• 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' writer says it was too easy for Rey’s parents to be nobodies
    Style
    Gregory Wakeman

    'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' writer says it was too easy for Rey’s parents to be nobodies

    Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker writer Chris Terrio once again opens up about the thought process behind the reveal of Rey’s parentage.

  • ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Earns $34 Million in 3rd Week at No. 1 at Box Office
    Style
    The Wrap

    ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Earns $34 Million in 3rd Week at No. 1 at Box Office

    “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” will take its third No. 1 on the box office charts, grossing $34.5 million to bring its domestic total to $453 million after three weekends.While the result was slightly lower that the $40 million result analysts were expecting, the film is still on pace to become Disney’s seventh 2019 release with over $1 billion grossed worldwide. After a global third weekend of $84 million, it sits at $918 million grossed so far.Holiday holdovers completed the rest of the Top 5 except for the first wide release of 2020, Sony/Screen Gems’ “The Grudge.” The Sam Raimi-produced horror film has earned an estimated $11.4 million opening against a $10 million budget, meeting pre-weekend projections. However, it is far below the $39 million opening of the 2004 version of “The Grudge and the $20.8 million opening of its 2006 sequel. It also opened below the $18.2 million start of “Escape Room,” the horror film Sony released in this slot a year ago.Also Read: Box Office Year In Review: Disney Conquers, But Who Else Had a Good 2019?In addition, the film became the 20th release ever to receive an F from CinemaScore audience polls. The last film to receive that grade was Darren Aronofsky’s “mother!” in September 2017. Critics also panned the film with a 16% Rotten Tomatoes score.The good news for Sony is that their two December releases, “Jumanji: The Next Level” and “Little Women,” are showing strong holdover numbers. “Jumanji” is second on the charts this weekend with $26.5 million, giving it a $236 million total after four weekends. Globally, the Dwayne Johnson-led blockbuster has passed $600 million worldwide with a total of $610 million.“Little Women” is in third with $13.5 million in its second weekend, giving it a total of $60 million after 12 days in theaters. The film has also grossed $20.4 million from six early international markets, with a release in Brazil and Italy next weekend.Also Read: 'Frozen II' Takes All-Time Animation Box Office Record From the Original 'Frozen'Completing The top 5 is Disney’s “Frozen II,” which today will pass the original “Frozen” to become the highest grossing animated film of all time. The film was released in Brazil, Argentina and Bolivia this weekend, posting the highest openings ever for Disney Animation in those markets. With $53 million grossed worldwide this weekend, “Frozen II” now has a total of $1.325 billion, putting it $75 million away from passing the $1.4 billion global run of “Avengers: Age of Ultron” and joining the top 10 all-time list.Finally, the Golden Globe-nominated “Knives Out” is now expected to pass $150 million in domestic grosses after earning $9 million in its sixth weekend to bring its North American total to $130 million. In addition to reaching that mark, it will also pass the domestic run of another 2019 original hit: Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood,” which grossed $141 million.In anticipation of the Golden Globes, Lionsgate expanded the screen count of both “Knives Out” and fellow contender “Bombshell,” which is now up to a total of $24.6 million after earning $4.1 million this weekend. “Knives Out” earned nominations for Best Comedy or Musical and for lead stars Daniel Craig and Ana de Armas, while “Bombshell” earned acting nominations for stars Charlize Theron and Margot Robbie.Read original story ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Earns $34 Million in 3rd Week at No. 1 at Box Office At TheWrap

  • ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Has Way Too Many Death Stars
    Style
    The Wrap

    ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Has Way Too Many Death Stars

