Ian Shank, Staff Writer

When I was a little kid my media consumption consisted of only two things: “Lord of the Rings” and “Star Wars.” I had a ton of toys from both movie franchises and played almost all of the video games. As I grew older, my appreciation for both of these series grew deeper as I was able to understand it on a more complex level. While I was able to maintain my love for “Lord of the Rings,” “Star Wars” won out. What I love most about the “Star Wars” universe is the characters. While some aren’t all that likeable, they all have a lot of depth to them. While I wasn’t a huge fan of Anakin Skywalker, I still felt that I could see where he was coming from all throughout “Revenge of the Sith.” One thing that I really liked about the newest movie, “The Force Awakens,” is that Kylo Ren is such a conflicted character. Everyone has seen Jedis be seduced to the Dark Side, but nobody had ever seen a Sith almost succumb to turning back from their evil ways and joining the Jedi. I also really like the visual effects.  While the cinematography is dated from when the first one was released back in 1977, the visuals still hold up. The ways they were able to film the starship battles were brilliant. They actually used little toys and used backgrounds, so you know how the X-wings are about twenty feet tall? In real life they were probably only about a foot tall. Another thing that really impresses me, though, is its philosophy and stories that are based on Greek mythology. When Luke went into the Death Star in “A New Hope,” that was supposed to represent a hero from a Greek myth that entered the underworld. What really grinds my gears about the “Star Wars” movies is the second prequel movie that is “Attack of the Clones.” The dialogue was atrocious especially when it came to the romance between Anakin and Padme. My favorite example is when Anakin tells her that he doesn’t like sand because it feels coarse. That quote along with many others makes a love story that takes up a good chunk of the run time very laughable. Regardless, of how I feel about “Star Wars” there is no point in denying that it is a pop culture landmark since we’re going to be getting a new movie every year for several years and that Disney is working on a brand new “Star Wars” land at the Hollywood Studios theme park.