Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens

I watched the new Star Wars film last Sunday. Before I tell you how I feel about it let me outline to you my affection for the Star Wars universe.

When I was small, before I can even rightly remember, I was obsessed with the first three movies. My favorite at the time being Return of the Jedi. And having parents that encouraged this I received two cassette tapes. One being the Return of the Jedi audio play for the movie, and another called Rebel Mission to Ord Mantell.

I liked the Ord Mantell story, but I was obsessed with Return of the Jedi. I don’t know how many years I did this, but I used to listen to at least one side of that cassette a night. At one point in time I could easily quote the entire movie word for word with no issue. These days I can still get through the majority of it. In fact I did a quick rendition of it doing all the voices on a recording when I was in grade school.

This all being said I was ecstatic to hear news of the original trilogy being re-released in theaters, this time with new things being included. I went and watched them, and was disappointed with the effects being used, and I didn’t really like anything new that was added. But I still watched all three.

Then news of a new trilogy came out. At the time I didn’t know they were prequels, and was extremely excited to see what Luke, Leia and Han would do. And then I heard they would be a prequel and would be about Darth Vader. I thought that sounded pretty cool too, and was as excited as a person could be when the first movie came out.

When I finally saw the movie I came away not hating it, but certainly not loving it like I had the originals. I didn’t watch it again until I had watched all three prequels, but by the time the last one came out I was extremely disappointed already.

I didn’t find joy with episodes I-III until I saw some reviews about them that explained in hilarious detail why they were so bad, but by then it was just because they were such a joke. I feared I might never enjoy a movie in that universe again.

And that is how I went into “The Force Awakens”. Completely broken with no hope that it would be any good. So as I began my journey, sitting in really the perfect spot for the movie in a theater that wasn’t as crowded as opening night would have been. I began to shake.

I was full of doubt and dread that my beloved childhood film would be once more tainted by people who didn’t seem to care as much as I did. The opening crawl came upon the screen with the familiar John Williams score, and I still was filled with doubt. But when I saw that the crawl looked to be just as slightly jittery as the originals I began to feel a glimmer of hope. This wasn’t some poorly rendered text flying across a screen, it looked like it was done like it had been in the past. Of course that might have been because of a poor copy, or a bad projection, but I didn’t see any problems with it elsewhere.

I was like this through the first half of the movie, but I began to open up to hope again as it progressed. By the end of the movie I was in tears. Not because I was sad, and not because there is a sad moment in the film, but because it wasn’t horrible. I had to contain myself until I reached the car, but then I was a blubbering mess.

The movies I had loved as a child, and then the movies that had destroyed much of that enjoyment, had returned to the light side. It’s a good movie. It really is. It’s fun. It’s exciting, and oh boy is the sound of Kylo Ren’s lightsaber amazing.

This all being said there are some downsides… Mostly with inconsistencies in plot that weren’t explained, and the music feeling old and over used. I’m not saying I dislike the old music from episodes IV V and VI, but they almost seemed out-of-place in parts. The one thing I can say about the prequels is that they had a fantastic new song. DUEL OF FATES!

This all being said I would highly recomend this movie to fans. I think even knew people to the franchise would enjoy it. It can be a little silly in places, and perhaps they have too many call backs that kinda take you out of the film, but all in all I liked it an awful lot.

 

What I’ve published

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safeClick here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – hhttp://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: 1,018 words of a new book written. Several pages edited for the yet unnamed novel.

“It’s better to die in pursuit of your dreams than to live a life without hope.”
― Terry Brooks

Steven Oaks

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Views of the future from the past, and work-ethic

Last evening I was entertained by watching several old cartoons on YouTube from the 1950’s. Within these short animated films I was shown how people of that time saw the possible future, and what they suspected our technology would be like.

First off the horrible sexism that exists in these films is rampant. Not only that, but someone must have really hated their mother-in-law as she was the but of much of the jokes. Then again most people were shown in a horrible light. The wife was only there to supply food and spend money. The children were horrible whiners that deserved a good slap. The father was a drunken letch.

Far from being fascinated with these concepts of the future world they imagined I was more horrified on how they depicted people. I understand they were supposed to be caricatures, and perhaps even my less than PC view of the world is too rough a critic on such things, but I was left feeling ashamed to have come from such people.

