears to have made a lot of difference. It feels necessary to say that J.J. Abrams is a great director, and Rian Johnson is adept at anything other than Star Wars, but Lucas’ touch was definitely missing in the most recent trilogy and it might have helped. Creating a female Jedi that acted as the hero wasn’t the issue, nor was the idea that women carried a much bigger and stronger role in the trilogy. What appears to have made the difference is that Disney has somehow taken a lot of verve out of the story and replaced it with up to date special effects in the hope that people will see that as a fair compromise. Many that have read the book would say that it surpasses the movie in a big way by giving more explanation and story line to the final episode, but the truth of it is that once Disney got their hands on Star Wars it really feels as though there was no turning back, and that the overall feeling of the story would change in a way that wouldn’t be entirely in keeping with the original trilogy, or even the prequels.
Some might want to say that the recent trilogy is edgier, a little more raw, but no…no it really isn’t. Kylo Ren acts more like an irrational and emotional teenager, while Rey, great as she is, appears to be greatly confused most of the time, which isn’t hard to understand as by the end of the second movie she’s wielding a lightsaber like a trained Jedi and using the Force as though she’s had years of training. Finn, who had a good deal of build-up in the initial movie, went almost completely unused in the third movie apart from being a tagalong, while Poe kind of went up and down in his level of inclusion in the story, while Leia was definitely there as a figurehead, while Han and Luke were basically there to show up and then disappear not too long after. In fact, Chewbacca and C-3PO are the only ones on the cast that really felt as though they were given the appropriate level of screen time and didn’t get switched around too much from the original movies. People are still talking about the job that Johnson did with Luke, as it was hard to see the man that would become the Jedi Master turn into a green milk-drinking hermit that was content to remain a recluse and could have stomped Rey into the ground but didn’t since he was practicing restraint.
This particular scene could have been made so much greater just with the addition of the fan edit that’s seen in the clip, but obviously that wasn’t the idea. Johnson might call it pandering to the fans, or catering to them, or whatever, but when a director realizes that fans want to feel the same power from a movie that’s been built up with past examples, it’s usually wise to give it to them.