17 April 2015 2983 Views

Celebrating the ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ Trailer

by James Murphy

Star Wars opening crawl

STAR WARS!

At Star Wars: Celebration, armies of fans amassed. Greeted by J.J. Abrams and Kathleen Kennedy, they were rewarded with a trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. It is even more powerful than the original teaser. Star Wars can now reclaim its position as the dominant power in the cinematic universe.

The fact that a single trailer can now be an event is indicative of how movies get made and marketed today. Studios trade on nostalgia and evangelical zeal among hordes of adoring fans. But Star Wars is different; bridging the usually gaping gulf between devoted fanatic and the merely curious, fair-weather franchise friend.

Star Wars IS cinema.

George Lucas’ visionary creation defined our childhood dreams and punctuated collective steps into a ‘wider world’. The series indexes influences on story-telling throughout history. From fairy-tales to westerns; religion and folklore; war films, morality plays, family sagas and screwball comedy: EVERY genre is combined in one epic mythology. And all set to a library of spectacular sound and visual effects with lives of their own.

Does the new trailer honor that legacy? Yes. Here’s why.

Note: This piece is now spoiler-ish so if you have not seen the trailer (liar!), look away now.

Harrison Ford IS Han Solo

Moot the reboot of Indiana Jones all you want, but there is only ONE Han Solo and his name is Harrison Ford. He is older and looks a tad slim and world weary. But the line delivery, body language and presence are all natural. It does not feel contrived. He captures charismatic joy in a snapshot, somehow hinting at an entire backstory in one roguish grin. Even the hair and costume are just ‘right’. Welcome back, Han. What took you so long? We’ll find out in December.

Harrison Ford in Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens

Everything Old is New Again
The trailer plays with familiar images. X Wings; TIE fighters; Imperial Cruisers and sandy landscapes dominate the screen. But subtle shades of distinction punctuate proceedings. There’s the chrome coloured Storm-Trooper and a blood stained helmet. And there are hints at an expanded political landscape (note the Hunger Games moment, where the flag of a dominant galactic power overlooks what seems to be a sci-fi take on a fascist rally).

Balance in the Force
Keeping things too upbeat and light risks minimizing the sense of peril and jeopardy required for any good story to entice an audience. Veering too far to the ‘Dark side’ compromises the awe, wonder and optimism that define Star Wars.

J.J. Abrams has pulled off a perfect balance here: seamlessly fusing darkness to light in tone and pitch.

The villains look genuinely threatening. The good guys (and girls) are outnumbered, outgunned and outdone at various points. And there’s an eerily Gothic vibe at times, with a charred Darth Vader helmet as the possibly mystic ‘MacGuffin’ and a Star Destroyer graveyard as basis for a battle scene set piece.

But youthful energy and optimism pervade the piece; ensuring there is indeed ‘new hope’ on the horizon. Witness the sheer joy in the adventurous X Wing pilot. Giggle at the comic potential of a ball droid, hiding in a corner of that beloved ship. Rejoice as a hand of helpful friendship is extended in the heat of battle. THAT is the spirit of Star Wars.

Patience, You Must Have

Make a cameo appearance here, Yoda does not. But his ethic is alive and well. The trailer MAKES you want more answers and fast; whilst testing resolve and discipline. One is left guessing deliberately, on a number of fronts. This trailer shows more than the initial teaser yet raises MORE questions. You’ll have to WAIT for more details, having been spoiled as it is.

Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker narrates the trailer, off-screen. Where is Luke? Is he talking to a family member /apprentice? Who is holding the Vader helmet? The villains look familiar; but are they a unified band and do they constitute a new threat or resurrect an ancient evil? Is Princess Leia still married to Han Solo, or did they consciously uncouple? Whatever happened to Jar Jar..(ok; that’s enough).

Chrome Trooper Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens

All will be revealed come December. And Movie-Viral will be there with you, every step of the way.

This will be a ‘day long remembered’: the joyous reveal of a truly special trailer. Long live Star Wars!

‘Chewie, we’re home!’

Words: James Murphy (space scoundrel)
Format: Kevin Costain (wise Jedi)



New

NetFlix Treats
06 April 2020
NetFlix Treats

May interest You

Disney Plus and BritBox Highlights
27 March 2020
Disney Plus and BritBox Highlights
Paul Hirsch: At the Cutting Edge of the Cutting Room! James Murphy talks to the Editor behind Star Wars, Mission:Impossible, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Many More Magic Movies..
18 March 2020
Paul Hirsch: At the Cutting Edge of the Cutting Room! James Murphy talks to the Editor behind Star Wars, Mission:Impossible, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Many More Magic Movies..
Indiana Jones and the Woefully Missed Opportunity: With Spielberg now out, is there any point in Indy 5?
29 February 2020
Indiana Jones and the Woefully Missed Opportunity: With Spielberg now out, is there any point in Indy 5?

Popular

Shut up Bond fans. Hans Zimmer is PERFECT for 007: it’s a match made in (00) Heaven. Here’s why.
12 January 2020
Shut up Bond fans. Hans Zimmer is PERFECT for 007: it’s a match made in (00) Heaven. Here’s why.
Indiana Jones and the Woefully Missed Opportunity: With Spielberg now out, is there any point in Indy 5?
29 February 2020
Indiana Jones and the Woefully Missed Opportunity: With Spielberg now out, is there any point in Indy 5?

Tags