Alright friends. Lets watch this together. And then we will break it down.
Lets get the facts out of the way.
Did I have smile across my face when I watched the full trailer. Yes.
Did It bring me back to the old Starwars I know and love. Yes.
Did I see a light saber and it that whooooosh sound effect. Yes.
Did I see that BB-8 Droid (Which I still can’t find that toy anywhere) Yes.
Did I see the Han, Leia and The Millennium Falcon. Yes.
Was I stoked to see the trailer. Yes.
Did I watch the trailer 17 times. Yes.
Was I left wanting more. Yes.
It did everything a trailer is suppose to do. It gave me enough new footage without spoiling any of the new plot.
But. Did it deliver? Yes and no. Let’s dig in.
The trailer opens slowly on the desert planet of Jakku, like both of its predecessors. We see Rey (Daisy Ridley) living her scavenger life, the droid BB-8 rolling along at her side. “Who are you?” she’s asked by an unknown female voice. “I’m no one,” she responds.
As ever when anyone says that in a movie, we know they’re 180 degrees away from the truth. Add this, then, to the list of heavily dropped hints that Rey is more than she seems.
Next up is John Boyega’s character, Finn. He was “raised to do one thing” but now has got “nothing to fight for,” we learn, as a damaged TIE fighter — the new chrome-plated style of the replacement for the Empire, the First Order — goes skittering down to Jakku. Presumably Finn, whom we already know starts the film as a Stormtrooper, was on board. We see him surveying his new location, breathing heavily.
Cut to Kylo Ren, declaring that “nothing will stand in our way” and that he “will finish what you started” — staring at the disfigured helmet of Darth Vader, presumably rescued from that funeral pyre at the end of Return of the Jedi.
Many fans have pegged Kylo Ren as a wannabe Sith, a collector of artifacts, but this statement suggests something more menacing. What did Darth Vader start? The destruction of all Jedi and potential Jedi, up to and including his own son.
Interestingly, we then see Ren torturing Oscar Isaac’s character, Poe Dameron, previously known to be nothing but an X-wing pilot. Is anyone in this galaxy what they appear to be on the surface?
A quick clip of the Millennium Falcon being chased across Jakku by TIE fighters, and we get one of the things we’ve been waiting for since April: More Han Solo. “It’s true, all of it,” says the old scoundrel, looking sad and haunted, peeking through a hologram of planets, when Rey brings up the topic of “stories about what happened.”
What’s true? “The Dark Side. The Jedi. They’re real.” Which suggests that the galaxy had forgotten the Force again, just as it evidently had before the original Star Wars; the Jedi have become myths once more. Only this time, instead of dismissing the Force as a “hokey religion,” Han Solo believes. Hence the haunted look.
Time now for a final battle montage. This mainly stars Kylo Ren (seen for the first time without his helmet, from the back, with what is clearly Adam Driver’s luscious locks) and Gwendoline Christie’s Captain Phasma, being generally badass.
Along with them is a whole series of wonderfully mysterious, beautiful-looking shots that pass almost too fast to catch on a first or second viewing — like this one, in which Finn, Han and BB-8 enter what appears to be a hallucinogenic kind of Tibetan temple, draped with prayer flags and guarded by a large, red, and possibly bad robot:
“The Force,” says the same mystery female voice that spoke to Rey at the beginning, likely belonging to Lupita N’yongo, “it’s calling to you.”
We also get one quick shot likely to bring a tear to the eye of even the sturdiest old-school fan: Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia, distraught, resting her head on Solo’s chest.
“Just let it in,” the voice continues. We doubt you’ll do anything but.
There are nits to pick, of course. Many of the shots were reused, or slightly longer versions of shots seen in previous trailers. Which is all well and good, but with this level of hype you’d be forgiven for expecting to see entirely new content. And there’s still no hide nor hair of Luke Skywalker, unless you count that reused shot of the hooded figure reaching out to R2-D2 with a robot hand.
May the force be with us all.