Eventually I forced myself to relax and view them as a historic depiction of our past, and I was able to laugh at the absurdity of it all. Not only that but how little we have accomplished with the goals of the 50’s. There are no flying cars… but we do have planes. No self driving cars… oh wait we do have that. No television that won’t be disturbed by passing planes… oh wait, the internet and cable usually handles that. Nevermind, it seems we have come far, it’s just some things are not widely available, such as driverless cars. But the shortened workday was brought up… it was depicted as basically a 4 hour day, with a 2 hour lunch… Not in this economy!

There was a point in time when the job market was thriving, and a person could easily access a job. Maybe not a great one, but work nonetheless. These days, I’ve found with my own search of months and months, that it is very hard to get a job. Even one involving food service! I’m lucky that I have a place to work, and I cherish the hours of labor I am able to put into this work. Because it means I get paid to work.

On the other hand I have met people, who have jobs, and then feel entitled to laze about and not work. That makes me rather upset. When I am asked to come into work, I am there to work. Why would they pay me just to stand around? I’m sure I’m amusing enough company to entertain many, but I’m being paid/employed to do a job. Apparently this is one of my hot buttons, and I get rather aggravated easily about it. I’ve been told to mind my own business when I see such idle laziness, and I try… I try very hard. It certainly isn’t my place to ensure a co-worker works, but if I care about them and a co-worker I would think they should be working. Unless they want to be let go sooner rather than later.

Perhaps I should just let things play out, and work as I do. However if there are more people working the job gets done faster, and I’m all about that. But I suppose I should listen to others, as the system should work. A supervisor will eventually notice any idleness, and point the fact out. It is not for me to say such things. Then again I rather work be fair. I will certainly take on a larger role when it comes to working. I like working, and I take pride in the fact I can do so much, and do it well. However when it comes to light that an individual is just there to get paid, which is a legitimate reason to go into work, I can sometimes get upset. You are there to work…. and by working you get paid. It is not that you showed up, and then magically you are granted money, you must put effort into the task.

That all being said, I don’t dislike anyone because of this. I understand their viewpoint, I can just sometimes get carried away with my motivation to see things get done. I might be a difficult boss to please, but I’m even harder on myself than anyone else. I give leeway to others where I’m extremely rigid with myself. If my break is only so minutes long, I will get back to work immediately. Many others I’ve notice do not, and take their time to start back up. It isn’t hours later, merely minutes, but I can understand it can take some people time to shift back into work mode. When I’m at work however I’m always in work mode, and I don’t think many can live up to that.

Blah blah blah, I’m done with my little rant. All this being said I’m still working on the latest book, and in my head I’m outlining a new one.

What I’ve published

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safeClick here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – hhttp://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: Edits were made based upon an editor… still several more to go.

“…there are people who try to look as if they are doing a good and thorough job, and then there are the people who actually damn well do it, for its own sake.”
― John D. MacDonald

Steven Oaks

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Prequels and Sequels

Last night before falling asleep I had a conversation. It began with talking about the Star Wars prequels vs the Original Trilogy. As a vague antagonist Vader was wonderful. As a fully ‘Fleshed out” protagonist in the prequels he wasn’t any good.

I think that’s what made the original better. Instead of trying to explain everything, they left it vague. We knew there was a power called the force, but somehow someone well-trained could do amazing feats of strength. But we didn’t know where it was derived from, save from constant practice. We only knew Luke was just a kid that worked on a farm, and liked to fly ships. Unlike Anakin, we didn’t start out with him as a child, and try to have it explained why he was special. Luke just was. The power to let your audience decide what the meaning behind stories are is the thing. Hence why all the side characters we only see briefly in the original trilogy have such a cult following, or at least interest. Whereas the people you are introduced to in the prequels we don’t care about. Remember the guy who worked at a dinner? I mean I do, but do I care about his back story? NO.

This then flowed into a discussion about Avatar: The legend of Korra, and why it wasn’t as good as the original Avatar. While I enjoyed watching Korra, it wasn’t for her, it was for everyone else surrounding her. She never grew as a person, she just was a brawler the whole time. And she wasn’t even very good at that. Ang at least was a powerful Air Bender, and could get out of most situations unaided. He needed people around him more for support, and help training his other bending abilities. Korra needed others just to make it to the next fight. She could have been such a strong character, but I think the largest mistake they made was making her older. Had she been a child some of her behavior would have been acceptable, but as someone who was nearly an adult it was bewildering.

All this though is just, like my opinion man.

What I’ve published

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safeClick here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – hhttp://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: Another run through of the latest book completed. I really need to get another set of eyes on this.

“It’s better to die in pursuit of your dreams than to live a life without hope.”
― Terry Brooks

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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