WARNING: ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ SPOILERS ahead!!
Despite its stellar run at the box office, critical approval, and sheer watchability (this fan has gone to see it 3 times already, and is planning a 4th), ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens‘ is anything but a perfect film, and it seems the world has finally stopped drinking the Kool-Aid long enough to admit that it has some minor flaws. And it is not only fans starting to comment on a couple of plot points and character arcs, but also members of the extended ‘Star Wars’ family, which includes those actors privileged enough to have played significant characters in the franchise over the years. One such star is Samuel L. Jackson, who fans will remember played the vaunted Jedi Master Mace Windu in Lucas’s prequel trilogy. Jackson was out speaking recently about his new movie, Quentin Tarantino’s ‘The Hateful Eight,’ and was understandably asked his opinion about ‘The Force Awakens,’ and while Jackson was overall very diplomatic, he did eventually say:
“I think the kids need to go to lightsaber fight school, but… that’s just me thinking out. They got time to get better.”
Coming from a man who most likely spent weeks with a sword instructor to perfect the masterful moves of Mace Windu, it clearly makes sense why it would bother him to see the polished lightsaber duels of the prequels be swept aside for the punishing brawls that were the lightsaber battles of ‘The Force Awakens.’ Of course, since we know Finn was basically not a Jedi, Rey had never wielded a lightsaber before (though she was skilled with her staff), and Kylo Ren was badly wounded and emotional coming into the duel (who would not be after killing their own father?), it makes sense for the lightsaber battle to be more punishing, awkward, and brawlish, as none of these characters had the classic Jedi training that explained the elegant moves performed by Mace Windu and his ilk.
What are your thoughts on Jackson’s comments? Do you miss the highly choreographed fights (which for me, ultimately made the duels less dramatic) from the prequels, or do you prefer the dirty style of combat similar to the original trilogy? Share your opinion in the comments below!