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Robin Bland

THE LAST JEDI - Movie discussion and critique

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3 hours ago, Robin Bland said:

I think they’ll listen. Disney is very cautious about protecting its investments. 

I agree. The ending was sanguine, in that it raised a note of hope with the survivors. But in story terms, it was pretty absolute in how it swept the slate clean of any other players. You can see how it was a set-up for Ep 9 with Leia being central to inspiring a new rebel movement. I found the Force kid coda to be really twee and sentimental, but to be fair, Lucas could often be same. It wasn’t tonally out of synch with what’s gone before (particularly the prequel trilogy) - SW routinely switches tones. I think that’s Johnson’s big flaw - he’s very crass in how he switches moods throughout the story. His treatment of Luke as a character was utterly wrong-headed, to my mind. 

Rian Johnson really shortchanged a long-overdue emotional payoff for the audience (some of us waited 34 years for this).  Luke showed virtually no warmth shown toward Chewbacca, and only a fleeting moment with his once-beloved droid R2D2.  He showed more affection towards the Millennium Falcon's cockpit than those characters whom he'd known for most of his life...

I also grew really tired of Luke's annoying 'get lost kid' routine with Rey; it felt like everytime we cut back to Luke and Rey, he was finding a new way to be a jackass towards this poor girl.  Insulting her home planet (said the boy from the upscale metropolis of Nowhere, Tatooine), shunning her or just treating her like refuse.  His moments of so-called 'training' amounted to jack squat, really.  

Where was Luke's compassion, for goodnes' sake?   Getting older doesn't have to turn someone into a heartless pr!ck...

I also agreed with what you said upthread about Rey and Kylo's scenes together being the most interesting parts of the movie; I think she received more from him than from 'master' Luke.  Too bad Johnson chose to undo Kylo's moments of interesting character progression and set him back to square one at the end (the angry petulant brat).

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On 1/4/2018 at 6:35 AM, Sehlat Vie said:

Especially since TFA established that Han now believes in the force; that moment of near-murder would've also explained Kylo/Ben's (Ken’s?) resentment of his father, and it would even give him further motive for killing him so cold-bloodedly in TFA.   Even if his dad hesitated, the fact that he even considered it at all would’ve been heavy stuff.    But for Luke?  It’s both out of character and a bit less effective dramatically.

I agree completely. In fact - now that we know the "whole story" on Ben Solo .... why exactly did he hate Han so much? We never really find out. Is it because Luke is his friend? Because Han and Leia gave Ben to Luke? IDK ...

It would have been much more powerful for Han to have that weak moment then instantly regret it. Or at least .... much more understandable than Luke of all people.

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4 hours ago, The Founder said:

I agree completely. In fact - now that we know the "whole story" on Ben Solo .... why exactly did he hate Han so much? We never really find out. Is it because Luke is his friend? Because Han and Leia gave Ben to Luke? IDK ...

It would have been much more powerful for Han to have that weak moment then instantly regret it. Or at least .... much more understandable than Luke of all people.

Not that I care to defend this movie much further, but I will say that it seems his increasing feeling that all of the past should be burned and that starting fresh is the only way to achieve peace seems a solid motivation for killing Han. Maybe seeing it as a first step towards that goal, or hopes that it might be perceived as a good move in Snoke's eyes, before he was disenfranchised by Snoke generally not giving a crap about his little achievements.

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Second time around, I don’t think anyone who had a problem with the way Luke was handled is going to like it any better. Luke’s arc still all feels ignominious and out of character. Rey comes out of those Ahch-To sequences better, but even she, Finn and Poe seem like different characters from those established in TFA. Johnson uses them all to make thematic points rather than letting the characters be themselves, or believable evolutions of what we’ve seen before. For example, suddenly the formerly cool-headed daredevil pilot Poe is now reckless and heedless of authority until he gets an object lesson in the finer shades of heroism. It’s using a character to make a philosophical point rather than letting a character carry the story forward in an organic way. 

