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FLICKANALYSIS

STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER- The Flick Fanatics (Karl)

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STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER 

Starring:

Daisy Ridley- Rey

Adam Driver Kylo Ren

John Boyega- Finn

Oscar Isaac- Poe Dameron

J.J. Abrams reassembles his cast to tell the final chapter in the Skywalker saga and bring the 42-year journey to a climactic ending with “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”

It all began with a simple statement… “A long time ago In a galaxy far, far away…” and a 42-year journey began with Director George Lucas self-funding his sci-fi film with virtual unknown actors called Star Wars: A New Hope. Star Wars would change the world and movies moving forward. May 25th 1977, I was 13 and saw the original film 3 times back to back to back, so it’s no surprise that I saw the final chapter “The Rise of Skywalker” 3 times in 3 days.

(This is a reaction review that contains No Spoiler and information already available to the public, a more in-depth review with Easter eggs and opinions and plot details will be posted in 2 weeks)

The Rise of Skywalker resumes the battle between the resistance and the First Order a few years after the events of the Last Jedi. Rey continues to train and wonder about her origin while Kylo Ren continues his quest to rule the galaxy. Rise of Skywalker reunites some familiar faces Finn (Boyega), General Leia Organa (archived footage of Carrie Fisher). Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran), Chewbacca, C3PO & R2D2 and introduces a few new ones.

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Interviews

Aquaman Highlights Wizard World St. Louis 2019!

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Temperatures are in the 70’s, flowers are blooming and superheroes are walking around downtown St. Louis……IT’S WIZARD WORLD 2019!

The annual pop culture convention that is Wizard World rolled into Saint Louis this weekend and the people of the city came out by the thousands. Wizard world features special guests from television and movies in addition to artists, video games and anything you are searching for in pop culture.

Comic-con visitors were greeted by Wizard Worlds Master of Ceremonies, Kato Kaelin who fired up the crowd before releasing them onto the show floor. A quick scan around the floor had vendors Wild Bill’s Ol’ Fashion Soda Company with delicious flavors of soda offering a bottomless cup you can purchase. Thrones fans can get a sword and padawans’ can pick up a light saber for Jedi training. There are t-shirts, POP figures, comic books, artists that will draw you as a caricature or you can have Phil Ortiz “Simpsonize” you! Some of the more unique items I saw were a vendor that made custom frames perfect for that photo op you purchased with Aquaman, another vendor that had sheet music from TV and movies that had the stars images printed on the music and Twisted Wires makes statues of superheroes out of colored electrical wire….Super Cool!

Smack dab in the middle of your buying frenzy is the autograph area that features the original Hulk, Lou Ferrigno, Holly Marie Combs and her co-stars Brian Krauss & Drew Fuller from the TV series “Charmed”, American Pie party goers Thomas Ian Nicholas & the “Sherminator” Chris Owens and SNL comedian Chris Kataan. Fans immediately began to line up for an autograph and selfies with movie stars Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters, the Crow) and original Goonie Sean Astin (Lord of the Rings trilogy, Rudy) with the crowd screaming “Goonies never die!”

Wizard World programming was so diverse that you could get help on sculpting, learn animation, get caught up with the latest fan theories on Dr. Who with the members of St. Louis CIA (Celestial Intervention agency) and listen to your favorite stars tell stories from their careers. I made the Charmed panel with Holly Marie Combs playing “den mother” to Brian Krauss and Drew Fuller as they bantered back and forth with their fans. Sean Astin was fired up on his 3rd trip to St. Louis in 4 years and he still hasn’t been up in the Arch! Astin answered question about his long and epic career from questing a ring of power to making a single play for Notre Dame and playing the “good guy parent” in Stranger Things season 2 and a similar role in his new Netflix series “No Good Nick”.

Chris Owen

Sean Astin

Ernie Hudson

Sunday is family day and kids get their cos-play on and are able to play the latest video games in the Wizard World gaming area, meet and have a picture with Detective Pikachu, train a dragon or win a prize in the kids costume contest! Sunday was also “Aquaman Day” with Jason Momoa making his first trip to Saint Louis! Jason was delayed until Sunday due to a filming conflict but Momoa greeted the thousand in attendance and put in a full day of autographs and photo ops for all his fans. People showed a wide range of emotions after meeting the star of Game of Thrones, Justice League and Frontier from jubilation to tears of joy and a few ladies actually collapsed outside the booth!

