This time, I did not have an opening-day deadline for my Star Wars movie review. Thank the Maker!

Instead, I’m writing my review over the course of a few days, after reflecting, writing, and talking with people who loved it, people who hated it, fans who were satisfied, and fans who were disappointed.

The whole experience of anticipating the movie, seeing it, and discussing it afterward has been an emotional rollercoaster. Like so many people, my connection to Star Wars is not just about a relationship with some movies — it’s about how my own imagination, my passions, and my creativity were formed within a wonderland of characters, relationships, histories, conflicts, environments, and sensory experiences. So it’s difficult to look closely at one film, see it clearly, and write about it fairly without being swayed to favor it for its past glories and triumphs, and without being swayed to be cynical because of its past failures and betrayals. 

I have been discussing the film in a private Facebook group with readers of this blog who have become Looking Closer Specialists — that is, they’ve shown their support for this website by contributing to the cost of keeping it alive. (I run this site without funding for it, and without advertising income, so I am grateful for the help in sustaining it.)

If you’d like to become a Looking Closer Specialist, get in on first-impression discussions of films with me and with this website’s best friends, and get your name listed in the “credits” of this site, read this and follow the instructions.

Meanwhile, I am still preparing my review. Late tonight or tomorrow morning, this post will disappear and the review will take its place.