Film / The Force Awakens

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Han Solo: The Force, the Jedi, all of it. It's all true.

Luke Skywalker has vanished.
In his absence, the sinister
FIRST ORDER has risen from
the ashes of the Empire
and will not rest until
Skywalker, the last Jedi,
has been destroyed.

With the support of the
REPUBLIC, General Leia Organa
leads a brave RESISTANCE.
She is desperate to find her
brother Luke and gain his
help in restoring peace
and justice to the galaxy.

Leia has sent her most daring
pilot on a secret mission
to Jakku, where an old ally
has discovered a clue to
Luke's whereabouts....

The Force Awakensnote  is the first film in the Star Wars Sequel Trilogy, directed by J. J. Abrams. Writing credits are shared by Abrams, Lawrence Kasdan (writer of The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi), and Michael Arndt. The film's score is by John Williams. George Lucas served as a creative consultant in the very early stages of pre-production, but was otherwise not involved with the film.

Its story takes place 30 years after Return of the Jedi, and revolves around an Imperial deserter, a scavenger, an X-wing pilot, and a number of other Unlikely Heroes becoming involved in the conflict between an Imperial remnant known as the First Order and an offshoot of the former Rebel Alliance called the Resistance. Along the way, they cross paths with numerous characters from the Original Trilogy, including Han Solo, Leia Organa, Chewbacca, C-3PO, and R2-D2.

The film stars Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Max von Sydow, Andy Serkis, Lupita Nyong'o, Gwendoline Christie, Domhnall Gleeson, Adam Driver, Ken Leung and Greg Grunberg. Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, Peter Mayhew, Anthony Daniels, Tim Rose, Erik Bauersfield, Mike Quinn, Kipsang Rotich and Warwick Davis from the Original Trilogy also appear.

The Force Awakens was the first Star Wars movie since The Phantom Menace to be filmed on a non-digital format (35mm film, with IMAX 65mm stock used for the Millennium Falcon sequence). It also emphasizes digitally edited Practical Effects, such as city models, Muppets, and animatronics, over wholesale Computer-Generated Images, to recapture the style of the Original Trilogy. Filming locations include Scotland, Iceland's Eyjafjallajökull and Mývatn, Abu Dhabi, England's Gloucestershire, Puzzlewood Forest, and Greenham Common, Ireland's Skellig Michael, New Mexico, and Vietnam's Hang En Cave.

The movie also has numerous tie-ins, including: The Journey to the Force Awakens tie-in books, that fill in the 32 year gap between Return Of The Jedi and the film. A comic book mini-series, Star Wars: Shattered Empire, set directly after Jedi. DICE's Star Wars Battlefront (2015), which has a downloadable distant prologue. And an official novelization by Alan Dean Foster, ghostwriter of the novelization for the original Star Wars film.

The Force Awakens is also the final Star Wars film to feature Kenny Baker as R2-D2 and Erik Bauersfield as the voice of Admiral Ackbar before they passed away note  in 2016.

Followed by The Last Jedi.

Very few entries will have spoiler tags and all character tropes must be moved to the proper character page.


The Force Awakens provides examples of:

