At this stage, my relationship status with the Star Wars franchise can best be described as ‘mixed.’
There have been bumps in the road, but overall, I have had a lifelong appreciation, some might say obsession, with Star Wars episodes 4-6 especially; so much so that as a youth:
- I read the novelization of Star Wars an innumerable amount of times (don’t ask me to recall anything); as well taking multiple trips to the library to read articles and companion books about the Star Wars universe. Big deal you might say, but I will admit, even now, to not being the most voracious of readers – so this was in fact quite a feat of accomplishment for me.
- Founded my own Star Wars fan club at my elementary school – granted there were probably only 5 members, and they were friends who probably just pitied me.
- I took to playing with my brothers’ action figures and sets, once they aged out of them (don’t think they are aware of that fact — SURPRISE, guys).
- I remember it like it was yesterday the moment my brothers came in from seeing Return of the Jedi in the theater and regaling us all with a blow by blow detail of what happened. It was so cool.
- During a few bouts of illness, I passed my days of convalescence away by getting up early in the morning and timing it just so that I could watch every episode of the trilogy in succession before my dad and brothers got home from school. Please note younger readers – I was a youth in the time of the dinosaurs and when you would have one – maybe two televisions in the house and you had to do this interesting thing called SHARING. But I digress.
All of this to say Star Wars was a major part of my life. And in many ways, I can credit these three films being one part of what got me so passionate about movies. In fact, I give them a lot of credit.
Even as I got older and my cinematic tastes broadened and came to include multiple genres, there were still moments of fond recollection as I recalled these films. During my college years, I paid service to this mindset going to the re-release of at least one film (I think it was The Empire Strikes Back). If my roommate is reading this, I hope she will confirm which one(s) me might have seen in Charlottesville.
So, you can imagine my excitement at the very mention of prequels (Episodes 1-3) …
… but then I got to the end of The Phantom Menace (the only one I went to the theater to see of the set).
Needless to say, it did feel like a part of my childhood had been decimated by a world-weary, adult-level of cynicism. It followed that seeing these films felt more like an obligation than an event one meets great anticipation. I feared, maybe the magic was gone forever.
Years of dormancy followed, filled with the continued excitement of simply going to the movies, attending film festivals and just the business of getting on with one’s adult life.
So when (again) there was a major Star Wars announcement – that we would be moving forward with the story set in a galaxy far, far, away, I met it with a curious ambivalence.
Details trickled in and I made note of them and then, earlier this year, THIS happened:
Legit tears of I don’t know what – streamed down my face. I could not describe it. I watched that trailer I don’t know how many times, I texted family and friends describing my elation. I endured buffering on my YouTube feed, watching the live Star Wars trailer event, which included the seemingly odd experience of watching people watch the trailer breaking it down and reacting.
Yeah! Something to look forward to!
Fast forward to this past weekend’s events in San Diego (SDCC) – and this happened …
… followed by the pleasure of seeing old and new friends on stage talking about their experience.
All to be capped off by a wonderful, surprise celebration for the fans …
I don’t think anything more needs to be said about the level of elation I feel.
In the end, all of this was to say the force has indeed been re-awakened in me and I cannot wait until the holiday season to catch Star Wars: The Force Awakens on the big screen.
P.S. the downloadable app is pretty kick-ass too 🙂