The problem lies in JJ and Johnson not really tying together any of the threads that were set up in TFA. If Luke went in search of the first Jedi temple (as we’re told in TFA), why does he then claim in TLJ that he went there to die? He could’ve gone anywhere off the chart to die. And why did he leave a map behind so that he could be found? So the Luke Johnson gives us is one that is expressly altered to service a very particular story, and we’re left with few of the character traits from the Luke we knew at the end of ROTJ, which smacks of straightforward revisionism for the sake of subverting expectations.  Maybe something in the green milk drove Luke nuts and radically altered his personality. 

It’s all very well to do those Rashomon-like flashbacks to Ren turning dark, but we’re given no real context for Luke’s failures as a Jedi teacher - maybe it would’ve helped to have seen more of that Jedi college, something about the Knights of Ren (was Ben the only student there?), Snoke stoking darkness from the shadows. As it is, we’re left to fill in the blanks and just believe what the characters tell us - but they’re contradicting (or at least, not affirming) any of the set-ups from the previous movie. 

Canto Bight still drags and seems to be there to provide an action sequence and to set up the Force kid at the end. It’s clunky and not really necessary for the story, except to give Finn and Rose something to do. The story’s structured like a tragedy, but Johnson even double-bluffs on the delivery of moments where you think you know what’s going to happen, like Leia’s non-death. But it’s pretty clear that Johnson’s main self-imposed rule in writing this script is to go left at any point a Star Wars fan’s expectations might’ve gone right. Or even just straight on. 

All that said, there is good stuff. The development of Rey and Ren’s relationship and eventual alliance really works - I think it’s the story's biggest strength. The throne room fight should’ve been the climax of the film. It’s great character work, fused together by Driver and Ridley’s superb chemistry. 

But Rey’s then sidelined so that Rian-Luke can be redeemed, and Ren returns to his former tantrums after momentarily being haunted by a sympathetic poignancy that threatens to tip this film into the depth that Johnson is reaching for, but he doesn’t go there. It’s strange, as these are the characters that are supposed to be taking the saga forward, but they’re shifted sideways for another set of character climaxes - Luke’s, obviously, but also Finn and Rose’s. Poe gets zilch except a moment of enlightenment. Rey rescues everyone, which should feel triumphant, but is curiously low-key. One thing I didn’t take note of previously, which is great, is that Chewie actually does get a real moment in the limelight, when he leads off and destroys all the Tie Fighters at the battle of Crait in a feat of fancy flying that would make Han or Poe proud. 

While Rose is loveable character, Johnson seems less interested in Finn. Finn is still a funny fall guy whose heroism comes to the fore when necessary but again, then he's sidelined and used to make a thundering philosophical point when Rose intercepts his suicide run.  

Oh, and Phasma. Phasma’s back - here she is, with her shiny suit and no explanation of how she escaped Starkiller Base (except that you fans who read tie-ins will know). The flight of the Resistance (and their transformation into “Rebels”) is the whole theme of the film stretched into a moral victory - failure is the greatest lesson. It’s a brave move, but Johnson subsequently stretches the story and the characters that populate it into all sorts of weird shapes to fit.   

Again, I didn’t fail to be moved by Luke’s finale, largely because Hamill is mesmeric. But it is an odd, disjointed film, with occasional flashes of brilliance. I can see why people don’t like it, and it does feel essentially like a repudiation of TFA. I think if Johnson was less obsessed with thematic layers and more worried about characters (the most essential element of any story, in my humble opinion), it would seem less of a bumpy ride. If TESB was his blueprint, he’s missed a lot of what makes that film work - sure, it’s dark, but it’s also full of charm and fun, character detail and dialogue that really does work. Luke does dumb things in Empire, but boy, does he learn from them. The bitter old ex-Jedi in this film does come full circle, and you want to cheer for him because it’s Luke. In an earlier post, I said it felt earned, but a second viewing exposes Johnson’s reimagining of Luke’s character and motivations to make that arc work. It feels mechanical. But the music swells, and if anything or anyone’s gonna sell this hero’s exit, it’s John Williams. But you don’t know how Luke got to be this way, not really, despite the flashbacks. (Wouldn’t it have been interesting if, when Rey arrived on Ahch-To, Luke had been expecting her? But that really is another story.) 

