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Blu-ray Review- STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER
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Movie review- STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER
Blu-ray review: ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD
Blu-ray Review: HARDWARE
PHOTOGRAPHY
STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER
Blu-ray review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 142 minutes, making-of documentary, featurettes, digital copy
VIDEO: 2.39:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen) 1080p High Definition
AUDIO: English 7.1 DTS-HD MA, English 2.0 Descriptive Audio, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 DD
Subtitles (movie): English SDH, French, Spanish
Subtitles (extras disc): English SDH, French, Spanish, Korean, Portuguese, Chinese Mandarin, Cantonese

STUDIO: Lucasfilm/ Bad Robot/ Disney
Theatrical RELEASE DATE: 12-20-2019
Blu-ray/ 4K/ DVD RELEASE DATE: 3-31-2020
It appears the Emperor is alive and he is making his presence known again. Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) tracks him down with the use of a Sith wayfinder device. The remnants of the Rebel Resistance led by General Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher) sends a team of Rey (Daisy Ridley), Poe (Oscar Isaacs), Finn (John Boyega), Chewbaca, BB-8, and C-3PO on a mission to the planet of Passana to find clues to the location of the Sith planet Exegol. Kylo Ren and the Knights of Ren have tracked the team to that planet. It begins a quest that leads to the reappearance of Lando (Billy Dee Williams) and the wreckage of the Second Death Star on one of the moons orbiting Endor. This is the final battle for the fate of the universe between the Resistance and the First Order which has planet destroying Star Destroyers.

STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER is a better STAR WARS movie than the train wreck known as STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI which divided fans on whether it was a good or bad film. The final installment of the Skywalker saga does it best to wrap up the current trilogy and connect back to previous trilogies while also taking some jabs at THE LAST JEDI and making do with deleted footage of Carrie Fisher to finish Leia's arc (since she was originally supposed to the focus of Episode 9 (or Episode IX) before Carrie Fisher's untimely death on December 17, 2016). There are several Easter Eggs to previous STAR WARS movies and other parts of STAR WARS cannon (the books, comics, and animated shows). It is disappointing that Luke Skywalker died in the last one and has one scene as a force ghost. Kylo Ren's arc is satisfactorily wrapped up while Rey's arc is somewhat good and some characters get the short end like Rose, Finn, and R2-D2. The Emperor makes his return as the villain beyond the curtain while it is welcome to see Lando return for Episode IX (along with a surprise return of one character for a scene with Kylo Ren). The Knights of Ren get some use in this movie, but I wish they had more use as characters though after being talked about in Episode VII and not even being used for Episode VIII.

STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER moves along at a good pace and makes up for some of the creative choices done by director Rian Johnson. The battle scenes are well put together, but there are a few plot holes I wish they took time to get rid of when they were making this movie (and part of that may have to do with there not being a concrete plan for the latest STAR WARS trilogy from the start and THE LAST JEDI's story really throwing an ax to what was set up in THE FORCE AWAKENS. I do look forward for the rumored regime change in the STAR WARS universe as THE MANDOLORIAN TV show is one of the best things in the STAR WARS universe since ROGUE ONE and the Original Trilogy (Episodes IV, V, and VI). I do look forward to STAR WARS movies that are more of single films with the worry of them being part of some future trilogy as Lucasfilm currently shifts the focus to live action STAR WARS shows for Disney+ for the near future.

SPECILA FEATURES:
THE SKYWALKER LEGACY- two hour making-of documentary that looks back at the STAR WARS series while also looking at the making of the latest movie

PASAANA PURSUIT: CREATING THE SPEEDER CHASE
ALIENS IN THE DESERT

D-O: KEY TO THE PAST- a behind-the-scenes look at Ochi's ship and the new droid (D-O)
WARWICK & SON- a look at Warwick Davis revisiting his role of Wicket (along with his son) and the featurette includes footage from an unreleased documentary on Warwick Davis playing Wicket from the early 1980s. It also shows the various STAR WARS characters he had played in various movies since RETURN OF THE JEDI
CAST OF CREATURES- all about what it takes to bring the creature characters to life in THE RISE OF SKYWALKER

Code to download and stream a digital copy of the movie

FINAL ANALYSIS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER is a big improvement over THE LAST JEDI to finish up the last chapter of the Skywalker Saga. Despite the flaws in the story, I did rather enjoy this movie. THE SKYWALKER LEGACY is the highlight piece of the extras, but sadly the release is missing two featurettes (one is digital only (about composer John Williams) and the other is available on a bonus DVD at Target. Plus the extras disc lack the theatrical trailers, TV spots, and still galleries. I hate to say it, but the Disney STAR WARS releases don't have the attention to detail when it comes to extras to all of the STAR WARS releases before Disney bought Lucasfilm. You will probably want to buy this first version of the blu-ray if you want the extras before Disney releases the movie without the extras later on.

This review is (c) 4-6-2020 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. Send all comments to feedback@enterline-media.com and check for further content at http://enterlinemedia.tumblr.com