    open/close all folders 

    Tropes A to C 
  • The 47 Society: The thermal oscillator is located in Precinct 47 of Starkiller Base.
  • Achilles in His Tent: Han Solo turned his back on Leia and the Resistance to go back to smuggling sometime before the film's events due to his son Ben facilitating the massacre at Luke's new Jedi Temple and becoming Kylo Ren. His story arc is about him finally returning to action, reuniting with Leia, and confronting Ben to try and talk him out from under Snoke's dark influence.
  • Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene:
    • Han and Leia's reunion, then his departure for the Starkiller Base, then his confrontation with Kylo Ren.
    • Finn and Rey, too. For example, their reunion on the Starkiller Base.
    • Rey approaching Luke Skywalker at the end of the film, holding out his old lightsaber.
  • Adult Fear:
  • Aerith and Bob: Continues the proud Star Wars tradition of mixing real-sounding names with Space Opera ones. On one side are Finn, Rey, Poe Dameron, and Ben. On the other end are Maz Kanata, Kylo Ren, Phasma, Hux, and Snoke.
  • After the End: Jakku's landscape is littered with remnants from an apocalyptic battle between the New Republic and the Galactic Empire 32 years prior to The Force Awakens. After the battle, the planet became a Scavenger World.
  • Airstrike Impossible: The past two Death Stars were destroyed by flying through a trench and inside of the weapon itself, respectively. Poe does both to finish off Starkiller Base.
  • Alas, Poor Yorick: Kylo Ren keeps the helmet of Darth Vader, his idol and grandfather, with him.
  • All There in the Manual:
    • The Visual Dictionary gives a lot of background information not presented in the movie, like how Rey knows how to pilot the Millennium Falcon despite never being off-world, what the connection between the New Republic and the Resistance is, and how the First Order came to be.
    • The novelization adds further details that were not able to make it into the movie and expands several scenes, such as more insight and backstory on the characters, the reasons why the First Order was able to grow despite the restoration of the Republic, how Poe got off of Jakku, that Rey was such a good pilot despite never going off world because she was secretly studying the Millennium Falcon at night, the implication that Kylo Ren knows who Rey is and that his Force Probing of her mind unwittingly broke down a barrier in her mind that had cut her off from her Force Sensitivity. One of the most notable differences is that in her Force vision, Rey sees an unidentified boy nearby while inside the halls of Cloud City...
  • Always Save the Girl: Finn convinces the Resistance that he knows how to destroy Starkiller Base in order to rescue Rey. In reality, his knowledge about the base was just from his work assignment in sanitation, and he wasn't privy to more sensitive information about the weapon. Lampshaded by the fact that he and Rey do manage to save the day, at a price.
  • Ambiguous Syntax: From Kylo Ren, leaving you wondering if he may be good after all — until he kills his father.
    Kylo Ren: I'm being torn apart. I want to be free of this pain. I know what I have to do, but I don't know if I have the strength to do it. Will you help me?
  • An Arm and a Leg: In the novelisation, Chewbacca saves Rey from Unkar Plutt in Maz's castle by ripping off Plutt's arm.
  • And Man Grew Proud: The Force, the Dark Side, the Jedi, and the Sith are the stuff of legend due to an extended absence from the presence of Galactic affairs — it's been over fifty years in-universe since the end of the Clone Wars, after all — which makes the "awakening" all the more stunning.
  • Apocalypse How:
  • Arc Words: "To complete..." and "Run as far as you can."
  • Artistic License – Physics: From Takodana, light years away, the characters are able to see the destruction of the Hosnian System happen in real time. Word of God handwaved it by saying that what they saw was a hyperspace disturbance created by Starkiller Base's projectile being fired through hyperspace.
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: Kylo and Hux are of approximately equal rank in the First Order, and are constantly jockeying for position and Snoke's approval. But every so often, when Kylo really wants something (such as BB-8), he subtly reminds Hux that he's a telekinetic martial arts master with a lightsaber, and Hux is within arm's reach. Hux is smart enough to realize that the argument is over at that point.
  • Attack Backfire: Kylo tries to Mind Probe Rey for the map to Luke Skywalker, but all he does is give her insight into his mind when she turns it back on him.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: The climax of the movie has the Resistance pilots trying to bomb the thermal oscillator conduit on Starkiller Base to destroy it. Complicating matters, the conduit is protected by a heavily armored building and a LOT of fighter cover.
  • As Long as There Is Evil: More specifically, as long as there is the Dark Side. The Original Trilogy ended on a high note, with Darth Vader redeemed, the Empire defeated and the galaxy at peace. How long did that last? Not very, with the First Order rising from the ashes of the Empire, Luke's efforts to revive the Jedi Order tragically being cut-short and Kylo Ren, Vader's grandson, declaring that he will finish what the Sith Lord started, all in a span of thirty years.
    Maz Kanata: The only fight: against the Dark Side. Through the ages, I've seen evil take many forms. The Sith. The Empire. Today, it is the First Order.
  • As You Know: Kylo Ren's identity is revealed in a conversation between him and Snoke, when Snoke identifies someone first by their relationship to Ren, and then by redundantly saying their name.
    Snoke: The droid you seek is aboard the Millennium Falcon in the hands of your father... Han Solo.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: Finn and Poe work together in the TIE Fighter to escape of Kylo Ren's Star Destroyer with no-one following them.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: While only depicted externally, Rey's struggle and eventual push back against Kylo Ren's Force interrogation can be seen as this.
  • Big Badass Battle Sequence: The attack on Starkiller Base.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Chewbacca showing up in the Millenium Falcon just in the nick of time to get Rey and Finn off Starkiller Base before it blows up.
  • Big "NO!":
    • Of course, Finn lets out a cluster of them when Kylo Ren kidnaps Rey.
    • Also, Rey has one and Chewie gives a roar that's clearly meant to be one when Han is killed.
    • Kylo Ren has one of his own after finding Rey had escaped her cell and then goes into another equipment-slashing temper tantrum.
    • During Rey's Force vision, she sees her younger self wailing "No!" at whomever dumped her on Jakku. We also faintly hear Luke's famous Big "NO!" from The Empire Strikes Back.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: The Skywalker family line, so it seems, cannot exist without suffering some kind of tragedy. This time Han and Leia's son Ben has fallen to the Dark Side, and is going by the name of Kylo Ren. He destroyed his uncle's temple in some manner, and seeks to emulate his maternal grandfather.
  • Bilingual Dialogue:
    • Both Poe and Rey can understand BB-8's droidspeak.
    • As before, Han understands Chewie's shyriiwook language and Chewie understands Galactic Basic.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The good news is that Starkiller Base is destroyed, earning the Resistance a major victory, Luke has finally been located, and Rey is going to train with him. The bad news is that Han Solo was killed in the process, the New Republic has been dealt a major blow with the destruction of its capital at the time, the Hosnian system, along with its entire main fleet, Ren's Redemption Rejection firmly places him in dark side territory, and Finn is in a coma after nearly getting killed by Ren.
  • Bloodless Carnage: Averted by the dying Stormtrooper in the beginning of the film, and by Kylo Ren after Chewbacca shoots him. While the other movies fell back on this trope in the past (with the odd exception of Pondo Baba's arm getting lopped off by Obi Wan in A New Hope and Darth Maul getting sliced in half by Obi Wan in The Phantom Menace) this film notably presents the villains getting quite bloody and wounded in combat.
  • Bloody Hand Print: Finn gets one on his helmet when tending to a dying Stormtrooper. It helps to identify him among the other faceless mooks. For more, see Uniformity Exception, below.
  • Bookends: The first time we see Rey, she's sliding downhill having removed something valuable from its place. The last time we see her, she's trudging uphill to return something valuable to its owner.
  • Bootstrapped Leitmotif: The Rebellion fanfare from the original trilogy is tied to scenes involving the Millennium Falcon.
  • Break Them by Talking: Rey's interrogation by Kylo Ren. Only after Ren taunts Rey, makes suggestive remarks and insults her newfound friend and father-figure does he really try to get the information he needs.
  • Brick Joke:
    • When Han first inspects the Millennium Falcon, he notes a compressor on the fuel switch, saying it puts too much stress on the hyperdrive. When he's trying to leave and can't get the Falcon to start, Rey points to the compressor. After that, when they're having trouble with the hyperdrive, Rey rips the compressor out to fix the problem.
    • When a First Order officer reports that BB-8 escaped, Kylo Ren takes out his frustration on the computer terminal with his lightsaber. After Ren discovers Rey has broken out of her cell, there's a discretion shot to the corridor outside, where a pair of Stormtroopers nervously start backing away after hearing Ren ignite his lightsaber and start trashing the room.
  • Bridal Carry: A non-romantic version of this trope: after Kylo Ren corners Rey in the forest on Takodana and learns that she already saw the map that BB-8 has, he uses the Force to render her unconscious before carrying her back to his ship this way.
  • Broken Streak: This is the first main entry in Star Wars that doesn't have any decapitations, limbs being cut off, or any other form of dismemberment.
  • Call Back:
    • The lightsaber used by Anakin Skywalker in Revenge of the Sith and by Luke Skywalker in A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back is found in an old chest. It ends up in Finn's hands, but he does not fare well. However Rey then uses the saber and the Force to defeat Ren.
    • Rey experiences a Force vision when touching Anakin/Luke's lightsaber, a la Quinlan Vos' ability to see images from an object's past by touching it in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. One of Yoda's lines from The Empire Strikes Back is briefly heard, and the first thing seen in that vision is a hallway in Cloud City, the same one where Vader ambushed Luke in the final stage of their duel. Luke's Big "NO!" can be heard in the distance.
    • Starkiller Base is compared and contrasted with the two previous Death Stars.
  • The Cameo:
    • Yayan Ruhian, Cecep Arif Rahman, and Iko Uwais from The Raid and The Raid 2: Berandal cameo as the Kanjiklub pirates that Han stole a loan from.
    • Warwick Davis, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, and Harriet Walter also made cameos.
    • Hideo Kojima voices the "Red-Eyed Sand Alien" watching BB-8 roll away after the opening First Order attack on Jakku.
    • Kevin Smith voices the stormtrooper who announces the incoming X-Wing squadron during the First Order attack on Maz Kanata's castle.
    • J.J. Abrams' usual composer Michael Giacchino and Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich play Stormtroopers (the latter is the guy who screams "Hey!" before Chewie punches him).
    • The credits for voiceovers reveal plenty of famous voice actors as well.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: Rey and Finn are both technically adults, but were stunted developmentally in childhood, and thus experience the Coming of Age motions throughout the film.
    • Very much in the vein of previous franchise installments, Rey is introduced as a lonely youth living day-to-day on a desolate desert planet. She is terrified to leave, maintaining hope that her family will return for her. By the end of the film, however, she has accepted that they are never coming back, embraced her Force-sensitivity and sought out Luke Skywalker.
    • Like all Stormtroopers in the movie, Finn was stolen from his family and submitted to rigorous training and conditioning by the First Order. He didn't even have a name before turning his back on them. In the film, he adopts a name and is confronted with the task of overcoming his fears in order to save Rey.
  • Canon Immigrant:
    • The term "Light Side" and the implied dichotomy of equal opposing aspects were never used in the previous movies, though the dichotomy was addressed in Star Wars: The Clone Wars.note 
    • Similarly, the Star Wars: Battlefront tie-in to the game first introduced the term "New Republic" for canon material (after long usage in the Legends continuity), which is used in this film. As no canon work after Return Of The Jedi was released before this movie was in post-production, this is the first time that the term is pulled over from the Legends setting.
    • Kylo Ren combines elements of Star Wars Legends characters Jacen Solo, a son of Leia and Han who eventually fell to the dark side, and Luke's son, Ben Skywalker.
  • Captive Push: Poe Dameron is brought on board of the Star Destroyer with his arms bound. He really doesn't like being pushed around by the Stormtroopers and voices his annoyance a few times.
  • Changing of the Guard: Progressively. According to J. J. Abrams's rewrite of Michael Arndt's script, the cast of the Original Trilogy has a greater presence in the script, although the focus is still primarily on the newcomers.
  • Character Aged with the Actor: Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford are reprising their original trilogy roles, and since it's been over thirty years since their last film appearance, a 30+ year Time Skip was inevitable.
  • Character Death: Han Solo is ultimately killed by Kylo Ren (his own son). Made even worse by the fact that Han only wanted to redeem him, and for a brief moment, it appeared that he was almost successful.
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • During their escape from Jakku, Finn warns Rey to keep low, as it confuses the targeting sensors of the First Order's TIE Fighters. Later in the film, the First Order attacks them on Takodana. When the Resistance arrives as relief, their X-wings are skimming the lake near Maz's castle only a few feet above the surface. This obscures their approach until they are almost right on top of the First Order troops, taking them by surprise. It comes around again after the Millennium Falcon needs to land on Starkiller Base undetected and the only way is to exit from hyperspace close to the surface and fly through a forest - key word being through, smashing hundreds of trees.
    • While giving directions to BB-8, Rey warns him about the large, sandy sinkholes that are located towards the north. Finn and Poe later crash into one, which swallows their TIE fighter whole. This leads to Poe's apparent death and forces Finn to finish his mission.
    • Chewbacca's bowcaster is shown to be more powerful than seen in the previous movies, even impressing Han. A blast can send a Stormtrooper back several feet. Later, after Kylo Ren kills Han, Chewie shoots him in the flank which only causes him to double over.
  • Chekhov's Skill:
    • Rey gushes over how Han Solo still holds the record for the Kessel Run. In order for Solo to have completed the run in 12 parsecs, he had to travel through the Maw, dangerously close to multiple black holes and Imperial patrols while in hyperspace, breaking the previous distance and speed record by a significant margin. This skill as a navigator comes in handy when the Millennium Falcon has to travel dangerously close to a planet's gravity field while in hyperspace.
    • Rey has several that help her survive the events of the film.
      • She is shown at the beginning to have spent years scavenging derelict starships, including Imperial Star Destroyers, and would need a working knowledge of what's what in order to find valuable equipment, especially after all the easy stuff had already been taken away. Thus, her knowledge of how to work such equipment later makes sense.
      • One of her Establishing Character Moments occurs while looting a wrecked Star Destroyer; she's free climbing around the machinery inside the superstructure, hundreds of feet from the ground. This later comes in handy when she goes spelunking inside the chasm of Starkiller Base to evade recapture.
      • Finn first meets Rey when he comes across her being assaulted by a couple other junkers on Jakku. Despite being caught by surprise, outnumbered, and surrounded, she makes short work of them. This scene is a big part of how she was able to hold her own against Kylo Ren at the end of the film.
  • Comet of Doom: Starkiller Base's beam looks like one from the view of the people on Takodana when the weapon is fired on Hosnian Prime. Per the trope, it's a harbinger for the dark times to come, and a stark demonstration of the threat that the First Order poses.
  • Comic-Book Adaptation: Chuck Wendig is writing a five-issue one for Marvel.
  • Contemplate Our Navels: Rey has a moment on Jakku while cleaning a scavenged part where she pauses and looks at a much older woman doing the same thing.
  • Continuity Nod: Has its own page.
  • Continuity Reboot: For the franchise's entire Expanded Universe. Most of the Star Wars Expanded Universe has been rebranded as Star Wars Legends.
  • Contrived Coincidence: True to Star Wars tradition, there are a few plot-convenient alignment of events.
    • Rey happens to be living on the same planet as Lor San Tekka, the guy who has a section of map which leads to Luke Skywalker which the First Order desperately wants, and near enough to his village that she can happen across BB-8.
    • The TIE Fighter Poe and Finn steal crashes near enough to Rey's settlement that Finn can reach it without dying of thirst or exposure in the process.
    • Rey happens to be living near the same derelict junkyard where the Millennium Falcon has been parked for the last few years.
    • After Rey and Finn take the Millennium Falcon and fly away, within minutes they just happen to come across Han Solo, the ship's previous owner. This somewhat justified in-story when Han mentions that he was tracking the Falcon's unique engine signature, but the timing is still undeniably convenient.
    • Maz Kanata has Anakin's/Luke's old lightsaber sitting in her castle's basement, ready for Finn and Rey to use. Han lampshades this by asking her where she got it.
    • Han, Chewie and Finn happen to find Captain Phasma after they realize Finn doesn't actually know how to deactivate Starkiller Base's shields, and need to force somebody to do it for them.
    • Han, Chewie and Finn also happen to see Rey climbing up the middle of Starkiller Base — just as they were formulating a plan to find her.
    • When the surface of Starkiller Base is splitting apart at the end and a chasm opens up between Kylo Ren and Rey, Rey happens to be on the side with Finn and the Millennium Falcon.
  • Conveniently Close Planet:
    • Maz's planet is close enough to the Hosnian system for Hosnian Prime's destruction to be visible shortly after the event. The bar also happens to conveniently be on the side of the planet facing the Hosnian system at the time.
    • The Millennium Falcon is captured within a few minutes of popping out of hyperspace. Then that freighter itself is docked simultaneously by two other ships (though those two ships had admittedly already been tracking the big freighter).
  • Cool Helmet: Kylo Ren, whose helmet is an evil-looking combination of a Stormtrooper's and Darth Vader's, heavy enough to make a dramatic clank when dropped.
  • Cool Starship: There's the return of the Millennium Falcon and a new generation X-wing closer to the original concept art. On the First Order side of things, it looks like they're still using TIE Fighters, but sharing the Stormtrooper color scheme of white & black. The second teaser also gave us a glimpse of a new class of Star Destroyer with a ram-like bow that looks to be even bigger than the old Imperial-class ships of the OT. That particular ship is called the Finalizer. Also, when Rey is running for a spaceship she shows a bias for "Cool" ones instead of "Garbage" ones.
  • Cool Sword: Anakin Skywalker's blue lightsaber, which resurfaces after being lost more than 30 years before, is highly sought out by different characters for its historical significance.
  • Creator Thumbprint:
    • Rey mentions a place on Jakku called "Kelvin Ridge", named for JJ Abrams' grandfather. The name has appeared in each of Abrams' works, from Lost to Star Trek.
    • According to the credits, one of the Resistance pilots is named Niv Lek.
  • Crossing the Desert: Finn does this after crash-landing on Jakku, though it's not clear how long he actually walks for.
  • Curb Stomp Cushion:
    • One of the thugs attacking Rey on Jakku manages to get a good left hook in on her; emphasis on a.
    • Finn is able to wound Kylo Ren's right shoulder during their lightsaber duel before Kylo proceeds to beat him badly.
  • Cypher Language: The Aurebesh alphabet makes an appearance.