I don’t think TLJ is a disaster, but it’s structured in a very weird and overly deliberate way, which is its fatal flaw, whether you agree with the direction Johnson took Luke or not. You can at least get involved in the unfolding of Rey and Ren’s arcs, but those too don’t completely satisfy because of the multiple climaxes. 

Seriously, how many “great” Star Wars films are there? This one’s by no means an instant classic, but given the multi-generational appeal of this franchise, I guess it’s going to be someone’s first entry point and they’re going to love it. But for me, after the uplift of TFA, itself far from perfect, I’m gonna file this one under “Oddity.” I don’t think it’s entirely disappointing, there’s some elements that really work, but it does feel like the new boy’s stylistic portfolio, a mission statement rather than a story.  I am genuinely intruiged to see where JJ Abrams and his scriptwriters take it for the ninth installment, because at this point, all bets are off and he’s got nothing to lose. 

 

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1 hour ago, Robin Bland said:

Seriously, how many “great” Star Wars films are there? 

About two, really; SW77 and TESB.  There’s a few good ones as well, some genuinely awful ones too; but it’s definitely a mixed bag that’s largely buoyed by the sheer power and majesty of those first two classic movies.   

1 hour ago, Robin Bland said:

But for me, after the uplift of TFA, itself far from perfect, I’m gonna file this one under “Oddity.” I don’t think it’s entirely disappointing, there’s some elements that really work, but it does feel like the new boy’s stylistic portfolio, a mission statement rather than a story.  I am genuinely intruiged to see where JJ Abrams and his scriptwriters take it for the ninth installment, because at this point, all bets are off and he’s got nothing to lose. 

Very much this.  

Can’t say I entirely ‘hated it’ per se (hell, even the prequels have their moments), but it’s definitely an oddity.

 

Thanks for sharing your second viewing thoughts with us; and gain strength from the sharing... (ah, the wisdom of Sybok).

 

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13 hours ago, Sehlat Vie said:

About two, really; SW77 and TESB.  There’s a few good ones as well, some genuinely awful ones too; but it’s definitely a mixed bag that’s largely buoyed by the sheer power and majesty of those first two classic movies.   

Very much this.  

Can’t say I entirely ‘hated it’ per se (hell, even the prequels have their moments), but it’s definitely an oddity.

 

Thanks for sharing your second viewing thoughts with us; and gain strength from the sharing... (ah, the wisdom of Sybok).

 

Sybok was a dude!

Interesting RIan Johnson interview that addresses the backlash:

http://uk.businessinsider.com/star-wars-rian-johnson-interview-about-the-last-jedi-fan-backlash-2017-12?r=US&IR=T

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1 hour ago, Robin Bland said:

Sybok was a dude!

Interesting RIan Johnson interview that addresses the backlash:

http://uk.businessinsider.com/star-wars-rian-johnson-interview-about-the-last-jedi-fan-backlash-2017-12?r=US&IR=T

Hmmm...

40 minutes ago, prometheus59650 said:

I just don't believe that 80% of his Twitter feedback was positive.

I don't.

He says 80-90%.... now I know that’s a load.  

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Just now, Sehlat Vie said:

Hmmm...

He says 80-90%.... now I know that’s a load.  

Yeah.

There are plenty of people that liked his personal ego exercise, but, what I'm finding is a fairly even split.

90% is Trump-level (and actual) fake news.

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1 hour ago, prometheus59650 said:

I just don't believe that 80% of his Twitter feedback was positive.

I don't.

I honestly saw mostly positive feedback on Twitter, seeing only a few that despised it...and then I came here and a lot of people seemed down on it.  So I can believe it. 

I actually read a really good twitter thread on the film today, which really made me appreciate what they did with Luke a little more.  And I was down with it from the get go, but I think it made a really strong argument for the way the character ended up being handled.  Can't find it now though, which is a shame. 

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49 minutes ago, kenman said:

I honestly saw mostly positive feedback on Twitter, seeing only a few that despised it...and then I came here and a lot of people seemed down on it.  So I can believe it. 

I actually read a really good twitter thread on the film today, which really made me appreciate what they did with Luke a little more.  And I was down with it from the get go, but I think it made a really strong argument for the way the character ended up being handled.  Can't find it now though, which is a shame. 

From my Twitter feed, it seems about 50/50, but 80-90%?  Come on... that’s a bit much.   That sounds less like an objective opinion, and more like self-propagandizing. 

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1 hour ago, Sehlat Vie said:

From my Twitter feed, it seems about 50/50, but 80-90%?  Come on... that’s a bit much.   That sounds less like an objective opinion, and more like self-propagandizing. 

Maybe, I genuinely didn't see as much negative.  I saw a bit, but I mostly saw positive, though I would hear it described as love it or hate it. Since I am kind of indifferent to the series continuing (as a friend recently put it, I would gladly give up not being able to see a new Star Wars if it meant I never saw another tie-in commercial again), I thought I would end up hating it, but found myself pleasantly surprised.  I have no algorithm or date to back up the 80 percent, my guess would've probably been like 60-70...because I have seen mostly positive things.  But that can be the the nature of Twitter or any Social Media, it is all in who you follow. People I happen to follow seemed to rather enjoy it, and the negative I saw was mostly from people who enjoyed it responding to their criticisms.  My critic buddy really liked it a lot, thought it was great, and he is like you, old school, saw the original in the theater as a kid in 77 and has been hooked since.  Most of the negative I saw seemed to come from Prequel Era folks, so I find it fascinating to see the negative here from the older school fans.

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5 hours ago, kenman said:

Maybe, I genuinely didn't see as much negative.  I saw a bit, but I mostly saw positive, though I would hear it described as love it or hate it. Since I am kind of indifferent to the series continuing (as a friend recently put it, I would gladly give up not being able to see a new Star Wars if it meant I never saw another tie-in commercial again), I thought I would end up hating it, but found myself pleasantly surprised.  I have no algorithm or date to back up the 80 percent, my guess would've probably been like 60-70...because I have seen mostly positive things.  But that can be the the nature of Twitter or any Social Media, it is all in who you follow. People I happen to follow seemed to rather enjoy it, and the negative I saw was mostly from people who enjoyed it responding to their criticisms.  My critic buddy really liked it a lot, thought it was great, and he is like you, old school, saw the original in the theater as a kid in 77 and has been hooked since.  Most of the negative I saw seemed to come from Prequel Era folks, so I find it fascinating to see the negative here from the older school fans.

I think a lot of the negative chatter is on SW dedicated posting boards. I haven't seen a lot on Twitter personally, but I entirely agree with what you say, it’s all in who you follow, or what hashtags you can be bothered to look at. 

Interesting about the prequel-era fans though... 

On other boards, I’ve seen a lot of both pro and con arguments re: the treatment of Luke, and with some folks, it’s just never going to sit well. I think it’s kind of a poisoned chalice, being handed a legacy character and being told that you can do what you will...! As Johnson says in that interview, you just are never going to be able to please everyone. I have some sympathy with that comment. A lot of what he does follows a storyteller’s logic - you can hear him balancing various elements even in his answers in that link. It makes sense on paper, but I can’t help thinking there needed to be an editorial - or maybe at least advisory - voice on board reminding him that there were several elements that don’t really link up with previous films. I guess, in the end, that comes down to a matter of opinion and personal taste. I’m never going to like the Ahch-To Luke in this film, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t stirred by his heroic outro. Maybe I’m easily manipulated. 

 

 

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10 hours ago, Robin Bland said:

I’m never going to like the Ahch-To Luke in this film, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t stirred by his heroic outro. Maybe I’m easily manipulated. 

aNjtJAm.gif

“You’re easily manipulated...”   :P

JK

And yes, I found that final force-ghost stand against Kylo Ren to be a lot of fun, even though it was telegraphed in advance since Luke suddenly looked 15 years younger and he somehow got his father’s just-destroyed lightsaber back.   The thing that bothers me most is that despite the padded running time, and all of the things that happen, the ending of the movie really changes nothing.   Rey doesn’t really advance much in her force-training (Snoke still throws her around like a toy),  Kylo is still firmly committed to the First Order (would’ve loved to have seen him rebel against BOTH the FO and the Resistance as he said), and the rebels are still on the run.   Oh, and Rey & Rose went off and did something stupid and entirely inconsequential.

