I didn't hate "Rise Of Skywalker" as a movie it began, middle and ended better than some of the prequels. You will note that I say some of the prequels which is already pretty damning. (Sorry Owen) I should mention that I have only seen the film the once and with the previous few films my opinion shifted after a second watch.
When the sequels were announced my biggest concern was that the significance to Vader's sacrifice in return of the Jedi would be diminished. By having the Emperor return it rather is, however I must admit to being quite positive to the reveal in the trailer that he would be back as Ian McDiarmid is just fun to watch on screen. He is by far the biggest highlight of “Revenge of the Sith”. Which makes it such a shame that Rise Of Skywalker made such little use of him. Frankly his character could have been any Tom, Dick or Exar Kun.
I never had a problem with the characterisations of “The Last Jedi” and it is a crying shame to see some of the most interesting choices made in Star Wars in recent years completely walked back. The supposed it revelations made about Rey raise more questions than they answer and whilst the decision to make her a descendant of the Emperor works better than her being the daughter of either Han or Luke it still does not make for as interesting a story than if the force can simply come to anyone.
A lot has been said about the supposedly fan service in the film, what I think people mean is a service to people who aren't fans and complained bitterly that they didn't like what had been done and surrendering an interesting narrative for the sake of a vocal minority completely leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
So what did I like about it?
That little dude who reprogram C3P0 was pretty cool, I like that C3 PO had some decent screen time this time around after he and R2 were underused in the previous two instalments, I miss the idea from the OT that they were the narrators. Bringing Lando back to just stand around seemed like a cynical attempt at pleasing the crowd, but I can't help it it was pleasing.
It didn't make the decisions that I would have, and whilst some of those detract from previous instalments overall it was a fun movie even though it didn't reach its potential and whilst it will not be my first choice to revisit I also won't be entirely striking from the record.