Star Wars: The Force Awakens : CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Well, that would also be the work of the choreographer not just JJ. His only job is to show something revealing about their characters during the battle, which he does. Rey runs away and Ren is still incredibly strong despite the wound.

After re-watching the scene, I'll concede that he's able to keep up with Rey with a fair jog. But also it's clear now where his wound does matter. (I stand by the rest of my points, Finn getting a hit in and Rey force attacks throwing him more off balance than what it normally would.)

As gusninja has already pointed out, Rey does kick Ren in his wound, which is the 1st attack that lands him on his back and right after we see him holding his side in agony. Also, her 1st lightsaber attack that lands seems to graze his wounded side which results in him holding his left arm down near his side allowing Rey to stab his other shoulder. I'd say that's doing a good job of keeping up with the impediments of Ren while the battle unfolds.

Another reason the battle is enjoyable is the weight of the lightsaber are taken into account and matches the weight of what we see in ESB and ROTJ. In the special features, the actors talk about how much they had to strengthen up their arms in order to hold the very heavy prop lightsabers convincingly. That's attention to detail, particularly the detail of lightsaber battles in the OT.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey


Another reason the battle is enjoyable is the weight of the lightsaber are taken into account and matches the weight of what we see in ESB and ROTJ. In the special features, the actors talk about how much they had to strengthen up their arms in order to hold the very heavy prop lightsabers convincingly. That's attention to detail, particularly the detail of lightsaber battles in the OT.


Lightsabre's are light...they're nearly weightless outside the hilt...that's canon...so what exactly do you mean here? How is it attention to detail?

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Because it means JJ was paying attention to the OT and implemented it in the last battle. Lightsabers are light in the PT, but heavy in the OT. I prefer the OT take on them.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

...uh...rewatch the first time Luke turns one on...one handed, swinging it around...not heavy at all.

I think you're misunderstanding what attention to detail is... Only reason he'd use props like that is because it makes it possible for the actors to actually do a duel with a prop. If there was no plastic blade for them to hit, they wouldn't be able to act out the actual battle, and the entire thing would have to be CGI.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Luke can swing his sword around like Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley and John Boyega can swing their very heavy prop lightsabers around in real life (which is stated as such by the cast during training), normal human beings in our world. They're still heavy, but not impossible to swing around. It just provides extra oomph for every strike. Watch the speed and the way the lightsabers are fought with in ESB during the Luke/Vader fight. Very similar.

And no, I know what attention to detail is as I stated where those details were in the battle. I also pointed out he was paying attention to the way the OT treats lightsabers. In other words, he wasn't slacking in that regard.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

So he didn't slack in recreating props, but he slacked in story and scene detail. OK.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Those were not due to lightsabers being heavy, but due to heavy props and a lack of good choreography/training during the OT. Only later, when they actually had access to proper choreographers ad better props did the weight issue vanish. Completely different reasons for those fights that have nothing to do with canon.

"From a phylogenetic perspective, we are all fish!"

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

The only bad choreography I ever saw in the OT was the battle between Obi and Darth in ANH. And those props looked light though I could be wrong. The Luke/Vader duel in ESB is still awesome and it's due in part to the weight which resembles Kurosawa samurai classics. The power in those strikes man. Makes every hit count.

Though, if you like the speed and acrobatics of the prequels, that's cool too. I enjoy those too. Just not preferable.

You might have to provide a link about lightsabers being light in the canon. I'm not doubting you, but even if it was retroactively made so by the prequels or the old EU, I'm not necessarily a fan. Canon doesn't equal better.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey


Well, that would also be the work of the choreographer not just JJ. His only job is to show something revealing about their characters during the battle, which he does. Rey runs away and Ren is still incredibly strong despite the wound.

Actually if we're following the way things were done in the Lucas films it would be collaboration between the two. So someone should catch discrepancies.