    Tropes D to G 
  • Damsel in Distress: Parodied. Finn first sees Rey when some thugs accost her to steal BB-8 and rushes over to help her, only for her to successfully fight them off before he's halfway there. When the First Order attacks Niima Outpost, he still treats her like a helpless damsel, no matter how clear it is or how much she protests that she's perfectly capable on her own. This culminates in a scene where they both get thrown off their feet by an explosion. Rey is up and alert almost immediately, while Finn is knocked out... and when she wakes him up, he asks her if she's okay. Rey is left dumbstruck.
  • Darker and Edgier: The Force Awakens is the second Star Wars movie to take on a PG-13 rating in the United States, and it shows. The movie has more intense violence (with some blood) and less kid-oriented humor than either of the previous trilogies; it opens on a village being invaded by the First Order at nighttime as its inhabitants are slaughtered, and BB-8 is the only new Kid-Appeal Character.
  • David vs. Goliath: Finn knows he's in way over his head when facing down Kylo Ren for a lightsaber duel, but he does it anyway.
  • Deadly Deferred Conversation:
    • While fleeing the castle, Han asks Maz the justified question of where the hell she got Anakin Skywalker's lightsaber from, as Luke lost it into the depths of Bespin. She replies that it's a good question for another time. Sadly, there won't be another time.
    • In the novelization, Han says there's something he's been wanting to say to Leia for a long time, but Leia tells him to save it for when he gets back from Starkiller Base.
  • Decomposite Character: The three new main characters are all embodying different aspects of Luke from the original trilogy: Finn is the good-hearted everyman, Rey is a hopeful youth with a special destiny ahead of her and Poe is an Ace Pilot who saves the day by destroying the First Order's super-weapon.
  • Decoy Protagonist: While all three members of our Power Trio are important, Rey is clearly the focus of the story, yet they are introduced to us in reverse order of their relevance to the overall story — first Poe (who's also the only one alluded to in the opening crawl), then Finn, then Rey. Even after all three of them are properly established, the focus doesn't shift fully to Rey until after Finn tries to hitch a ride off of Takodana and Rey finds Luke's lightsaber right where Finn left it. The trailers also lead one to believe Finn to be the main character, even giving him a lightsaber on the poster and certain parts of the trailers. It isn't until Finn loses his fight with Kylo Ren that Rey picks up the lightsaber.
  • Derelict Graveyard: The entire planet of Jakku is filled with destroyed spaceships from a massive battle between the Empire and New Republic decades ago. Of particular note is a capsized Super Star Destroyer.
  • Deuteragonist: Both Finn and Rey are equally important to the overall narrative, meaning that they can both be classified as "main character".
  • Do a Barrel Roll: The Millennium Falcon doesn't actually do a barrel roll — the camera does.note 
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?:
    • Much of the movie takes place in and around the scrapyards of Jakku, where characters are constantly surrounded by the massive, rusted-out wreckage of the iconic spaceships from the Original Trilogy, which stand as lasting relics of a massive battle that took place decades ago. This is pretty obviously symbolic of the massive legacy of the Original Trilogy itself, which still casts a massive shadow over the entire film industry, despite ending three decades ago; even the scavengers, who eke out a living combing the wreckage for fresh parts, are clearly representative of the fans who kept coming back to the movies, and could always spin new stories from their tiniest background details. When one of those rusted-out relics—the Millennium Falcon—finally takes off for a new destination, it's symbolic of the saga's resurrection.
    • Han Solo goes deep into enemy territory with the goal of redeeming a prodigal son, and dies by a cross of sorts. Furthermore, the last thing he does in this life is make a gesture of forgiveness.
    • In contrast to the well-armed, well-disciplined Galactic Empire, the First Order is a relatively small band of fanatics who hide out in a secluded zone of space and disrupt their enemies with surprise attacks on civilians. Their first scene in the movie involves them massacring a remote desert village, and they eventually surprise everyone by launching an attack on the distant Republic capital and killing millions. Considering the context of the film, the conflict with the First Order seems designed to evoke the War On Terror, with the destruction of Hosnian Prime evoking the 9/11 attacks.
  • Doom Doors: The classic sound makes an auditory cameo when Rey's speeder engine cools down.
  • Double Meaning: An exchange between Rey and BB-8 on Jakku, after the droid expresses that he is on a top-secret mission. The dialogue is used for comedic effect, but also serves as a reference to the mystery behind Rey's origins.
    Rey: Classified, really? Me too. Big secret.
  • Downtime Downgrade: For Han and Leia are quite obviously as much in love as ever, if not even more so, but grief over their son's turn to the Dark Side has separated them, as they both return to "the only thing[s they were] ever any good at."
  • Drama-Preserving Handicap: Before the climactic fight scene between Kylo Ren and Finn and Rey, Ren takes a bowcaster bolt to the abdomen and is shown to be bleeding from the wound, so that it's more realistic someone with zero formal training with a lightsaber or the Force could stand a chance against him.
  • Dramatic Unmask: Three unmasking scenes serve as initial facial introductions for Finn, Rey and Kylo Ren.
    • First, when Finn removes his Stormtrooper helmet.
    • Again, when Rey takes off her scavenger goggles and hood.
    • Lastly, when Kylo Ren finally unmasks himself during his interrogation of Rey.
  • Driving Question: With the very first line of the opening text everyone, in-universe or out, is wondering: "Where is Luke Skywalker?"
  • Dude, She's Like, in a Coma!: Gender-flipped in the end between Rey and Finn. She kisses him on the forehead.
  • Dungeon-Based Economy: Jakku is a scavenger economy living off the remains of old battles. People travel the desert looking for derelict machine parts they can salvage and sell or trade for food.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Prior to the movie, Poe was first mentioned in Star Wars: Shattered Empire and Moving Target, while Jessika Pava first appeared in the Framing Story of Weapon of a Jedi.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Important ones for Finn, Rey, Kylo Ren and Poe.
    • Finn's reaction to his fallen Stormtrooper comrade leaving a bloody handprint on his helmet. He directly disobeys Kylo Ren's orders to gun down innocent villagers. This is the first time we see a Stormtrooper express genuine inner-conflict — Finn is just a terrified young man who sees that what he is being asked to do is wrong. It comes as no surprise when he betrays the First Order and frees Poe.
    Finn: Because it's the right thing to do.
    • Rey's introductory sequence shows us that she is a lonely scavenger whose survival depends on selling whatever she can get her hands on for rations. This makes the scene in which she refuses to hand over BB-8, despite being offered a staggering amount of rations in exchange, all the more noble.
    Rey: Actually, the droid's not for sale.
    • Kylo Ren's doesn't truly come until halfway through the feature, when he is shown confessing his anxiety over Snoke sensing his lingering desire to embrace the Light Side from which he was born. What is he confessing to? The melted helmet of his dead grandfather, Darth Vader. This scene firmly places Kylo Ren in the realm of Tragic Villain.
    Kylo Ren: I feel it again... the pull to the light...
    • Poe is immediately characterized as a well-respected and brave pilot with an undying commitment to General Organa and the Resistance. In his first scene, when faced with the daunting reality that he will be captured by the First Order, he sends BB-8 away and distracts Kylo Ren, buying time for the droid to escape. His reaction to Kylo Ren is undeniably cheeky as well.
    Poe Dameron: So, who talks first? Do you talk first?
  • Earth-Shattering Kaboom: The destruction of every planet in the Hosnian System, the current capital of the New Republic, by the First Order using Starkiller Base. It's repeated with the destruction of Starkiller Base itself and the planet it's located on.
  • Enemy Civil War: The remains of the Empire underwent this after the Battle of Jakku, with the First Order rising from the ensuing ashes.
  • Everything Is an iPod in the Future: The new Stormtrooper design is much more sleek and streamlined than in the original trilogy. BB-8, the ball droid, is also more streamlined compared to older astromechs like R2-D2.
  • Evil Brit: There is a decent representation of characters with UK accents, and all are evil or antagonistic except for Rey and a random X-Wing pilot, including some sort of mercenary with a grudge against Han, who has the first ever Scottish accent to be heard in Star Wars.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Starkiller Base is an ice planet converted into a stronghold for the First Order and armed with a fiercely destructive new beam cannon which kills suns by draining them of their energy and converting it into a weapon.
  • Falling into the Cockpit: Although Poe Dameron has never flown a TIE Fighter before, he's not only able to expertly pilot a stolen one within seconds of climbing aboard, he can also give Finn instructions on operating the weapon systems. Likewise, Rey does amazingly well flying the Millennium Falcon for the first time.
  • Famed In-Story: Rey and Finn are surprised to learn that the ship they escaped Jakku in is the Millennium Falcon. They've also heard of the heroes of the Rebellion like Han Solo. As the last of the Jedi, Luke Skywalker has reached Living Legend status.
  • Fantastic Fragility: Preemptively lampshaded by Han Solo reacting to Starkiller Base, leading directly to attacking the oscillator.
    Han Solo: OK, so it's big. How do you blow it up? There's always a way to blow it up.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: How Finn bonds with both Poe and Rey, separately.
  • First Name Ultimatum: Han gets Kylo Ren's attention when he calls him by his true name, Ben.
  • Flat "What.": Rey is captured and held prisoner, and being watched over by a Stormtrooper. She tells him "You will remove these restraints and leave the cell with the door open". Unaware that she's trying to perform a Jedi Mind Trick, he replies "What did you just say?" as in "You are a helpless prisoner, with no authority or power whatsoever; and you're ordering me to release you?"
  • Food Pills: Powdered bread: just add water.
  • For the Evulz: Kylo Ren establishing his villainy in the village early on by ordering Phasma to "kill them all" (as if his costume weren't a big enough clue). Confirmed later when Kylo explicitly prays for more darkness.
  • Forced Sleep: When the First Order comes looking for the map, Kylo Ren determines Rey has seen it when he finds her and waves his hand in her face, causing her to fall unconscious so he can take her prisoner.
  • Foreshadowing: Has its own page.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus:
    • Poe Dameron has lettering on his vest. When translated, it says "Pull to Inflate".
    • Boba Fett's Mandalorian symbol can briefly be seen among the flags at Maz's castle.
    • As Rey and Finn flee the TIE fighter attack, the Millennium Falcon can be very briefly seen in the background as they sprint past.
    • When Finn shoots down the first TIE fighter over Jakku, the wreckage has barely hit the ground when scavengers come running in to strip it.
  • Functional Genre Savvy:
    • Han Solo presupposing that "There's always a way to blow it up".
    • Ditto Leia for her "He's right".
  • Game-Breaking Injury: Kylo Ren gets shot by Chewie's bowcaster before his climactic fight with Finn and Rey. This is a weapon that has been shown to blow people across the room. Now, Ren doesn't die, but he doesn't shrug it off, either. It takes him several minutes to recover, and is clearly bleeding and heavily affected by it. He's still a massive badass, but it slows him down enough that Finn is able to hold his own, and Rey eventually beats him.
  • Genre Throwback: The film mixes the boxy, worn looking '70s' sci fi aesthetic of the original trilogy (complete with being filmed on 35mm film instead of digital film, on-location shooting and having a fair amount of practical effects) with digital special effects, elements of the sleeker new age design sense of the prequel trilogy, and cinematography techniques of contemporary films.
  • Giving the Sword to a Noob: After Rey rejects it, Finn, who has only basic melee training and unclear levels of Force ability, receives the lightsaber of Anakin Skywalker. He has mixed results, killing one stormtrooper by surprise but being soundly defeated by another wielding an electrostaff. He does manage to put up a fight against a heavily injured Kylo Ren, but is still trounced after Kylo loses his patience.
  • Good Colors, Evil Colors: Keeping in line with previous films, Kylo Ren's lightsaber is red, while Rey ends up with Anakin Skywalker's old blue model.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: When one of the loosed rathtars devours one of the space pirates on Han's freighter, Rey looks on in horror and covers her mouth.
  • Gunship Rescue: Things seem pretty grim for the heroes in the rubble of Maz Kanata's castle — until the panicked First Order troops see the awe-inspiring sight of Resistance X-Wings streaking at high-speed over the surface of the lake coming right towards them, followed by Ace Pilot Poe Dameron delivering a Curb-Stomp Battle on the far more numerous TIE Fighters.
  • Guy in Back: During their escape from Kylo Ren's flagship over Jakku, Finn takes the tailgunner seat for Ace Pilot Poe Dameron in a two-man TIE variant. Unusually for the trope, it's Dameron who doesn't make it. Except they Never Found the Body, and he turns up later leading a squadron of X-Wings in a Gunship Rescue.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Zig-zagged. For the most part, Rey uses a Simple Staff, and and Finn uses a blaster. However they don't use those weapons exclusively, since Rey does use a blaster later on and they both, at different points, use Anakin's lightsaber, which Rey ends up with.

