“Star Wars Epiosde VII was filmed on Skellig Michael island in Ireland. What better place to depict an ancient, mystical, martial asceticism in a galaxy far, far away than an actual ancient eremitic settlement, dripping with stone-cold monastic austerity, located at what was for centuries the very ends of the earth, seven miles off the very tip of a western Irish peninsula?”
This island is dripping with geologic, biogeographical, and religious intrigue that makes this world heritage site a place that is shrouded in mystery. This article from JSTOR Daily is a great introduction to the island for the incurably curious. The already vibrant tourism industry is bound to increase after Star Wars used this incredible location in the recent film (much like New Zealand experienced a huge spike in tourism after the Lord the Rings films). Filmmakers understand the power of place to deepen the narrative; they frequently situate their stories in a geographic context that will heighten the emotional impact of the story. For more on the dramatic locations of Star Wars filming sites, see this article by National Geographic.