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**SPOILERS FOR Star Wars: The Last Jedi***
Ah, The Last Jedi. Some people loved it, some people hated it, and some are like me, who had mixed feelings about Episode VIII in the famous Star Wars franchise. And even though you've probably already seen the movie, I'll be giving my spoiler-filled review of the film.
So, we have to establish something first. I only got into Star Wars a few weeks ago. I marathoned all the movies (except Rogue One), and I decided since I watched Episodes I-VII, I should watch The Last Jedi while it was still in theaters.
And since I only just got into watching these films, I don't know that much about them, and I'm not one of those die-hard Star Wars fans who writes those mile-long pages on Wookiepedia about characters that appear on screen for two seconds.
When I was walking into this movie, I really didn't know what to expect because of how split audiences were. Critics gave it a "certified fresh" 90% on Rotten Tomatoes, while audiences gave it a measly 49%.
It seems like half of audiences loved it, and half hated it. And I've read some very spirited opinions from people who hate this movie with a passion.
So, I watched the movie, and I thought it was okay. I don't really have a high standard for a Star Wars movie, because I'm a newcomer. Not one of those passionate fans who has been watching these films in theaters since A New Hope in 1977.
When I watched The Force Awakens, I thought it was good, since it had a bunch of chemistry between Finn and Rey. Kylo Ren wasn't a disappointing villain, and they got back Han Solo, Chewbacca, Leia, C-3PO, R2-D2, and Luke at the end.
And Luke was the backbone of this entire movie. When we knew we were getting Luke Skywalker back in the action, bringing balance to the Force, we were HYPE. And if Luke was coming back, he needed to have the spirit of his character back in the original trilogy.
But it didn't work that well; at the end of Episode VI, Luke is a happily trained Jedi, who has brought his father back from the Dark Side, and won a victory against the Empire.
He tries to train the next generation of Jedi, including Ben Solo, the son of Han and Leia. But when he sees the darkness in Ben's heart, he ignites a lightsaber and contemplates killing him in his sleep.
Luke admits that the thought went away as quickly as it came, but that is not the young, promising Jedi hero that we saw at the end of the original trilogy.
Can you imagine the Luke from the original trilogy even thinking about killing Han Solo's son in his sleep? Luke was able to turn Anakin from the Dark Side, but when he knows that Ben has turned to the Dark Side as a result of Snoke's manipulation, Luke doesn't think about turning him back.
Luke just considers killing him right then and there, when Ben didn't even do any act of evil yet. I get that over time, people change, but Luke's change from the original trilogy to the sequel trilogy is simply tragic and almost badly written.
If I remember correctly, Yoda taught Luke, "A Jedi uses the Force for knowledge and defense, never for attack." The fact that Luke went so far as to ignite his lightsaber to attack someone who didn't attack him is beyond me.
But that doesn't necessarily mean I hated the movie. The movie had some GREAT scenes that are exactly the kind of scenes that Star Wars fans love watching, from the lightsaber duels, to the military combat between the Resistance and the First Order.
And I don't care what you thought of Luke's character or the film or anything; but you have to admit that you liked this scene.
So, I'm not one of those people who is gonna be up all night complaining about how The Last Jedi effectively tried to ruin the entirety of Star Wars with its horribleness. It was an okay movie that definitely wasn't as good as The Force Awakens, but was an enjoyable addition to the franchise.
I did like the scene where Kylo kills Snoke with the lightsaber and both Kylo and Rey fought Snoke's guards together. It seems to me that Kylo could make a return to the light side of the Force, but there is also a chance that he could be killed at the end of Episode IX.
There was also a scene in the film where the bridge of the ship Leia is on gets destroyed, and Leia survives by flying through the air with the Force. THAT scene may have been the single stupidest looking scene I've seen in Star Wars. She looked like Mary Poppins if she lost her briefcase.
And now, the ending.
The ending seemed pretty good. Luke returns, faces Kylo Ren, they fire at him, and Luke emerges, zero f**ks given.
He and Kylo briefly duel, into Kylo sticks his lightsaber through Luke, and sees Luke not even wince. Luke says a goodbye to Kylo, and vanishes, while we cut to him on Ahch-To, where he vanishes.
This scene looked cool, but it REALLY confused me. I mean, I just thought that Luke's survival meant that he had become the most powerful Jedi in the galaxy, and was therefore unkillable. And then, when he vanished, I thought he just disapparated into the mountains, and he just let himself die after that.
Wookiepedia gave a great explanation for what happened at the end of the film:
Light years away, Luke collapsed from the mental toil necessary to sustain such a lifelike illusion, which Kylo realized meant that Luke would become one with the Force. As he sat down on the cliff where he first trained Rey, Luke beheld the twin suns of Ahch-To in their final descent towards the horizon. Silhouetted by the binary sunset, Luke Skywalker — Jedi Master, ace pilot, savior of the galaxy and son of the Chosen One — passed away, joining his father and former masters as one with the Force, finally at peace.
That's an okay ending for the film, but I'm still not clear on what actually caused Luke's death. Old age? Mental toil?
I mean, if I watch this movie again on TV, it might mean a lot more to me, but this was kind of a random, rushed death from the character that many grew up with.
And this is where things could go awry.
Han died in The Force Awakens, Luke died in The Last Jedi, and the actress who portrayed Leia, Carrie Fisher, passed away, having drowned in moonlight, strangled by her own bra in 2016. This means that in Episode XI, we likely won't be getting ANY of the three characters we loved in the original trilogy.
BUT we still have the characters of Rey, Finn, and Poe. Two strong male characters and one strong female character, just like in the original trilogy. And the same way Obi-Wan died in A New Hope, yet gave guidance to Luke in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, Luke may do the same to Rey, Poe, and Finn.
I don't think Mark Hamill will be disappearing from Star Wars just yet. He doesn't seem to be a big fan of the sequel trilogy, but for the sake of the fans, I think he'd appear as a Force ghost in Episode XI. Besides, he liked one of my tweets. We're pretty much best buds now.
And with Luke and Han dead, and presumably Leia in Episode XI, this will likely be the final Star Wars trilogy to be released, besides the anthology ones.
If we're lucky, Episode XI will end with Poe, Finn, and Rey, with the First Order destroyed, and with C-3PO, R2-D2, BB-8, and Chewbacca all by their side, and who knows? Maybe Kylo Ren will join.
But anyways, The Last Jedi had a bunch of flaws, but I thought it was an okay movie that kept with the spirit of Star Wars.
ALSO, one final nerd complaint: no one said "I have a bad feeling about this" in the film, which is a must-have for Star Wars. And if there was a Wilhelm scream, I didn't hear it, and I'm pretty good with hearing that scream. STOP DISAPPOINTING US, RIAN JOHNSON!!!