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My Ten Favorite Movie Heroines

I love movies because they’re very fun to watch. I love seeing stories play out onscreen, I love watching actors portray different characters that I will either love or despise, I love action films, but most importantly, I love a movie with an off-the-chain heroine. There are hundreds of great films with male heroes but when a woman can come into the fold and kick butt alongside the men that’s when a movie, for me, gets really awesome and lately that’s become a regular occurrence.

Last year Wonder Woman finally got her own blockbuster film after being around for decades and there have been a bunch of critically acclaimed indie films and television shows led by women in the past year. The last three Star Wars films have been led by women and have made billions of dollars, an idea that at one time would seem preposterous to the Hollywood elite. And last year’s highest grossing films were all female-led, Beauty and the BeastWonder Woman, and The Last Jedi.

So, because women are clearly awesome, I’m going to share with you the ten movie heroines that I have come to love the most, at least, so far. Enjoy!

10. Dorothy

The Wizard of Oz is one of my favorite movies of all time. I remember seeing this film as a child and it was one of the most magical films I have ever seen still to this day. To think that this movie was made in 1939! is beyond incredible and in the center of this epic tale is Dorothy.

Dorothy is a special character. She has those ruby slippers, she sings like an angel, she has the cutest dog ever, Toto, and she’s so sweet. She’s a regular farm girl trying to run away from home because a mean old lady wants her dog to be taken away who just so happened to end up embarking on an incredible journey in a magical world unlike any other. She faces flying monkeys, an evil witch, and many other obstacles but at the end of it all she survives the adventure and helps save the Land of Oz while never refraining from being herself. If you really think about it, Dorothy is a very brave girl. To face all of that strange stuff; a talking scarecrow, a talking lion, a tin man, munchkins, witches, etc. without utterly freaking out is very impressive.

Without Dorothy The Wizard of Oz would not be the same magical movie that it has been for almost a century and that’s why she is one of my favorite heroines.

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The Defining Moments of Kylo Ren

Kylo Ren has become my favorite character in Star Wars, so far. He’s complex, Adam Driver is a ridiculously remarkable actor, he looks really cool, and every time he’s in a scene the scene gets ten times better. Now I have to admit, I wasn’t as huge a fan as I am now of Kylo Ren after The Force Awakens but The Last Jedi shed a new light on his character and he has become just a blast to watch.

So, today on the final segment of The Defining Moments, I am going to tell you all of the moments that I think have defined his character throughout The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi. Enjoy!

1. Confessions

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When we meet Kylo Ren in The Force Awakens he’s a troubled and angry individual. He destroys equipment off of a whim, he killed Lor San Tekka just because he said something that upset him, and he emits gloom. Then we find out he’s Han’s son and it’s like, okay, now we’re starting to get an idea of who this character exactly is but there’s still a great deal of mystery surrounding the Knight of Ren.

When he confesses to his grandfather’s Darth Vader mask about feeling the call to the light his story instantly becomes more than that of just a scary villain. At that moment we see another side to him, a vulnerable side that he can’t hide, even with the mask on. It makes us wonder if he’s really a villain or if he’s going to eventually crack and become good. This, of course, won’t be the last time we see a conflicted Kylo Ren but it is the first.

This scene also subtly hints towards Snoke’s distrust in Kylo Ren as he tells “Darth Vader” how the Supreme Leader senses the conflict within him. That distrust will lead to a lot of things happening in The Last Jedi.

2. Finding the Girl

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At the Battle of Takodana Kylo Ren went to find the missing droid and instead came upon the girl who helped the droid, and the stormtrooper, escape. This scene is very important, for it’s the first time he comes into contact with his future arch-nemesis/ally and it subtly hints towards Kylo Ren having a slight attraction to her.

I mean did he have to pick her up and take her to his personal ship? No. And he surely didn’t give that courtesy to Poe Dameron. He could’ve easily had the stormtroopers take her aboard their craft and that would be the end of that but no, he had to capture her himself and take her to his transport. Mmm-hmm, we see you Kylo Ren.

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The Defining Moments of Leia Organa

Princess Leia was the first heroine I saw as a child that I really, really liked. She changed the perception of what I thought a princess was and she simply was very cool. Now, in my adulthood, I can look back at all of the times I watched the original trilogy and see her story with new, fresh eyes thanks to these new Star Wars films that have come out. And so today, on this segment of The Defining Moments I’m celebrating all of the incredible moments that have propelled her legend even to this day.

