Not seen the film? Caution advised as Spoilers for The Last Jedi Present.
Back in 2012 I was ecstatic when a new trilogy of Star Wars films were announced. The Force Awakens came and was reassuringly familiar but did not generate the love I had for earlier films. The Last Jedi, released this week, has perhaps changed my feeling on Star Wars forever.
The film itself looks stunningly brilliant plus there is an interesting and unexpected storyline but something did not feel right.
- I never remembered Star Wars being the scifi comedy it has become. Why is Chewbacca now a slapstick character?
- New characters have little depth.
- The purpose and point of the films in the Sequel Trilogy remain unclear.
- Flashbacks don’t work in a Star Wars film.
- Yoda just looked odd.
I have spent since 1983 waiting to see what became of my childhood heroes and time has not been kind. The triumphant finish of Return of the Jedi seems to have been in vain. Fast Forward 30 years and we seem to be in a similar situation just with new characters. Just in my opinion these characters are not as good as the old ones.
Supreme Leader Snoke remains a mystery. An interesting, mysterious and terrifying “Big Bad” of the Sequel Saga. Or so we thought!
Just when we thought he was becoming interesting he was defeated by Kylo Ren. We still don’t know who Snoke was. Where was he in the original trilogy? What was his aims? Why did he control of Kylo Ren? It seems we will never know.
The story arc of Finn was perhaps the biggest disappointment of the film. Sent on a chase with new sidekick Rose. The story served little purpose and just crowded an already lengthy film. Finn was perhaps the most interesting character of the earlier film but now he serves little purpose.
The original Star Wars felt believable despite being preposterous. Even the prequels felt like there really could be a Galaxy Far Away. Something in these new films just does not feel right e.g. Superman Leia. Perhaps it is the regular use of slow-mo? The Last Jedi is visually stunning but it does not feel classic Star Wars.
Mark Hamill had an outstanding turn as Luke Skywalker and was a highlight of the film. His ending was somewhat unexpected and brilliant. A true legend and master of the force.
Carrie Fisher was also great in her last film role. She will be sadly missed in Episode 9.
Perhaps my biggest issue with The Last Jedi & The Force Awakens is I still don’t understand why they are Episodes 7 & 8. Are these stories really bigger than
- The rise of Snoke?
- The fall to Dark Side of Ben Solo?
- The destruction of the Jedi Academy?
- The rise of the New Republic?
Perhaps the greatest achievement of Rian Johnson‘s The Last Jedi is we have no idea where Episode 9 will go. However; they need to justify why this should be considered a worthy Sequel Trilogy. Yes, the prequels had problems but the story wasn’t one of them.
When I watched 1st night showing of The Force Awakens there was many people present who did not look like they had been outdoors since watching Return of the Jedi in 1983!
Last night at the premiere of The Last Jedi a far younger crowd was present. As I left the theatre mixed in my thoughts on whether I liked the film it seemed it had gone down better with many of my younger movie goers.
Perhaps that is the point? This isn’t my Star Wars. Poe, Finn & Rey are a new generation of heroes for a new generation. This is their Star Wars.
Whilst I have mixed opinions on The Last Jedi I will see it again(& again & again). Plus nothing will stop me seeing Episode 9 just to see if it can justify being the concluding episode to the Skywalker Saga.