As gusninja has already pointed out, Rey does kick Ren in his wound, which is the 1st attack that lands him on his back and right after we see him holding his side in agony. Also, her 1st lightsaber attack that lands seems to graze his wounded side which results in him holding his left arm down near his side allowing Rey to stab his other shoulder. I'd say that's doing a good job of keeping up with the impediments of Ren while the battle unfolds.

Again, the wounds just aren't a factor before Rey's Force power up. Kylo getting struck on the shoulder by Finn was as much a result of Kylo showing off to prove he deserved possession of the lightsaber and Finn was no match for him. So Kylo letting his guard down for a second and Finn being driven by a surge of adrenaline and anger made for a lucky blow.

Again, not once did Kylo's wound of the abdomen or wound on the shoulder ever affect him in his battle with Rey before her power up.




Another reason the battle is enjoyable is the weight of the lightsaber are taken into account and matches the weight of what we see in ESB and ROTJ. In the special features, the actors talk about how much they had to strengthen up their arms in order to hold the very heavy prop lightsabers convincingly. That's attention to detail, particularly the detail of lightsaber battles in the OT.

Even if this was an attempt at attention to detail, it doesn't excuse failure in other areas.



"Silly TFA apologists!" = 🙉🙈🙊

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

We might have to agree to disagree about his wound not affecting him during the battle with Finn.

But something to consider:

The anguish and pain he's showing during his fight with Finn, is very apparent. They show his wound and his reaction to his wound multiple times, he screams at Finn in the least calm and collected way and while he's strong, he's not exactly at 100%. Compare Ren during the battle to his relative cool in the rest of the film* and it's obvious he's physically and emotionally compromised. Lucky blow from Finn maybe, but his lack of concentration led to him dropping his guard which in turn led to the blow.

*Yeah, I know he had that one tantrum. Calm and collected for the rest though.

And no it didn't impede his abilities for the fight with Rey before the force power-up (mostly due to her running away for most of the fight) but remember the argument was whether or not it affected the battle at all, not when. And how that relates to the believability of Rey winning as a whole.

After the force helped her gain the upper hand, she took advantage of his wound - Twice. And the more I watch that last part the more obvious it is the wound not only took part, but also was the deciding factor in Ren losing balance and ultimately falling. Literally, she slices his wound, kicks him in the wound and he falls. He gets back up, but not before holding his side in considerable pain.

She tapped into the force, the force gave her strength, she used said strength to get away from the cliff and then attack back, she then used his wound to win the battle.

But this is where TFA succeeds. Getting us SW geeks to argue over whether it was the force or his wound. The intention was both, but by putting two factors into play during the battle it gives us fans something to argue about and discuss non-stop. Great stuff.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

...so again, the wound was ultimately irrelevant. She pretty much defeated him completely without taking advantage of the wound. And the kick was just rubbing salt into it.

"Not all change is progress, as not all movement is forward."

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Rubbing salt isn't irrelevant because it's unnecessary. It's shades of the Dark Side.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Yep. And it mirrors Luke's channeling of the Dark Side in ROTJ to beat Vader. Forceful, angry attacks rather than precise calm blows.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Is she Han's daughter-she looked so much like Leia too...

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Yes an no: Rey has traces of the best of all the characters:

* She flies, repairs and upgrades the Falcon like not seen before, and becomes his captain (including Chewie as her adoring co-pilot and fan), and she is an hotshot with Han's gun and turret.
* She inherits Luke saber and can do outrageous Jedi stuff by basically just closing her eyes, and she beats Kylo Ren, master of the Ren several times.
* She goes on the mission for Leia to meet Leia's long lost brother who Leia desperately was looking for to save the galaxy.
* Incredibly, she is must be related to C-3PO and R2 too, as she understands all languages including droid and Wookie) and she can all mechanics, including disrupting security systems.

So, Rey represents the best in all the good OT characters, and of human race itself. She is part of all of us, and we are lucky to claim a small part of her.
de gustibus non est disputandum

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

thank you!

