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Forced and messy, final film feels

The climactic end of the latest “Star Wars” saga, “The Rise of Skywalker,” came with tears and frustration.

Director J.J. Abrams returned to direct the final film starring Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Adam Driver and Oscar Isaacs.

The movie starts off with Kylo Ren, played by Driver, discovering a hidden world, Exegol, where the evil Emperor Palpatine has been planning his agenda to end Rey, played by Ridley, along with the Resistance.

While Rey is being trained by Leia Organa, Finn and Poe (played by Boyega and Isaacs, respectively) inform them about Palpatine’s return. All but Leia go to Pasaana, a planet that Rey learned from Luke Skywalker’s notes holds a Sith wayfinder to lead the direction to Exegol.

On Pasaana, the trio is met by Lando Calrissian who helps them escape Stormtroopers after being discovered. They find a dagger with Sith writing on it that C-3PO can read but cannot say out loud because of his programming. After finding an abandoned ship belonging to a Jedi hunter, they are met by Kylo Ren and his Knights of Ren, who capture Chewbacca.

After unleashing a new power of lightning from her hands while trying to save Chewbacca, Rey and her gang travel to Kijimi, a planet Poe used to frequent before his piloting days. They run into an old friend of his, Zorii Bliss, who is still holding a grudge after Poe left to join the Resistance. After Rey persuades her to help them, Zorii leads them to Babu Frik, a droidsmith who can reprogram C-3PO so he can speak the writing from the dagger.

From then on, they deal with their own individual challenges separately while trying to defeat Palpatine. But once the movie is over, viewers are left with a handful of questions. Spoiler alert!

Why did Rey and Ben kiss? How was Palpatine able to create hundreds of ships unnoticed? Did anyone else think Keri Russell’s character, Zorii Bliss, was not needed? Why was Kelly Marie Tran’s character, Rose Tico, screen time limited to about a minute and a half? What’s the story with the Knights of Ren? Who would want to create a child with Palpatine knowing how he looks? Why did J.J. Abrams steal ideas from “Avengers: Endgame”?

Watching the film the first time, I was happy and excited. I wouldn’t consider myself a hardcore fan of “Star Wars,” but I do enjoy the movies and TV shows. After seeing it a second time though, I started to question some choices made.

To me, this film seemed to be made more for the fans and not explore the story director and writer Rian Johnson left for us from “The Last Jedi.” While I am happy this movie wrapped up unanswered questions from the previous two films, it left viewers with more.

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