– written by Han Spinel (and shout out to discord user, Happily Dancing)
Disclaimer: This article discusses potential, and detailed, plot descriptions of The Rise of Skywalker revealed via ratings information for the film. You have been warned!
Recently, detailed plot descriptions were revealed for The Rise of Skywalker pertaining to the film’s rating, and under the BBFC’s (British Board of Film Classification) violence category. The full description is provided below this amazing Dolby Cinema TRoS poster – this is your last spoiler warning!
The ratings info for The Rise of Skywalker includes:
Fights with fantastical weapons include impalements and brief sight of blood and injury. A character’s face is melted by fantastical energy.
Fantastical weapons are likely light sabers, and impalements along with brief sights of blood and injury are nothing new to Star Wars. But hold up here – a character’s face is melted by fantastical energy?!
Disclaimer 2: This article is about to melt faces.
The first thing that came to mind for me was Raiders of the Lost Ark, and it’s memorable face-melting scene.
Don’t look, Marion! Keep your eyes SHUT! – Indiana Jones
Using the same source, BBFC (British Board of Film Classification), I looked up the violence descriptions for Raiders. Sure enough, it details a slightly different style of face-melting, but face-melting nonetheless:
There are frequent scenes of moderate violence, including fistfights, gunfights, and chases. There is occasional sight of blood, including a sequence in which it is implied that a man is struck by an aeroplane propeller, and a scene in which a man has been impaled on a wall by an archaic booby trap.
In one scene, ghosts appear and fly among the assembled crowd of people before a mystical power erupts, killing the onlookers and causing some characters’ faces to melt. There is CU detail as the flesh, eyes and muscle on their faces liquifies and runs off to reveal their skull underneath.
OK, so what do you suppose the difference is between fantastical face-melting and mystical face-melting? You guys think I’m joking, but this is seriously how the mind of a Spinel works – I ask the tough questions.
The answer, my fellow nerds, is actually quite telling and definitive. Mystical – defined as “relating to mystics or religious mysticism” is consistent with the face-melting brought on by opening the mystical and religious artifact – the Ark of the Covenant.
So what’s fantastical face-melting going to look like in The Rise of Skywalker?
One scenario is that fantastical relates to the Force, and someone’s face is literally melted off by Force powers. But in-universe, the Force is referred to as a “religion” and “mystical energy field.” Seeing as both Raiders and TRoS are works of fiction, why melt one face with mystical power and another with fantastical energy? You guys still think I’m joking-
Fantastical – an adjectival form of “fantasy” – is defined as “conceived or appearing as if conceived by an unrestrained imagination; odd and remarkable; bizarre; grotesque,” and can therefore also be related to imagination.
So, assuming words actually mean things, which is often the case, fantastical face-melting could also mean it takes place in a character’s imagination, unlike the literal and mystical face-melting we witnessed in Raiders. Within the context of Star Wars, “imagination” or fantastical face-melting could be taken to mean that a character’s face is melted within a Force vision.
Intense visions of faces are almost a right of passage for our protagonists:
And considering this The Force Awakens concept art, my theory is that it’s quite possible the face melting belongs to none other than Anakin Skywalker!
From the caption:
“If we see Anakin Skywalker, because he does flow back and forth between Darth Vader and Anakin, let’s see him as a character with a dark and light side. The reason Luke is this whole new entity is because he was the first to acknowledge his own dark side–that it was not separate from him.” – McCaig
We also know several elements from TFA concept art are being reimagined for TRoS such as the remnants of the Emperor’s throne room:
And so it stands to reason that Anakin’s face melting and transforming into Darth Vader is another TFA-concept being reimagined for TRoS; most likely in the form of an intense and dark Force-vision. I’d personally love it if Hayden Christensen came back to reprise both forms of Anakin Skywalker and Darth Vader! Talk about a return of the Jedi (or revenge of the Sith?)!
Let us know what you think in the comments below, and thanks for reading. May the Force be with us (and Anakin)!