Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

The Last Jedi

The Last Jedi

Mike Ptak, Staff Writer

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MAJOR SPOILER WARNING. . .It has since been a month since The Last Jedi release date, on December 15. The dust has settled and people are wondering, was the movie actually good?  It’s easy to become overwhelmed with nostalgia in the theater with epic battle sequences and returning characters; however, it has seemed that this movie has a split review, between fans and critics.Usually, it is the fans who praise and applaud the movie; however, this time the fans are being quite harsh, with this being one of the most controversial Star Wars movies to date.

 

The Good: The Last Jedi was directed by Rian Johnson, who produced Looper and Brick. Other than that, he hasn’t really done any other noteworthy work to date. I am surprised and I applaud Disney for giving Episode VIII to , basically, a nobody director. Furthermore, from what is seen in the movie, Disney completely took the reigns off of this movie and it “feels like a movie” not a rehash of previous films put together in a boardroom of executives.

Johnson has definitely captured the look and feel of the Star Wars universe from real locations to even using the original Yoda puppet on screen! It is obvious that the crew of this movie took the time and effort to put together the best story possible. The cinematography should also be noted, since the movie has such a dark tone to it, like any other second film in a trilogy. It almost feels a bit “Matrix-ey” at times. The score by John Williams, as always, is fantastic and just as good, if not better than The Force Awakens.

 

The Bad: The Last Jedi  is the lengthiest film of the Star Wars movies (2h 32m), and it can feel so at times. The plot itself is defiantly original, but takes some points from other Star Wars movies, and seems like a bit of a mess from three people’s heads. There are many pointless characters and scenes that take up way too much time on screen and is off putting to the length. For example, to save the resistance, Poe Dameron and Rose have to find a code breaker to disable a tracking device in a star destroyer. This would have been very interesting, but instead they land on a casino planet that blatantly rips off the Cantina from Star Wars (every Star Wars movie has to have a cantina…). They then meet a sketchy code breaker that ends up betraying them in the end.

Also, there was a very strange scene where Rose frees a CGI animal and blurts out a line about animal rights which had no relation to the movie. So now Star Wars is about animal rights apparently?

Regardless, the entire casino scene spanned about 45 minutes of the movie, and did not contribute to the plot in any way.

The characters are a mess as well, and with the passing of Carrie Fisher, it has made things more complicated for Disney. Since Johnson did not kill her character in The Last Jedi, Disney is going to have to get creative since they stated they would not use CGI to recreate her face nor use extended cuts from this movie in the next. Aside from Princess Leia and Luke Skywalker (which Mark Hamill did a fantastic performance as), not many of the new characters are as entertaining or developed as Kylo Ren, played by Adam Driver. His performance blows away Rey, Finn , Poe, and definitely Rose’s performance. He is a different villain than the Star Wars saga has seen, being untrained and unstable. Other than him, not many of the other new characters are memorable.

The real problem with this movie, however, is the way it ends. In the final confrontation, Luke faces certain death trying to defend the Resistance. Using the force, he protects himself across the galaxy to fool Kylo Ren, which was new and interesting. However, the downside to this is that Luke is killed in the process, and so is most of the Resistance. Afterword, the ENTIRE resistance boards the Millennium Falcon, and Leia says a line about having everything we need for the Resistance. What!? If the amount of resistance members left can FIT on the Millennium Falcon, you have a problem. It’s as if they didn’t know how to end the movie, so they just inserted that at the end.

 

Verdict: The Last Jedi is a pretty good movie overall: however, I honestly do not know where the last movie is going to go, considering this movie started and ended in the same place, the resistance being chased by the First Order. I do also dread that the last movie will become a rehash, just like The Force Awakens because it is being directed by J. J. Abrams. However, I do have faith that they will realize that they need to take the franchise in a new direction, and stray away from the bad guy chases good guy plot.

 

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