    Tropes H to L 
  • Happy Ending Override:
  • Heavenly Blue: The blue lightsaber wielded by both Rey and Finn, which was once under the ownership of Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Luke Skywalker.
  • Helmets Are Hardly Heroic:
    • First Order troopers are evidently forbidden to remove their helmets without permission. So when Finn takes his off, it's immediately clear that he's going to be a hero.
    • Rey starts out wearing protective headgear that, given the desert environment, is probably pretty useful. She takes it off about a minute after her introduction and never wears it again.
    • It's inverted by Kylo Ren, who doffs his helmet before performing his most evil acts.
  • The Hero's Journey: Rey's part in the film follows the Departure phase note-for-note:
    • Call to Adventure: BB-8 and Finn provide this, drawing Rey away from Jakku and into the greater conflict.
    • Refusal of the Call: She tells everyone throughout the film she just wants to go home again to wait for her family. Even though she really knows they're never coming back for her. She refuses Anakin's lightsaber when Maz gives it to her as part of her rejection of the Call.
    • Supernatural Aid: Arrives in the form of Maz telling her about her connection to the Force and persuading her to confront the truth about her family, and the vision she gets from Anakin's lightsaber. Kylo Ren provides a darker twist, due to the fact she only begins to actively use the Force after his attempted Mind Probe.
    • Crossing the Threshold: She begins the process while in Kylo Ren's custody, and finally lets go of her past and accepts her destiny when she claims Anakin's lightsaber for her own. Kylo Ren is her Threshold Guardian, and confronting him is her first step across the Threshold.
    • Belly of the Whale: Rey has let go of her past and accepted that her family is never coming for her, and seeks out Luke to further her training.
  • Heroic Second Wind: After running away desperately from a rampaging Kylo Ren and finally getting cornered in a saber-lock with a chasm behind her, Rey finally channels the Force and gets the upper hand on Ren. Her first hit nicks him in the leg and shears off part of his trenchcoat. Her second successful blow is a hard thrust into his left shoulder. After winning a grapple, she busts his lightsaber and then rakes his face for the third and final blow before he goes down for the count.
  • Hero Stole My Bike: While fleeing a strafing run from the First Order, Rey and Finn hop aboard an unattended "garbage" freighter of Unkar Plutt's and fly off. It turns out to be the Millennium Falcon.
    Unkar Plutt: THAT'S MIIIIINE!
  • History Repeats: Once again, a rag-tag group of rebels must face down an oppressive and evil empire, are pursued by a fallen Jedi in black armor, and menaced by a powerful weapon capable of destroying planets, albeit one ten times more powerful than the Death Star. One of this rebellion's key actors is a youth from a backwater planet far removed from the conflict, who is unwillingly drawn into the battle and must learn the ways of the Force. Additionally, the New Republic is just as flawed and weak as the previous one, and are once again menaced by an order dissatisfied with the way they run the galaxy.
  • Holograms Are Always Beta: Averted. Holoprojectors have come quite a ways in 30 years, and are much crisper. They also lack the blue monochrome/aura and scan lines they used to have. We get to see old-school holos at the end in side-by-side comparison with the new ones when R2 reactivates and shows his portion of the map, and BB shows the portion contained in the MacGuffin.
  • Hope Spot: It seems for a moment like Kylo Ren might accept his father's offer to reconcile. Then the moment ends.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Maz Kanata offhandedly refers to Chewbacca, who's at least a meter taller than her, as her "boyfriend".
  • I'm Dying, Please Take My MacGuffin: The movie begins with Lor San Tekka handing a data thing to Poe and saying "This will start to make things right." A minute later, as landing craft attack, he's telling Poe to run and seems resigned to his fate. While Luke is arguably the true MacGuffin of the film, the much sought-after map is his proxy throughout.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice:
    • Finn runs a stormtrooper through a lightsaber; he seems to have misjudged how easy to stab it is with one and it stops to the hilt.
    • The fate of Han Solo, at the hands of Kylo Ren (his own son) no less.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: Averted Trope. The Stormtroopers actually have a somewhat reasonable accuracy rating in this film, and Finn is an exceptionally good shot when he manages to get his hands on a blaster. On the other hand, Rey, who is unused to firing a blaster, takes several shots to hit a single Stormtrooper who isn't moving around.
  • Indy Ploy: Finn lies about knowing how to disable Starkiller Base's defenses so he can get the opportunity to rescue Rey. When Han Solo finds out and calls him out on it, Finn responds that they'll figure something out (which they do).
    Finn: We'll figure it out. We'll use the Force!
    Han: That's not how the Force works!
  • Instant Mass, Just Add Water: The "polystarch" Rey gets for her scavenged parts. Rey pours the powder in hot water, stirs it, and after a few seconds there's a loaf-thing. This was a practical effect, though not a tasty or nutritious one. The pack also comes with a side of "Veg-Meat".
  • Internal Homage:
    • FN-2187 echoes Princess Leia's cell number 2187 in the original Star Wars film, which itself is an homage to a 1963 Sci-Fi short entitled 21-87.
    • A side shot of the Millennium Falcon as it escapes the pursuing TIE Fighters into the Star Destroyer graveyard is nearly identical shot-for-shot to the famous scene where it did the same thing while flying into the asteroid field in The Empire Strikes Back. It also directly references the infrastructure chase of the Death Star II in Return of the Jedi.
    • The shot of Kylo Ren trying to Force-pull Anakin/Luke's lightsaber in the snow only for it to be taken by Rey resembles the shot of Luke trying to grab the lightsaber in the Wampa's cave in The Empire Strikes Back.
    • Han's death partly resembles Emperor Palpatine's death in Return of the Jedi, falling down a shaft after being betrayed. It also resembles the fate of two duelists in the final battle of The Phantom Menace, with Han getting impaled by a lightsaber like Qui-Gon Jinn, before falling into the shaft like Darth Maul. Also, the scene is a dramatic family encounter on a bridge suspended over a shaft.
  • Interstellar Weapon: Starkiller Base houses a Death Star-sized cannon which can fire a Wave Motion Gun through hyperspace, exiting in another star system and destroying every planet therein.
  • Invincible Classic Car: The Millennium Falcon gets smacked around quite a bit throughout the film. During the take-off from Jakku, Rey can barely maintain lift and scrapes the ship along the ground for several seconds. When they're escaping from the transport ship, a rathtar tries in vain to rip off the cockpit canopy. During the infiltration of Starkiller Base, Han smashes the ship through a forest before a very rough crash landing. None of these things causes any meaningful damage. Corellians build their ships to last, for sure.
  • Invisible Means Undodgeable: Kylo Ren likes to take advantage of this when dealing with targets that are outside of his physical reach. He telekinetically grabs both Poe and Rey at different points in the film, holding them motionless so that he does not have to bother chasing down agile, blaster-toting adversaries.
  • Jedi Mind Trick: Double subverted. Rey is held prisoner, and she has just discovered that she's strong in the Force. She orders a Stormtrooper: "You will remove these restraints and leave the cell with the door open". The stormtrooper reacts with a Flat "What.". She says it again, but he replies instead that he'll tighten the restraints, you scavenger scum. She repeats it a third time, and now it does the trick. The Stormtrooper releases her, leaves, and drops his weapon in the ground, as ordered.
  • Jump Scare:
    • In the first teaser, Finn pops up in a ball of sweat after a brief shot of Jakku.
    • In the movie, when the rifle blast Kylo Ren has frozen restarts again, this gives Finn a jump.
    • The crashed TIE Fighter suddenly explodes after it sinks into the sand on Jakku, also scaring Finn.
    • When Rey touches Luke Skywalker's lightsaber at Maz Kanata's hideout, she is thrust into a crazy vision kick-started by Vader's mechanical breathing.
  • Keystone Army: Subverted. Despite the Empire losing the Battle of Endor due to the Emperor's death in Return of the Jedi, their remnants are still around in the galaxy decades later.
  • Kill the Ones You Love: Amongst Kylo Ren's tests by the Dark Side is having to kill his father, Han Solo. Initially he didn't have the will to do it on his own, but when Han comes to try and talk him into leaving the First Order, he finally does it.
  • Legendary in the Sequel: The Millennium Falcon still has a legendary reputation for the Kessel Run and now with her storied involvement in the Rebellion on top of that; however, she still looks like an old Corellian jalopy so neither Finn nor Rey know what she really is until Han spells it out.
  • Lens Flare: While this is a staple of J. J. Abrams's films, this one downplays it to levels comparable to the Original Trilogy.
  • Light Equals Hope: Rey, Chewie, and Han race to try to stop the new weapon that's eating the sun. When it is powered up, the sun will literally go out. On the way, Solo meets Kylo Ren. Kylo speaks of a struggle and asks Han's help. He's clearly struggling between staying on the Dark side or going back to the Light. As Han steps forward to help him, Kylo offers his lightsaber. The sun goes out, and Kylo chooses the Dark side, impaling his father on the lightsaber and shoving him to fall into the guts of the space station.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: While they've been True Companions for more than two decades, Han occasionally gripes at Chewie, making sarcastic comments and seems to anticipate his objections.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: You have the six major players from the original movies (Luke, Leia, Han, Chewbacca, R2-D2, and C-3PO), characters aligned with the Resistance (Finn, Rey, Poe, BB-8, and Maz Kanata), and characters aligned with the First Order (Kylo Ren, Captain Phasma, General Hux, and Supreme Leader Snoke). That's already 15, and that's before even getting to several cast members with minor roles, including Max Von Sydow, Warwick Davis, Miltos Yerolemou, Greg Grunberg, Crystal Clarke, Pip Andersen, Christina Chong, Jessica Henwick, Billie Lourd, and Maisie Richardson-Sellers, which brings the total up to 25.
  • The Lost Woods: Maz Kanata's castle is located by a lake in the middle of a vast forest on the planet Takodana. Rey is awe-struck.
    Rey: I never knew there was so much green in the galaxy.

