OK, you’ve just seen Star Wars The Force Awakens and you’ve got lots of questions. We’ve seen it too and have a theory on the answers to those many questions.
This is a review of Episode VII WITH MAJOR SPOILERS – so please be warned that if you read on you will find out key facts and plot points.
So our advice is read on ONLY if you’ve SEEN Star Wars The Force Awakens.
If you haven’t seen the movie, then we already have a SPOILER FREE review for you to read that doesn’t give any thing away.
OK this is your last chance to get out before we get started.
Still with us? OK – here we go.
WHERE IS LUKE SKYWALKER?
Right from the first line in the opening crawl – Luke Skywalker has vanished – and we’re immediately wondering the tumultuous events of the 30 years between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens that had forced Luke to go into hiding.
When we left him in Episode VI, Luke had just cremated his father Darth Vader in a funeral pyre after Vader turned back to the light side of the Force before he took his final breath to look on Luke “with his own eyes”.
Where he is in The Force Awakens is the driving plot point of the film and the opening scene shows Lor San Tekka (Max Von Sydow), a friend of Leia Organa and resident of the planet Jakku, handing over a clue to Resistance pilot Poe Dameron on Luke whereabouts.
Even when we see Luke in the final frames of the movie, we still don’t exactly where that place is.
During Rey’s interrogation by Kylo Ren he says he see the ocean and the island – but where is that? It’s a big universe.
Han Solo says there was a rumour he was trying to find the first Jedi temple and the place o the island where he is seen right at the end of the movie does have a temple look to it.
WHY DID LUKE SKYWALKER DISAPPEAR?
According to Han Solo, Luke was trying to train a new generation of Jedi when one turned to the dark side – we later learn this pupil who turned to evil is Kylo Ren.
Luke, the last Jedi, felt so badly about what happened he disappeared.
We are unsure how long he has been in the self imposed exile but we get a feeling it’s been quite a few years.
IS KYLO REN THE SON OF HAN AND LEIA?
Yes he is! Han talks about the pupil that turned to evil under Luke’s tutelage but we later learn that is Kylo Ren and then also learn he is Han and Leia’s son Ben.
When they talk about how they “lost him” Han reminds Leia that there was too much Vader in him.
In the opening scene when Lor San Tekka is being questioned by Kylo Ren, Tekka reminds Ren about who his family is – moments after referring to Leia (Ren’s mother) as royalty.
Ren’s heritage is revealed for the first time by Supreme Leader Snoke and then by Han and Leia later in the film.
IS HAN SOLO REALLY DEAD?
Sadly, yes he is. Han confronts Kylo Ren aka Ben at Starkiller base pleading for him to come home.
And it seems like Han is getting through for a moment but his son proves the depths of his evil by impaling Han Solo on his lightsabre before he drops into the bottomless chasm.
When Supreme Leader Snoke mentioned Han Solo earlier, Ren said Han means nothing to him and even alluded to the fact that he’ll be doing something about it.
The murder of his father was another rite of passage to the dark side. You have to remember – Kylo Ren’s grandfather was Darth Vader – one of the most powerful Jedi/Sith Lords ever.
COULD HAN SOLO COME BACK?
We doubt it – he was impaled with Kylo Ren’s lightsabre just like Qui-Gon Jinn in Episode I at the hands of Darth Maul.
And Han Solo being a non-Jedi leads us to sadly believe we’ve seen the last of the lovable smuggler and scoundrel.
WHY IS KYLO REN SO OBSESSED WITH DARTH VADER?
Well for one that’s his grandfather. And it turns out he also inherited his anger and whiny attitude (remember Anakin Episode II – painful to remember I know – but you know what I mean).
Ren’s anger is on display a few times when he trashes some First Order equipment after being given some bad news.
Ren even went so far as retrieving Vader’s helmet and his ashes.
We can clearly see Vader’s melted helmet – even in the trailer – and Ren’s vow to “finish what you started”.
In The Force Awakens he also asks for inspiration to show him the darkness to fight off the call to the light.
Later in the movie when Kylo Ren is questioning Rey with the Force, he drops his mask into a tub that looks to be filled with ashes. Are these Darth Vader’s ashes?
And when Rey says he is afraid he won’t be as power as Darth Vader that really threw him for a loop.
DOES KYLO REN DIE AT THE END OF THE MOVIE?
