Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Star Wars: The Last Jedi ★★★★★

[UNIMPORTANT PERSONAL PREAMBLE]

I honestly don't know how to begin this review. It's late at night and my eyes are literally bleary, legs hurting, and head aching from an intense seven-on-one job interview that I had at a renowned English daily newspaper earlier today. My boyfriend and I decided to meet after the interview to check out The Last Jedi which I wasn't exactly ready to engage with academically because of the aforementioned side-effects of the psychological battle royale that they called "job interview". I wouldn't say that the film served as an antidote (because obviously I could only take so much emotional pressure and it definitely made me feel things), but at least it managed to distract me from post-interview insecurities.

So, anyway, this is going to be one of those semi-coherent collections of blurbs, thoughts and ideas that I managed to generate during a film as I can't afford to tune into the wavelength of the Discourse™ at the moment. Treat this as a placeholder of sorts, because I plan to see this film again very soon.

With that out of the way...


[ACTUAL SEMI-COHERENT REVIEW]

"Good guys, bad guys... Made up words."

I can't believe I'm saying this about a Disney Star Wars film, but The Last Jedi is glorious in every sense of the word. It is equal parts a subversion of the middle-chapter-in-a-trilogy formula established by Empire Strikes Back and an endlessly artful, majestic, and humane apotheosis of the eternal conflict between perplexing abstractions that we endearingly call "good" and "evil".

It is a study of principles; the seemingly innocent ideals which have the ability to make or break a person once they are filtered through their own personal schema. But most importantly, it is a story about people; a celebration of humanity in all its forms. It views every class of the society as equal; every person has a role that helps propel a cause forward, no matter how insignificant it may seem; every person needs to be saved for all lives are fundamentally sacred and precious.

The Last Jedi
is about a whole lot of these things. However, its articulation of these ideas never come across as didactic nor crass, but rather humanistic and respectful. Post-Lucas Star Wars finally gets to fiddle with serious semiotics, too!

I'm going to call it: The Last Jedi is the best Star Wars film, bar none. It is everything that the past films tried to be and more.

I may or may not regret that statement come tomorrow, but, you know, you got to live on the edge sometimes.

Oh, one more thing. Rian Johnson actually recreated this shot from Yojimbo. I absolutely fucking approve.

(UPDATE 12/15/17: I passed the damn interview!)

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