    Tropes M to O 
  • Magic A Is Magic A: When they get in a difficult situation (and with no Jedi present), Finn says "We'll use the Force!" An exasperated Han Solo replies, "That's not how the Force works!"
  • The Magic Comes Back: The Force is indeed awakening in the galaxy after years of dormancy.
  • Match Cut: The first shot of Rey follows a close-up of Finn, their faces matching up exactly.
  • Meaningful Echo: An estranged father and his son reunite on a catwalk. Any connection the scene may have had to its Empire counterpart proceeds to go spectacularly Off the Rails beyond that.
  • Meaningful Name: Starkiller Base. Not only does it contain a weapon capable of destroying entire planetary systems, but it powers itself by siphoning off all of the material within a burning star.
  • Mega-Maw Maneuver: As Rey and Finn are escaping from Jakku in the Millennium Falcon, the ship is suddenly overridden and a large transport engulfs it. They're certain they've been caught by the First Order, but it's actually Han Solo and Chewbacca.
  • Mind Rape: Kylo Ren forces his way into Poe's mind, an experience that is worse than all the torture Poe had endured up to that point. He does a cursory scan of Rey when he first captures her, learning that she's seen the map. It's subverted when Kylo tries to do a deeper probe back at Starkiller Base. She blocks him and reads his mind to discover his fear of not being as evil as Darth Vader.
  • Mohs Scale of Violence Hardness: It rates a 4, with a few lightsaber impalings. Blood also makes several appearances.
  • Moment Killer:
    • Finn's first attempt to tell Rey where he really came from is interrupted by a leaky pipe suddenly venting steam.
    • An emotional reunion between Han and Leia is interrupted by, predictably, C-3PO.
  • Mood Whiplash: The first teaser starts with Finn popping into frame in a desert, visibly stressed and sweating. This is followed up by the adorable BB-8 rolling by, even as the super-serious music continues to play. This levity is then followed up by sinister-looking Stormtroopers.
  • Mooks: Stormtroopers return, with all-new armor. In fact, one of the main characters, played by John Boyega, starts off as one. Turns out he's a better shot than his comrades, although they leveled up as well.
  • More Dakka: The Resurgent-class Star Destroyer isn't just twice as big as the old Imperial-class Star Destroyers, it's also massively better armed: while the Imperial's mounted some 150 weapon systems, the Resurgent has over three thousand. This seems to be in keeping with the First Order's overall design philosophy, which is "The Galactic Empire, squared."
  • More Teeth than the Osmond Family: The rathtars that Han and Chewie are transporting. They're basically multi-tentacled killing machines with meat grinders for mouths.
  • Muppet: Many of the non-Human Aliens are puppets made by the Henson Workshop. These include a strange-looking merchant that carries several caged bird-creatures upon his back, and a giant creature (operated by five people) that resembles both a boar and a rhinoceros.
  • Mushroom Samba: Without the mushrooms. When Rey touches Luke's, and Anakin's, former lightsaber, she experiences a confusing Force vision showing her a mishmash of both her past and her future.
  • My Significance Sense Is Tingling: Leia senses the death of Han.
  • Mythology Gag: Has its own its own page.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast:
    • As if the new class of Star Destroyer the First Order uses wasn't scary enough, the particular ship is called the Finalizer.
    • "Starkiller Base" is certainly scary.
    • Messing with a group called the "Guavian Death Gang" seems rather inadvisable.
  • Never Trust a Trailer:
    • The trailers and the poster contain multiple shots of Finn wielding a lightsaber, implying that he is the Force adept for this generation. In fact, both Finn and Rey show Force-sensitivity, although Finn shows it first, within his first scene, when he panics after sensing the villagers' deaths.
    • From the first trailer, many fans assumed the desert planet was Tatooine.
  • New Meat: When the Resistance's fighters charge into battle over Takodana, he gives his pilots an order that implies that many of them are about to see battle for the first time:
    Poe: Don't let these thugs scare you.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: The entire Race Against the Clock battle at Starkiller Base is precipitated by the fact that the Resistance sent scouts to do recon on the base's infrastructure to figure out a way to take it down. The First Order notices and is able to track the scouts back to the Resistance base, enabling them to designate their weapon's next target.
  • The Nicknamer:
    • Rey calls BB-8 "Classified" before he tells her his real designation, and Han calls Finn "Big Deal" when the latter gives an inflated reputation with the Resistance as his background. "Finn" is actually a nickname, too, given to him by Poe because "FN-2187" isn't much of a name.
    • Poe giving him the nickname Finn becomes that much more meaningful when you read the supplementary material. In the First Order almost no Stormtroopers go by their designation when around other Stormtroopers, instead having nicknames given to them by people in their squad. Finn goes by FN-2187 purely because he has no real friends no one likes him enough to give him one. Poe naming him like a friend would is showing him he could belong somewhere.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Han and Finn have gotten a hold of Rey, and managed to drop the Starkiller Base's shield just prior, their mission for all intents and purposes is done. When they see that Poe's squadron can't breach the weak point of the base thanks to its much heavier protection, Han decides to use the explosives they have on hand to help out. This decision ultimately leads to the destruction of the base at the cost of his death at the hands of Kylo Ren.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • How Anakin's lightsaber ended up in Maz Kanata's possession. She just says that it's a story for another time.
    • C-3PO draws attention to his new red arm (implying that he has lost his old golden one), but doesn't elaborate on the story behind this.
    • The Trillia Massacre, which involved Rathtars.
  • No OSHA Compliance:
    • The First Order may have improved in some ways, but worker safety isn't one of them. There's a confrontation on a long catwalk over a massive pit that is barely wide enough for one person and has no handrails.
    • Averted when locked doors open upon having vital components removed by Rey. This would be a basic safety procedure to allow workers to escape in an emergency.
  • Not Hyperbole: Starkiller Base actually does destroy stars - and that's just how it refuels!
  • Not-So-Omniscient Council of Bickering: The current capital of the New Republic gets obliterated by the First Order's Starkiller Base while one of Leia's representatives is there lobbying the Senate to take the threat of the First Order seriously. Leia herself was not there because by this point she was not held in high regard by most Senators due to her persistent warnings about the impending danger. Instead she was leading a small rag-tag Resistance with only covert backing from a minority of supporters in the government who believed her.
  • Not with the Safety on, You Won't: Rey, upon using a blaster for the first time, forgets to take off the safety. She fixes this problem quickly. The novelization expands on this with an earlier scene where she tries to use the blaster on Unkar Plutt and his thugs, but is foiled by the safety being engaged. That's why she's quick to figure it out when later confronted by Stormtroopers.
  • Obligatory War Crime Scene: Our introduction to the First Order has them massacre a peaceful village.
  • Offhand Backhand: Han casually plugs a Stormtrooper in the center mass with his DL-44 blaster without even looking when they come out guns blazing from Maz's wrecked cantina. Even Han looks surprised and impressed.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome:
    • The creative team behind Battlefront (2015) has confirmed that there was indeed a "Battle of Jakku" some time before the events of the film, but it isn't depicted in the film itself. It's very likely that the derelict spaceships are meant to be the wreckage of the battle. The battle itself is also featured in a number of the Journey to the Force Awakens tie-in stories.
    • In the film itself, Chewbacca goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge after Han dies. He's last seen setting off the explosives in Starkiller Base then charging into the base one-shotting Stormtroopers as the base goes up in flames around him. He's next seen in the Millennium Falcon no worse for wear. One tough Wookie.
    • It's never explained (in the film) how Poe got off of Jakku.
  • Offscreen Teleportation:
    • When Finn first spots Rey and is then forced to run when BB-8 spots him in turn, Rey somehow appears ahead of him to hit him with her staff.
    • Rey and Finn escape the exploding superweapon, leaving a wounded Kylo Ren behind as they run into the woods. Suddenly their way is blocked by Kylo Ren, his lightsaber ready for action. Though they would have had to climb back down the building they'd left Kylo in, as they were a few stories above him when he was wounded, which would have given him something of a head start.
    • Chewbacca is last seen charging into the exploding Starkiller Base in a Roaring Rampage of Revenge but somehow manages to get back to the Falcon to rescue Finn and Rey.
  • Offscreen Villain Dark Matter: Skeptics in the New Republic doubt that the First Order is a threat because they are supposedly nothing but a bunch of poorly-funded fanatics, yet these fanatics have a fleet of new Star Destroyers, upgraded TIE fighters, and a superweapon so large that they had to build it into a planet.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Finn has this reaction several times throughout the story, with the biggest instance being his reaction to Kylo Ren charging at him.
    • Rey's reaction to Kylo Ren bringing his unstable lightsaber right up close to her face. There might be a pattern here.
    • This is both of their reactions to a ship that Rey can pilot getting blown up — JUST as she points it out — as they're trying to escape the First Order's attack on Jakku.
    • The action on board the freighter Eravana becomes a never-ending sequence of these for all characters after the rathtars get loose.
    • Kylo Ren freaks out when Rey successfully resists his attempts to Mind Probe her and proceeds to read him instead.
    • Han's reaction when Finn admits that A) he was stationed at Starkiller Base in sanitation and B) he has no real plan for disabling the shields, he's just come to save Rey.
      Han: People are counting on us! The galaxy is counting on us!
  • One Dialogue, Two Conversations: When confronted by Han, Kylo Ren confesses that he feels "torn in two" (between the Dark and the Light) and that he knows what needs to be done but lacks the strength to do it, and asks Han's help, to which Han immediately agrees. Han thinks he's asking for help breaking away from Snoke and the Dark Side; Ren is talking about finding the strength to kill Han - his father - and fully embrace the Dark Side.
  • The Oner: Poe Dameron's Big Damn Heroes moment in Takodana, where he demonstrates why he is the best pilot in the Resistance by destroying ten TIE fighters in a single pass, while at the same time sniping stormtroopers on the ground with pinpoint accuracy.
  • Orange/Blue Contrast: The poster, lighted on one side by Kylo Ren's red lightsaber and orange explosions, and on the other side by Finn's blue lightsaber and cyan laser fire.
  • Our Graphics Will Suck in the Future: Despite 30 years passing in both the galaxy far, far away and the world where it was filmed, the HUD graphics seen still look as if they were programmed for displays available in the late 1970s. It's likely an Enforced Trope to retain the Original Trilogy vibes this movie leans so heavily on. The new ships do have improved graphics, although still stylistically similar to those of the originals. The Falcon however is still using its original, extremely basic HUD.

