Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View (Audio Book Review)

Along with space battles, lightsaber duels, and a wide array of colorful creatures, Star Wars is also known for its iconic sayings. “From A Certain Point of View” is not just a clever variation of the truth explained by Obi-Wan Kenobi, it is also the title of the newest novel from a galaxy far, far away.

Star Wars: From A Certain Point of View celebrates the 40th anniversary of its cherished namesake with forty short stories that occur during A New Hope.

Every tale is told from different perspectives by various characters brought to life by a cast of renowned writers including John Jackson Miller, Matt Fraction, Christie Golden, Chuck Wendig, and Claudia Gray. The narrators range from celebrities to voice actors/narrators, including Ashley Eckstein, Marc Thompson, Jon Hamm and Neil Patrick Harris.

Some of the stories fill in minor plot holes from the film, other stories answer some long outstanding questions, and others are purely entertaining. There are some accounts that miss the mark, but the overall collection is an audible delight to the ears.

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Star Wars: The Last Jedi: Trailer Review

The official trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi was released on Monday night, along with the official movie poster. There are some beats borrowed from The Empire Strikes Back, however, it seems that they will be molded into something different.

Yes, there will a Jedi master reluctant to train the newbie with the refusal based on fear as opposed to doubt. Sleight of hand plot points round out the highly anticipated two minute and thirty-five-second preview of the Rian Johnson directed film.

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Star Wars: Phasma (Book Review)

It’s safe to say that the chrome plated Captain Phasma was highly underutilized in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Looking back on all of the hype going into the film, absolutely nothing was promised as to the importance of Phasma. Still, the plethora of merchandise in her likeness along with the fact that Brieann of Tarth herself, Gwendolyn Christie was playing the towering stormtrooper all but guaranteed this amazing new character that we never got.

Force Friday II saw the initial launch for Star Wars: The Last Jedi merchandise. There were action figures, vehicles, clothing, puzzles, nerf guns, Funko Pops, and books as far as the eye could see. One of those items was one of the new canon novels written by Delilah Dawson appropriately titled, Phasma.

Captain Phasma’s origin story is told in the form of an interrogation session where Resistance spy Vi Moradi has been captured by First Order captain, Cardinal. Cardinal dons crimson colored stormtrooper armor with a left captain’s cape just like Phasma. Cardinal is convinced that his highly respected and feared colleague cannot be trusted and believes Vi has the proof he needs to bring her down.  Continue reading

Star Wars – Thrawn is a Triumph

Millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror when the mouse officially declared that the stories in the Star Wars expanded universe as non-canon. There was a glimmer of hope when Lucasfilm stated that aspects of what is now deemed “Legends” could be brought into the new canon. At that moment, fans in unison, all wanted one character more than anyone… Grand Admiral Thrawn.

Famed author Timothy Zahn brought this character into our consciousness in 1991 with the novel Heir to the Empire, the first installment of what would become known as the “Thrawn Trilogy.”

Thrawn’s reputation as a master military tactician is legendary. Now, the character’s creator Zahn returns to the Star Wars universe and gets reacquainted with an old friend.

Thrawn serves as an origin story of the blue-skinned, red-eyed Chiss warrior, while detailing his rise to power in the Empire. Most of what we know about Thrawn is pretty much intact. Various characters that served under Thrawn in “Legends” become canon, except for Captain Pellaeon. Instead, a new character named Eli Vanto is introduced and carries the essence of Pellaeon in a younger form.

Vanto is an imperial cadet from the outer rim who talks with what could be a southern accent and is considered a “wild space yokel.” He vies for simplicity until fate brings Thrawn into his life and changes it forever. Zahn sets up Vannto as the listener’s window into how he helps Thrawn adjust to a career as an Imperial while marveling at his cunning and reserved disposition.

Click here to read the entire review at Forces of Geek.com

Third Time’s the Charm with Star Wars: Aftermath – Empire’s End

In the abstract, the Aftermath series is reminiscent of the prequel films. The first installment left a lot to be desired, the second chapter is a curious but rough read, and the finale sticks the landing well enough to earn a place on the podium.

