With The Rise of Skywalker, Star Wars closed the Skywalker Saga after more than 40 years. Though other parts of this expansive universe have been seen in video games, television shows, comics, and books, fans believe the nine-film series is the most iconic.
Several fans and critics felt satisfied with the last film in the series. Others felt an injustice was done to the Skywalker legend and Star Wars canon in general. To prove this point, here are 5 reasons The Rise of Skywalker was perfect and 5 reasons the critics were right.
10 Perfect: It Had All The Right Elements
When George Lucas created Star Wars, his intention was to create a space opera that emulated is favorite movies and directors, In this case, the Japanese film The Hidden Fortress, directed by Akira Kurosawa. The format he established in A New Hope was used in the next eight films.
The Rise of Skywalker had all the right elements. Good and bad forces attempt to reach a desired goal by destroying obstacles along the way. The protagonist encounters a dilemma that initially halts their progress. This is followed by a change that hardens their resolve. Throw in a good deal of action, comedy, and a little romance to round it out, and the last entry in the Skywalker Saga works on all levels.
9 Critics Were Right: It Was Too Predictable
Despite all of the special effects and lightsaber battles, Rise of Skywalker was too predictable. As a result, fans were disappointed in many of the scenes. For instance, we knew about Kylo and Rey’s inner struggles from the last two movies. It wasn’t a surprise that they both turned to the light. Let alone had their first and last kiss.
We also knew Luke was going to help Rey quell her inner demons when she attempted to throw his lightsaber into a fire. That was a parallel to Obi-Wan talking to Luke in Return of the Jedi. Furthermore, how else was Emperor Palpatine going to be destroyed other than with his own lightning? All of these moments were seen long before they appeared on the screen.
8 Perfect: It Launched A New Generation Of Heroes
There’s a reason all of the original cast (except for Lando) were killed off during this last trio of movies. The Star Wars baton had to be passed to a younger generation. Rise of Skywalker accomplished this.
It was bound to happen, sooner or later. Star Trek took care of it years ago, passing the torch on to the Next Generation crew. It made sense for the Star Wars legacy to be placed in a new set of personalities. Decades from now, should the franchise still be active, it will pass on to yet another group of underdog heroes.
7 Critics Were Right: It Tainted The Legacy Of Luke And Leia
Before the last film’s release, fans speculated on the identity of Rey’s parents. A good portion thought she was a Skywalker, hidden from the First Order like Luke and Leia were. On the one hand, it seems logical. On another, it would have made for an awkward kissing scene between her and Ben Solo.
When Rise of Skywalker made Rey a Palpatine, fans and critics went crazy. Then, they balked when she called herself Rey Skywalker at the end of the film. It felt like the ending, and the entire Saga’s legacy was retconned because J.J. Abrams and his crew couldn’t find another origin for her.
6 Perfect: We Saw the Original Cast One More Time
The new cast of characters didn’t mean much for some filmgoers. They were happier seeing the original cast appear. In Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, we got to see Han, Leia, Luke, Chewie, and the droids. Though they weren’t all together, fans felt that was enough.
When Lando appeared in Rise of Skywalker, it closed a circle. The fact Luke, Leia, and Han were also there sealed it for good. These half-dozen galaxy saving heroes had done their time and were ready to move on.
5 Critics Were Right: It Didn’t Provide True Closure
Seeing as this was the last Skywalker-based Star Wars movie for a while, those who desired craved proper closure didn’t get it. In other words, it wasn’t like the last scene of Return of the Jedi where everyone celebrated because the series was done — at least at that time.
It didn’t even feel like the end of Revenge of the Sith, because fans knew what was going to happen after that. Instead, there were several open-ended plotlines fans didn’t get answers for. As some of these people don’t delve into the video games or comics, they may never get the closure they seek.
4 Perfect: Much Was Covered During The Film
There was a lot of material covered during the Rise of Skywalker to satisfy normal fans. In a little over two hours, they saw the team-up of Rey, Finn, and Poe, the death of General Hux, Leia’s death, the transformation of Ben Solo, and the final (alleged) destruction of the Sith and First Order.
Compare that to what happened in the slower A New Hope and you’ll see how much was taken care of. Even in today’s world of film where theater-goers want to see more action and less talk, Rise of Skywalker efficiently covered both through steady pacing.
3 Critics Were Right: Too Much Was Covered
As mentioned above, there were several open questions fans had as the end credits rolled. Critics believe it was the fault of Abrams’ and his writing team. Instead of ending the movie with everyone’s story closed, for the time being, they jammed several subplots into Rise of Skywalker to prepare for the next round of films or television shows.
Even with a long-standing series like Star Wars, an ending that asks more questions instead of answering them doesn’t work. What happens if Disney wants to take a decade-long break? How do fans find out about these characters? J.K. Rowling tried to do that in the last Harry Potter book and ended up adding several more pages to show what happened to Harry and his friends as adults with children.
2 Perfect: The Legacy Will Continue In Other Forms
Though the movies may be on hiatus, the Star Wars universe continues to expand into other forms of media. The best example is The Mandalorian on Disney+. Between first airings and second watches, the streaming series has probably had as many viewers, if not more, as Rise of Skywalker.
There are other Star Wars-based shows in the works along with in-continuity books and comics. thus, the Skywalker Saga will continue somewhere. However, not in the movie theaters for quite some time.
1 Critics Were Right: It Didn’t Honor The Original Story
No matter how much the Star Wars universe expands, some critics believe there is nothing except the original story. If not for the first three movies, this would have never happened.
It’s the reason why they’re so upset about Rise of Skywalker. Due to its inconsistencies and plot holes, they felt the last movie didn’t do the original justice. In fact, it was so out there that it could be considered a new timeline. For them, it wasn’t the way to end a decades-long movie series.
Rise of Skywalker was a divisive wrap to Star Wars' Skywalker Saga. We're looking at why it was the perfect ending, and ways criticism might be valid.