Review of Star Wars IX: The Rise of Skywalker

The Rise of Skywalker follows Rey, Finn, and Poe Dameron as they lead the Resistance's final stand against Kylo Ren and the First Order, who are now aided by the return of the deceased galactic emperor, Palpatine.

  

The Rise of Skywalker takes what we loved from Episode 7 and does it’s best to fix what went wrong in Episode 8. Fan favorites come back, we get some questions answered, and we get an ending to a multiple decade long stories. This review comes from an optimistic Star Wars fan, but I can’t deny the underwhelming feeling I have when I talk about Ep. 9. I loved a lot of moments. I also hated for one moment. But only a Sith deals in absolutes, so I will do my best to review this finale as a moviegoer and not a snobby Star Wars fan. (A reputation that some people definitely earn.)

 

 

We start off catching up with Rey continuing her training and the Resistance in hiding. I enjoyed every bit of Rey’s newfound purpose as a Jedi, and Kylo Ren’s descent into the dark side. Finn and Poe continue their bromance, but in an annoying “we argue a lot!” kind of comedy. All of the returning characters are refreshing to see, but I can’t help but miss how much Episode 7 showed the multidimensional sides to our core heroes and villain.

 

With that being said, Kylo diving deeper into the relatively unknown Sith-Lore was by far the most interesting thing to me. Not only is he finding his place as the new “Supreme Leader” but he’s also learning with the audience WHO Palpatine is and what he’s been up to. Finding out what the Sith are capable of through one of Palpatine’s monologues was a little lackluster, but I get we’re short on time.

 

Fast forward to everyone getting their missions. Lots of different aliens and planets and character progression with Kylo and Rey. We learn a lot of new secrets and see the potential in our heroes who I feel like I was JUST getting to know. As you can imagine, there were multiple “showdowns” since this is the end of the saga, but Kylo’s and Rey’s went from trying to kill each other in Episode 7 to working together in Episode 8 to kind of…flirt fighting in Episode 9. I just never felt the urgency.

 

After a lot of planet hopping, plot devices, and a few misdirects…it’s time for the final act. The BIG showdown happens. Rey vs. Palpatine. We learn more and more about Rey’s past and we think we learn more about Kylo AKA Ben Solo’s future. Now here’s my biggest issue with the whole movie. I’ve been pretty chill about spoilers until now. The way Rey beat Palpatine was one of the most boring, underwhelming, main villain battles that I’ve ever seen.

 

After the good guys win, we lose a lot of characters. Some more important than others. But sweet moments ensue. The ending was full of fan service and I will always be grateful I got to see the final chapter of the Skywalker Saga.

 

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