 

Every star was happy to be in St. Louis and enjoyed meeting their fans. I was fortunate to be able to talk to Sean Astin, Ernie Hudson and Chris Owens (Hear the interviews below) and talked to Jason Momoa in his booth as he autographed my 6’ Aquaman poster. Jason told me “I have never seen this! WoW!” I asked him about Frontier and his character Declan Sharpe. He said Frontier is over but he was happy how the series wrapped up and asked me if I liked the way it ended? I said I loved it but I also love the show and will miss his character. Momoa told me Declan was destined to end up alone and he was pleased with the end of the series. Jason Momoa continued to sign autographs well after the show floor closed down and Wizard World 2019 was a “Wrap!”

 

Every fan I spoke with loved the comic con and is waiting to see who will be in St. Louis for Wizard World 2020! With Game of Thrones ending and Marvel moving on to the next phase of films has a large amount of sci-fi and action film stars available to join Wizard World for the 2020 comic-con in St. Louis!

FLICKANALYSIS

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Review- Karl Sides (The FlickFanatic.com)

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STAR WARS:THE LAST JEDI

Starring: Mark Hammill- Luke Skywalker

Carrie Fisher- Gen. Organa

Daisy Ridley- Rey

Adam Driver- Kylo Ren

John Boyega- Finn

Oscar Isaac- Poe Dameron

The First Order is about to annihilate the Resistance when Luke Skywalker appears in the latest episode in the Star Wars saga, “The Last Jedi”.

Following the events of “The Force Awakens”, the First Order is about to throw the final blow against the Resistance with their newest weapon. a huge attack ship called the Dreadnot. General Organa along with Finn and her ace pilot Poe Dameron are trying to escape their secret rebel base. Poe disobeys orders and leads an attack on the Dreadnot. He loses all the bombers but does destroy the ship. The Rebel jump to lightspeed, only to have the first order track them through lightspeed and stay on their tail. As the rebel ships begin to run out of fuel the First Orders destroys them.

Rey has found Luke Skywalker and has returned his light saber to him requesting him to return and help his sister Leia and the rebels. Luke tosses the saber over the cliff and walks away. Rey is persistent and won’t let up until Luke agrees to show her the force and why the Jedi need to end. Luke sees she is very powerful with the force and also drawn to the Dark Side. He explains how he lost Ben Solo aka Kylo Ren to Snoak and the Dark Side, and he won’t do it again.  As Rey is training on the island, she has visions where her mind is linked to Kylo Ren and she can see him and converse with him. Rey believes she can turn Kylo and plans to go meet him and help the Rebels.

Rey meets with Kylo and he takes her to the Supreme Leader Snoak. Snoak explains how he is going to eliminate the Rebels and then kill Luke Skywalker then her.

Finn with fellow pilot Rose (Kelly Marie Tran) are on a mission to get a code breaker to help them get onto Snoak’s ship and destroy the machine that allows the First Order to track the rebels. The code breaker, DJ (Benecio Del Toro) sells out Finn and Rose when they make it to Snoak’s ship. Gen. Phasma reappears to execute Finn and Rose.

Gen. Organa and Poe lead the remaining rebels to a deserted base on a nearby moon, the last rebels ship flying on vapor is being helmed by Vice Admiral Holdo (Laura Dern), who moves the ship in front of the Star Destroyer and jumps to light speed splitting the First order vessel in half. The destruction allows Finn and Rose to escape, but not before Finn gets some revenge on chrome dome. Rey also escapes back to Chewy and the Millennium Falcon to search for survivors.

Kylo Ren leads the First Order to the Rebel moon to vanquish the resistance when out walks Luke Skywalker to face him!

 

The Last Jedi is a great film and is an entertaining lead into the final episode IX. The first third of the film is slow and has some plot holes, but that is soon forgotten when Skywalker and Ren battle as part of one of the best fight scenes in Star Wars history. Snoak is disappointing, but the rest of the cast are excellent. I was really impressed with new comer Kelly Marie Tran, who provides a love interest for Finn. Hammill is solid and is exactly what Star Wars fans were salivating for. The Last Jedi is also a fond farewell to our Princess Leia Organa, Carrie Fisher.

I have watched the Last Jedi twice in 3 days, it is a great film and should be seen on the big screen. I went in thinking I was going to get another Empire Strikes, but The Last Jedi is closer to Return of the Jedi and I am fine with that.

5/6 Light Sabers

Tony's Take

STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI review

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It’s Time for the Jedi to End

Breathe….Just, breathe. When we last left our heroes, Finn was recovering from Kylo Ren’s attack, Rey had encountered Luke on Ahch-To, and the Resistance was celebrating the (small) victory over the First Order after destroying Starkiller Base.  As “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” begins, both the Resistance and the First Order are Continue reading