    (We’ve got spoilers here for “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”)I think at times, “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” is simply too much for our brains to process. This is the only explanation I can come up with for why — Even though it might be the most absurd aspect of the entire film — Emperor Palpatine’s gigantic fleet of Death Stars hasn’t really been a big topic of conversation thus far.OK so let’s talk about this. At the very beginning of the movie, the Emperor (Ian McDiarmid) reveals that he has a giant fleet of Star Destroyers that he’d kept hidden under the ice on Exegol for who knows how long. If Kylo Ren proves a suitable successor to Palpatine’s Sith legacy then the First Order gets to have this fleet. Allegiant General Pryde (Richard E. Grant) remarks later that if they get that fleet it’ll increase their military strength “ten thousand fold.” And then, just before the final battle, we learn that every single one of those Star Destroyers has a Death Star superlaser that can blow up a planet.Also Read: The 21 Worst Parts of 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker'This is a truly unbelievable revelation. The Empire just trying to fix every problem with a Death Star has been a joke among “Star Wars” fans for decades. It was a bit surprising, because of that, that folks embraced “The Force Awakens” after it presented an extra large Death Star that could blow up several planets at the same time. But this is something else. This is a fleet, referred to in the movie as the biggest fleet the galaxy has ever seen, that is made up entirely of Death Stars. It’s a fleet that is so big that it has 10,000 times the power of the First Order fleet that just conquered the entire galaxy.So we’re talking about literally thousands of Death Stars. A threat so gargantuan, and never even hinted at before “The Rise of Skywalker,” that it makes everything that happened before in this entire franchise seem like minor conflicts — like the previous eight movies are all “The Hobbit,” and “The Rise of Skywalker” is “The Lord of the Rings.”I’ve got so many questions about all these mini Death Stars. If the Emperor was just hiding out on Exegol for 30 years, then where did he get the biggest fleet in galactic history from? Why did the First Order, which Palpatine was secretly the leader of the entire time, have to completely build its own fleet of new Star Destroyers from scratch if the Emperor had that fleet? Why would they build a giant Death Star, presumably at his command, when he’s got those Death Stars just sitting there in the ice, plus the technology to apparently affix a Death Star laser to any capital ship?Also Read: 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' Actually Makes 'The Last Jedi' and 'The Force Awakens' WorseBut this article is not about those questions, to which there are no answers right now. Right now all I’m trying to do is remind everyone that “The Rise of Skywalker” has too many Death Stars. Adding a fourth Death Star in six movies would be silly. Adding thousands of Death Stars all at once is parody. Except “The Rise of Skywalker” is an actual mega-budget “Star Wars” movie, not some cheap farce thrown together by the “Meet the Spartans” guys. They put a fleet of Death Stars in this movie, and it wasn’t intended to be funny.I just don’t understand.Read original story ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Has Way Too Many Death Stars At TheWrap

  • ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Actually Makes ‘The Last Jedi’ and ‘The Force Awakens’ Worse
    Style
    The Wrap

    ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Actually Makes ‘The Last Jedi’ and ‘The Force Awakens’ Worse