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey


Echoed in Han Solo's reply to Rey's insecure "I think I can handle myself" is "I know you can, that's why I'm giving it to you". Whether she believes it or not, the force, like Han, is with Rey.


But that is exactly what a Mary Sue is. Han being so fond of her almost instantly is so out of character for him. And Rey doesn't want the Force, but the Force wants her. Please... Why? I hate the turning of the Force into a god-like entity, eager to present itself through yet another savior. Blah.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Or it's because Han has softened up over 30 years and is wiser for it. He also used to not believe in the force, now he does.

If it's for the sake of preferential treatment of the main character, then it's for wish fulfillment and again there's nothing inherently wrong or unenjoyable about that.

A farm boy who is picked up by a Jedi to destroy the death star is also preferential. Nothing wrong with it.

When accusing any character of being a Mary Sue, it's important to recognize what's wrong with a Mary Sue in the 1st place. If it's relatabilty then Rey's doubt circumvents it. If it's believability, you're a fan of the wrong universe.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Han is back to his rough smuggler career and dealing with the worst scum in the universe, but nevertheless he has softened and became wiser and treats newcomers with warmth and respect nowadays. Backwards progression in terms of morality and the greater good, but forward in terms of wisdom and hospitality. Really? Sounds Mary-Sueish temptingly convenient, but quite silly. Even for a fantasy universe. And as an extra bonus he suddenly not only believes, but becomes force-sensitive and embraces Rey because he senses she is ... what exactly? Come on, even the movie didn't go that far...

Obi-Wan knows very well who Luke is, he has been assigned to watch over him. Han meets Rey for the very first time and has no idea who she is. Oh, I forgot, no one does. So why the preference?

Rey's doubts are actually the biggest problem with her relatability. She doesn't know if she wants the force, but the force insists on projecting itself through her and comes at handy in the blink of an eye in ways it never did before in the fantasy universe we are familiar with. If I were a Disney princess, I would find this very relatable.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

People can grow in certain ways and stay the same in others. Not out of the ordinary. He prefers Rey because she has shown that she is proficient in understanding the falcon. No better reason to ask someone to join their crew.

And yes, the force has come in handy in this fantasy universe before. Whether or not it's choosing to run it's will through them or they're tapping into it, it's standard for this film series.

And her relatability wouldn't be the problem in this case but the rules of the force. Which is getting into an entirely different criticism of the film. But honestly, arguing the rules of the force is the equivalent of Lucas trying to use midichlorians to make the force make sense. Ruins it really.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Rules apply even to fantasy concepts. Without certain rules and limitations the fantasy narrative would become completely pointless.
And yes, my greatest criticism of the film is that whatever Rey is using, it is not the Force as it's been presented to us in the previous movies. I really hate the just-close-your-eyes-and-wish-for-it precedence over practice and training. This completely ruins the force for me. Much more than those useless midichlorians.
And it does affect Rey's relatability because we need some understanding to be able to relate. And we don't know why Rey suddenly changes the pre-established rules and limitations of the force. And after seeing the story arcs of Anakin and Luke it kind of feels too easy and undeserved.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Without rules and limitations it would just become surreal, lol.

But that's understandable actually. I hate whenever a character in a movie does something that's not in line with that character for the sake of the plot. If you think about the force as a character, then yeah I get it. Although, I don't think that's the case here as she's not wishing for the force, just tapping into it naturally. If you have a problem with Rey's gift, you still have Finn who has a long ways to go, granted you like his character.

Honestly, I'm not sure how they could present an insanely strong and gifted force user without said character pulling off some crazy jedi tricks with no prior training. If her character calls for it then let it be. Her training will happen in time.

Still, I know where you're coming from. It's the reason why I think she'll be defeated in some way in VIII.

Rey's strength is still enjoyable though as it's exciting to see how strong she'll become in the next two movies if she's already a badass in this one. I believe the doubts and fears we see in Rey this time around could result in a ticking time bomb in the next. And again, her strength doesn't overshadow the intricacies and universality of her character for me. Still relatable & enjoyable.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

blendzim wrote:

Honestly, I'm not sure how they could present an insanely strong and gifted force user without said character pulling off some crazy jedi tricks with no prior training. If her character calls for it then let it be.

