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The new Star Wars trilogy closes with a fast-paced adventure to varying degrees of success. (Picture courtesy of The Walt Disney Company)
The new Star Wars trilogy closes with a fast-paced adventure to varying degrees of success. (Picture courtesy of The Walt Disney Company)

CASUAL fans of Star Wars will love this final instalment of the new trilogy.

The Rise Of Skywalker is an uber fast-paced action adventure romp that speeds through various locations as the race for good to triumph over evil comes to a close in a galaxy far, far away.

Various characters from Episode VII and VIII return. Heroes Poe (Oscar Isaac), Finn (John Boyega) and Rey (Daisy Ridley) are in a hurry to stop baddie Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) and the old school big boss himself, Palpatine, from enslaving the galaxy with another nefarious but seemingly familiar plan.

Director J J Abrams provides lots of fan service in this one, also known as Episode IX, with scenes, characters and dialogue that will rekindle a sense of nostalgia among the faithful.

It would be easy to draw parallels between this movie with Return Of The Jedi as well but the breakneck speed and video game-like progression of the storyline will keep pliable minds from wondering.

The special effects are great and the action sequences are exciting, especially the elaborate lightsaber duel between Rey and Kylo Ren on a ruin surrounded by a watery tempest.

Abrams seems to have listened to the fiery grouses of fans who did not like the many changes that previous director Rian Johnson did in Episode VIII or The Last Jedi.

So Abrams, who also helmed Episode VII (The Force Awakens), had the colossal challenge of reigning the narrative back to its more recognisable aspects.

And it showed. Certain emotional scenes suffered from the fast paced run that unfortunately diluted the power of those moments.

The most jarring though were the scenes that involved actress Carrie Fisher who is no longer with us.

Abrams had the unenviable task of making those sequences work by only utilising the scarce footage of the deceased actress who played the iconic and much beloved character of Leia.

The new characters also suffer from having no meaningful developments or satisfying story arcs, except for Kylo Ren and, to a higher degree, Rey.

Ridley gets to emote more this time around and her character has a surprising development (for those who don't already know).

Audiences will finally get to know who she actually is and her link to the Skywalker moniker and the Jedi.

It's a shame really since most of the characters are interesting and could have received more love from the audience if they had been crafted elegantly from the very beginning of the trilogy with a more planned and careful follow through.

Alas, what you see now is what you get.

So if you liked The Last Jedi, then you'd probably not like this one. And if you didn't like The Last Jedi you'd most likely enjoy this final outing in the trilogy.

Star Wars diehard purists will perhaps be more harsh and sideline this latest edition, as well as the previous two of the new trilogy from their minds.

Whatever the case, those who love Star Wars should catch Rise Of Skywalker just to complete the grand storyline and find some perceived closure to the series, for now.

Disney, who owns the franchise, will not be sitting inactively on it.

There's sure to be many more adventures for the characters both new and old over the horizon in the universe of this fertile epic space opera.

Just like the first eye-opening movie that greeted audiences way back in 1977, there is a new hope.

After all, the force will be with us, always.



Directed by J J Abrams

Starring Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong'o, Domhnall Gleeson

Duration 142 minutes

Rating P13

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