THE RISE OF SKYWALKER SPOILERS AHEAD – Please don’t read if you haven’t yet seen the film
The new TRoS Novelization is about to release (March 17, 2020) and boy what a whopper this is going to be for the fandom! The fans have long debated since the film’s release, that Rey and Ben share a lot more than just a kiss at the end of the movie. This book confirms those rumours.
An excerpt from Slash Film’s article on the TRoS novelization:
Some fans believed that dialogue was removed from that one scene for the final cut. Rey’s lips appear to be moving in that one shot. And the novelization will prove them right. According to the Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker novelization, Ben and Rey exchanged a few final words before he died.
“A voice came to her through the Force, clear and strong. ‘I will always be with you,’ Ben said,” the novelization reads (via MovieWeb). “She smiled. Let the truth of it wash over her. ‘No one’s ever really gone,’ she whispered.”
As a fan, I have to repeat those words because of their meaning at one of the most pivotal moments in the film:
“I Will Always Be With You”…
Let’s dissect this for a second. I was one of those fans that agreed with the majority of fans on Tumblr that Ben and Rey were talking just before the kiss. For the novelization to confirm that this is the case is a big deal. Mostly because it adds to the rumours that circulated at the time that the end of the film was heavily edited. Whether or not this means that the end of the film may have been changed is irrelevant, it proves that there were changes made either way. And that is all the fans need to argue that fact (which some still do, I might add).
I have kind of made my peace with the film and with the ending between Ben and Rey. I still don’t think they needed to make the ending romantic, but I am kind of happy to know that Ben could have had something so much better than the life he had up to that point.
Ben Solo endured a lot. I am not denying his past as Kylo Ren and the atrocities he committed in the First Order’s name. But Ben Solo was denied a loving family, denied a mentor that could have given him so much more than the darkness that almost consumed him. And lastly, he could have had something with Rey, anything that was better than what he received. He deserved more. And there is nothing that will ever make that right for me. Although the novelization gets pretty damn close.