The End.

A friend of mine just went and saw it on New Years’ Day with her husband and 6 year old SW fanatic of a son (he knows SW about as well as I do, and I’m only slightly exaggerating).  They were disappointed as well (with NO prodding from me at all).   Everyone said the same thing; it was too long, and despite a few “good parts” (6 year old’s words) it wasn’t his/their favorite Star Wars at all.  This was a family of Star Wars fans; my wife & I have attended ‘lightsaber parties’ at their house for their son’s birthday and Christmas.  They live/breathe/eat Star Wars and even they were disappointed.

I was reassured that it wasn’t just me, though in fairness I’ve decided to give it another try soon and reevaluate it.  I have another friend in my circle who insists it was better the second time.  She’s got a decent track record for being right IMO, so I trust her.  I’ve also read our own Robin Bland’s reevaluation here, and I’m curious.   Maybe this is one of those films that demands repeated viewings to fain better appreciation?   There’ve been (quite) a few of those in my lifetime.

So maybe I should just drain my bladder thoroughly for the long sit-down (no diet Sodas for me, thanks!), take my arthritis meds and give it another try.

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Hey this article nicely compiled the thread about Luke in the Last Jedi that I found made a lot of sense. You may well disagree, but it is an interesting point of view, particularly his thoughts on the Force Awakens and how Luke's decision to become a complete pacifist serves those changes more than I initially realized. 

http://www.guacamoley.com/extra-chunky/2018/01/09/ZLHlcN/fan-explains-why-luke-skywalker-choice

Again, this only made me think, "oh yeah, see it does work!" so others may wholeheartedly disagree here...and I rather expect that to be the case.

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On 1/8/2018 at 10:53 AM, Robin Bland said:

 

It’s all very well to do those Rashomon-like flashbacks to Ren turning dark, but we’re given no real context for Luke’s failures as a Jedi teacher - maybe it would’ve helped to have seen more of that Jedi college, something about the Knights of Ren (was Ben the only student there?), Snoke stoking darkness from the shadows. As it is, we’re left to fill in the blanks and just believe what the characters tell us - but they’re contradicting (or at least, not affirming) any of the set-ups from the previous movie.

 

Honestly, I'm wondering if this might be a key point in regard to the flaws of the movie.The lack of context really harms the depiction of Luke in particular, for that infamous scene where he stands over Kylo. I think I saw someone else point that out, and I agree. Even if that had been fixed, I still wouldn't be a fan of this particular version of Luke, though.

That being said, his final 'duel' with Kylo (and his brief meeting with Leia beforehand) worked very well.

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On 1/6/2018 at 5:56 PM, kenman said:

Not that I care to defend this movie much further, but I will say that it seems his increasing feeling that all of the past should be burned and that starting fresh is the only way to achieve peace seems a solid motivation for killing Han. Maybe seeing it as a first step towards that goal, or hopes that it might be perceived as a good move in Snoke's eyes, before he was disenfranchised by Snoke generally not giving a crap about his little achievements.

Yes - true. That more or less works. Kylo just seemed to have a visceral hatred of Han. Between his murder and telling Rey that Han is a failure as a father-figure, he seemed to have a more personal reason for hating Han besides wanting to wipe away the past. But it probably was just to prove himself to Snoke and maybe prove to himself he is Darth Vader 2.0.

1 hour ago, kenman said:

Hey this article nicely compiled the thread about Luke in the Last Jedi that I found made a lot of sense. You may well disagree, but it is an interesting point of view, particularly his thoughts on the Force Awakens and how Luke's decision to become a complete pacifist serves those changes more than I initially realized. 

http://www.guacamoley.com/extra-chunky/2018/01/09/ZLHlcN/fan-explains-why-luke-skywalker-choice

Again, this only made me think, "oh yeah, see it does work!" so others may wholeheartedly disagree here...and I rather expect that to be the case.

The issue with this article and the myriad of articles that have come out since TLJ came out is ... it misses the core point of the criticism of Luke's radical personality shift.