    (Major spoilers ahead for “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”)“The Rise of Skywalker” is weird film that does many dubious things, but its most notable accomplishment is a rare feat indeed: storytelling so haphazard and random that it actually makes the other movies in its trilogy worse.That’s not easy to do. But “The Rise of Skywalker” has managed to pulled off this feat, and it’s thanks in large part to the crazy reveal that Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) was behind everything all along.From the moment last summer that it was announced, I had a feeling bringing back Palpatine was probably a bad idea. We’ve seen that story before, in the old “Dark Empire” comics from the early ’90s, and that certainly didn’t go well. And there were no hints whatsoever in “The Force Awakens” or “The Last Jedi” that there was some secret other power out there. But I figured it would all depend on how JJ Abrams and friends handled it. Maybe they could make this scenario complement the other movies, and add some extra layers to future viewings of this new trilogy. Hell, the original trilogy managed to make “from a certain point of view” not sound like an insult to your intelligence.Also Read: 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' - We Need to Talk About This Rose Tico SituationUnfortunately, that’s not how it went at all.Palpatine’s presence, as it turns out, is super jarring, and makes so much of what happened in the previous two movies either meaningless or nonsensical. Watching the first two movies in this trilogy after seeing “The Rise of Skywalker” is a bizarre experience now. I’m not sure the “Star Wars” movies have ever been this much of a mess — the prequels are terribly made movies, but at least they have an over-arching plot that more or less makes sense. This new trilogy is pure madness.A lot of that is just due to the sheer scale of what the Emperor does in “The Rise of Skywalker.” We’re told that Palpatine orchestrated the rise of the First Order after the Empire’s defeat at the end of “Return of the Jedi,” and that he literally created Snoke (Andy Serkis) to lead it. Created, as in physically made him — in the that big temple on Exogol we see a big tube with a half-made Snoke body in it. So we can, in theory, say that everything Snoke ever did was because Emperor Palpatine told him to do it. I don’t see any other way to interpret this turn of events with the minimal explanations we’re given in this movie.Not only that, but as it turns out, while the First Order was out there building an army and a big fleet, Palpatine was hanging out on Exogol with a huge fleet of his own buried in the ice, each equipped with a planet-killing Death Star superlaser. The Emperor has had a thousand Death Stars, basically. And none of them were ever even used until one of them blew up a planet in “The Rise of Skywalker.”Also Read: Nothing About Emperor Palpatine's Return in 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' Makes SenseThis basic premise really messes up basically everything from “The Force Awakens” and “The Last Jedi.” The entire conflict between the Resistance and the First Order becomes weirdly kinda low stakes with the Emperor lurking out there with his thousand Death Stars. Why would the First Order do all that work to hollow out a planet and build Starkiller Base, their own new and improved Death Star, when Palpatine could have just given them a few of the Death Stars he already had?Maybe more problematic is the issue of Rey’s (Daisy Ridley) lineage. It’s not necessarily a problem that she’s Palpatine’s granddaughter. It is extremely an issue that, as we’re told practically as an afterthought, Luke (Mark Hamill) and Leia (Carrie Fisher) knew about it. That little tidbit makes everything Luke has done in this trilogy seem extra bizarre and stupid.Let’s break it down real quick. When Lando shows up in “The Rise of Skywalker” on the desert planet Pasaana, he tells the gang that he originally came there more than a decade before with Luke. The two of them were searching for Exogol, which that snow planet where Palpatine is hanging out in the movie.They came to Pasaana because they were chasing an old Jedi hunter from the before times. But they just found an empty ship and no clues. Now, the reason this Jedi hunter was on Pasaana was because he had been pursuing Rey on Palpatine’s behalf. But the hunter only found her parents, because they had left her on Jakku. So he killed the parents and bailed before Luke and Lando got there. And I guess Luke and Lando gave up on the search since Lando is still there many years later.Also Read: Whose Voices Were Those at the End of 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker'?Left unsaid is why Luke and Lando were trying to find Exogol, but there are a couple easy guesses I could make. The option that looks best for “The Rise of Skywalker” is that Luke knew there was a Sith temple there and wanted to check it out, but didn’t know that anything further was going on. But that doesn’t seem like a likely story, because they aren’t looking for clues — they’re looking for people who are alive and know things about Exogol. And since Luke in the present knew about Rey’s family, then this whole adventure looking for Exogol has to be where he learned about her.So Luke knew about Exogol, and he knew that a Jedi hunter came out of retirement to actively hunt some folks. He probably, given his knowledge of Rey’s family in the present, knew that Palpatine had had a family and at least one grandkid, and that that family was running around the galaxy to get away from Palpatine’s agents, even though Palpatine was already long dead by then. The only possible takeaway from that collection of evidence is that something weird and probably bad is happening. Something that Luke, as the only Jedi at the time, would need to be wary of.So fast forward to Luke was training Ben Solo (Adam Driver) and a bunch of others to become Jedi a few years before “The Force Awakens,” he and Leia both sensed the existence of Snoke (Andy Serkis). And they knew that Snoke was trying to turn Ben to the dark side by some means — the how of that situation has not been made clear in any movies or books thus far. But a new comic released this week, “The Rise of Kylo Ren 1,” appears to reveal that not only did Luke know about Snoke by that time, but they actually had fought before and Luke was responsible for Snoke looking all messed up in the movies.It always felt like kind of a stretch that Luke would exile himself and cut himself off from the Force — let alone be cool with doing extrajudicial murder on his nephew — as explained in “The Last Jedi,” but when I’m in a generous mood I can allow for the idea that Luke thought he would do more harm than good after the stuff with Ben happen. But this new information makes that impossible to justify, unless you wanna argue that Luke is too dumb to put these pieces together. He had to have known, for decades before the emergence of the First Order, that there was some big shadowy threat out there.Hopefully, when we eventually get a novel or comic book that tells the story of this little adventure he had with Lando, this will make more sense. But right now, it does not.That’s the consequence of this weird, completely random addition of Emperor Palpatine to this trilogy. The fact that he was out there, orchestrating the creation of the First Order and hoarding a bunch of Death Stars, really alters the plot of the previous two movies in ways that those movies simply cannot support. This retcon just does not work.Read original story ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Actually Makes ‘The Last Jedi’ and ‘The Force Awakens’ Worse At TheWrap

