AWAKENED: A Star Wars Renaissance

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There has been an awakening – and you have in fact felt it…

No spoilers forthcoming.

$240 million dollar opening weekend.

$50 million dollar Christmas Day take.

But, how do you feel?

I for one feel alive. I for two feel awakened. As has been previously discussed in past blogs, the ‘Star Wars’ saga oddly provides a skeletal framework to my life. The originals defined my childhood. The prequels defined my quarter life crisis. They were a mess. They made no sense.

J.J. Abrams thought he had a tough task – having to deliver the goods on Disney’s investment of this franchise? He has a tougher task in my eyes…

Avenge the afternoon of May 19, 1999.

Avenge the day I saw ‘Episode 1: The Phantom Menace’.

And he did it.

By god, he did it.

I’m going to take on some of the critics for a second. Some of the naysayers. Those who think we are seeing a rehashing of the original trilogy. A glorified reboot. Funnily enough, I find those critics to be around the same age as I was when I saw ‘The Phantom Menace’.

For you, I ask that you please consider the following:

  • History repeats itself. We all hate it when that happens in our own life. A lot of us don’t want to see it reflected in a form in which you wish to escape.
  • J.J. Abrams loves the theme of history repeating itself. I assume he know he loves this theme. Have you seen ‘LOST’? Have you seen the ‘Star Trek’ reboot?

Now, if you get ornery over seeing an all powerful battle station for the third time (this isn’t a spoiler) – I can understand that. But, just as those who went crazy about not getting answers on ‘LOST’ – I combat your frustration with this:

It’s about the characters.

It’s not about the action. It’s not about the mystery. It’s about the characters.

Because without the characters it doesn’t matter how good the action or mystery is.

This is where the prequels failed. The characters were just not interesting enough – or at all, really. They were poorly written. They were poorly directed. And, for the most part, they were poorly acted too.

The characters in ‘The Force Awakens’ are the most interesting characters of ANY ‘Star Wars’ movie.

ANY OF THEM!!!

Rey? Awesome.

Finn? Great.

Han Solo? Han Solo.

Star-Wars-The-Force-Awakens-John-Boyega-Finn

Sure, when I saw Episode IV for the first time at age 2.5 (and I remember!), was it about that Star Destroyer that flew over the movie screen of stars after the opening crawl? Yes. But it was the characters that stayed with me long after. I didn’t toss a penny into the Cinderella fountain in the Magic Kingdom at age six wishing to fly an X Wing or to wield a lightsaber – I wished that all the characters were in Walt Disney World were with me.

The characters!

Yes, let’s discuss me wishing for a Disney-Lucasfilm merger at a Disney theme park at age six and having it come true thirty years later another time, ok?

I’ve seen the movie twice and for the first time in seven years I have not been distracted by someone checking their Facebook on their Iphone. More importantly, this movie actually allows you to escape – if you want it to.

I want to escape.

I want to see my unlimited potential fulfilled.

Then I leave the theater and the world returns to its regularly scheduled programming.

star-wars-the-force-awakens-lightsaber
Published
Categorized as LIFE

By The Improviser's Guide

The Improviser's Guide Network was created by Frank Cardillo, a Queens, NY based Creator & Producer. Frank has appeared throughout New York City performing improvisation and standup comedy, including performances at Super Bowl XLVIII, Turning Stone Casino, Gotham Comedy Club, Universal Studios, Walt Disney World, and for 15 years off the shores of Lake Ontario at the Sterling Renaissance Festival as their emcee, Lenny Burrows. Most recently, Frank was part of the cast for the New York City premiere of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival hit, Overheard at Joe's (formerly Joe's NYC Bar). Since 2009, Frank has been the Founder and Producing Director of the 'Raft of Comic Knockouts' known as [By The Mummers]. Known for their 'unpredictable, coming out-of-nowhere humor' (Backstage), their musical 'BLOOD' was a Next Link Selection of the New York Musical Theatre Festival and was named 'Best of the Fest' by Davenport Theatricals. [By The Mummers] are the reigning, defending Champions of the Down Under Improv Festival. Besides serving as a member of the writing team for several original [By The Mummers] events, Frank has had public stagings of two original modern Commedia dell'Arte performances and has devised several structured scenarios for productions in New York City and across the state. In September 2015, [By The Mummers] held a public staged reading of Frank's historical, satirical, farce, 'The Double Play' at Foley's, Home to the Irish American Baseball Hall of Fame. In June 2016, Frank debuted 'The Improviser's Guide to Being a Better Birth Partner' onstage Off Off Broadway. He has performed this one man piece in New York City on multiple occasions with a book in the works. Following years as an adjunct faculty member at Stony Brook University, Frank has applied his improvisation experience in training employees at Macy's Herald Square, Carnegie Hall, & the Sterling Renaissance Festival. Frank has been the recipient of the Impresario Award for supporting New Play Development, as well as a Rollie Award winner for his service to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. In 2008, he received the Spirit of Christmas Award.

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