TFA didn’t feel like a love letter to the OT at all to me, rather like the most expensive fan film ever made.
TLJ is weighed down by the ST’s poor set up (the FO being inexplicably all-conquering and powerful), but still succeeded despite all the things it had going against it.
That’s another problem I have with TFA. Abrams approached the movie like a fan, whereas Johnson approached it like a filmmaker first and foremost.
Since the movie’s release all online discussions feel like an exercise in who can hate the movie more, which why I’m not particularly fond of expressing my love for it as it makes me feel like some sort of extraterrestrial being with a mindset drastically different from others.