Some quick thoughts on a few of the smaller characters in The Force Awakens.
My ultra short review before I do... Loved it. JJ gets it exactly right. Had a big job and he did it well. Respected the fans, but still managed to bring in a lot of stuff for new viewers. Favorite characters: Poe (duh), Maz, BB 8, Rey.
Kylo is interesting. I want to see more of his development before I form an opinion.
Didn't quite know what to make of Finn at first. Watched the movie for a third time with Star Wars first timers and realised he's the guy who can help bring them in. He's vaguely heard of it all while a stormtrooper, so he's learning about all this with (for?) the new fans.
Ok, back to the smaller characters I was talking about.
1. Lor San Tekka a.k.a The Vicar (played by Max von Sydow)
What was he doing with the missing piece of the puzzle? The fact that he lived on the same planet as Rey all this time can't be a coincidence. He certainly knows a lot about what's going on, and that Poe Dameron's mission will start to 'make things right'. Is he an Obi Wan-type jedi protecting his own Luke? He dies in TFA, but I'm betting he plays a major role in Rey's backstory... Something we're almost definitely seeing in Episode 8.
2. Maz Kanata (played by Lupita Nyong'o) She has Luke's light saber. How she got it is a story she was saving "for another time". She claims not to be a jedi but knows plenty about the Force. And, despite her age, has no trouble keeping a crazy cantina in check. The Yoda figure of the sequels? (I really, really want to see more of her!)
3. Unkar Plutt (played by Simon Pegg)
Probably not a major character, but it's almost certain that he's the person who Rey was left with when she was abandoned on Jakku. Did he have the trust of Rey's parent/guardian? Did he buy her as a slave? Would that make him a bit like Watto from The Phantom Menace?
4. The Knights of Ren
We only see them in Rey's flashback in this movie. Were they jedi in training with Kylo under Luke? How come they're nowhere to be seen? Were they killed by Luke when Kylo went loco or did they go into hiding? If they're still around do we see them again? Hope so.