"Can corporate Hollywood have a soul?" That was the question going in and the answer was as bad as I feared.
We want anything that does not remind us of us - and we're willing to pay for it. Truth is a dirty word. As time marches on, more and more truth is scrubbed from our creative output. Imagine making "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" today. Imagine our head-in-the-sand society wanting to see that ugly reflection. We're not digging for the truth anymore. We're burying it. Bury it with special effects and you have a hit on your hands!
Was there one character in the film you cared about? No. Was there one element in the film original or unpredictable? No. Was there any magic of the first trilogy? No.
We want to have our own heroes same as yesteryear. That's why we still have our awards shows, etc. going on just as if the art done today is still of the same quality. So there will be many cheerleaders for this film proclaiming victory and departing the field (quickly!), hooting and hollering how the old guys aren't in touch anymore and the new generation is as good as ever.
The passionless will be passionate about passionless films. The empty will love the empty. The dead will love the dead. To see people raving over this warmed over terd is to witness detachment from reality on par with a Presidential debate. Our hunger for fiction leads down the path to boredom.
A droid has vital news that must get through! Boring. The droid happens upon the one place in the universe where a girl (unbeknownst to her) is imbued with the Force! Boring. Conflict between parent and child! Boring. "Luke, I am your father" only works once.
Feel my force upon your wallet
I would love to see a "making of" documentary of this film, of how they convinced themselves this was a good movie. I'd love to hear them spew forth on their grand intentions and how they executed them. Just how much of this was self-deception and how much was genuine contempt for the public? Were we to turn on this franchise this sort of abominable behavior would end.
For perspective, take the beginning of the film where we see a storm trooper acting strangely and then refusing to engage in mass slaughter of a village. Is it because he's a Jedi in disguise, coming to save the day? Is it because he has a backstory that has turned him against his killing ways? Is there some sort of secret agenda he has that conflicts with the empire? Nah, none of that. We never find out why he stops killing or why we should trust him as a good guy.
This is PC catering to both the left and the right. He refuses to participate in war but refuses to decry it. Here we are in America engaging in the most evil wars in our history and not even one nod on the soullessness of those endeavors or the price our soldiers pay as they commit suicide in droves upon return. Sure, they want to keep politics out of the film. Keeps out the heart, mind and soul as well.
There's nothing that's going to stop this planet from dying (outside of divine intervention) but let's at least be honest about it as we're going down. The soul you save just might be your own.