  • Nothing About Emperor Palpatine’s Return in ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Makes Sense
    Style
    The Wrap

    Nothing About Emperor Palpatine’s Return in ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Makes Sense

    (Be warned that we’ve got some huge spoilers ahead for “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”)There’s really been one major thing that’s been on everyone’s mind since the first trailer for “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” made its debut back in April: Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid). That trailer revealed that the big bad of the original trilogy and the prequel trilogy would be in this movie somehow. We were all so excited to find out how that would work, since it’s not as though either “The Force Awakens” or “The Last Jedi” had given any hints that he was still around. His laugh at the end of the trailer was completely out of left field.It was definitely a big mystery of the type JJ Abrams loves — we’ve all been cracking jokes about his whole mystery box concept since the “Lost” days. And this one was a doozie, because we’ve all thought for the past several decades that Palpatine definitely for sure died at the end of “Return of the Jedi.” And as we learned in the prequels, it was extremely Anakin Skywalker’s destiny to kill him. So it was hard to guess how this would work, but it seemed like it would make the most sense for him to be a Force ghost who had been influencing events.And now we’ve seen the movie, and it turns out that, uh, I’m still not really sure how Emperor Palpatine ended up in this movie. He’s not a ghost — he’s just still alive. And he claims that he “made” Snoke, as we see a shot of a cloning tube containing another Snoke body. And he’s got a huge fleet of Star Destroyers that have been hidden under the Exogol ice. And each of those Star Destroyers, apparently, is equipped with a planet-killing Death Star superlaser.Also Read: Whose Voices Were Those at the End of 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker'?None of this is explained in any way. I guess we’re just not supposed to think about it too much.This is strange because back in “Return of the Jedi,” Palpatine was tossed into the Death Star’s reactor and appeared to actually explode. But even assuming he somehow survived that, just a few moments later the entire Death Star blew up, which seems like it would be a difficult thing to survive when you’re literally at the center of it. But as we see in “The Rise of Skywalker,” apparently folks who have talent with the Force can use it to do basically anything they want, no problem — including resurrection, which we saw Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) do for Rey (Daisy Ridley) at the very end of the movie. So anything and everything is possible if you think of it that way.But he’s definitely still alive and not a ghost, though barely. The Emperor would be over 110 years old at this point, and it shows because he looks pretty gross, with his dead eyes and rotting fingers and all that stuff. And, of course, the whole point of his plan in this movie is to have Rey kill him, and she wouldn’t be able to kill him if he were presently dead.So I have so many questions about this and no answers. I don’t know how he got a fleet of Death Star Destroyers or whatever you wanna call them. I don’t know why, when he was arranging for the rise of the First Order, he wouldn’t make use of some of them. Or why he would need the First Order at all when he has a fleet of Death Stars.Also Read: 'Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker' Film Review: Final Chapter Delivers the Goods, But It's Slick and a Little SoullessAnd I really don’t understand the Snoke thing. Since Snoke was literally a fake person, can we assume that everything he did can be attributed to Palpatine? If so, why would he direct the First Order to build Starkiller base instead — beating a dead horse here — using those Death Stars they already have? Or did he just let Snoke loose to do whatever and not really actively engage?I also don’t understand what Luke knew or when he knew it about Palpatine. A couple decades before this new trilogy, Luke and Lando went searching for Exogol themselves. And in the present Luke and Leia both know about Rey’s family before she does, but we aren’t told how they know or when they learned it.This is, I think, the big picture of why “The Rise of Skywalker” is so frustrating — crazy things happen, and there’s no way to figure out why those things happened just from watching the movie. Someday we will get answers, maybe from the finale of “The Mandalorian” next week, or from some novel or comic book. But right now, we have no meaningful answers.Read original story Nothing About Emperor Palpatine’s Return in ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Makes Sense At TheWrap

  • ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ – We Need to Talk About This Rose Tico Situation
    Style
    The Wrap

    ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ – We Need to Talk About This Rose Tico Situation

    (Spoilers ahead for “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” and Rose Tico’s role in it in particular)There are so many strange things that happen in “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” and it’s rife with odd creative decisions. And while the way the movie treats Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran) is not even remotely the weirdest thing about this movie, it’s certainly one of the most blatantly obvious bits of pandering that JJ Abrams’s film does.When Rose was first introduced back in “The Last Jedi,” it wasn’t necessarily the cleanest fit. She spent most of the movie with Finn (John Boyega) going on a side adventure that had no real bearing on the main plot and thus, unlike the characters who were in “The Force Awakens,” never actually got to establish herself as part of the new trilogy’s ensemble. She never got to be part of the group, and thus felt kinda extraneous.That’s not an unfixable problem. John Boyega promised that the main crew of this new trilogy would spend a lot more time together in “The Rise of Skywalker,” so really all that needed to be done was to include Rose in that crew. After all, extraneous or not she was inarguably one of the film’s main characters and even got to deliver a line of dialogue summing up what amounts to the moral of the story. And at the end of “The Last Jedi,” Rose and Finn have basically become a couple, so it would make sense to bring her along on Finn’s adventures with Poe and Rey.Also Read: Nothing About Emperor Palpatine's Return in 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' Makes SenseExcept that doesn’t happen, like at all. In TROS, Rose basically gets the same treatment Jar Jar received in “Attack of the Clones” and “Revenge of the Sith.” Relegating her to a very minor role — barely more than a cameo — the film tries to present her like she was never actually one of the main characters in this new trilogy. And her interactions with Finn suggest nothing more than professional courtesy, an especially weird thing to do considering the last time we saw them, they were kissing.I can’t pretend to know exactly what the thought process was behind this decision, but there are not all that many reasons why they would push Rose out of frame like this. The big one, as we all know, is that a bunch of freakin’ nerds conducted a months-long harassment campaign that drove Kelly Marie Tran off social media after “The Last Jedi” came out. Actually, that’s the only reason I can think of. That doesn’t mean it is the only possible reason, obviously. “The Rise of Skywalker” is full of shockingly inexplicable creative decisions — we’re talking about a movie with a huge fleet of Death Stars here. But if there’s some other reason why she’s only in a handful of scenes, it’s not something we could intuit.There a feeling that “The Rise of Skywalker” is trying to undo the setup provided by “The Last Jedi,” sort of like how that film set out to defy your expectations based on how “The Force Awakens” kicked off the trilogy. Abrams and co. will insist that’s not the case, but Rose serves as pretty solid evidence.Also Read: Whose Voices Were Those at the End of 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker'?And that’s annoying! I can understand, in a general sense, criticisms of how her character was handled in “The Last Jedi.” What I can’t understand, in the third movie of a trilogy and ninth movie of a series, is simply refusing the play the cards you’re dealt. You can’t just toss one of the main characters aside just because a couple dozen angry internet nerds didn’t like her in the last movie.Or I guess you can, since that’s exactly what happened with Rose in “The Rise of Skywalker.” And that’s not great, Bob.Read original story ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ – We Need to Talk About This Rose Tico Situation At TheWrap

  • REVIEW: 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' is the most action-packed and fast-paced Star Wars movie ever, but did it have to be?
    Style
    Marcus Goh

    REVIEW: 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' is the most action-packed and fast-paced Star Wars movie ever, but did it have to be?

    Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker is literally the most exciting film in the Star Wars series, because there is never a dull moment.

  • ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Underwhelms Critics as ‘Convoluted’ and ‘Safe’ Finale
    Style
    The Wrap

    ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Underwhelms Critics as ‘Convoluted’ and ‘Safe’ Finale

    Critics are underwhelmed with “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” saddling the finale to one of the biggest franchises of all time with just a 56% on Rotten Tomatoes. They called the film a “safe,” “sour” or even “convoluted” end to the Skywalker saga.It’s still early, and the score could change, but the review embargo for the film broke just after midnight on Wednesday, and with 119 critics reporting at time of writing, the current score places it below not just the previous “Star Wars” films “The Last Jedi” and “The Force Awakens,” but even behind “Solo” and “Rogue One,” though it’s just ahead of “Episode I: The Phantom Menace,” which has just a 53% score.“Rest assured that there’s nothing in this final ‘Star Wars’ that would prompt the eye-rolls or the snickers of Episodes I-III; Abrams is too savvy a studio player for those kinds of shenanigans,” TheWrap‘s Alonso Duralde wrote in his mixed review of the film. “But his slick delivery of a sterling, shiny example of what Martin Scorsese would call ‘not cinema’ feels momentarily satisfying but ultimately unfulfilling. It’s a somewhat soulless delivery system of catharsis, but Disney and Abrams are banking on the delivery itself to be enough.”Also Read: 'Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker' Film Review: Final Chapter Delivers the Goods, But It's Slick and a Little SoullessMany of the reviews pointed out that the film’s first act is loaded with exposition as a way to reunite the three main characters and tie up many of the film’s loose ends. Some reviews called it “incoherent” and added that many of those plot threads fail to satisfy in the end.“The gang’s all here–every new and old favorite character one could imagine–for an experience so convoluted and overstuffed that I wondered whether the whole cast would board a flying kitchen sink for the final battle,” David Sims wrote in The Atlantic.But much of the discussion has centered around Rian Johnson’s “The Last Jedi.” Critics have said Abrams’ film works as something of a course correction for fans who were outraged at the direction of the previous film, undoing some of “The Last Jedi’s” main and best ideas.“The haste with which ‘The Rise of Skywalker’ rushes to undo its predecessor is almost comical at first, at least before its capitulation to the franchise’s most toxic fans turns outright contemptible. Mad that Rey (Daisy Ridley), Finn (John Boyega), and Poe (Oscar Isaac) didn’t spend enough time together in the last movie? Let’s shove them into the same frame from the beginning and throw in lots of forced banter to remind you that they’re pals,” Sam Adams writes in Slate. “Didn’t like when they killed off the pale evil guy with the misshapen face? What if we brought in another? And that whole thing about Rey being ‘no one,’ suggesting a radical rewrite of the idea that Jedi knights are made and not born? Well, you’ll have to see what happens there for yourself.”Also Read: 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' Arrives With Sky-High Box Office Expectations“He’s made what feels sometimes like a glorified apology for his successor’s choices,” A.A. Dowd says of Abrams in The A.V. Club. “Remember in ‘Last Jedi’ when fallen son Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) smashed his Vader-esque helmet to bits as a symbolic rejection of the past? It takes him all of 15 minutes to weld it back together in ‘Skywalker,’ the little red cracks across its surface evidence of a “mistake” that’s been mended.”See more reactions from critics below. “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” opens in theaters this Friday.Alonso Duralde, TheWrapAbrams certainly knows how to manipulate, but when he does it, you can see the strings. How much or little you enjoy “The Rise of Skywalker” will rely almost entirely on whether or not you mind that every laugh and tear and jolt feels like it’s coming right off a spreadsheet.Mike Ryan, UproxxJ.J. Abrams’ “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” is the most convoluted of all the Star Wars movies. It feels like three full movies worth of plot crammed into one film. The stories in the other Star Wars movies, even the Prequels, have a way of bringing a viewer into that world. “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” never lets us in. It, instead, keeps us at arms length so it can use almost its entire first half as exposition. Just character after character explaining things.A.O. Scott, The New York TimesAt least since “The Return of the Jedi” (1983), the point of each chapter has been consolidation rather than distinction. For a single film to risk being too interesting would be to imperil the long-term strategy of cultivating a multigenerational, multinational fandom. “The Rise of Skywalker” — Episode IX, in case you’ve lost count — is one of the best. (It opens Friday.) Also one of the worst. Perfectly middling. It all amounts to the same thing.Sam Adams, Slate“The Rise of Skywalker” gives people what they go to Star Wars for, but that’s all it does–and worse, all it sets out to do. It’s frenzied, briefly infuriating, and eventually, grudgingly, satisfying, but it’s like being force-fed fandom: Your belly is filled, but there’s no pleasure in the meal. The movie feels like it’s part of the post-“Last Jedi” retrenchment, when Disney jerked the leash on “Solo” and killed plans for future spinoffs by insisting that filmmakers stick to the established playbook. It’s of a piece with the pointedly unambitious “The Mandalorian,” just good enough to get people’s attention but fundamentally terrified of rocking the boat. Rather than making a movie some people might love, Abrams tried to make a movie no one would hate, and as a result, you don’t feel much of anything at all.Jake Coyle, Associated PressNot much has caused a disturbance in the “Star Wars” galaxy quite like Rian Johnson’s “The Last Jedi,” an erratic but electric movie that, regardless of how you felt about it, was something worth arguing about. The same can’t be said for J. J. Abrams’ “Rise of Skywalker,” a scattershot, impatiently paced, fan-servicing finale that repurposes so much of what came before that it feels as though someone searching for the hyperspace button accidentally pressed the spin cycle instead.David Sims, The AtlanticThe gang’s all here–every new and old favorite character one could imagine–for an experience so convoluted and overstuffed that I wondered whether the whole cast would board a flying kitchen sink for the final battle.A.A. Dowd, The A.V. ClubBut in the case of this ninth official episode, the batting-cleanup responsibilities are compounded by the expectations of a fanbase on the cusp of mutiny. “Skywalker” wants desperately to please them, a potentially impossible task it tackles with transparently ingratiating caution. This is a space opera animated not by joy but insecurity–the anxiety, evident in almost every moment, that if it’s not very careful, someone might feel letdown.Brian Truitt, USA TodayIt’s a treat when Rey, Finn and Poe finally get to the adventuring, not only because there are tons of Han, Luke and Leia vibes when they’re together, but also because their taking on flying First Order goons in a wild, banter-laden “Mad Max”-esque speeder chase reminds why these movies are a hoot.Richard Roeper, Chicago Sun-TimesThere are a few moments when it feels as if this movie is trying to satisfy every “Star Wars” fanatic in the world — but that would be beyond the scope of even the most impressive Jedi mind trick. “The Rise of Skywalker” rarely comes close to touching greatness, but it’s a solid, visually dazzling and warmhearted victory for the Force of quality filmmaking.Michael Phillips, Chicago TribuneIt wraps up the trio of trilogies begun in 1977 in a confident, soothingly predictable way, doing all that cinematically possible to avoid poking the bear otherwise known as tradition-minded quadrants of the “Star Wars” fan base.Read original story ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Underwhelms Critics as ‘Convoluted’ and ‘Safe’ Finale At TheWrap

  • ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’: First Reactions from the World Premiere
    Style
    Variety

    ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’: First Reactions from the World Premiere

    The third and final film in Disney's latest Star Wars trilogy, "The Rise of Skywalker," had its world premiere Monday night in Los Angeles with audience members rushing to Twitter to share their thoughts. The official review embargo for "Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker" lifts on Wednesday, Dec. 18, at 12:01 a.m. PST. The […]

  • 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' writer on how 'The Last Jedi' impacted Rey’s parentage
    Style
    Gregory Wakeman

    'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' writer on how 'The Last Jedi' impacted Rey’s parentage

    Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker’s writer Chris Terrio talks building upon what Rian Johnson did with Rey’s parentage in Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

  • Daisy Ridley says Rey’s ‘Star Wars’ ending felt 'really right'
    Style
    Gregory Wakeman

    Daisy Ridley says Rey’s ‘Star Wars’ ending felt 'really right'

    Daisy Ridley opens up about the conclusion of Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker, and says it felt really right.

  • Leia’s 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' role is just as 'profound' as Han Solo’s in 'The Force Awakens'
    Style
    Gregory Wakeman

    Leia’s 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' role is just as 'profound' as Han Solo’s in 'The Force Awakens'

    J.J. Abrams opens up about Leia's role in Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker and insists it is incredibly profound.

