Mandatory Movie Battles: ‘The Rise of Skywalker’ vs. ‘Return of the Jedi’

2019 has been a big year for serialized storytelling. Some of the biggest sequels of the year are aiming to bring closure to their respective franchises, and none has been more anticipated than Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. After the divisive nature of The Last Jedi and the underwhelming box office returns of Solo: A Star Wars Story, a lot is riding on The Rise of Skywalker to close out the eponymous saga in spectacular fashion. Does The Rise of Skywalker top Return of the Jedi as a satisfying conclusion to the Skywalker saga that we’ve been looking for? Let’s find out!

Cover Photo: Lucasfilm/Disney

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The Rise of Skywalker is the type of film that not only gives one a further appreciation for Return of the Jedi but also for Revenge of the Sith. While the latter two entries manage to complete their respective trilogies in a way that feels organic and natural, the former is a pale imitation of what the filmmakers think that fans want to see. In essence, it’s the exact trap that another saga-ending movie, Avengers: Endgame, could have fallen into (but didn’t) – fan service for the sake of fan service. Ultimately, much of the content in The Rise of Skywalker feels not only shoehorned into the plot but also rushed through in a way that makes it one of the weaker entries in the Skywalker saga as a whole.

Overall Winner: Return of the Jedi