Did ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Exceed Already Low Fan Expectations?

It’s the end of an era. On Dec. 20, 2019, the final movie of the Skywalker Saga premiered in theaters, entitled The Rise of Skywalker. Did this film deserve its low critic rating? What are viewers saying about it on social media? Here’s a spoiler-free look into the latest Star Wars movie.

'The Rise of Skywalker' panel at the Star Wars Celebration
‘The Rise of Skywalker’ panel at the Star Wars Celebration | Photo by Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images for Disney

The last movie in the Skywalker Saga premiered during December 2019

All of the Jedi live in Rey now. During The Rise of Skywalker, this powerful Jedi must defeat Kylo Ren, the First Order, and now Emperor Palpatine, the leader of the Sith. But it’s not just the end of the Star Wars sequel trilogy. The Rise of Skywalker is the last film in the Skywalker installment — the last time fans will see Princess Leia, Luke Skywalker, and Han Solo.

With a lot of weight on its shoulders, the reviews for this film started rolling in this December. Unlike previous Star Wars movies, they weren’t mostly positive. Then, the film premiered to the public with Thursday previews on Dec. 19, 2019, and its official opening night on Dec. 20, 2019.

‘The Rise of Skywalker’ is the third film in the ‘Star Wars’ sequel trilogy

While The Rise of Skywalker has one of the highest Rotten Tomatoes fan-ratings of all the Star Wars saga, this movie earned less than its predecessors on opening day. According to Forbes, the third movie in this sequel trilogy earned $90 million on Friday, including $40 million in Thursday previews.

Compared to the opening days other movies in the Star Wars universe, including The Force Awakens ($119.1 million) and the 2017 release, The Last Jedi ($104.6 million), The Rise of Skywalker’s drop-in opening night earnings could be a result of poor critic reviews. Currently, the film holds a 57% in critic reviews on the popular rating website.

Additionally, this film had a significant portion of its budget devoted to advertising. According to The New York Times, “The Rise of Skywalker, which cost roughly $400 million to make and market, will collect an additional $200 million (or more) in international release over the weekend.”

Fans reacted to ‘The Rise of Skywalker’ on social media

The fan response regarding this Star Wars film varies on a personal basis. It is, however, fairly split from the critic response. Some viewers took to social media, sharing their thoughts about The Rise of Skywalker.

“So I’m just home from #RiseofSkywalker. Personally, I really enjoyed it! I smiled, I laughed, certain scenes hit me in the feels, but a… good ending to the saga! I know some will have different opinions but I can respect that! Definitely my favorite of the new trilogy,” said one Twitter user.

“[The Rise of Skywalker] was everything I wanted and more. [A] great send-off for these characters. The way JJ was able to keep Carrie as Leia was phenomenal,” wrote another Twitter user. “The whole cast crushed it. Hats off to JJ, the cast, and crew!”

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is now playing in theaters. Other movies, including The Force Awakens and A New Hope, are available for streaming on Disney+.