Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Star Wars: The Last Jedi ★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

I'm not here to complain and create any animosity amongst the 'Star Wars' fan base. If you read this and don't like what I have to say then please don't verbally abuse me. Film is subjective and if you like 'The Last Jedi', I respect that. I wish that I was able to share your enthusiasm. Unfortunately, I feel that it is the worst entry in the franchise to date. If you honestly believe that I have some sort of agenda against a series that I have loved for nearly twenty years then you're mistaken. Why else would I get up at 05:00am and drive for over an hour to get to the 06:50am IMAX showing?

If I'm being totally honest, I'm not particularly keen on the decisions that have been made in regards to the main saga. Whereas, 'The Force Awakens' was criticised for being too safe, 'The Last Jedi' feels like Lucasfilm are having an identity crisis.

There are moments that left me genuinely perplexed. It would be hypocritical of me to say that I don't want the franchise to move into a new direction but you can't rewrite the rules that have already been established for the past forty years? Can somebody please explain to me how a Force pull can save General Leia from surviving after floating in a space vacuum? Also, while I'm on the subject, why would Luke Skywalker sacrifice himself after a mere Force projection? The decision-making doesn't make any sense. In fact, I would say that it is borderline disrespectful to what has come before.

Now this is where I am probably going to take a lot of flack. With the exception of Rey and Kylo Ren, I don't like the new characters. In 'The Force Awakens', I was able to tolerate Finn because I was more interested in Han Solo. Nevertheless, due to the latter character's absence, Finn is left to his own devices and the whole subplot involving him, Rose and Poe is uninteresting especially in contrast to what is going on with the Force users.

One of the biggest criticisms of 'The Force Awakens' was the use of Captain Phasma. How can this fierce leader be so complimentary towards the Rebellion? It was a serious issue that needed to be addressed in order to restore the character's credibility. Oh, how they needn't bother. The way she was handled in this film made her even more pathetic. Honestly, in contrast with Snoke and Hux the whole First Order are a joke. It's as if they don't know what they're doing. At times, I was waiting for the 'Seinfeld' music to accompany some of their decisions. In fact that music should have accompanied the entire film due to the sheer volume of jokes. Occasionally it can feel like a sitcom. I wonder why this corporation are so intent on including forced humour in their products? Isn't it possible to have dramatic tension anymore? If I wanted a comedic 'Star Wars' film, I'd watch 'Spaceballs'.

After having to listen to numerous theories for the past two years, we have learnt that Snoke is a joke and that Rey isn't a descendent of any notable lineage. Personally, I'm not phased by the latter. Not everything within the universe has to be connected. Besides remember how many padawans occupied the Jedi Temple in the prequels? Not all of those kids had Jedi's for parents so that makes perfect sense. Snoke, on the other hand is ridiculous. To see such a cool character handled so poorly is upsetting. After all the flack, Lucasfilm took for copying 'A New Hope' it feels like they're deliberately trying to sabotage storylines in order to make it look like they're attempting something different. When in reality what they are doing is wasting potential.

The Casino subplot is filler, the dialogue is often prequel level and aside from Rey and Kylo, the character development is non-existent. Despite the cinematic improvements there are way too many regressions in key areas which is a shame considering that I think Rian Johnson is a talented film-maker. 

John Williams is a legend! Arguably the greatest cinematic composer of all time but his score in the previous film wasn't good and sadly, yet again, he disappoints. That may sound sacrilegious and believe me, I don't take pleasure in saying this, in fact, it actually pains me but there is nothing memorable here. Say what you will about the Prequels but at least Williams brought his A game.

Admittedly, there are some touching moments particularly when Luke reunites with Chewie, Leia and R2 but throughout it's entirety these interactions are few and far between. Unsurprisingly, I never felt this emotional depth when watching the new characters. 

On a more positive note, Mark Hamill is brilliant as is Adam Driver. I wouldn't necessarily say that there any bad performances in the film, it's just the writing that lets the characters down. Most notably, Benicio Del Toro who doesn't contribute anything and Laura Dern who looks like she's just walked off the set of the latest 'Hunger Games'.

There have been bad 'Star Wars' movies before and I'm certain that there will be bad ones again. No matter what we may think of the entry as a whole, we always end on a sweet lightsaber duel. Not this time! No lightsaber duel... wow! If this is the "new direction" that many have complimented, then I am seriously concerned. 

I think, I have asserted myself more than enough. I refuse to comment on the not so subtle political messages that took place during the casino subplot but let's just say, they were as stereotypical as the Trade Federation in, 'The Phantom Menace'.

I'm not going to say that I am done with 'Star Wars' but I do think that after Episode IX the main saga needs to end. I thought, 'Rogue One' was a fantastic addition to the canon and maybe individual stories will serve the franchise best going forward. If you're afraid to criticise something because of the name on the tin then were you even a fan to begin with? I won't be going to see it again anytime soon but it will be interesting to see if I feel differently towards it in the future? Who knows but if that is the case, you'll be the first to know about it. Sorry people, don't hurt me.

P.S. Which Yoda is considered canon? Puppet or CGI?

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