Be warned. Leia’s life has been very extensive and so this post is a longread. I thank you for heeding this warning. Enjoy!

1. Giving R2-D2 the Death Star Codes

Carrie Fisher and Kenny Baker in Star Wars (1977)

I still remember the feeling of mystique that surrounded Princess Leia when I saw her for the first time in A New Hope. I had to have been about eight or nine years old and it was amazing seeing her down that hallway with the white hooded dress hiding her appearance. When she removed her hood, revealing her face for the first time, it was an immensely magical moment.

Not only was this moment magical for that reason but it also immediately highlighted who she was as a character. She could’ve easily escaped with the droids but she chose to stay behind and face Vader and his minions. This instantly showcased her bravery in the face of evil and that incredible quality is what made her so special to her very last scene in The Last Jedi.

2. Mocking Governor Tarkin

Carrie Fisher, Peter Cushing, and David Prowse in Star Wars (1977)

Leia was no joke. If she didn’t like you she didn’t shrug away from letting you know that and that’s exactly what she did to Grand Moff Tarkin. She was a captive in the Death Star, she was being led around the scariest bad guy in the universe, Darth Vader, and she was being led to have a talk with Tarkin and yet she didn’t quake in the slightest. She was the smallest person in the dark, forbidding room but her brave persona shone as brightly as her white dress. I love that about Leia and it’s why she’s one of the greatest heroines of all time.

Rarely do you see a woman as strong and resolute as Leia Organa and every scene that she participated in highlighted how strong of a character she was. Unfortunately, despite her mocking of the Grand Moff’s stench, she still had to watch as her home planet, Alderaan, was blown to smithereens. That was a devastating blow for her but did she let it show? While she was clearly in anguish on the inside she rarely let her pain be seen on the outside because she’s that off the chain.

3. Rescued?

Leia was unknowingly about to be executed but luckily two men and one very large and very hairy alien had come to rescue her. This scene was one of the most important moments of her life, for it was the first time she met Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and Chewbacca. To her rescuers they thought they had performed a perfect plan for her escape but to her she knew the reality. They had only prolonged her execution.

Because she is just that awesome she took charge, helping them escape the oncoming stormtroopers by taking them down the garbage chute. While it wasn’t the most flattering of escape plans it was necessary for them to survive and it’s the first time you see Leia as the natural leader that she is.

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The Defining Moments of Han Solo

Han Solo is one of the greatest characters that has ever appeared in Star Wars. In fact he is the character that put Harrison Ford on the map and helped make him into the iconic actor that he is today. Now Han Solo is getting his own standalone film later on this year, further extending his marvelous story.

So today on The Defining Moments I’m excited to share the moments, so far, that have made Han Solo into the beloved character that he is to this day. Enjoy!

1. Meeting Obi-Wan Kenobi and Luke Skywalker

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When we first meet Han Solo in A New Hope we have no idea who he is. He’s a smuggler, a supposedly fantastic pilot, and he’s the man who’s going to take these two mysterious folks across the galaxy to the Alderaan system. Han, at this time of his life, didn’t care about anything except for money and can you blame him? He had a debt to Jabba the Hutt and he knew if he didn’t pay it off he would be in big trouble.

He had no clue that this mysterious old man and this young kid would end up changing his life.

2. Rescuing A Princess

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Han can sometimes be a scoundrel. He didn’t have anything to do with you unless you were going to pay him some money. When Luke told him that if they rescued this certain captured princess he would get paid handsomely for his deed he was all in on the idea. When Han met Princess Leia for the first time he tried to be the boss of the situation but she, of course, didn’t play that. He was stunned and immediately became attracted to the feisty princess.

He tried to pretend that he didn’t care about her wellbeing and that all he wanted was money but the truth was that he was infatuated with the princess and didn’t want to see any harm come to her, leading him to one of the most heroic moments in his life.

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The Defining Moments of Finn

Finn was introduced in The Force Awakens and he became an immediate fan favorite because he was just so darn lovable. I loved Finn because I had never seen a stormtrooper as a main character and on top of that he was the first black character to have a super major role in Star Wars. Basically, Finn is pretty awesome.

Now his story has grown beyond just being the stormtrooper gone good and today I’m celebrating his journey with this segment of The Defining Moments. Enjoy!

