Already the biggest blockbuster of the year, there is no doubt that you may be wondering about Star Wars: The Force Awakens. With original cast members Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher, among others, and the nostalgia of the original trilogy, it is the must-see movie of the year. As a member of Fandango Family Digital Network, I am presenting a (spoiler-free) review written with families in mind.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
- Movie: Star Wars: The Force Awakens
- Rating: PG-13
- Running time: 2 hours, 16 minutes
- Moviegoers: Staci (41), Colby (40), Nic (21), Cheyenne (20), Wyatt (18), Jaden (12), Jaci (10), Joeli (6)
- Family movie faves: Guardians of the Galaxy, Inside Out, Mary Poppins
- Fave movies for grown-ups: The Breakfast Club, The Heat, My Girl
Review of Star Wars: The Force Awakens
What’s the story: The galaxy is once again under attack, by the evil Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) and the First Order. Together, a conflicted Stormtrooper (John Boyega) and a tenacious scavenger (Daisy Ridley) join forces with Han Solo (Harrison Ford) to make sure the Resistance receives intelligence containing a map to the location of Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), the last of the Jedi Knights. Through distant galaxies, the team finds themselves propelled into an adventure not one of them could have foretold.
What parents may like about this movie: The nostalgic feel of the movie based on the original trilogy was superb. From returning cast members to the film’s opening to it’s transitions, long-time Star Wars fans are transported back to their youth through the magic of movies. Not to mention, Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher bring their classic characters to life once again on the big screen after 30+ years of waiting. The storyline picks up where Return of the Jedi left off and, for our generation, fills in the void that has been missing since then. Plus, even with the retro feel of the film, there is undoubtedly new, improved special effects that will completely blow you away.
What kids will like: With fresh, new faces, kids will be able to relate to the emotions and actions of these young heroes. Not to mention, The underlying comedic undertone of the characters was amusing. There was plenty of lightsaber action without being incredibly violent in its delivery. Our kids were mesmerized by the special effects and really enjoyed the variety of characters.
Concerns: There are themes of loss, as well as depression and anger from the Dark Side. A few of the characters can be a bit scary for more sensitive children who may not be used to the types of puppetry in the film. The violence in the movie is primarily choreographed lightsaber fights and X-wing battles in the sky, but, again, could be challenging for delicate viewers.
- Positive themes: There is a journey of self-discovery and perseverance, as well as doing what is right in every situation. Furthermore, no matter the paths you may have chosen in the past, there is always an opportunity for redemption. (4/5)
- Violence/scare factor: The First Order Stormtroopers are vigilant in fulfilling their duties as commanded, which often means shooting to kill. Lightsaber battles leave the participants with wounds, yet minimal blood is shown. Kylo Ren deals with a lot of anger and can be intimidating to a sensitive crowd, as well as The Supreme Master. (3/5)
- Sex/Romance: There is flirting between two characters. An occasional hug is given but no kissing. (1/5)
- Bad language: I believe we counted three curse words, mostly from Finn. Nothing too harsh and one was even shown in the trailer. (1/5)
Read exclusive interviews with cast and crew members: