When Star Wars: The Force Awakens hit theaters last year, it instantly became a money-making machine the likes of which we had never seen. Suffice it to say, Disney’s decision to purchase Lucasfilm for $4 billion in 2012 was nothing short of a brilliant business move.
Anchored by nostalgia and an entirely new cast mixed in with some recognizable favorites, Star Wars: The Force Awakens immediately began to break any number of box office records, including becoming the fastest film to ever pass the $1 billion threshold in global box office receipts. But despite the film’s uncanny ability to print money, not everyone was of the mind that Star Wars: The Force Awakens was actually a good movie.
As we highlighted a few months back, many of the film’s more negative reviews centered on the fact that it effectively presented viewers with the same exact story we had already seen decades earlier. And recently joining that chorus of naysayers is none other than Titanic and Avatar director James Cameron.
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During a recent interview, Cameron was asked what he thought about Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and while the famed director tried to remain diplomatic at first, he couldn’t help but let his real thoughts on the film shine through.
George Lucas is a friend of mine, and he and I were having a good conversation the other day about it.
I don’t want to say too much about the film. I also have a lot of respect for J.J. Abrams, and I want to see where they’re taking it next.
So far so good, but Cameron just couldn’t help himself.
I have to say that I felt that George’s group of six films had more innovative visual imagination.
This film was more of a retrenchment to things you had seen before and characters you have seen before and it took a few baby steps forward with new characters.
So for me, the jury’s out. I want to see where they’re going with it.
Personally, I applaud Cameron’s candor. Not only is Hollywood a place where big time stars are afraid to be 100% honest when critiquing the competition, but Star Wars is one of those popular franchises so drenched in nostalgia and passion that some people simply refuse to hear any opposing viewpoints.
Having seen the film, I thought the film was just okay, if not downright overrated. As I noted in a review late last year, “the film’s primary anchor is the iconic name it’s attached to.” Truth be told, Star Wars: The Force Awakens as a standalone film is rather forgettable, offering up nothing new, exciting, or compelling.
In any event, for those interested, Cameron’s full remarks can be seen in the video below at around the 3-minute and 16 second mark.