BackToTheMovies’s review published on Letterboxd:
The rebellion is reborn today. The war is just the beginning, and I will not be the Last Jedi.
rian johnson is a genius because NO ONE was ready for his take on Star Wars when this movie came out.
Why do so many people love the prequels so much when they barely even feel like Star Wars? I mean Revenge of Sith kinda does but yk. Whereas both The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi don't only feel like pure Star Wars, they're also love letters to the franchise. If Star Wars The Last Jedi did anything for me today, is that it brought out my eternal love for this franchise.
I think we established that Star Wars The Last Jedi is the most visually stunning Star Wars movie of all time. In every (or most) frame that feels like a painting, the visual awe this movie brings. The colors, lighting, etc. are masterful and perfect. However, The Last Jedi is beyond just the visuals. I could talk about all day how this movie is so beautiful, there's so much more to appreciate.
Rian Johnson's take on Star Wars genuinely feels like something new for this franchise. It's fresh and original. It's daring and bold. The reason everyone decided to hate The Last Jedi when it came out is because they want to see big spaceship battles and lightsaber duels - and TLJ offers that but it leans more on story. This movie has actually something to say. Unlike most other SW movies; TLJ has real stakes, has real weight to the story. It's a story of survival as they lean into hope - and the stakes presented got me more interested this time.
My main complaint in my previous watch is how it juggles up way too many plotlines. That wasn't an issue for me now. Everything ticked right. It was paced well, it was structured well. There was never a dull moment, and there was never a moment that dragged. Every inch of this beautiful story was engaging and it sat right with me. A central aspect of it's story is it's characters, and there is not one character that feels underdeveloped. They all have something in the film. The characters arcs - especially from Luke, Rey, and Kylo - were some of the best parts of the film. This is arguably one of Luke's best appearances yet, and whenever he shines on screen he always proves why he's my personal favorite character in the franchise (and many other people's personal favorite).
Other characters such as Poe, Finn, and Rose were so good. I honestly really like Rose, besides some cringe lines from her - i think she had charisma and people really misunderstood her (or people are just assholes that's why she recieved a lot of hate). Besides the story and the character arcs, the movie still feels like a blockbuster spectacle. The action was really good, and there are so many great scenes throughout this film - such the Yoda scene, the red room scene, and the scene where Luke stepped out to confront the first order is one of the best scenes in the whole franchise. Absolutely glorious. I felt that it was a perfect ending to Luke: dying peacefully knowing he brought hope to the rebellion.
5 years ago when I watched this in theaters, I nitpicked this to death. I didn't really hate it, but I nitpicked it. Couple years later I realize that I had fallen under the trap of Star Wars fans (rather than me forming my own opinion). Every issue I had from this movie is gone. This time around, every single thing ticked right with me. Every. single. thing. Right now, at this very moment, I am giving this the rating it deserves. I am not bandwagoning with everyone who also decided to give this 5/5, I am giving this rating for what I saw today. I genuinely don't care if you still dislike this today, i genuinely don't care if you want to fight me of this rating. Go and argue with a wall. This movie is the most brilliantly and beautifully crafted Star Wars movie to date, and top 3 SW movies rn. Rian Johnson is a literal wizard.
If The Force Awakens is reliant on the past, The Last Jedi leans on the future. Exactly what Kylo said in the movie, "Let the past die. Kill it if you have to. It's the only way you'll become what you were meant to be". This movie rules. Star Wars rules.