The Character Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker Left For Dead

16
The Character Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker Left For Dead
Image: Disney, Lucasfilm, Industrial Light & Magic

Being put in the hands of J.J. Abrams, it’s no surprise that Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker was a two and a half hour checklist, a movie squaring off all the fan favourites and major loops in the most satisfying way.

Cruelly, however, the Star Wars roadshow left one character completely in the dust.

There’s gonna be some decent spoilers from this point forward, so if you haven’t seen the film or want the experience unsoured, you have been warned.

One of the crueller stories about the reaction to the latest Star Wars trilogy has been the fate of Rose (Kelly Marie Tran), who quit social media last year to escape the vitriol from the more venomous parts of fandom. The fandom didn’t like Rian Johnson’s attempts to play with Luke Skywalker’s legacy, with one fan going as far as to make a 46-minute supercut of TLJ recasting every woman in the movie as being weaker than men, or cutting out their contributions entirely. An alt-right group even tried to claim victory over the whole affair, even though The Last Jedi raked in $US1.32 billion, the second highest amount for any Star Wars film and almost as much as Rogue One and Solo combined.

Having dealt with the brutality of that, then, it’s incredibly disappointing that Rise of Skywalker nearly shuts Rose out of the picture entirely. The film spends the majority of its time acting as big-budget fan service, but Rose plays practically no part. After having helped Finn and Resistance forces escape the First Order in The Last Jedi, the three main heroes – Finn, Poe and Rey – bounce around the galaxy while she stays on the rebel base. Her relationship with Finn is further neutralised when the former stormtrooper runs into another stormtrooper-turned-resistance fighter Jannah (Naomi Ackie), who immediately partners up with Finn off-screen before the final battle.

Her role in the battle is pretty minor too, limited to throwing some grenades down the hatch of a star destroyer to knock out a navigation tower on a command ship. It’s a minor inconvenience for the Empire, and one that’s completely nullified once Emperor Palpatine Force EMP’s the entire battlefield, and it says everything what Rise of Skywalker thinks of The Last Jedi. Most of the events, characters and questions from the former are either overlooked, retconned or forgotten, and that the characters.

Tran was the first woman of colour to have a leading role. She won’t be the last: the final moments of the film featuring Lando Calrissian and Jannah is a very obvious setup for some kind of origin spin-off. And now that Abrams has done what Disney always wanted by wrapping up the trilogy into a safe, neat bow that shuts as few doors as possible, there’s room for Disney to properly explore the Star Wars universe free from the weight of four decades of expectations around the characters that remain.

That future will be better for actors like Tran and, ultimately, the Star Wars fandom too. The Mandalorian has shown how much scope there is in the universe for Star Wars stories, and the audience’s appetite for live action Star Wars in general. There’s also series like Clone Wars and Rebels to enjoy, all of which have more time and room for characters to grow than the Skywalker finale could have ever allowed for someone not named Rey or Ren.

Comments

  • What a waste of 3 movies.

    Were back at square one: Takes down the Empire/ First Order, kill Palpatine and end the Sith. Turns a Skywalker back from the dark side, and is leave one surviving Jedi.

  • i didn’t dislike the film but yeah, she got properly shafted. Why even introduce new characters when you can’t close off the story with what you have.

  • I was left disappointed, at least Chewy got his medal.

    The movie was way too rushed, it leapt from plot point to plot point.

      • This trilogy has suffered from Disney’s “Marvel” model of making a checklist of what fans are asking for the most, then packaging it up as a movie. The Force Awakens was Disney delivering a Star Wars movie that felt like the original move, but the biggest complaint was it felt too much like a retread of A New Hope. The Last Jedi intentionally tried to push away from the world being so Skywalker-centric but veered too far from the path for a vocal group of fans. Now, the biggest complaints coming from Ruse if the Skywalker is that it’s too focused on changing direction closer to The Force Awakens, and it weakens the overall story the trilogy is trying to tell.

        I think this trilogy can be used as strong evidence on why people should read Martin Scorsese’s article about why he’s not a fan of Marvel films, because it’s a really good example on how storytelling by committee can really damage plots.

        • I think the main problem was that there wasn’t a clear and coherent narrative that was followed to create a trilogy of films. They decided it was a trilogy, but from all reports didn’t have scripts or a solid arc planned from start to finish, hence why Last Jedi feels poles apart from Force Awakens, and Rise of Skywalker feels equally disjointed again.

          Marvel movies, for all their woefully formulaic faults, at least had a solid plan of where they wanted to get to with the bits and pieces they laid out. Instead this trilogy seems to have been three separate movies with three separate goals.
          Force Awakens: Regain old fans by giving them something familiar.
          Last Jedi: Get critical acclaim and new audiences by subverting all expectations
          Rise of Skywalker: Get fans back by having a mcguffin chase in familiar territory again.

          Three disjointed movies don’t make a trilogy. They make three disjointed movies.

          • Basically, yeah. Marvel has two advantages: one, they are all (very loose) adaptations of already beloved story lines; and two, having so much IP going at the same time, the shift feels more organic. The best example if Disney retooling a Marvel character is Thor. He never quite worked as space Shakespeare, but retooling him as space jock seems to have worked a treat.

            Star Wars has the burden of fans wanting to feel that childish excitement for the first time, again as an adult. It becomes an impossible task of feeling familiar yet unexpected, childish yet mature and in the end it just feels muddled.

  • Really not surprised with what I hear of this movie considering the preceding 2 were bland.

    Jj Abrams’ in general is bland.

  • Disney can’t do trilogies well. just look at Pirates of the Carribbean. First one good, second one a confusing mess, third one is half mess half struggling to tie up loose plot threads.

  • She was a side character in TLJ too?

    Not surprised she got relegated; TLJ and this whole trilogy as a whole are such a mess…

  • Saw it at a midnight screening and really enjoyed it. Best adaptation of Dark Horses’ Dark Empire we could have gotten. I’ve learnt to ignore metacritic given the abysmal reviews that critics gave Joker, when it was one of the best films I’ve seen.

  • Absolutely enjoyed the film!!
    I still find it bizarre that every media outlet is jumping over each other to get an article out with; “start wars, FIRST POST!, something controversial” in the title.

    Can’t the globe have a star wars movie without every fan boy/ 12 year old trying to preach their opinions, I don’t care that character X didn’t get an extra 5 secs of screen time, or that character Y didn’t represent a minority, or that a movie about space wizards wasn’t real enough.

    I just want more… more movies, more web series’, move TV shows, more Star Wars, I don’t want to wait another 25 years for some tiny crumbs because the voice of the few out ways the opinion of the many.
    If we got Star Wars like we’ve had Marvel the last 10 years, good or bad I’d die a happy man child 🙂

    Love all the Wars on Star, 10/10 – Marionette Palpatine Chuckles.

  • She was an annoying pointless character anyway, the lack of her in this movie wasn’t a bad thing.

    Yes, lets stop Finn from making a heroic sacrifice and stopping the laser from destroying the base….

    Hell her sister was a much more interesting character, and she was only on screen for a few minutes.

  • I really, really like Tran, the actress.
    The character was fun, but was ultimately unneeded. So her casting to the back support was just fine.

    You know who really got left in the back? Billie Lourde. That actually shocked me.

  • Rose was a completely forgettable character, part of a completely useless and forgettable side plot in the 2nd movie in the first place.

  • Anyone who didn’t like her in TLJ has no right to complain.
    People seem to love to complain about Star Wars… The movie was great

Log in to comment on this story!