Two years ago, the mega-success of Star Wars: The Force Awakens rejuvenated the franchise in a major way. While it was not a bad film, it received a lot of criticism about not being an original story and also gave rise to various unanswered questions. After a long wait, anticipation and weird theories trying to answer those questions, Star Wars: The Last Jedi has released. People are really excited about the film, and the initial trends suggest that the Force is powerfully with this chapter of the Skywalker saga. However, we ask those who have seen the film: Is Star Wars: The Last Jedi really an incredible film?
Now, we will get going with the spoilers so this is the last point for you to go back and we have cautioned you.
Let’s take the less troubled route to get this started. Is the film bad? No, definitely not. But, considering the kind of hype and the unbearable burden of expectations associated with this film, we can’t really say if it has justified all that hype. Rian Johnson definitely created his own narrative and didn’t stick to the company directions of making a profitable Star Wars film. He has kept you guessing throughout the movie, and that’s really commendable. The film also happens to be a visual treat and a Star Wars film replete with emotions.
A lot of people have called Star Wars: The Last Jedi to be very close to a perfect winner, however, in our opinion the film gives you a mixed feel. We are taking the example of the moviegoers who love to enjoy their films, the kind who won’t mind watching popcorn films that a lot of serious people would reject. Precisely speaking, the audience that doesn’t fall into ‘cynical’ category. It is that audience which is likely to feel that The Last Jedi misses out on certain elements.
The biggest factor is the key plot element of Star Wars: The Last Jedi. We know that the film is heavily character oriented, but, the narrative has to be strong as well. The film is pretty much focused on the last few remnants of the Resistance trying to escape destruction at the hands of the First Order and finding a new base. This has resulted in an extremely boring high-speed chase as far as high-speed chases are concerned. It’s basically a ticking clock in motion, and all the subplots and characters in the film are working against that clock. Rey has to make Luke overcome his grumpiness and guilt whereas Finn and Rose have to locate the mysterious codebreaker before the Resistance ship’s fuel tanks run empty and the First Order’s really slow ships manage to overtake and destroy them.
Among the best aspects of The Last Jedi is that it has done a great deal to keep us diverted from giving too much thought about this. It is full of awesome moments which the fans have waited to see for a long time. The film shows Leia use the Force! For the first time in 30 years, Luke talks as well as he uses the lightsabers, both of them! Agreed, he tried killing his nephew, Ben Solo, momentarily and that led to him turning into Kylo Ren, but, he also used the green lightsaber from Return of the Jedi! Also, the Yoda sequence was spot on. Then there was the scene showing R2-D2 and Luke on board the Millennium Falcon that would make all the fans nostalgic.
Then there is the fact about this being Carrie Fisher’s last appearance as Princess Leia. She has done it superbly, like every other time. She is not the part of the movie’s flaws. She has never been part of any movie’s flaws. She has consistently been incredible, and this film will make you miss her tremendously. There is no doubt that she will forever be the beloved Princess for us all.
Yet, those great moments were not adequate to please a large number of fans. We love Star Wars big time, but, despite all our love for the franchise, it is kind of tough to ignore the mixed feelings created by this movie. Those great moments are equally accompanied by disappointing sequences. All the great build-up about Supreme Leader Snoke turns out for this? Just to see him sliced off like a sacrificial animal without any revelations about who he was? We agree that his death is the build-up for the extremely ruthless and dark turn that Kylo Ren took, and that was superbly narrated, but, Snoke turned out to be a big-time disappointment.
Then there was Captain Phasma, the villain who was not used properly in The Force Awakens and we expected her to gain prominence in this film, but, she also had a less than a justified end. There are other small things, which we couldn’t feel good about and maybe a lot of other fans would feel that way too. Star Wars: The Last Jedi is a mix of some incredible things merged with some disappointing events. If we shake this mix up, then we get something that is good but not great.
We would also be wrong if we didn’t mention the biggest question lingering around the story. Yes, Star Wars: The Last Jedi managed to answer the questions about Rey’s parents. Let’s take a moment away from that to talk about Daisy Ridley who is the best aspect of this film, just the way she ruled The Force Awakens. Mark Hamill also deserves great appreciation for his excellent performance in the film.
Coming back to the question, after countless theories, conjectures and expectations, we find that Rey’s parents were ordinary junkies from planet Jakku who bartered her for some drinking money. The extremely brief revelation was wrapped up so nonchalantly that it turned out to be somewhat jarring. We, Star Wars fans might be split about it. Love it or hate it. To many, this might be a great thing. The insignificant, ordinary child of junkies is now at the center of the biggest stories ever witnessed by the galaxy. She is not a special ordained one, but, just a normal girl connected to Force and has become a part of something immense.
Talking about the Force, Rian Johnson has done given a great scope to what all the Force is capable of and what it really is. There is a great deal of Force abilities that we find out in The Last Jedi, and we had no idea about such things being possible. People could get connected and communicate with each other as if they were sitting next to each other, but, in reality, were at opposite ends of the galaxy. Luke managed to beam his projection across the galactic space and even fight as that projection. Snoke displayed previously unseen levels of manipulation that the Dark Side of the Force was capable of. This expansion of the Star Wars mythos is a great deal of what The Last Jedi brings forth.
Frankly, the new Star Wars movie fails to live up to the title. Yoda and Luke clarify that even though, they let the old Force tree burn down, the Jedi as we know them must end. Rey will take the Jedi order forward, but, in a new manner. It won’t be dictated by those old, mothballed books. It is a superb new world for the Jedi, and the fractured remnants of the Resistance must now discover a new way to unleash a fresh rebellion. J.J. Abrams has the task clearly marked for him on Star Wars: Episode IX. That is doubtless, and yes, Porgs caused no harm to the film.