    Tropes P to R 
  • Palette Swap: The First Order's TIE Fighters' color scheme is an inversion of the Original Trilogy's TIE Fighters. The Empire's TIE Fighters had gray hulls with black wings, the First Order's TIE Fighters have black hulls with gray wings.
  • Pants-Positive Safety: Han Solo gives Rey a blaster pistol, but no holster; so she quite casually stuffs it through the back of her belt. Solo, the experienced gunman, has no problem with this. The blaster stays secure through a lot of running and fighting. It does have a safety, as seen when she tries firing it.
  • Partly Cloudy with a Chance of Death: When the ambient light goes dark red (because the nearby sun is drained) it's obvious something really bad is about to happen to Han Solo.
  • Passing the Torch: Part of the relationship between the new stars and original cast.
    • The second trailer re-purposed Luke's "the Force is strong in my family" speech to Leia from Return of the Jedi — which now ends, not begins, with "You have that power too". However, Luke doesn't have any lines in this movie, so the specifics of that line are still up in the air.
    • Han acts as the primary vehicle for the passing the torch from the old guard to the new. He acts as a mentor to both Rey (independent, hard-bitten pilot) and Finn (scrappy kid crushing on a girl out of his league). He gives them both weapons and advice and tries to guide them to a better future than what they imagine for themselves. And then he has an Obi-Wan style death.
    • The movie places a big focus on Rey inheriting Anakin Skywalker's lightsaber. She is called to it and receives a Force vision when she touches it, and she is able to summon in to her hand when the person confirmed to be Anakin Skywalker's grandson is unable to do so. Whether this is foreshadowing of her future as Luke's apprentice or a sign that Rey is Anakin Skywalker's granddaughter remains up in the air.
  • Patricide: Kylo Ren, born Ben Solo, murders his father Han after he attempts to get him to reject the Dark Side.
  • Planet Spaceship: Starkiller Base. We don't see it moving at all, but it presumably relocates to drain another star every time it needs to fire its weapon. When Resistance pilots are being briefed we see a 3-D representation of it compared to a Death Star and dwarfing the latter.
  • Please Select New City Name: The planet known as Starkiller Base used to be named something else before the First Order built a superweapon into it — although the movie doesn't clarify what that name was. This also counts as a Meaningful Rename.
  • Plot Armor: The rathtars Rey accidentally releases aboard the Eravana eat the criminal mooks within seconds of getting their tentacles on them, but drag Finn along the ship's hallways for just as long as it takes for Rey to get him back.
  • Possession Equals Mastery: Averted. Finn uses a lightsaber on multiple occasions, but since he knows absolutely nothing about swordsmanship, he ends up losing every time he faces somebody trained in a weapon that can block the blade.
  • Power Incontinence: Rey experiences involuntary Force visions the first time that she touches Luke's lightsaber.
  • Power Trio:
    • Luke, Han, and Leia return.
    • Finn, Rey, and Poe seem to form a new one.
    • A villainous one exists with Kylo Ren, Hux, and Phasma.
    • C-3PO, R2-D2, and BB-8 at the end.
  • Precision F-Strike: While the movie's language is mostly clean (like all Star Wars movies), Finn gets three minor swears. He lets out a subdued "dammit" after being struck during the escape from Jakku, and later calls Poe one "hell of a pilot" during the Resistance's Big Damn Heroes moment. He also says "Hell, no." when Han asks him if he's up to it.
  • Psychometry: Rey experiences this when she touches Luke's lightsaber for the first time, seeing visions of the past.
  • Quicksand Sucks: One of the hazards on Jakku is quicksand pits which can swallow people whole. One of these snags the crashed TIE Fighter, which is what convinces Finn that Poe was killed in the crash. Although it seems to be Princess Bride-style dry quicksand, as there's no distinctive slurping, gurgling, or bubbles like the regular stuff.
  • Race Against the Clock: After Starkiller Base destroys the New Republic capital, our heroes have a very tiny window of time until the weapon recharges again (absorbing a nearby star, no less) to sabotage the shields and letting the Resistance attack it.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Finn and Poe get into a docked spaceship without checking to see if it's moored or still connected to a cable, leading to them bouncing around the hangar until Poe finds the release button.
    • The trope is later double subverted in a single scene. Rey's first two attempts to use the Jedi mind trick don't work at all, but it works just fine when she tries it a third time moments later.
    • Return of the Jedi left fans with the belief that the Empire immediately dissolved after the Emperor, Darth Vader, and the Death Star were destroyed. 32 years later, this movie does for the current continuity what Star Wars Legends did for the previous one, setting the record straight by showing that there are still remnants of the Empire who survived and are still very much a threat to the galaxy.
    • Finn getting to wield Anakin's lightsaber, while awesome, proves impractical for him in a real fight because it isn't the weapon he's trained to use (he doesn't even know the thing is a weapon until Maz tells him so), and gets his behind handed to him when he engages a Stormtrooper wielding a lightsaber-proof baton and Kylo Ren, both of them experts in close-quarter combat. Watch him closely, and you'll notice that he always has more confidence around blasters or gunning equipment and makes a point of seeking them out when he's unarmed. On the other hand, Rey is much more experienced in the subject, herself quite handy with the staff as shown on Jakku when she defended BB-8 from being stolen, and being Force-sensitive. However, even though Ren is heavily injured and apparently hasn't completed his own training, notice that Rey is actually running away from him for most of their final fight. Just because she's discovering her Force powers and is good at hand-to-hand combat doesn't make her a match for an experienced swordsman.
    • While everyone cheered for Han and Leia's pairing in Return of the Jedi, it seems this trope intervened — he's a smuggler and she's a general, and their relationship is more like reality than the fairy tale that was expected. More than anything, it seems it was the loss of their son Ben that drove them apart — as often happens in Real Life. The loss of a child is an enormous strain that not all marriages can weather.
    • Rey tries to help Han at one point by pulling out a fuse and locking a door on the freighter they're on. This actually ends up releasing the dangerous beasts Han was transporting at the time since she just yanked a random fuse without really knowing what it was supposed to do (she didn't have much time).
    • Kylo Ren rescinds the order to capture BB-8 when he captured Rey, as she had seen the map BB-8 was carrying. He never anticipated that he couldn't extract the map from her, nor did he realize that the droid was still heading towards the Resistance. Hux "kindly" pointed this out to him in front of Snoke.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: A couple of reviewers mocked how Kylo Ren frequently twirls his lightsaber when fighting (ignoring the fact that the Prequel Trilogy had even more complex lightsaber moves). In a behind the scenes featurette, however, the fight trainer for the movie specifically explained that this is what you are supposed to do in real-life swordsmanship: constantly moving your blade, ready to fluidly transition from one position to the next. As he explained, the old trope of dramatic posturing from one static sword stance to another is pure Hollywood, and actually the exact opposite of how real life sword fights should work.
  • Recurring Element: Many old elements are given a modern version here. See also the Trivia page.
    • A new desert planet in the middle of nowhere, Jakku to Tatooine.
    • A new Force sensitive outcast living on the desert planet who gets recruited by the heroes, Rey to Luke and Anakin.
    • A new small, cute, droid carrying secret information for the heroic faction, who discovers the desert outcast, BB-8 to R2-D2.
    • A new cocksure Ace Pilot, Poe to Han.
    • A new seedy bar in Maz's castle which combines elements of the Cantina and Jabba's Palace.
    • Maz herself as the new diminutive Force savvy mentor, echoing Yoda. A deleted scene confirms she's a very powerful force user.
    • A new spherical planet-destroying superweapon station, Starkiller to the Death Star.
    • A new Darth Vader Clone in Kylo Ren.
    • An old, reclusive Dark Side master in Snoke to Palpatine.
    • A new confident and zealous fascist leader, Hux to Tarkin.
    • A new perpetually masked soldier who serves the evil side, Phasma is a loose one to Boba Fett.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Han spends the last several years of his life returning to his old piratical ways, making it unsurprising that his final attempt to redeem his son results in his shish kebabing.
  • Redemption Rejection: Han tries to convince Kylo Ren to join them against Snoke, Ren seems about to accept, even offering Han his lightsaber... and then kills him.
  • Refusal of the Call: By both Rey and Finn. Rey just wants to return to her home on Jakku, Finn hopes to get as far from the approaching conflict altogether.
  • Repeating so the Audience Can Hear: Noticeably subverted between Han and Chewbacca, as well as between BB-8 and Rey, resulting in bilingual dialogue. In several instances we the audience are left wondering what Chewie (or BB-8) really did say.
    BB-8: <chirps and beeps>
    Rey: NO!
  • Retraux: Halfway. Although a number of old-fashioned techniques were used for the film like puppetry, 35mm filming, and miniatures, modern techniques (such as CGI and digital editing) were also utilized to avoid Special Effect Failure.
  • Reveal Shot: While fleeing from the TIE-fighters' bombardment on Jakku, Rey dismisses the off-screen spaceship Finn is suggesting as "garbage", but the other ship they were heading to gets blown up. This leads to the decision that "the garbage will do", with the camera panning to reveal to the audience that the aforementionned piece of junk happens to be the Millennium Falcon.
  • Revisiting the Roots: The film brings back Lawrence Kasdan to write the screenplay, the original cast, and the Millennium Falcon, as well as a boatload of miniatures, animatronics, and practical effects. Not to forget John Williams, once again composing the music.
  • Revival: The Force Awakens picks up three decades after where Return of the Jedi left off, Passing the Torch from the Original Trilogy's heroes to a new generation of adventurers caught up in the continuing war between The Empire and La Résistance.
  • Rewatch Bonus: By the time Rey finds Anakin Skywalker's lightsaber stored in a chest, it's easy to have forgotten that she was originally attracted to Maz's basement by the sound of a crying child. On rewatching it becomes clear that it's Rey crying as she's left behind on Jakku, paralleling her abandonment by Finn.
  • Right Behind Me:
    • Han is arguing with Bala-Tik about his debts, who insists that he also owes money to Kanjiklub.
      Han: I never made a deal with Kanjiklub!
      Bala-Tik: Tell that to Kanjiklub.
      [Kanjiklub appears behind Han]
    • Finn is trying to come up with a plan to locate Rey inside the huge and complex base, while Han repeatedly gestures for him to turn around.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Chewbacca, Rey, and Finn enter one when Kylo Ren/Ben Solo murders his father, Han. Chewbacca, in particular, seems outraged, as he proceeds to shoot Kylo Ren in the guts, one-shot the remaining Stormtroopers around him and blow up the entire First Order installation.
  • Rousing Speech: General Hux delivers one to a large crowd of soldiers about how they will crush their enemies "THIS DAY WILL BE REMEMBERED AS THE LAST DAY OF THE REPUBLIC!". He caps this speech with a demonstration of Starkiller's power.
  • Rule of Cool: No reason is given why a random Stormtrooper would just happen to be carrying around a lightsaber-resistant electric staff, but it makes for a cool fight scene.
  • Rule of Symbolism:
    • The Starkiller weapon eats stars to power itself. So when the X-wings are trying to destroy it before it fires, they note that as long as there's still light, there's hope.
    • Light from the dying star shines through a window when Han and Kylo Ren meet and as a nod to Return of the Jedi half of Ren's face is in it while the other half is drenched in the building's red utility lighting. The star's light fades right before Kylo kills Han to symbolize his complete descent to the Dark Side.
    • When Rey despairs over Finn's apparent death in the darkened forest, the sudden light from the Millennium Falcon as it swoops in to the rescue is framed almost as if it were a sunrise.
    • After the Starkiller weapon is destabilized, the star it consumed blows it up from the inside, leaving a new sun in its place.
    • Kylo Ren's cross-guard lightsaber has a cracked focusing crystal, causing it to sputter and spark when live and requiring secondary "channels" perpendicular to the blade to vent some of the excess power that the crystal cannot contain. The blade itself mirror's Kylo's inner turmoil, great power, and difficulty with control.
  • Rule of Three: While fleeing from stormtroopers on Jakku, Finn twice grabs Rey's hand to lead her away, causing her to protest each time. The third time they need to flee, she offers him a hand.
  • Running Gag:
    • Finn's inability to understand any language other than Basic, be it droidspeak, Shyriiwook, or anything else.
    • Finn not having a blaster during fight sequences. First on Jakku, then during the rathtar sequence, before finally at Maz's castle. When he finally gets his hand on a Stormtrooper blaster, he immediately shows why he wanted one.
    • Finn lying badly about being a Resistance member. Only Rey buys it. Even BB-8 manages to look skeptical, which is quite a feat given his utter lack of changeable facial expression.
    • On Jakku, Finn keeps mistakenly treating Rey like a Damsel in Distress. He tries to rescue her from muggers, only to watch her beat up the muggers before he gets there and then start chasing him down. He keeps grabbing her hand to lead their flight from the Stormtroopers, causing her to gripe at him each time and ultimately offer him a hand when he falls over. When he's knocked unconscious, he snaps back awake and asks if she's okay.