We last see Kylo Ren on Starkiller base wounded and defeated after the lightsabre battle with Rey and just before the planet is blown sky high.
In the last part of the film when General Hux reports the First Orders defeat at the hands of the Resistance, Supreme Leader Snoke asks him to bring Kylo Ren so he can “complete his training”.
So obviously he must still be alive.
WHO IS REY?
We are introduced to scavenger Rey on Jakku at the beginning of the film.
She scavenges the wreckage of giant crashed star destroyers for scrap and sells them for “portions” – food rations meted out by junk yard dealer Unkar Plutt.
She lives in the wreckage of a large AT-AT walker and is seen scratching a line on the wall to illustrate just how long she’s been on Jakku.
She refers to her family one day returning so she was obviously left on the desert planet as a child.
DOES REY HAVE THE FORCE?
Yes. From her amazing skills as a pilot and her ability to understand and speak multiple languages, indicates she is truly gifted.
After meeting Han Solo and Chewbacca and then being taken to see Maz Kanata to help get BB-8 safely to the Resistance, she hears something calling out to her and discovers it to be Luke’s lightsabre which he lost (with this hand) on Bespin during his fight with Darth Vader.
IS REY LUKE SKYWALKER’S DAUGHTER?
Possibly. Luke’s lightsabre was calling to her and when she touched it she had a vision showing the Bespin gantry where Luke lost his hand then Luke putting his robotic hand on R2D2 and then seeing Kylo Ren murdering other Jedi apprentices.
Her vision also includes seeing herself being left on Jakku as a young girl and pleading for the spaceship that abandoned her to come back.
Maz Kanata explains the vision and suggests that the people she’s waiting for on Jakku probably won’t be coming back and that she should look forward to find what she is looking for.
Rey’s reply is simply: “Luke”.
The very last shot of The Force Awaken shows Rey reaching out to hand Luke the lightsabre that belonged to him and his father before him.
Could we see in Episode VIII Luke saying to Rey: “I am your father”?
But then we have to speculate – who is her mother? And that could lead us into a whole new rabbit hole.
WHO CAUSED THE FORCE TO AWAKEN?
Rey discovers she has the Force on Starkiller base. She repels Kylo Ren’s interrogation and then uses a Jedi mind trick to get a storm trooper to release her, open the door and leave his gun.
This is reminiscent of Obi-Want Kenobi telling the stormtroopers in 1977’s original film A New Hope that “these aren’t the droids you’re looking for”.
Supreme Leader asks Kylo Ren the question – “there has been an awakening – have you felt it?”.
He is referring to Rey. Kylo Ren later complains to Snoke that Rey is strong with the Force but can’t control it.
This leads us to believe her heritage must be in the Skywalker family.
OR COULD REY BE HAN AND LEIA’S DAUGHTER?
This also isn’t out of the question. Twins run in the family – Luke and Leia were twins so it’s plausible that Kylo Ren and Rey are twins.
Han Solo really warms to Rey and even offers her a job as the second mate on the Millennium Falcon.
But you’d think Han would know his own daughter unless their birth was kept a secret from him.
Leia might know she is her daughter – she does say to her near the end of The Force Awakens – “may the Force be with you”.
But why keep this from Han? Luke and Leia were separated at birth and hidden because of their father’s (Anakin aka Darth Vader) decision to turn to the dark side and join the Empire.
Was there an incident in the 30 years that elapsed that would require Rey and Ren (if they actually are twins) to be separated?
WHO IS SUPREME LEADER SNOKE?
This mysterious figure is the evil leader of the First Order who must have a link to the dark side of the Force.
Is he a Sith lord? We don’t know. We thought the Sith were wiped out at the end of Return of the Jedi with the death of the Emperor and then Darth Vader.
Snoke says he wants to complete Kylo Ren’s training so he obviously has some kind of dark power.
WHAT WILL PRINCESS LEIA DO AFTER HER SON KILLED HIS FATHER HAN SOLO?
Her reaction to Han Solo’s death – in the middle of the resistance’s attack on Starkiller base – was her physically staggering to one side as she felt a disturbance in the Force.
But she doesn’t react in any other way and carries on with the battle and the search for Luke.
Can we expect that Episode VIII will reveal that sub plot? Can she ever forgive her son for murdering his father?
Did we miss anything? Do you still have some unanswered questions? Leave a comment below and let’s start a discussion.