But they did that in ANH. Luke's potential is established by portraying him as the son of a man who was a Jedi and great star pilot, and his Force feat at the end is made credible first by showing Luke receiving at least some degree of instruction, and then by showing how the brilliant shot he makes was almost achieved by another pilot moments before.

Her training will happen in time.

But this is the wrong way round. You don't establish powers before training - or not impressive powers, at any rate - but after. Luke can summon his lightsaber a foot or two at the beginning of ESB, but his ability to duel with Vader later is made credible due to the repeated montages of him training earlier.

Rey's strength is still enjoyable though as it's exciting to see how strong she'll become in the next two movies if she's already a badass in this one.

I fear the opposite! If Rey's so extraordinary here, how absurdly over-powered will she be in Episode VIII? On the other hand, if, like the preceding trilogies, she fails in the second instalment - possibly losing a limb, or hand - won't it smart all the more, given the pedestal she's been placed on?

To IMDB, or not to IMDB - because I've got some questions.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Is Luke naturally gifted at the force though??? It seems his ability is slowly developed as he learns it. In other words, if chewy was taken on the same journey as Luke, he probably would've developed the same set of skills. Nothing in the OT suggests that his lineage helps with his force powers, it just sets him up for the journey ahead. Rey on the other hand is NATURALLY gifted and therefore if we are to see she's naturally gifted we need to see that gift before she trains.

Absurly over-powered is exactly what I'm excited for 😀 That and her inevitable defeat which will surely involve her contradictions as a character. Sweet, sweet character development.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

blendzim wrote:

Is Luke naturally gifted at the force though??? It seems his ability is slowly developed as he learns it...Nothing in the OT suggests that his lineage helps with his force powers

We learn in ANH that Luke's father was a Jedi and the best star pilot in the galaxy. Luke is - as Beru states and Owen fears - a chip of the old block.

We also learn in ESB that Luke's father was a powerful Jedi, before learning that Luke's father is Vader, rather than having been killed by him.

It's true that the notion of the Skywalker bloodline as being particularly attuned to the Force, and of Vader being Luke's father, is a retcon, but it still seems to be the case in ANH that Luke is an apt pupil.

In other words, if chewy was taken on the same journey as Luke, he probably would've developed the same set of skills.

Oh come on! This has given me an amusing mental image, but come off it!

Absurdly over-powered is exactly what I'm excited for. That and her inevitable defeat which will surely involve her contradictions as a character. Sweet, sweet character development.

But how will this work? If Rey becomes even more extraordinary, doesn't that make Luke redundant, unless we see him displaying Yoda like power? And what about Ren? Assuming he defeats, at least temporarily, Rey in their rematch, how powerful will he have to be? And, given the pedestal she's been placed upon already, won't Rey's defeat really leave a bitter taste in the mouth?

To IMDB, or not to IMDB - because I've got some questions.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Luke won't be redundant if his training focuses on Rey's inner weakness = insecurity. Just like Yoda taught Luke how to overcome his inner weakness = impatience. (Whether Yoda succeeded is another debate) In other words, training isn't all about being the best with the force. It's about training the pupil's character, to keep them from the dark side and responsibility with their talents.

But yes, I do expect Luke to be on par with Yoda and no, I'm not sure why a bad taste would be left with a Rey defeat. It would be just part of her journey. I have no personal stakes in her "winning" outside of enjoying her as a fictional character lol.

Oh and you're not giving Chewie enough credit ;-).

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

The mental gymnastics that people go through to defend this awful character are staggering.

This is how you 'explain' Rey, and it really is this simple: TFA is almost a direct copy of ANH and Rey is just a gender swapped Luke. BUT, thanks to the caterwauling of the perpetually outraged it is nigh on impossible to have a female character fail at anything or suffer any kind of physical harm without the usual cries of 'misogyny!'.

