JJ Abrams is a filmmaker who learns from experience: responsible for a successful restart for Star Trek, he applied the same logic when taking over another classic science fiction series, transforming Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens in a sequel that also sounds like remake. With this, the director takes the viewer to experience a mixed feeling of nostalgia and charm in the face of newness, building a work that recreates iconic moments while seeming to discover new elements of an already known universe, watch now the movie and discover how they adressed the plot this time.
Written by Michael Arndt, JJ Abrams and veteran Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back, Raiders of the Lost Ark), this Force Awakens takes place three decades after The Return of the Jedi and (don't worry, I won't reveal anything that is not in the trailers or in the first act of the film) brings the galaxy under the threat of the First Order, which emerged from the rubble of the Empire. Facing the resistance of the rebels, the villains view the destruction of Luke Skywalker (Hamill) as fundamental to their success, dedicating their efforts to find him - and the only clue to his whereabouts is under the power of the little droid BB- 8. Thus, when he is "adopted" by young Rey (Ridley), the girl is chased by the threatening Kylo Ren (Driver), who also does not sympathize with ex-stormtrooper Finn (Boyega).
As it is easy to see only from the brief description above, the basic structure of The Force Awakens closely follows that of A New Hope - and the similarities also occur in the other two acts of the narrative. In the same way, if Luke was a young man who felt out of place and gradually discovered his vocation and his place in the world under the guidance of Obi-Wan, here the dynamic is repeated between Rey and another veteran, following a journey that is very reminiscent of of the original padawan in its mishaps, dramas and learnings. And if before we had Darth Vader acting as the Emperor's henchman, now we have another masked one acting under the command of a ruthless supreme leader who abhors the Jedi tradition.
The similarities, of course, do not appear only in the plot, but in the other narrative aspects: the film opens, as it should be, in a sign that summarizes the premise and that gives way to a panorama that goes from the stars to an object of interest (in this case, a planet), while the montage invests in several curtains (those transitions between scenes that involve a bar crossing the screen) and irises that close at some point in the scene. In addition, the classic rhymes of the saga are maintained through dialogues ("I have a bad feeling about this.") And the relationships between the characters, who live in conflicts ... quite familiar to the fans, say.
In other words, The Force Awakens knows how to deal with mythological elements of popular culture, recognizes them as such, demonstrates unrestrained joy at being able to use them and does not seem to believe in his own luck in doing so. In this sense, even master John Williams shows reverence for his own compositions - and when Vader's helmet appears briefly (calm down, this is in the trailer!), It is clear that the classic theme of the character can be heard quickly. Thus, over the 135 minutes of projection, each item of the original revisited trilogy is reintroduced with absolute idolatry, already anticipating the excitement of fans when seeing them on the screen - a posture that could become irritating or presumptuous, but that ends up being just contagious, watch online Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens to find out why.
However, recovering established aspects of the series is only part of Abrams' good work, which is also successful in introducing its new members: John Boyega, like Finn, demonstrates not only having immense charisma as an enviable comic timing, while that Oscar Isaac evokes the courage of Poe Dameron with talent.
Still, it is newcomer Daisy Ridley who dominates the projection by creating a strong, competent heroine whose courage sounds as a direct result of a past that, while mysterious, contains enough dramatic seeds to arouse public sympathy. And if Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford comfortably dress the skins of their old characters (and Ford, in particular, takes the opportunity to add important layers to what we already knew about Han Solo), Adam Driver almost steals the film with his Kylo Ren, who, under the frightening mask reveals a villain who, despite the controlled tone of voice, hides an impulsiveness that reveals an immaturity important for us to understand his motivations and goals (and his key scene - you will recognize it - is brilliant in suggesting all the pain experienced by him).