Yes, I went to see the ((((JJ Abrams)))) remake of the famous space western monomyth, Star Wars (1977). The one where the male lead looks like he climbed out of a 1920s anthropology textbook, the female lead is an improbable Mary Sue, and nostalgia drives the entire plot of the film. Shoot me.
Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens is in many respects not a bad movie by the standards of the current year, though in my opinion the worst film of the franchise even without my White nationalist movie glasses. Good reviews of the film have been written from that perspective already (1, 2, 3) so I want to highlight other issues, in more of a meta kind of way.
The highlight of the film for me—and I mean this in a negative way—was the chase scene on not-Tatooine. A pair of diversity hires fly a stolen freighter (they don’t even know it’s the Millennium Falcon) through the wreck of a Star Destroyer while a First Order TIE Fighter is in pursuit. It was a powerful vignette, not just for the Star Wars franchise but for our civilization at large. The heirs to our society are fighting over ruins they are unfit to claim and neither side is particularly worthy of support.
“The Resistance,” despite being wholly part of the establishment, i.e. the restored Galactic Republic, is somehow still the rebel faction. “First Order” is apparently not the rebel faction but an even more powerful version of the Empire, despite the Empire having been defeated and the rebels winning in Return of the Jedi, which would lead one to suspect the rebels became the establishment. Oh well; it’s not like a movie’s plot should make any sense when you can just romanticize the permanent struggle against spooky evil people.
I wanted to like the First Order, but between their leadership being garbage and their personnel only being slightly less vibrant than the Resistance, it was hard to root for them. The only stand-out character of any principle in the entire movie was the Stormtrooper fans have styled as TR-8R, who calls out Finn the Magic Negro for being a traitor to the First Order and attacks him with style.
But alas, even TR-8R’s loyalty to the spastic Kylo Ren and the nominally reactionary First Order cannot save his cause from its fatal flaw—the establishment faction (even when mislabeled) is fated to lose to the rebel faction. And they are fighting over something which can evidently not be brought back since
- The Empire destroyed the Republic
- The Rebels destroyed the Empire
- The First Order (Empire) destroyed the Republic (Rebels).
And now the Resistance is poised, by the logic of the Star Wars universe, to destroy the First Order, thus recreating the triumph of republican rule over imperial rule. But this time it’s going to work!
This is what the dogfight over Jakku is all about. The rebels and the not-rebels are flitting about the ruins where their forebears once fell over the same dispute; because that’s the script. The key difference is that personnel of each faction have degenerated—in the literal sense of losing one’s people—along with the West since the 1970s, yet they want to fight the same fight and get different results. Practically speaking, they are likely to get increasingly worse results because multicultural societies are dysfunctional relative to more homogeneous ones. ((((Abrams)))) covers for this by making the latest crop of Star Wars rebels/heroes supersede the old ones in terms of capabilities and potential. Who needs White males in a space western/fantasy anyway? Women and people of color are even better!
It’s the same narrative we hear today all the time about diversity and white privilege. But if we are so terrible and superfluous, why imitate us? Why walk the trails we blazed in what seems like a distant era? Why struggle for control of our institutions? The rebels never wanted to destroy the empire; they wanted it for themselves. Our empire is run by regents who loathe their task. Our struggle is against not one force but two: both the “empire” and the “rebels.” Now that would make for an interesting movie.