So what do they do? They simply have her succeed. Every time Luke failed or suffered any harm they have Rey succeed.

Luke is beaten by the Sandmen - Rey beats up the thugs.
Luke is rescued by Ben - Rey rescues herself.
Luke is shown to be ignorant and childlike in the MF ('what's that flashing?') - Rey flies the MF better than anyone else we've ever seen in the entire Saga at her first attempt.
Luke needs to be trained and guided in the ways of the force - Rey doesn't need help from anyone, least of all from a man.
Luke has his family murdered and with their roasting corpses left out in the dust - Rey's family is 'missing'.

And the massive irony is that all this is massively sexist! There is a huge lack of well written female characters - especially in modern Sci-fi and Rey is another nail in the coffin. This is a character written by two old men who think women are so delicate and fragile they can't handle a women being written with flaws and who has to go through a painful journey.

In 1977 we had a well written female character - one who was shown to be able to hold her own against the men, who had many amazing qualities but also a few clear flaws - and now thanks to 30 years of 'progress' we get this pat-on-the-head-and-run-along caricature. What a joke.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

No mental gymnastics needed. Everything about Rey's needing to belong is there and meant to be understood on 1st viewing.

And again, I agree about her needing to be defeated in some way. Which I'm sure we'll see in VIII and will in some way relate back to Rey's doubt. Otherwise, Luke's training of Rey would be meaningless. I don't think studio execs would be too happy to fund a movie where the main character has nothing to learn. Remember, Rian asked for changes to TFA to fit his movie. It will all come together in time.

Whether or not her losing is a product of sexism or just not wanting their protagonist to lose in their 1st movie, I'm not sure. Still doesn't ruin the movie.

It kind of reminds of the criticism of Forrest Gump because it subtly supports conservative values. It might, but outside influences doesn't necessarily make for a bad movie.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey


I don't think studio execs would be too happy to fund a movie where the main character has nothing to learn


They just did!



And again, I agree about her needing to be defeated in some way. Which I'm sure we'll see in VIII and will in some way relate back to Rey's doubt.


"It'll all be fixed in the sequel!"

I seem this argument used so many times. If a film - or key parts of the story - need to be fixed or retconned in the sequel then it's a sh*t film. Being the first part of a trilogy is no excuse - TFA didn't just leave unanswered questions as to where the story is going, it left unanswered questions to where it came from. And why? Because JJ lacks the talent to tell that story. He lack the talent to tell any story. He has essentially given us episode VIII and someone else is going to have to come up with an episode IX that also serves as an episode VII.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Well, it doesn't need to be retconned. And I'm not arguing that VIII needs to "fix" anything about VII. Just that VIII will reinforce what VII already has established in terms of Rey's character. I just agree about her needing to be defeated slightly to set up more investment for the sequel. It's a small nitpick and one I actually go back and forth on as I greatly enjoy the last battle. And truly I hate the rules and limitations people have set forth that a main character has to lose in order to be fun or interesting. I know very few mains who actually lose anything of real value throughout their run. Indiana Jones, James Bond, Bugs Bunny... All Gary Stus according to the criteria and still very enjoyable.

As far as unanswered questions, that's kind of in line with all SW films. They even talk about it in the special features about how each installment feels like you're being dropped into the middle of a story but not necessarily at the beginning. People were asking all kinds of geeky questions after ANH and they're doing the same for TFA.

These movies are all about giving us a little taste of this world and then expanding on it later.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Oh and she did learn something. She learned that 1.) She's got a pretty good grip on this whole force thing & 2.) She has to take this journey and can't hold on to the idea that her parents are coming back for her on Jakku.

That's why at the end we see her go to Luke, instead of going back to Jakku like she initially wanted to.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Amen! I can't believe most women don't see how sexist the Rey character really is.

Re: CinemaWins on TFA - Defending Rey

Such an awful character
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