“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” made its long-awaited world premiere in Hollywood last night and critics were left both thrilled and disappointed by the much-touted final entry in the Skywalker saga. “The Rise of Skywalker” finds “The Force Awakens” helmer J.J. Abrams back in the director’s chair following Rian Johnson’s “The Last Jedi.” The latter film opened in 2017 to vast critical acclaim, but Johnson’s script earned a polarizing response from “Star Wars” fans for the way it upended conventions and side-stepped fan theories. It appears Abrams has course-corrected the franchise with “The Rise of Skywalker” in a way that critics are finding frustrating.
The New York Times carpetbagger Kyle Buchanan respond on Twitter to “The Rise of Skywalker” by writing, “[The film] could only have been ruder to Rian Johnson if they had motion-smoothed it.”
IGN’s deputy entertainment manager Laura Prudom added, “The emotional highs are spectacular, and there are a lot of payoffs (some earned, some not). But some choices feel like an unnecessary course-correct from ‘The Last Jedi’ and some just plain don’t make sense. Need to see it again.”
The biggest early criticism being lobbed at “The Rise of Skywalker” is that Abrams and Chris Terrio’s script packs way too much plot into a final installment. Uproxx’s Mike Ryan says the film is “certainly the most convoluted ‘Star Wars.’ The first half gets so bogged down with exposition and new plot and doodads and beacons and transmitters, it feels like it should have been three movies on its own.”
While the film disappointed several critics, it still managed to impress others. Fandango’s Erik Davis called “Rise of Skywalker” a “terrific finale” and “a wonderful way to end the Skywalker story.”
Disney will release “The Rise of Skywalker” in theaters nationwide December 20.
My favorite Star Wars are the ones that take their time and focus on the characters. The whole first half felt like all exposition. It does get better. And Lando rules. But there’s just so much plot it feels so rushed. And the Emperor stuff is so weird.
— Mike Ryan (@mikeryan) December 17, 2019
I’m still processing #StarWars #TheRiseofSkywalker. The emotional highs are spectacular, and there are a lot of payoffs (some earned, some not). But some choices feel like an unnecessary course-correct from The Last Jedi and some just plain don’t make sense. Need to see it again pic.twitter.com/NcgBbAeCVx
— Laura Prudom (@LauInLA) December 17, 2019
RISE OF SKYWALKER could only have been ruder to Rian Johnson if they had motion-smoothed it
— Kyle Buchanan (@kylebuchanan) December 17, 2019
So, I’m not too surprised and at times I felt too much fan service was given, but #TheRiseofSkywalker is everything and nothing that you’re expecting.
So I guess what my immediate reaction is: God I love this franchise and I’ll miss the Skywalker saga.
— Yolanda Machado (@SassyMamainLA) December 17, 2019
I’m gonna need a minute to digest #StarWarsTheRiseofSkywalker. There’s so much movie in this movie. But its best moments are the quietest and most human. Giving this more of a think, though.
— Adam B. Vary (@adambvary) December 17, 2019
Epic. All of it. #TheRiseofSkywalker is a terrific finale that is just stuffed with so much of everything. Action, adventure — answers!! — humor, heart, love, and grit. I spent the entire second half with tears in my eyes – a wonderful way to end the Skywalker story pic.twitter.com/K2NhHSGWzM
— Erik Davis (@ErikDavis) December 17, 2019
#TheRiseofSkywalker is a lot. It’s like 9 movies of plot in one. Going to take me about 9 days to process.
— Chris Taylor (@FutureBoy) December 17, 2019
#TheRiseOfSkywalker is ummmmmm a lot! tons to love here, no shortage of crowd pleasing moments and twists and cameos, but also quite a bit to 🤔. some faves: jannah 💜, d-0 💚, finn of course 🖤. and what a lovely send off for our general leia 💕🚀💫
— Angie J. Han (@ajhan) December 17, 2019
I absolutely loved it.
And now I feel … pic.twitter.com/5wkQh6v97G
— Anthony Breznican (@Breznican) December 17, 2019
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker has everything you want and more.
Which I don’t necessarily think is a good thing.
I loved parts, I didn’t love others, and I’m leaving the theater very, very conflicted about it. pic.twitter.com/dOYAP6Ntbi
— Germain Lussier (@GermainLussier) December 17, 2019
I’m emotional, overwhelmed, surprised, shocked & stunned. More than anything, I’m happy. Thanks for coming through one more time, Star Wars.#TheRiseOfSkywalker
— Mark Ellis (@markellislive) December 17, 2019
— Grae Drake (@graedrake) December 17, 2019
2/ There are SO many moments of pure audience delight. At one point in mid of #RiseofSkywalker, someone yelled “Yeah JJ!” and the whole audience erupted into cheers. This happened several more times.
It is the most ‘original trilogy’ movie since the ‘original trilogy’. pic.twitter.com/qPd9LBzov4
— Matthew Ball (@ballmatthew) December 17, 2019
There is good in Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker. But there is more that is disappointing. There are a number of choices that just don’t track, fan service that doesn’t work, and ignored details that are missed. I’m bummed. #StarWarsRiseofSkywalker pic.twitter.com/Ztk0VzGc6H
— Eric Eisenberg (@eeisenberg) December 17, 2019
Well… #TheRiseOfSkywalker is a drastic departure from TLJ, but also not as invigorating as TFA. It is a movie packed with action (it’s seriously nonstop), but also jammed with fan service. @starwars fans – brace for the debates. pic.twitter.com/DjKo9ejRWw
— CinemaBlend (@CinemaBlend) December 17, 2019