It's not a matter of it not "serving the story" or it "not making sense". It kind of does, within the context of this story, on why Luke did what he did (even if its a huge stretch given his history). The issue is ... was this a good idea for the character?

As I said in a previous post - with enough time (and writing classes :P) - I can write a story that takes place 20 years after Star Trek: Nemesis where Jean-Luc Picard has turned into a vicious imperialist killer or a coward that hides in France while the universe is burning around him. I can make up any convoluted plot line on why he is the way he is. Any plot line that will have a myriad of articles saying "All things considered ... it does make sense why Picard changed." or "In real life .... people change. Stop being so entitled, NERDS." or "Considering the events that led up to this story, it's true to life on why Picard did what he did." and so on and on.

It has nothing to do with it making sense within the context of a particular story. It has to do with regression of a character. Transformation of a character (especially a radical one) is a tricky thing. Especially if this transformation tends to ... harm the legacy of the character. It can work at times, but was it a good idea? - - - that is the bigger point.

And as others have said - connecting to the previous movie - Luke's choices are just ... odd (in a trilogy context). If he went to this planet to die - where did this map leading to him come from? Why did R2 have a piece of it again? It seemed like such a big build up that Luke found the planet where the Jedi were formed. As if he was gaining some type of lost knowledge. With the trailers hovering over his quote "It's time for the Jedi ... to end." - you're led to think he must have discovered something so controversial .... but nope. He didn't discover anything. He just went there to die. So .... why not just go to Tatooine and jump into the Sarlacc pit? Why not go to Hoth, walk into a random cave, and let a Wampa eat you? Why not go swimming in Dagobah and let a giant alien shark devour you? What did he go to this planet for?

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7 hours ago, The Founder said:

Kylo just seemed to have a visceral hatred of Han. Between his murder and telling Rey that Han is a failure as a father-figure, he seemed to have a more personal reason for hating Han besides wanting to wipe away the past. But it probably was just to prove himself to Snoke and maybe prove to himself he is Darth Vader 2.0.

^

This.  There was bigger setup for his hatred of Solo than just ‘patricide is a nice way to achieve my goal.’   He even tells Rey that he’d disappoint her if she looked upon him as a father figure. That was the talk of someone who’d been burned by an absentee father.  

I also had similar issues with Rey’s ‘so-what’ lineage.  And not because I think every character in SW has to be of noble blood or important lineage; far from it (I’m a huge midichlorian hater, lest anyone forget...), but it’s because she had those visions when she touched the lightsaber in TFA.   Ben Kenobi’s voice called to her by name.  She had visions of events such as the Cloud City duel (was she Vader reincarnated, as an early rumor indicated?), she saw the Knights of Ren, and she had a flashback of her own past (was it just to further jab at her, or was there significance to it?).  

My point is, don’t hint at something greater if there’s no payoff.   That’s something that TLJ seemed to enjoy, and to me it amounts to little more than trolling your own fan base.  

And Capt. Phasma.   FFS, can we make her relevant or important one of these days, and not just another damn Boba Fett?  Gwendoline Christie is too interesting an actress to waste on a useless, 'undying redshirt' character like that...

7 hours ago, The Founder said:

The issue with this article and the myriad of articles that have come out since TLJ came out is ... it misses the core point of the criticism of Luke's radical personality shift.

It's not a matter of it not "serving the story" or it "not making sense". It kind of does, within the context of this story, on why Luke did what he did (even if its a huge stretch given his history). The issue is ... was this a good idea for the character?

As I said in a previous post - with enough time (and writing classes :P) - I can write a story that takes place 20 years after Star Trek: Nemesis where Jean-Luc Picard has turned into a vicious imperialist killer or a coward that hides in France while the universe is burning around him. I can make up any convoluted plot line on why he is the way he is. Any plot line that will have a myriad of articles saying "All things considered ... it does make sense why Picard changed." or "In real life .... people change. Stop being so entitled, NERDS." or "Considering the events that led up to this story, it's true to life on why Picard did what he did." and so on and on.

It has nothing to do with it making sense within the context of a particular story. It has to do with regression of a character. Transformation of a character (especially a radical one) is a tricky thing. Especially if this transformation tends to ... harm the legacy of the character. It can work at times, but was it a good idea? - - - that is the bigger point.

