A certain interaction between Han Solo and Finn has really been bothering me lately. While infiltrating Star Killer Base, just before they go in to rescue Rey, Finn reveals to Han that he doesn't actually know how to lower the shields like he had promised. Han is obviously upset by this, and the dialog is as follows:

Han Solo: People are counting on us. The galaxy is counting on us.

Finn: Solo, we'll figure it out. We'll use the Force.

Han Solo: That's not how the Force works!

My problem is that this is exactly how the Force works, and Han Solo knows it! In fact, for the majority of the original films, it is hypothesized that Han uses the Force (whether he realizes it or not) in situations exactly like this. And in The Force Awakens, we learn that Han does believe in the Force, and he must understand that the Force has been with him in most, if not all, of his past adventures, including his most recent escape from the Guavian Death Gangs.

For the sake of clarity, let me specify that I am not saying that Han actively uses the Force, like a Jedi would. Rather, I am saying that the Force is with him, and he is using it for "good luck".

So why would Han say this? He has knows that the Force does, in fact, work like that.

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    Han's probably referring to the fact that neither he nor Finn are force-sensitive and therefore can't actually feel the Force, let alone use it in the same way a Jedi or Sith would. Aug 3, 2017 at 16:27
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    Because that's not how the force works.... There is not a magical "Use Force" button that will do whatever is needed at the time.
    – amflare
    Aug 3, 2017 at 16:35
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    I've watched the original films a lot, and I'm not sure I've ever seen anyone "hypothesize that Han uses the Force" in them, nor do I remember Han saying the Force ever helped him directly. Similarly: I believe F-14s exist, but I've never used one personally. If someone said "We'll upgrade this server using an F-14", it would be fine to say "That's not how F-14s work".
    – Plutor
    Aug 3, 2017 at 16:38
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    @Plutor, yeah, most keyboards only go to F12. Aug 3, 2017 at 18:22
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    The Force only works like that if you think The Force = the scriptwriter. Aug 3, 2017 at 18:54

1 Answer 1


Finn has just told Han that he doesn't actually know how to lower the shields. When Finn says "We'll use the Force" he's suggesting that the Force will somehow give them the knowledge required to shut down the shields, or that it will enable them to shut down the shield without needing to know how to do it. This is despite the fact that neither of them are trained Force users.

You are right in that Han does have a lot of indirect experience of the Force, having associated with powerful Force users like Luke. Therefore, unlike Finn, he knows that the Force can't be used to conjure knowledge or skills out of thin air - hence his exclamation "That's not how the Force works!".

  • Your answer touches on a topic I asked in another question about the Force. Does the Force provide skills and knowledge? I am not sure there is a definitive answer, so I asked here. scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/164387/…
    – RichS
    Aug 4, 2017 at 3:25
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    It is irrelevant if there are some obscure legends, rpg, etc. force skills that go into that direction. In all the situations where Han watched the force being used, it did not work like that at all. Luke was not able to switch down the shields protecting the death star simply by "using the force". So, as far as Han is concerned, that's not how the force works. (And it isn't. Saying "We just use the force" is stupid, a trained jedi might let the force guide him to a certain point, but it does not do all the work for him). Aug 4, 2017 at 7:18

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