As I mentioned in my review of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the plot often parallels that of the first Star Wars film A New Hope. I pointed that out as maybe weakness, but also something that spoke to the greatness of the original story. According to Cinema Blend, J.J. Abrams has responded to that very critique and I think he really has a good point:
“I knew that, whatever we did, there would be a group of people — and I was just hoping and praying that it would be smaller than not — that would take issue with any number of things. But I knew we weren’t making the movie for any other reason than we believed that it could be something meaningful and special and entertaining and worthy of people’s time…I can understand that someone might say, ‘Oh, it’s a complete rip-off!’ What was important for me was introducing brand new characters using relationships that were embracing the history that we know to tell a story that is new — to go backwards to go forwards.”
So there you have it. Utilizing the classic setting, plot, and relationships to introduce the next generation of Star Wars heroes. Too bad Abrams will not be directing the next film. You can read about that here!