KcMsterpce posted a MOVIE REVIEW item: about 1 month ago

Star Wars: The Last Jedi


Directed by: Rian Johnson
Written by: Rian Johnson
Cast: Mark Hamill, Daisy Ridley, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, John Boyega
Studio: Walt Disney
Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Science-Fiction
Official Site:
Plot: While Rey tries to get Jedi training from Luke, the Resistance is being pushed to the end of their tether by the Not-Empire, The First Order. Meanwhile, Kylo Ren is having a lot of emotional issues under the thumb of the Evil Snoke.


I came to Star Wars The Last Jedi for Mark Hamill. Because, well… it’s Mark Hamill. He was good. The movie, however, wasn’t all that good. Much like the balance of the Dark Side and the light of The Force, I was torn in between, seeking a reason to find purpose amongst the slew of terrible jokes and attempted drama.

The opening scene was a bad start. There was a totally unfunny, embarrassing "comedic" sequence with Poe on a communication device with the Not-Empire. It got more and more uncomfortable by the second. I actually thought that maybe I walked into the wrong movie, since it was so out of place for ANYTHING "Star Wars". It played like a bad Monty Python skit. It was one of many tremendously out-of-place and downright awkward so-called jokes this movie provides.
Come to think of it, almost every joke in the movie sucked. At certain points of the movie, I wanted nothing but to get up and run off, get away from how shifty and antsy these moments made me. It was like I was being forced to sit and watch my parents make out, and they're about to take their clothes off. That feeling of desperate helplessness permeated through me time and time again while watching the "comedic moments" from this movie.
The story itself is extremely basic, with a terrible planning scheme by the Resistance as they are slowly being picked off by enemy forces. Meanwhile, a quick communique with Anal Eyes – aka Maz Kanata, played by Lupita Nyong’o’s voice – helps to push the “story” forward by assigning the rebels a task much like you’d see in a video game. When I play DOOM, or a number of other first-person shooters, a character says “Get the blue key. That is your only choice.” So, Poe Dameron, Leia and The Gang go in search of The Blue Key. This pits Finn and a newcomer Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran) on a quest for this MacGuffin.
As everyone sits around for a long time, Luke is a mysterious “teacher” to Rey, but in the end I don’t think he really teaches her a damned thing. It was the weirdest attempt to show a torn, emotionally scarred Jedi Master Luke. Without trying to make him unlikeable, he does a series of very unlikeable things.

Another issue I have is that events take place almost immediately after The Force Awakens. It would have been really simple to have the first act present an extended timeline, with Rey slowly gaining her abilities and getting trained by Luke. Meanwhile, Kylo could also be a parallel to Rey's training, learning to become a Sith, allowing a chance for these characters to become “more powerful” and formidable. It is an odd narrative choice to instead place these key characters into a hasty sequence of events just to keep up with the time sensitive events with Leia and The Gang.
If, for example, the first 40 minutes focused SOLELY on the differences in training between Kylo and Rey, it would have shown that these two are building strength and knowledge. There could be a few scenes tossed in showing Leia and The Gang trying to oppose the First Order in some way, just to touch upon their place during Rey's absence.
Then, push to events with the hasty timeline from the beginning of the movie as taking place at least six months to a year after Rey’s departure, and meeting Luke. This would, in turn, accelerate the pace of the boring, uneventful and predictable "chase", tightening up the movie's sense of immediacy as the clock ticks away towards a Big Showdown.

However, they chose instead to have an odd scenario in place to keep the rebels in dire circumstances in a race against time, further questioning the time it takes for travel – with all the characters that use light speed at one point or another – to push the limits of credibility.
What also frustrated me were the attempts to throw in “unexpected twists” about the way the audience should expect the movie to go. These twists were dumb at some points, and outright insulting at other moments (especially the very end). THE LAST JEDI does not break new ground in any way, and the only attempt to do so is by playing a game of cheap deceit with these silly plot twists.

There is very little resolution to some lingering questions about who is who, or what is what. There are odd story beats, with obvious inspiration (or knockoff, take your pick) from EMPIRE for one battle sequence, while also having Snoke rile up Rey in almost the exact same way the Emperor taunted Luke in RotJ. Snoke’s entire place with these two movies feels anemic, making me wonder what the point of his buildup really has to do with the overall story. This Snoke mystery is further emphasized by the weird timeline for Kylo and Rey's issues... with little time spent actually learning anything new since the previous movie, Snoke's dominance and influence on Kylo feels unwarranted.

It was nice to finally see Hamill talk again; as Luke Skywalker. The movie itself is alright for brainless entertainment. However, if you are hoping for the emotional depth, pacing and surprises that came from THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, then crush those hopes right now. Just… try to go along with a simple, sometimes silly, ultimately unremarkable blockbuster fantasy. If you go in with that mentality, it will be easier to digest.

Grade: D+
Score: 4.5/10

Reviewed 15 December, 2017.

****** TINY SPOILER *******
This movie's humor is just plain awful. Anal Eyes – aka Maz Kanata, played by Lupita Nyong’o’s voice – making that reference to being sexually involved with the "Best Cracker in the World", who can 'Do anything, oh yeah he can!'
Jesus, man. I mean, seriously! Holy hell!


Other reviews of this film: AlmostFamous91 (8/10) , OldKingClancy (9/10) > Display all

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