    Tropes S to U 
  • Saharan Shipwreck: Star Destroyers belong in the vacuum of space, but here they are in the desert of Jakku. They also supply our heroine with artifacts to collect and trade.
  • Scavenger World: Jakku gives off the vibe of one by featuring large, barren expanses while also featuring several abandoned supply stations, though there are still cities on the planet.
  • Scenery Gorn: Jakku's surface is littered with the broken hulks of X-wings, Star Destroyers and AT-ATs that fell in a battle decades ago.
  • Scenery Porn: Lots of it, with gorgeous desert vistas on Jakku, the forests of both Takodana and Starkiller Base, and finally the absolutely spectacular final shots of Skellig Michael as the first Jedi temple.
  • Sci-Fi Writers Have No Sense of Distance:
    • After Rey and Finn leave Jakku on the Millennium Falcon, they manage to lose the Finalizer without going to lightspeed.
    • All the planets in the Hosnian System are close enough to be visible in the same frame. At the same time, they are distant enough from each other to be visible more than 2-5 degrees apart in Takodana's sky.
    • The destruction of the Hosnian System is immediately visible in the skies above Maz Kanata's castle, even though that system is hundreds if not thousands of light years away. While this has been Hand Waved as the light from the explosions making it through hyperspace, the beam manages to: 1) travel interstellar distances in a matter of seconda; 2) be visible (in real time, not as an optical echo) from Kylo Ren's ship in realspace and from Takodana despite being hyperluminal; 3) only split upon entering the Hosnian system. All in all, everything is treated as if distances were comparable to the Earth-Moon system.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!:
    • Finn's reaction after being sent on his first mission as a Stormtrooper, in which he watched in horror as an entire village was massacred by the First Order. This prompts him to free Resistance pilot Poe so they can escape together.
    • Some First Order officers start to make a run for it as Starkiller Base is destroyed.
      Colonel Datoo: Lieutenant, get back to your station!
      Lieutenant Rodinon: Just look! We won't survive! Even Hux is gone!
    • Finn doesn't want to join the Resistance, he just wants to be as far away from the First Order as possible.
    • Rey is on board with helping the Resistance, but changes her mind and runs off after touching Anakin's lightsaber and having a horrifying Force-vision of the past.
    • A pair of Stormtroopers, while approaching Kylo Ren's interrogation room, see and hear him having an angry breakdown after Rey escapes, then quickly decide they have other places to be.
  • Sequel Escalation: The movie has a $200,000,000 budget, nearly twice the amount that it took to film any of the Prequel Trilogy films. That money is being put to use in a way that involves some of the most convincing practical effects and stunning CGI ever shown in a Star Wars movie.
  • Sequel Hook: The movie leaves multiple threads dangling for future installments (whether they be in the movies, comics, or novels):
    • The movie ends with Rey presumably becoming Luke's Padawan.
    • Rey's parentage isn't revealed, nor are we given a reason why her family abandoned on Jakku. However, we do get a brief flashback showing her being left behind.
    • Finn mentions that he never knew his family, as he was taken away by the First Order as an infant. This is another possible thread that could be explored. It was said earlier in interviews that there is a reason so little about Finn and Rey's family histories was revealed.
    • Finn has gone into a coma by the end of the film, being severely injured in his fight against Kylo Ren. Only time will tell if he will heal completely by the next film, or if it will require some assistance from other heroes à la Han Solo-in-carbonite first.
    • It's never revealed how Maz got her hands on Anakin's lightsaber. She even says that it's a story for another day.
    • Kylo Ren, General Hux, and Captain Phasma all survived the destruction of Starkiller Base, and Snoke ominously claims that it is time to finish Ren's training. Kathleen Kennedy even confirmed that Phasma is planned to have a bigger role in The Last Jedi.
  • Serial Escalation:
  • Serkis Folk:
    • Surprising absolutely no-one, Andy Serkis plays an alien character (Supreme Commander Snoke) rendered with CGI motion-capture. His mo-cap studio will also help with any other CGI characters in the Sequel Trilogy.
    • Lupita Nyong'o plays Maz Kanata, another CGI motion-capture character.
  • Shifting Sand Land: Jakku is nothing but desert, and even has pools of quicksand.
  • Shoot Out the Lock: While trying to escape the freighter, Han fiddles with the door controls while Chewie holds off the gangsters. After Chewie gets shot in the arm and Han has to borrow his bowcaster, he just gives up and blasts the panel, opening the door.
  • Shoot the Dog: While escaping the freighter, Han cold-cocks one of the fleeing pirates, grabs him, and shoves the guy into the mouth of a approaching rathtar to give himself some more time to run. The deliberate nature of it also seems to be a meta-commentary on the whole "Han shoots Greedo" controversy, showing that, yes, Han will absolutely kill another less-than-moral person if he's in a tight spot.
  • Shout-Out: Has its own page.
  • Shrouded in Myth: Rey has heard stories about the Jedi, but needs Han to confirm that they're true.
  • Sidequest: Unlike A New Hope, where the Death Star plans are the MacGuffin and destroying the Death Star is always the objective, in TFA, having to destroy Starkiller Base is a distraction away from the protagonists' quest to find Luke.
  • Signature Team Transport: The Millennium Falcon is back in business.
  • Silence Is Golden: The final scene of the film, marking the first appearance of Luke Skywalker since Return of the Jedi, lacks any dialogue.
  • Single-Biome Planet: All of Jakku that we see is a desert.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Starkiller Base, which outside the buildings is a snowy wasteland dotted by a few trees.
  • So Last Season:
    • The First Order Stormtroopers wield baton weapons that stop lightsaber blades.
    • The First Order makes a Kill Sat weapon as big as a planet instead of a moon like in the original trilogy.
  • Spin-Offspring: The film continues the generational saga of the Skywalker family — although, interestingly, who is related to who is not made clear going into the film.
  • Space Pirates:
    • Han Solo also encounters a few to whom he owes money.
    • The First Order has connection to these groups, since they are in exile and need to gain resources secretly.
  • Standard Establishing Spaceship Shot: Several with the Star Destroyer, including one where it points directly at the viewer (in 3D it looks like it's about to fly up one's nose).
  • Stealth Pun: When Poe and Finn escape the First Order, they try to take off in a TIE Fighter. They're held back, however, because it's TIEd up.
  • Stock Scream: A Wilhelm Scream is heard when a Stormtrooper gets knocked away during Finn and Poe's escape.
  • Stock Sound Effects: When the rathtars are attacking the pirate gangs, one of the beasts emits the iconic mechanical scream that Blackout used in Transformers.
  • Stopped Numbering Sequels: Both averted and played straight. Chronologically, this film follows the original trilogy movie titled simply Return of the Jedi, and known as Episode VI only retroactively. However, the last live-action Star Wars release was officially titled Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, following the same pattern as other prequel movies. So, if following the release order the numbering was dropped by this movie, but by chronological order it was dropped all the way back when Episode IV: A New Hope was titled simply Star Wars.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: Are we done with that TIE Fighter that Poe and Finn escaped in once the quicksand dune swallowed it? Nope! It lights off under the dune and spews a plume of sand into the air.
  • Sure, Let's Go with That: When Finn explains that he helped Poe escape the First Order, Rey assumes that means he's with the Resistance. Not wanting to reveal his past as a Stormtrooper, he pretends she's right.
  • Survival Mantra:
    • As Finn takes Poe to the hangar to escape pretending to be his prisioner, he repeats: "Okay. Stay calm. Stay calm."
      Poe: I'm calm.
      Finn: I'm talking to myself.
    • Later when Finn and Rey enter the Millennium Falcon...
      Finn: [in the gunner's chair] I can do this. I can do this.
      Rey: [in the pilot's chair] I can do this. I can do this.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Jakku to Tatooine; both desert planets where the Jedi prodigy is doing repetitive work and then becomes the center of a clash between the First Order and the Resistance.
  • Sword of Plot Advancement: Anakin Skywalker's lightsaber, which becomes an impetus to both Finn and Rey becoming heroes.
  • Tactical Withdrawal: Once the Resistance counter-attacks the First Order on Maz Kanata's planet, Kylo Ren decides to regroup rather than commit more forces to a battle, since he believes Rey has the information he needs.
  • Tagline: "Every generation has a story."
  • Take It to the Bridge: The confrontation between Han Solo and Kylo Ren happens on a walkway across a massive shaft.
  • Talking Is a Free Action: Averted. After Finn and Poe hijack a TIE Fighter and are pursued by enemy forces, Poe starts to explain why he needs to return to Jakku and pick up BB-8. The two get into an argument because Finn doesn't understand why they're going planetside just to pick up a droid, and in the process get nailed by a missile Finn is too distracted to pick off.
  • Taught by Experience:
    • According to the Visual Dictionary, the First Order, learning from the Empire's mistakes on Endor, eradicated all intelligent life forms of the planet they chose to build Starkiller Base on.
    • During the briefing before the attack on Starkiller Base, the Resistance wonders desperately how they'll stop it. Han points out that these giant doomsday weapons always have some exploitable weak point — remembering the two Death Stars — and is quickly proven right.
    • The shield generator for Starkiller is inside the shield so it can't be disabled from the outside, and the "weak point" is a hardened structure capable of withstanding repeated strafing runs by X-Wings. It takes Chewie blowing a large hole in the side and Poe flying inside and emptying his fighter's torpedo magazines into anything that looks important to finally destroy it.
    • The moment the Resistance X-Wings attack the Starkiller Base, Hux orders all TIE fighter squadrons to be launched, presumably learning from the first Death Star's destruction. They manage to destroy half of the X-Wings and would have succeeded in defeating the Resistance had Chewie and Han Solo not blown a hole in the oscillator.
    • Starkiller Base has better anti-starfighter protection than both Death Stars, incorporating turrets around key structures as well as missile launchers.
    • According to the "Incredible Cross-sections", they also applied this to the design of their new Star Destroyers. The Finalizer no longer has the exposed bridge tower which resulted in the destruction of the flagship Executor. A painful lesson to learn, indeed.
  • Theme Music Power-Up: When Rey uses the force to grab Anakin's lightsaber before Kylo Ren can reach it, the Force theme (specifically, the variation from "Burning Homestead") plays just before she begins the fight.
  • Thirsty Desert: Jakku, particularly Finn's trek while dropping armor, capped by sharing backwash in that animal's water trough. Might also qualify as Shifting Sand Land after swallowing a TIE fighter.
  • This Is Reality: When Finn starts his plan to escape by liberating Poe, the latter asks if he's with the Resistance. Finn is bemused, and in the novelization even asks how long Poe thinks a person sympathizing with the Resistance would last on a heavily monitored star-destroyer, full of indoctrinated Stormtroopers.
  • The Three Faces of Adam: Finn is the Hunter, desperately looking for a purpose, summed up in his quote in the first theatrical trailer. Kylo Ren is the Lord, a leader of the First Order with the burdens of the position and his superior, Snoke, placed upon him. Han Solo is the Prophet, a world-weary soul who has seen too much but is compelled to impart his wisdom to a new generation of heroes.
  • Threshold Guardian: Kylo Ren fills the role of the Threshold Guardiannote  who guards the entrance to the "special world" and tests The Hero's resolve in this film. When Rey faces him, he offers to teach the ways of the Force (read: the Dark Side), testing The Hero's commitment to the light. After defeating him, Rey is ready to enter the "special world" of the Jedi and flies into the Unknown World to search for Luke Skywalker (and presumably learn from him).
  • Tomato Surprise: Everyone who knows more about Kylo Ren than his name knows that he's Han and Leia's son. This is kept secret from the audience until the second act.
  • Torture Is Ineffective: Played with. Mundane torture by a First Order interrogator fails at making Poe Dameron crack, but Kylo Ren succeeds with a Force Mind Probe. Then he fails at the same technique on the Force-sensitive Rey, who turns it back on him.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: A Freeze-Frame Bonus in the trailer for the Disney Infinity 3.0 Edition Play Set that adapts the events of the film reveals that Rey takes up the lightsaber Finn had been using to fight Kylo Ren with.
  • Uniformity Exception: Before we get to see Finn unmasked, one of his dying comrades leaves a Bloody Hand Print on his helmet so we can tell him apart from the other Stormtroopers during the massacre on the Jakku village.
  • The Unreveal: C-3PO begins to tell the story of his red arm to Han, but is interrupted by Leia.
  • Up to Eleven: The original Death Star was the size of a small moon. The second was half again as large as that. Starkiller Base is absolutely enormous by comparison.
  • Used Future: The film returns to this aesthetic as it was used in the original trilogy, as it is set decades after it. Though a few ships and items look sleeker, such as the Stormtroopers and the X-wings, some things look exactly the same as they did back in Return of the Jedi (or how they would have appeared), give or take a few tweaks (like the Millennium Falcon, which was completely unmodified save for a new satellite dish). Judging from the second teaser, Luke can't even find the materials (or the time) to maintain his prosthetic hand properly.

