Why I’m Afraid of the Impact from the New Stars Wars Movie

James S Russell

Alex Clark, my 12-year-old lunch buddy friend and I watched Star Wars: The Force Awakens. He said, “It was good, but it seemed like they used a lot of clips from old Star Wars movies. That’s what my brother said, and he was right.”

Their comments matched my surprise the movie didn’t include modern technology. In the first scene the new spherical droid, BB-8, hustled back from a roll in the forest to warn about an attack instead of using a voice-activated mobile phone.

The evil enemy, called First Order, had a massive air base without moving walkways. Surveillance cameras didn’t direct clone troopers to heroes walking in hallways or climbing walls in plain view.

Those are quibbles. The arc of the story is resistance fighters imbued by a good force and supported by the New Republic using violence to overthrow the violent evil First Order. I cheered on the resistance fighters just as I did in the first movie in 1977.

The trouble is I’ve lost faith in our foreign policy of supporting resistance fighters since the U.S. and our allies lost the Vietnam War in 1975. Encouragingly, the united Vietnam is thriving and welcoming U.S. tourists.

Coincidently, since 1977 NATO and allied forces have stubbornly supported resistance fighters to topple dark side regimes in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya, among others. Allies declared military victories and drew down military forces. But do we see peace? Am I the only one appalled by the tragic lives of people living in Afghanistan, Libya and Iraq?

Are we going to be bombarded by Star Wars sequels until fighters ultimately triumph? Will there be a sequel of the rebuilding? Will our nation increase support for violent resistance fighters in dozens of existing despotically ruled nations?

Throughout this movie the heroes believe recruiting Jedi Luke Skywalker and delivering his customized lightsaber weapon is their only hope of reigniting the unifying power of the force. When they piece together the cryptic map to Skywalker’s hiding place, I saw a luminescent cross in the middle of the path. Was the message implying our heroes had to trample over the cross to deliver it, or that it was the Christian way to empower the force?

Was I mistaken about the cross? I didn’t find references to it in Internet blogs. But I saw it, the symbol of Jesus’ non-violence.  Non-violence was the force Gandhi used to win freedom from England in contrast to the U.S. Continental Army’s defeat of the British army. Nelson Mandela used nonviolence to overthrow apartheid in South Africa. Nonviolence works.

Alex listened to me raise these questions. He said resistance fighters and people on both sides of wars always believe they’re the good guys. He warned me that when people have a fun experience, they shouldn’t use logic on it.  It’ll take away the fun.

When I read him a draft of this article, he admitted he’d seen me enjoying the tense fight scenes. The more I thought about his sardonic answer, the more disappointed I was about my enjoyment of the movie.

The new Star Wars excited me, but I’m afraid it glorifies violence to achieve peace. That approach isn’t working for our nation.  Am I alone with this feeling? Is my fear unreasonable?

 

 

About Russellsclearskies

Writing to poke fun at a retired klutz like me who's curiously exploring the absurdities and complexities of the good life. .
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6 Responses to

  1. kay says:

    Perhaps I was the only one who heard it in the movie, but there was reference to Luke Skywalker having gone away and having now developed the ability to balance the good and the dark side. My first thought was it was a great hint about the next movie. My second was that it would be refreshing to see a presentation of how to co-exist, do the hard work of reconciliation, find some positive in the negative and acknowledge that there is a dark part to all, even revolutionaries:)

  2. jaseyster@aol.com says:

    gosh, Jim….I wish I had seen the new Star Wars movie….but have not….if I do,…I will pay good attention to your comments….love your lunch buddy….good for you….sincerely, Jolly

  3. Jane Covode says:

    No, it is not unreasonable. When will we learn war is not the answer? Obama is trying and I salute his and Kerry’s efforts to try diplomacy. As the President said, did we not learn anything from Viet Nam and Afgahanastan? He could have added Libya. The idea of carpet bombing is what is not only unreasonable but very scary.

  4. Cliff Bates says:

    I was wondering James why my comment was not included in the responses ? This happened previously about 2 years ago on the Loop Trail. Surely my comments aren’t that bad, or poorly written ? If there is some reason, it’d be interesting to know what it is, rather than just writing into the void for an exercise.

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