New “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” Trailer: Reaction + Review

You’ve probably heard by now that the final theatrical trailer for “Star Wars: The Force Unleashed” was released yesterday. If you didn’t know that, you should probably get out of your cave more often and join the rest of society.

The trailer first premiered on ESPN during halftime of Monday Night Football. The science-fiction geeks of the world were impatient as they watched a bunch of scruffy-looking nerf-herders throw a ball around for a couple hours. But finally, the moment arrived.

The trailer opens with some magnificent wide-angle shots of an abandoned ship (a star destroyer) and an unspecified desert planet.

We meet Rey (played by Daisy Ridley) and Finn (played by John Boyega), the two characters who many assume will be the focus of the new trilogy.

Rey appears to be a cross between Luke Skywalker and Mad Max’s Furiosa: a desert-dwelling bad-ass who yearns to leave her home planet in a ship and make a name for herself.

Finn appears to have been a storm trooper at some point. “I was raised to do one thing,” he says as he pulls off a storm trooper helmet. “But I’ve got nothing to fight for.” Wherever he comes from, his path seems to lead him toward becoming a Jedi. In the last scene of the trailer we see him drawing a blue light saber, preparing to fight Kylo Ren (played by Adam Driver), a Sith who has set out to finish what Darth Vader started.

The world we are shown is one where the events of episodes 4-6 have passed into legend. A young character who wasn’t there says they’re just stories — and that’s when Han Solo appears. “It’s true,” he says. “All of it.”

It’s crazy to think that all the heroic deeds of Luke and Co. have been more or less forgotten within a single generation. At this point we can only speculate as to why that might have happened. Maybe despite the death of the Emperor and Darth Vader, the Empire was able to rebound and silence those who tried to spread the story of their defeat? Or maybe after the Empire’s fall, Luke decided he was no longer needed and became a recluse like Yoda or Obi-Wan Kenobi?

Whatever the case may be, it’s clear in the trailer that all is not well in the galaxy far far away. The force is asleep, but it will be awoken.

All in all, this is the perfect trailer. The movie looks amazing, and it shows just enough to get everyone thoroughly excited. But it avoids one of the most common and most fatal mistakes that a trailer can make: revealing too much of the plot. We still barely know anything about what’s going to happen (and we still haven’t seen a shot of Mark Hamill as Luke) but that will just make the movie that much better when we finally get to see it on Dec. 18.

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