And as others have said - connecting to the previous movie - Luke's choices are just ... odd (in a trilogy context). If he went to this planet to die - where did this map leading to him come from? Why did R2 have a piece of it again? It seemed like such a big build up that Luke found the planet where the Jedi were formed. As if he was gaining some type of lost knowledge. With the trailers hovering over his quote "It's time for the Jedi ... to end." - you're led to think he must have discovered something so controversial .... but nope. He didn't discover anything. He just went there to die. So .... why not just go to Tatooine and jump into the Sarlacc pit? Why not go to Hoth, walk into a random cave, and let a Wampa eat you? Why not go swimming in Dagobah and let a giant alien shark devour you? What did he go to this planet for?

^
Precisely.gif

Once again, that’s an issue of setup/buildup with no payoff.  

And one can call it subverting expectations or whatever one wishes, but there’s a simpler word for it; it’s called a ‘cheat.’ 

If I drop hints that I’m getting you a Christmas gift and leave an empty box for you instead?  I’m not ‘subverting expectations’; I’m being a jerk. 

 

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13 hours ago, Sehlat Vie said:

^

This.  There was bigger setup for his hatred of Solo than just ‘patricide is a nice way to achieve my goal.’   He even tells Rey that he’d disappoint her if she looked upon him as a father figure. That was the talk of someone who’d been burned by an absentee father.  

I also had similar issues with Rey’s ‘so-what’ lineage.  And not because I think every character in SW has to be of noble blood or important lineage; far from it (I’m a huge midichlorian hater, lest anyone forget...), but it’s because she had those visions when she touched the lightsaber in TFA.   Ben Kenobi’s voice called to her by name.  She had visions of events such as the Cloud City duel (was she Vader reincarnated, as an early rumor indicated?), she saw the Knights of Ren, and she had a flashback of her own past (was it just to further jab at her, or was there significance to it?).  

My point is, don’t hint at something greater if there’s no payoff.   That’s something that TLJ seemed to enjoy, and to me it amounts to little more than trolling your own fan base.  

And Capt. Phasma.   FFS, can we make her relevant or important one of these days, and not just another damn Boba Fett?  Gwendoline Christie is too interesting an actress to waste on a useless, 'undying redshirt' character like that...

^
Precisely.gif

Once again, that’s an issue of setup/buildup with no payoff.  

And one can call it subverting expectations or whatever one wishes, but there’s a simpler word for it; it’s called a ‘cheat.’ 

If I drop hints that I’m getting you a Christmas gift and leave an empty box for you instead?  I’m not ‘subverting expectations’; I’m being a jerk. 

 

According to this, we should be glad Artoo was in the movie at all:

https://io9.gizmodo.com/the-true-story-behind-hans-dice-and-more-last-jedi-sec-1821971853

 

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11 hours ago, Robin Bland said:

According to this, we should be glad Artoo was in the movie at all:

https://io9.gizmodo.com/the-true-story-behind-hans-dice-and-more-last-jedi-sec-1821971853

I got the dice reference; you clearly see Chewbacca nudge them as he enters the Falcon’s cockpit in SW77, but that’s pretty obscure for the average fan.

And Artoo was little more than a hologram playback machine in TLJ, which again begs the question: why DID Artoo have the rest of the map in his memory banks if it were only to show the trail to Luke’s potential suicide retreat?  What was the point?  

That last sentence is a question I find myself asking more and more about this movie.   I dunno.   Maybe I really do need to give it another try; I almost feel like I’m still waiting to see the real “Last Jedi” someday...

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STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI Home Video Release Will Include Over 2 Hours of Bonus Footage

Ads for Target and Best Buy reveal the contents of their Star Wars: The Last Jedi 4K, Blu-ray, and Digital HD exclusive offers, which includes special packaging and a behind-the-scenes booklet.

https://www.comicbookmovie.com/sci-fi/star_wars/star-wars-the-last-jedi-home-video-release-will-include-over-2-hours-of-bonus-footage-a157010

26733413_10215479295394731_3346909921283

Gus

Edited by GustavoLeao

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Third friend saw TLJ and I had not discussed it with him till today. He was overly disappointed with Luke acting like a curmudgeonly old coot, playing the 'I don't give a rat's bleep' attitude of someone turned down by the forces at bay.

