Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Star Wars: The Last Jedi ★★★★½

People criticise Luke in this movie because he expresses contempt for the Jedi whereas in the original trilogy he was completely enamoured with the halcyon of their prime but to me this character development only serves as a beautiful parallel to Anakin's downfall in the prequels. It's such phenomenal storytelling that Luke should evolve like that, that he should ultimately come to the same conclusions that led his father to become Vader in the first place. This is, of course, only strengthened by, and strengthens too, Vader's own redemption at the hands of Luke in the originals. The cyclical nature of light to dark to light to dark to light again really shows the balance of the force that is at the core of this franchise. Anakin is the Chosen One but never would have brought balance to the force without Luke's direct intervention, and in many ways this is Luke's purpose in the originals, his entire character - both an audience surrogate, a conduit for Lucas to explain and explore his worlds, and a catalyst for the balance of the force, serving plot more than his own solid character arc, Luke's character in the originals is never as strong or independent as it is here. Luke in the sequels is, in my opinion, as interesting a character as Anakin is in the prequels - fanboys who obsess over prequel Anakin but hate on sequel Luke miss the point entirely. Their stories are incomplete without each other, as shown in the originals, but either side of that first masterpiece trilogy they parallel each other beautifully. The reasons why Anakin and Luke come to the conclusions about the Jedi that they do are different, with Anakin's fuelled by hate and Luke's by regret, but they're both massively personal. How is Anakin saying that the Jedi are evil any different from Luke saying that they were hubristic hypocrites and failures? Obviously it's more nuanced that this (Anakin was fuelled more by fear than hate but they're practically the same thing in the eyes of the Jedi) but even the broad strokes tell such an amazing story. I'm obsessed with the Skywalker Saga - it might be my favourite narrative arc in all of fiction. And what this movie does to develop it... is masterful. I don't understand people who dislike this movie, particularly the elements I've discussed here.

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