Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Star Wars: The Last Jedi ★★★★

Added to: 2017 Ranked & Star Wars Ranked

NO SPOILERS!! I merely talk about the inherent nature of the Star Wars franchise and what The Last Jedi does in all that. Zero plotpoints get revealed.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi is everything the second part of a trilogy needs to be and more. It's a dark and grim play in between the lengthy prologue that was The Force Awakens and the future finale. It's an epic display of what Star Wars has always been about: the forces of good and evil, their ever ongoing clash and the often painful ways in which these contradicting ideals commingle.

It is constructed like a true Shakespearean tragedy. Its story is built on the final remnants of the now iconic war between the mighty empire and the rebel alliance. Where Han Solo already uttered careful yet impactful words on the mythical proportions that their battles had obtained, in this entry in the decades-long franchise we fully start to experience how important this kind of reminiscence is. Yes, The Last Jedi is unforgiving and, despite a few somewhat clumsily placed comedic moments (fortunately not involving porgs), quite a bleak image of what the rebels losses in the past years have come to, but it is above all hopeful as well. As hopefull as any of the Star Wars films have been.

In fact, I would not be lying if I said that The Last Jedi packs some of the most emotional and overall impactful moments in the entire franchise. It embraces the history of the Star Wars franchise and goes wild with it. It takes the pain of history itself and makes it the main building block of the conflicting relationships that exist between and within the dark and the light side. Many people condemned the repetitive nature of the franchise that once more came full circle in episode 7 but after viewing episode 8, I wouldn't be surprised if that notion changed around somewhat. Sure, The Force Awakens almost felt like a by-the-numbers painting of A New Hope but there was some kind of truth in it nonetheless. It showed the influence of past events with a clearer eye than almost anything before it. The few moments in the franchise where we could really feel how much one generation affected another were (at the top of my head) when Anakin fully transformed into Darth Vader (which is quite a play on history itself considering the franchise's achronological nature) and the moment where Luke gets his father back to the light side for a final farewell. In these moments the clash between good and evil felt most imminent. We knew then and there that evil could be created from nothing, from simple desert-infants, little tabula rasas. Yet they could be brought up to the light just as easily.

The Last Jedi shows the purely black-and-white nature of the Star Wars-universe just as much as it shows the nuance in it and with that a whole lot of truth. It brings back a great amount of gravitas to a franchise that has been needlessly meandering for quite a few years now. It presents an incredibly tight story that blasts through your heart and soul in a solid 2,5 hours and remembers you not only of the strength of the story in itself which, in all of its cyclical nature, actually still breaks meaningful new ground but also of the importance and impact that a story like this can do, can still do after so many years.

The Last Jedi has proven the importance of time within what is basically still a franchise product. Amongst a slew of other films this year, it has shown that true auteur filmmakers, with the right tools, can still shock the cinematic world with that one little concept that is actually the very core of cinema itself: time.

Times have changed.
People may change.
But in the end, the world is still the same.

Make of that what you will and definitely go see this one for yourself!

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