  • ‘Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker’ given seizure warning by Disney
    Style
    Gregory Wakeman

    ‘Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker’ given seizure warning by Disney

    Disney are working alongside the Epilepsy Foundation to warn viewers that Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker could affect those with the condition. 

  • Daisy Ridley calls ‘Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker’ 'definitely dark' and 'genuinely scary'
    Style
    Gregory Wakeman

    Daisy Ridley calls ‘Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker’ 'definitely dark' and 'genuinely scary'

    Daisy Ridley has teased Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker using just four words and it sounds epic.

  • J.J. Abrams says 'The Rise of Skywalker' won't 'play safe' thanks to Rian Johnson
    Style
    Ben Arnold

    J.J. Abrams says 'The Rise of Skywalker' won't 'play safe' thanks to Rian Johnson

    In remarks that might have the opposite of the intended effect, J.J. Abrams has said that he's taking a leaf of out Last Jedi director Rian Johnson's book for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

  • Leia Speaks 1 Word In Final ‘Star Wars’ Trailer And It Reduced Fans To Tears
    Style
    Ed Mazza

    Leia Speaks 1 Word In Final ‘Star Wars’ Trailer And It Reduced Fans To Tears

    "The Rise of Skywalker" trailer reveals footage of the late Carrie Fisher in her iconic role.

  • Final 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' trailer arriving very, very soon
    Style
    Gregory Wakeman

    Final 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' trailer arriving very, very soon

    Disney have taken to Twitter to confirm that a new Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker trailer is coming early next week.

  • Rian Johnson casts doubt on his ‘Star Wars’ trilogy
    Style
    Gregory Wakeman

    Rian Johnson casts doubt on his ‘Star Wars’ trilogy

    Star Wars: The Last Jedi’s writer and director Rian Johnson has raised doubts that his potential new trilogy for the franchise will actually get made.

  • Closer look at the 'Knights of Ren' as new 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' artwork is revealed
    Style
    Ben Arnold

    Closer look at the 'Knights of Ren' as new 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' artwork is revealed

    A huge raft of new Star Wars artwork has been unveiled ahead of the release of the ninth movie, The Rise of Skywalker.

  • 'Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker' toys reveal two new characters
    Style
    Ben Arnold

    'Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker' toys reveal two new characters

    While Lucasfilm, J.J. Abrams, Daisy Ridley and John Boyega say precisely nothing about Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, as usual it's left to toy makers to spill the beans.

  • 'Sith Rey' appears in 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' footage at D23 Expo 2019
    Style
    Hanna Flint

    'Sith Rey' appears in 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' footage at D23 Expo 2019

    JJ Abrams, Kathleen Kennedy, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega and many of the cast were there to promote the final instalment of this saga.

  • Daisy Ridley has cut off social media 'like a Skywalker limb' after trolling made her quit
    Style
    Ben Arnold

    Daisy Ridley has cut off social media 'like a Skywalker limb' after trolling made her quit

    Daisy Ridley has said that she'll never return to social media, after binning her own accounts off in 2016.

  • 'The Rise of Skywalker' is Mark Hamill's last 'Star Wars' film and he'll be a Force Ghost
    Style
    Ben Arnold

    'The Rise of Skywalker' is Mark Hamill's last 'Star Wars' film and he'll be a Force Ghost

    Mark Hamill has said that he's done with Star Wars, but that Luke Skywalker will be returning as a 'Force Ghost' in the forthcoming The Rise of Skywalker.

  • Mark Hamill calls ‘Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker’ a missed opportunity
    Style
    Gregory Wakeman

    Mark Hamill calls ‘Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker’ a missed opportunity

    Mark Hamill has provoked the wrath of Star Wars fans by simply posting a picture of himself, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Billy Dee Williams in the Millennium Falcon alongside the caption, "Missed opportunities."

  • Mark Hamill sticks up for blogger mocked for emotional reaction to 'Star Wars IX' trailer
    Style
    Ben Arnold

    Mark Hamill sticks up for blogger mocked for emotional reaction to 'Star Wars IX' trailer

    US blogger Eric Butts posted his reaction video to the Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker trailer just few minutes after it was released online last week.