What is not being asked though, is what happened at the end of ROTJ? Are we actually to believe a bunch of rebels and a solar system's worth of big spear weilding teddy bears not only blew up the Second Death Star, but did not prevent the obliteration of the planet soon after that. Endor's moon was probably about Mars sized. The fallout from that thing, the size of Luna basically, would have wiped the planet out pretty hard. The rebels then would have quickly not been heroes, but villains. Luke would have had to run into hiding. Liea would have had to do some political backpedaling to explain why several million tons of debris just rained down on the Ewok planet and the fleet and the rest.

The rebellion could not actually have beaten to Empire after destroying only their main starbase and their main leader. Surely there were others. Millions of others. And how would a galactic empire do that anyway? Even with hyperspace, they might not even know the station blew up for years in outlying systems.

Although it is DJ that claims the Canto Bight aliens sell weapons to both sides, this is not a complete unnecessary scene. Finn and Rose enjoy their addition. They toss in a tacked on message about saving the animals, but so what.

He was most turned off by Luke milking a cow manitee thing, and by his being an oaf on the planet, but had to admit he liked the final ghost scene.

He did not like the nursemaid curators or the porgs.

His 12 year old daughter liked the movie having no frame of reference except TFA.

So sure, Luke could be traumatized by having his school decimated bty his crazy nephew, but it's odd they just put him out there then.

Still the story actually does not subvert as much as you might think it does.

Luke could very well have become recluse since for him to be somehow elevated to some sort of power. which he didn't want in the first place, would be silly at the end of ROTJ. It makes more sense for him to cut and run. Then when he tried running the temple, it failed, because he didn't know how. We were not told in TFA why he ran.

"Your father had it, I have it, my sister has it, and you have that power too." Cut line was not directed at Rey. It was directed at Kylo.

Kylo was lying. He knows Rey is not merely just an unknown left abandoned. He was trying to turn her. The movie reveals her darkest fear, is a reflection of herself, on for infinity. I think it was not as we though, an empty literal 'you are just you here, nobody else', but rather, 'your selfishness blocks what is actually there, and you must let go of it to see it'.

Snoke killed himself. He directed them to think they were killing him, but e said 'this will strike true', and directed his own thing, because as he said earlier, he was controlling their minds. They didn't break out of it.

Snoke was also a 'projection' as the Larry Flint/Hugh Heffner jacket snoke looked nothing like the TFA one. The real person behind Snoke is somewhere else. He might even look totally different. Remember Palpatane/Sideous.

Rey might be also force created, or as someone suggested, the true heir to Vader. Interesting idea! What if everyone knows Ren is merely Vader's lesser grandchild, but his 'spiritual grandchild' is actually Rey.

What would Ren or Ben find if he looked into that same pit on the planet? Suppose he foresaw Luke trying not to kill him?

Sure Luke was out of character, but if Snoke was able to manipulate him, suppose he also was manipulating Luke? But when Snoke had been killed (or took himself out) he was unchained, and Luke also was, and Luke went to force ghost some final moments.

JJ can fix this. I still think it was a very good film. Maybe it was not the beast Star Wars canon film, but like Trek 2009, was a good film.

I would dare say it is an improvement over some aspects of ROTJ. Really, little teddy bears can defeat super tech walkers and speeders?

It is better than the prequels.

I think most hardcore fans were disappointed to not get to see the old gang back together.

 

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, prometheus59650 said:

Sadly, I have no enthusiasm.

Completist enough to have it, but...used Blu after a month from Family Video.

I think I’m going to give it one more (bargain matinee) cinematic try sometime next week, but that’s just for my blog reevaluation.  

And yes, being the completist dork that I am, I’ll buy the blu ray, I’m sure. 

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21 minutes ago, Sehlat Vie said:

And yes, being the completist dork that I am, I’ll buy the blu ray, I’m sure. 

There are times when that compulsion sucks. :)

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