1. Snapping Out of the Spell

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FN-2187 was a loyal First Order stormtrooper. He had risen in the ranks from sanitation duty to being part of Captain Phasma’s platoon and when it was time for him to participate in his first raid he was ready. He had gone through all of the simulations, he was a perfectly trained soldier ready to do anything the First Order asked of him, and then reality struck.

When a fellow stormtrooper was gunned down in front of him he realized, at that moment, the brutality of war. This wasn’t a game anymore. This was a real battle with individuals dying on both sides. When he looked around and saw his fellow comrades heartlessly herding the helpless Jakku innocents into a circle against their will it was like watching a horror film. What was he doing? Was he really a part of a regime this evil?

When he, along with the other stormtroopers, were given the orders to slaughter the unfortunate civilians he couldn’t perform the atrocious act. It was wrong, it was evil, and he didn’t have the stomach to do something as wicked as gunning down helpless men, women, and children. Even though he didn’t know it, this would be the beginning of his transformation from the soldier, FN-2187, to the eventual rebel hero, Finn.

2. Removing the Helmet

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Finn was traumatized. He couldn’t believe the atrocities he had just witnessed or the fact that he had been a part of it. Taking off that stormtrooper helmet was the second act of his defiance and him growing into a different person. He didn’t want to be this mindless follower in a white mask of death. He was a living soul just like the ones that had been extinguished down on Jakku and he was going to make sure he wouldn’t be a part of the evil First Order anymore.

3. Rescuing Poe

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Finn knew it was only a matter of time before he would be sent to reconditioning and would become a brainwashed First Order soldier. He would rather die than become a robotic monster again and so he had to think fast how he was going to get away from the First Order. As fate would have it, during the skirmish on Jakku the First Order managed to capture the Resistance’s best pilot. Knowing this the stormtrooper, FN-2187 concocted a brilliant escape plan.

Not only was his rescuing of Poe the ultimate renouncing of the First Order but it was the beginning of a great friendship that would end up blossoming between the two.

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The Defining Moments of Obi-Wan Kenobi

The Star Wars prequels didn’t get a lot of things of right. In fact, they barely got anything right. The one thing all of us Star Wars fans can definitely agree on when it comes to the prequels however is that Obi-Wan Kenobi was the highlight of that trilogy. Obi-Wan was an immediate icon after Alec Guinness portrayed the Jedi Master so flawlessly in A New Hope, earning him an Oscar Nomination for his stunning and unforgettable performance. He appeared as barely more than a cameo in the next two installments in the original trilogy but his impact on the films was monumental. When it was announced that George Lucas would be making another trilogy and people found out they were going to have a young version of the iconic Obi-Wan Kenobi I’m sure Star Wars fans were highly skeptical.

With the ingenious casting of Ewan McGregor all of that worry was flushed down the drain as he perfectly portrayed a young Obi-Wan Kenobi in the trilogy. He made the movies worth watching and his scenes in the movies were ridiculously enjoyable.

So today, on this segment of The Defining Moments, I’m going to talk about Obi-Wan Kenobi’s journey throughout the seven films that he has graced, whether it’s in a major role or a tiny cameo that’s barely noticeable. Be Warned. I would like to let you know, Obi-Wan has had an extensive history so this will be a longread. I thank you for acknowledging this warning. Enjoy!

1. Sensing the Dark Side

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While Qui-Gon was immersed in the moment Obi-Wan was already displaying his strong gift with the Force, for he could sense that something was wrong far quicker than his master could. This moment highlights that even as a Padawan he was already very intuitive, a gift that would help him many times before his life’s end.

2. “The boy is dangerous.”

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Before Obi-Wan Kenobi took Anakin Skywalker as his padawan he, like the rest of the Jedi Council, knew that there was something very dangerous about the Force-sensitive boy. He tried to convey his concerns to his master, Qui-Gon Jin, but the warning fell on deaf ears. He had no idea how right he would end up being.

3. Defeating Darth Maul

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After seeing Qui-Gon defeated by the powerful Sith Lord, Darth Maul it was the first time that he let hate fuel him in battle. He ferociously fought Maul but ultimately got beaten, for he couldn’t channel his hatred as well as the trained Sith. In the final moments before Darth Maul was about to finish him off once and for all he managed to use the Force to propel himself upwards, he Force pulled Qui-Gon’s lightsaber to him, and slice! Darth Maul was supposedly no more. This was the ultimate test for him as a Jedi padawan and he passed with flying colors.

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