FN-2187, or Finn, was taken as a child to be trained as a First Order stormtrooper. In Battlefront II, it was shown to us that after the events of the Emperor’s death, Palpatine had several contingency plans set in motion to ensure that his enemies did not outlive him. One of them was setting in motion an army of children that they would mold into their liking. Embarking on the exodus into the Unknown Regions, the Imperial officers, noble and technologist, reorganized into the beginning of the First Order. This is where Finn’s life really begins, after being captured and trained in Project Resurrection which would condition them to become soldiers in the New Stormtrooper Corps. Trained as a cadet under the guidance of Captain Phasma, he was given praise: “You have great potential, 2187. You are officer corps material. Your duty is to the First Order above everything. Nothing else comes before that.” But there were times in Finn’s stormtrooper days where he showed a little too much compassion, something the First Order would not tolerate.
Of course, during his first mission, Finn realized he did not have the stomach for what the First order required of him. Helping Poe escape and landing on Jakku, Finn met the scavenger Rey. Their meeting set off, in my opinion, one of the best friendships in a movie. From the first time he grabbed her hand, she kept insisting that he stopped grabbing her hand. The first time they flew the Millennium Falcon, their teamwork brought back memories of Han and Luke going on daring missions together. What their friendship showed me really was that as much as people sometimes say guys and girls can’t be friends, it’s more so because they don’t try hard enough.
Ever since their first battle aboard the Millennium Falcon, something changed within them. Rey got a feel of excitement and adventure and Finn, for the very second time, felt he was doing something worthwhile. However, he still felt that his best bet was to keep running as far as he could from the First Order. When Rey was taken on Takodana, we see Finn putting her needs before his own and setting out a half bake rescue mission.
Surprisingly enough, the half-baked scheme works, and a battle ensues between Finn and Kylo Ren, who was the former superior to Finn. Finn really tried to hold his own against the dark side user, however, Kylo proved too skilled for him and put him into a space coma. Though we didn’t see much interaction with Finn and Rey in The Last Jedi,you could still feel their friendship and their constant love for one another’s well-being. Who didn’t tear up at the ending scene where he ran towards her after she lifted the rocks!!!! Now that we know he is Force sensitive, I am so calling that he was the one that pushed the rocks away, and not her.
Lastly, in The Rise of Skywalker, we finally get to see the trio of Rey, Poe, and Finn, and their screen time did not disappoint. When I watched the movie in theatres several times, it was strange. Their chemistry was so effortless that it had me rewriting the other two movies. I never realized that these actors never played against one another in the previous films, but, while watching The Rise of Skywalker, you wouldn’t know that. My mind began to insert them as a cohesive group, like the original trio of Leia, Han, and Luke. I wish we had another movie so they could play upon each other again because the dynamic was effortless and the witty banter between them all made me feel that this is what a true friendship is. There’s always one that feels like the outsider (Poe) and two very close friends that will have each other’s backs no matter what path they are going down on. With Finn realizing his true calling is to the Resistance, we see a more confident Finn that is living up to his name as the “Big Resistance Hero.”
Finn had learned that nothing is impossible as long as they do everything together, as it should be. Every time that they failed, they were separate and alone. Yes, some missions are better off alone, but then you don’t have your friends by your side when you need them the most. These Star Wars films with Rey, Finn, and Poe spoke to me about friendship and love. The originals will always have a place in my heart. The prequels taught me that not everything and everyone is as they seem. However, I think because these films were released in my lifetime and I waited in line to see them, that they will hold a special place in my heart. I scoured the internet for theories after Force Awakens was released. I’ve seen each of them more than a dozen times in the theatres. I got that feeling that George Lucas wanted everyone to feel like they did in his first films, the feeling of hope and the love that you find from others in times of need. There are many overall themes that are portrayed throughout the Star Wars Saga, but none is more prevalent than Hope and Love. The Rise of Skywalker delivers on both.
I will leave you with this final remark, no matter your stand on the new Star Wars, one thing that I believe everyone can say for certain is that it brought Hope and Love in The Rise of Skywalker. It challenged our thinking of what the Force is. Remember, just like Ahsoka said, “In my experience, just when you think you understand the Force, you find out how little you actually know.”
Thank you for reading and of course may the Force forever be with you!