    Tropes V to Z 
  • Vagueness Is Coming: The "Awakening" speech from the first teaser.
  • Vestigial Empire: In addition to the First Order being this to the old Galactic Empire, it's played with in the case of the New Republic. A disarmament policy sometime after the Battle of Jakku means that its armed presence is significantly reduced from the Rebellion at its height, which in turn prompted Leia to establish the Resistance in the first place. By the time the film takes place, the Resistance is unofficially supported by the Republic.
  • Vulcan Has No Moon: The destruction of the several inhabited planets of the Hosnian system is clearly visible with the naked eye, from what is explicitly a different star system entirely, in real time, during the local day, without even using any psychic vision handwavium.
  • The War Has Just Begun: Once you read the novelization, the Visual Dictionary and the prelude novel Before the Awakening you come to realize that the First Order has built massive armies and naval fleets, currently hidden in the Unknown Regions, working up for the invasion. All the main bad guys survived, the First Order's command structure is still intact and its ability to wage war is only diminished slightly by the loss of Starkiller Base. The New Republic just lost most of its government and a sizable chunk of its military while the Resistance, never that big to begin with, took heavy losses to take out Starkiller Base. By then end of the movie the question is whether the New Republic and Resistance can survive the coming blitzkrieg.
  • We Have Ways of Making You Talk: Kylo Ren uses Force Mind Reading when he interrogates Poe Dameron and, later, Rey.
  • What a Piece of Junk: When she, Finn, and BB-8 are running from the Stormtrooper attack, Rey dismisses Finn's ship suggestion as "garbage" and opts for another ship right in front of the group. When the ship is blown up, she quickly decides that the "garbage" is better than nothing. The "garbage" turns out to be anything but; it's the Millennium Falcon, and by the end of the film, Rey has inherited it from the late Han Solo. True to form, she's still very high-maintenance.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?:
    • Considering that Finn was a Stormtrooper at the start of the film, and the fact that they are revealed to consist of kidnapped, brainwashed children, the main characters sure don't mind gunning them down by the hundreds — even Finn, himself, doesn't show any guilt or internal conflict when he inadvertently kills dozens of his comrades when he escapes the First Order. This gets a minor subversion in the novelization; Finn says "Sorry boys," before opening fire.
    • Also, blink and you'll miss it, but the Stormtrooper Finn stands by as he dies and who leaves a Bloody Handprint on Finn's mask has a moving death scene — it's the only Stormtrooper death we've ever seen that was more than simply falling over.
    • This is the also the first Star Wars film to remind the reviewers that there are living, breathing men and women under the Stormtrooper armor, and that they are being killed by the heroes regularly. Emphasized by the first-time revelation that being shot dead by a blaster is not bloodless, nor always instantaneous, in the case of the aforementioned Stormtrooper Finn tries to comfort.
  • Wham Line:
    • The very first piece of new exposition in over thirty years is this.
      Luke Skywalker has vanished.
    • Another one occurs about half way through and changes the whole tone of the film.
      Snoke: [to Kylo Ren] The droid is aboard the Millennium Falcon in the hands of your father, Han Solo.
    • Han calling his son's true name when he confronts him: "BEN!"
  • Wham Shot:
    • Pretty much every scene featuring the return of a classic character, from Han to Admiral Ackbar, especially for long-time fans.
    • Kylo Ren murdering his father Han Solo.
    • Rey using the Force to summon the Skywalker family lightsaber.
    • Kylo Ren unmasking himself to Rey.
  • Who's Laughing Now?: At Starkiller Base, Finn takes pleasure surprising his former commanding officer, Captain Phasma, greeting her by his new name.
    Finn: My name's Finn, and I'm in charge here!
  • Weapon of Mass Destruction: Starkiller Base is a weapon constructed inside a planet that absorbs the energy of suns. It's far bigger and even more lethal than the original Death Star, having the capacity to obliterate multiple planets at once from interstellar distances.
  • A Wizard Did It: The Force explains and justifies a lot of coincidences that would seem out of place if it wasn't a Star Wars movie.
  • You Have Got to Be Kidding Me!:
    • Finn says this verbatim when Poe tells him BB-8 has a map to Luke's location.
    • Also, Han's reaction when Finn admits that his job at Starkiller Base was in sanitation.
    • And about a dozen other examples. The film loves this trope.
    Finn: We're making our landing approach at light speed???
  • You Monster!: Rey calls Kylo Ren a monster for killing his father.


Alternative Title(s): Star Wars 7, Star Wars The Force Awakens

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Film/TheForceAwakens