Star Wars: Aftermath – Empire’s End, the third and concluding novel in author Chuck Wendig’s trilogy that takes place following the events of Return of the Jedi and begins building an extended bridge to The Force Awakens.

The attack on Chandrila during the organized peace talks between the New Republic and the Empire looms over the story like a dark cloud. Despite the emotional toll she’s undergone throughout the series, the resolve of Nora Wexley is an enthralling journey to follow.

Tunnel vision towards the apprehension of the galaxy’s most wanted war criminal, Grand Admiral Rae Sloan, proves to be disheartening for those closest to Nora. While she’s not seething mad, her inner turmoil demands finality regarding this perilous situation.

Check out the rest of my review of Empire’s End at Forces of Geek.com

Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Official Episode 8 Title Revealed!

Lucasfilm announced the official title to Star Wars: Episode 8 and it is…THE LAST JEDI.

This news is only going to heighten the excitement leading up to the scheduled release date of December 15, 2017. The possibilities regarding what this title could mean are almost endless. I made a video giving my thoughts the title of the next chapter in the Skywalker Saga.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story: Review

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This review is super, super late. That thing called life kept getting in the way. Plus, I’ve only seen the movie twice…TWICE!!! I could lose my street credit for being so lazy.

Star Wars takes its first steps into a larger world by going backwards in its mythology. Rogue One is the first standalone film to occur outside of the cherished episodic saga and for the most part exchanged fantasy for pragmatism.

The sheen of fantasy that’s exhibited in The Force Awakens is replaced with a tattered, war-torn luster that beautifully coincides with the narrative of how the Rebels stole the plans to the Death Star.  Continue reading

The Journey to Star Wars: Rogue One Begins with Catalyst

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“Where’s Poe Dameron?” “Why did they recast Rey?” “How is Darth Vader alive?” These are the questions that Lucasfilm’s super weapon, the Disney marketing machine, haven’t been able to quell or answer for a fair amount of moviegoers as we’re now under thirty days away from the release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

While the title’s subheading takes the place of confusing and detested words such as anthology, companion, or…prequel, acclaimed author James Luceno once again brings elegant cohesion to the political climate of the Star Wars universe by examining the passion and desire of two of the upcoming film’s main characters.

Catalyst tells the story of the connection between Imperial Commander Orson Krenic and energy scientist Galen Erso, played by Ben Mendelsohn and Mads Mikkelsen in the upcoming film, and how came together to create the first Death Star. Krenic’s manipulation of Erso spans from the Clone Wars and stops well into the Empire’s grip on the galaxy.

Krenic marvels himself as a clever over-achiever while those around him feel he’s talented but short-sighted and arrogant. While that may prove to be true in the movie, here, he has no qualms about playing the long game of deception as he desperately vies for a seat at the table…The Emperor’s table. Krenic is in charge of the project to construct a certain technological terror and needs Galen to make the super laser operational.

You read my full review here at Forces of Geek.com 

 

Trailer Reaction: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

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I’ve been skeptical of these Star Wars spin-off movies since the moment they were announced by Disney. Going backwards scares me because of how badly prequels turned out. After seeing the teaser trailer for Rogue One, the first word that comes to mind is….WOW!  Continue reading

Star Wars: The Force Awakens In-Depth Review

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Welcome to my belated review of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. As much as I wanted to write up a review as soon as the end credits rolled, I decided to wait. I wanted to avoid being “Phantom Menaced” and watch the film a few more times while the nostalgia subsided. Six trips to the theater, and a much lighter wallet, gave me some clarity on the matter.

While this is not a perfect movie, the pros heavily outweigh the cons, and its execution in giving audiences that Star Wars magic is flawless. Perhaps the film’s biggest accomplishment is the introduction of the new characters Rey, Finn, Poe Dameron, and Kylo Ren.

Han Solo, Princess Leia, and Luke Skywalker are names that transcend pop culture and therefore need no introduction. Casting and character development was the key ingredient in making this a reality for the newcomers and they were delightful in every sense of the word.  Continue reading