Arts, Column

Trailers And Tickets, Fear And Hope For ‘The Force Awakens’

If you read this column, you know I have an unyielding affinity for Star Wars. If you regularly keep up with Star Wars news, you know that tickets for The Force Awakens and the film’s final trailer were both released Monday night. It therefore follows that since I have a public format to express my “varied” opinions, and since Star Wars is actually newsworthy again, I must talk about Star Wars.

Well, for a while there I’d actually lost a bit of the hype I had reverently clung to after the last trailer came out. It’s been about six months since any footage was released and I think there had actually been a couple days in that time frame that nothing Star Wars related actually went through my mind. But like I said, only for a couple days. Now Disney’s gone and ruined everything again. I can’t stop myself from pulling up the trailer in the library, allowing people to walk by with that bewildered look on their face probably thinking, “Really? Here? Now? I saw you crying over that thing when I walked by an hour ago. How many times are you going to watch it?” Though I’ll never actually say it, the phrase “haters gonna hate” is a big part of my mantra.

I can’t stay away from this new trailer. It’s flashy. It’s got a fantastic soundtrack. TIE-fighters are getting shot down left and right. There’s no end to the excitement that the two-minute clip brings me. It’s strange. Recognizing how excited this small clip makes me brings out two very different emotionsincomprehensible hope and absolute fear.

There’s this hour-long documentary called Making Star Wars: Episode I that I like to put on every once in awhile. It covers everything from the actor’s sword training to the making of the practical and computer-animated effects for the film, and even John Williams composing the score in Apple Studios in London. It’s a beautiful documentary. At the end of it, there’s a small clip about all the hype around the country leading up to Episode I’s release. It shows the news coverage of opening day, the fans waiting in gargantuan lines outside theaters, and the moment people were finally let in. One man, cloaked in his Jedi robes, lightsaber at his waist, fell to his knees thanking the Lord when he was handed his clipped ticket and he entered the theater.

I’m going to be that guy. And, just like him, I’m not going to do it to be funny or try to get attention. That’ll just be my natural reaction. But that man, that poor, poor man, probably went on to experience one of the biggest letdowns of his life that night. Maybe he wasn’t disappointed, but I’m assuming, like the majority of teenagers at the time whom I’ve heard speak of that evening, that he walked away feeling confused. He let his expectations get the better of him.

To be honest, I’ve done the same thing. This is the most anticipated film of all timefor me. I think I’ve got it in my head somewhere that this could win the Best Picture award at the next Oscars ceremony. As much as I remind myself that this thinking is only setting myself up for disaster, I can’t shake off this hope. Do I think it’ll be better than the prequel films? Undoubtedly, yes, but I think my real problem is that I’m asking The Force Awakens for something that might be impossible. I’m asking it to take me back to how I felt watching Star Wars as a kid, or at least how I remember watching them back then.

Is what I’m subconsciously asking The Force Awakens to do for me possible? I have no idea. All I know is that when I watch these trailers, I get goosebumps. Nothing else gives me goose bumps like that. I don’t even remember the classic Star Wars trilogy giving me goose bumps. I haven’t felt this impatient since I was a little kid, but the difference between then and now is that now I understand that warrantless speculation doesn’t make time go any faster. I guess there’s no way to tell how I’ll feel until I’m sitting there in my seat on Thursday, Dec. 17 at 7:15 p.m. Yes, I already bought my ticket.

Featured Image by Walt Disney Studios

October 21, 2015