It was 4pm on December 17th when I pulled up to the theater and started my wait. Just me and my Stormtrooper listening to songs as I waited in my car for what seemed too long. I walked into the mall that the theater attached to and was sad when I realized Chic-Fil-A was closed. The mall was desolate, barely a store was open, but for the first time in probably years the halls were packed.
It isn’t the best part of town but it was the best theater in the area. I met up with my friends around 5 which is when were allowed in to find seats. As we walked into the theater a rather large woman behind us made some comments. “Look at all these nerds! Getting here early to sit in the middle of the rows. All these nerds just have to get here early to get the best seats.” She said it very angrily. I took it upon myself to turn around and remind her that she is here doing the exact same thing she is complaining about. She responds with “Well I’m not a nerd, but I have to get here early to get good seats because of you nerds.” I remind her that in order for her to be here, at this 7pm early showing, she had to not only know the exact minute tickets went on sale but also hop online to pre-order her tickets and then make the choice to get here early. So say what she will about nerds, and like it or not, she was one of us even if it was just that night. Truth be told, we don’t want her though.
We had two more hours. So as one does we all got on our phones as we waited for the rest of our party to show up. Once Facebook ran out of entertainment we people watched as the seats began to fill in, made fun of said people and just talked about random stuff. Clifford was sick and could barely talk. However his throat affliction allowed him to do an almost spot on Jabba-The-Hut impression. It was amazing.
After a scare where one of our friends actually went to the wrong theater, we were finally all together and the movie started. I sat there for over two hours, completely drawn in to the movie. We were lucky enough to get tickets the Thursday, 7PM showing. That along with all the hype for the movie could normally be enough for us to have a good time. But the movie I watched stood all on it’s own. It’s a rare thing for a movie to surpass its expectation and rise above its own hype. Star Wars did just that.
When I was a kid it was easier for movies to capture my imagination and draw me in. Whether that’s because I was a kid or that movies were just that much better back then who is to say. But not since the first time I watched Jurassic Park in the theater has a movie drawn me in like The Force Awakens. I nearly forgot how it felt for a movie to affect me like a video game can. After The Force Awakens I had the same sense of pure joy I felt after playing Uncharted 2, The Last of Us, Dark Souls 2, GTA V and definitely To the Moon. As the credits rolled I just sat there processing what I just watched. Nearly the entire theater did the same thing. During the movie the entire audience laughed, cheered and even cried(I didn’t cry). The Force Awakens is the movie Star Wars fans have been after ever since Return of the Jedi. They did in one movie what the prequels failed to do with an entire trilogy. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy and respect episodes 1, 2 and 3 as entries into the universe but none of them have the magic, nostalgia factor and fan service that Episode 7 has.
I can’t say much more about the movie without giving anything away so I will stop there. Just make sure you go see it and avoid spoilers before going in. When I went in I was completely blind to it. I knew nothing. I watched the very first teaser months ago and that was it. I’m glad I did it that way. I can’t recommend the movie enough. I also can’t accurately describe how much I enjoyed it, I don’t have the vocabulary. Maybe one day.