The release of Solo: A Star Wars Story this year proves that Star Wars is far from a finished discussion. Princess Leia in a gold bikini played a starring role in any adolescent’s fantasy, both then and now, with Harrison Ford’s improvisation of “I know” to match Fisher‘s “I love you” taking the cake for absolute male swagger. You see, I recognize the phenomenon that is Star Wars, I have just never been tempted to partake in it.
Treading the Waters of Zero Temptation
This entire thing started because Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back is no. 14 on IMDb’s top rated movies list. My brothers and I have been slowly making our way through the list, in order to proclaim that we are cinephiles, or at least, trying to be. Age-wise, we are 90’s children, so Star Wars as a phenomenon is something alien to us; the prequels would be more recent to us that the original movies. So one of my brothers suggested watching the entire franchise in its proper order over the weekend. He said they must be so revered for a reason. I told the both of them to go ahead without me. And they did. “You are missing out,” they said. Their enjoyment of the franchise did nothing to encourage me.
Then The Force Awakens was released in cinemas. It seemed more pertinent than ever that I catch up, because how could I watch the most recent feature when I had zero insight into the world that George Lucas’ built? This was easy enough to solve, I just didn’t watch it.
Sometimes an idle browsing through cable would result in a Star Wars offering, and each time this happened, my brother would pause at that channel, and watch the movie till the end. I caught bits of it and just couldn’t understand it. How could he watch it over and over again? Was it really that fantastic? But then again, he doesn’t understand my obsession with Pride and Prejudice, so I guess to each his own.
Going Rogue, Once
Finally my brother managed to wear me down, and convinced me to watch Rogue One. Since it is a standalone movie, I wouldn’t be swimming through the sea of confusion as much. That’s like saying partial drowning is okay. But I watched it, because I love Felicity Jones and Diego Luna. It is my sincerest hope that if I say I love Diego Luna often enough, he will wake up one day and realize he loves me too. Also, it has Donnie Yen from Ip Man, who is just a legend really.
I thought it was okay, though I felt a bit cheated that they all died and their actions would have no impact considering what happens in the next film, but hey, they tried right? At this point, Rogue One had failed in what it was supposed to do. So my brother brought out the big guns: Adam Driver. While I appreciate Adam Driver as an actor, especially in Logan Lucky and Paterson, I am immune to the fetish that is a man in high-waisted pants.
Becoming a Social Pariah
At a Teachers Day celebration one year, where the theme was movies, I asked a teacher dressed as a Jedi if he was a monk, specially the monk played by Vincent Cassel in a movie of the same name. He was flabbergasted at my ignorance and tried to take me out with his light saber, which lucky for me, was fake (this sounds like an innuendo but it isn’t). I don’t think that was very appropriate Jedi behavior, but then again, one of them actually becomes a bad guy in the movies, so obviously they aren’t a dedicated lot.
From time to time, I try to make conversation with my students — to convince them that I am human. The first question I ask is: “What kind of movies do you watch?” Inevitably, we always return to Star Wars, making me wonder how they can commit to an entire franchise of movies, but cannot find the time to read their Literature texts. Needless to say these interactions devolve into awkward silence, before reviving again when I bring up Marvel.
Thus endeth my tale. I am sure you will try to convince me that I have made a mistake removing myself from the Star Wars conversation. I say: Bring it on. One last parting remark before I end this post: Let it sink in that I have watched every single movie in The Fast and The Furious franchise, but only a single movie for Star Wars. Okay, that’s it, the end. May the force be with you.
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