After J. J Abrams at the helm of the hugely successful Force Awakens, it was Rian Johnson’s turn to crank the notch up and make an action-packed and stunning sequel. He did just that, but somehow it still does not live up to its predecessor in plot, characters and uniqueness.
In Star Wars: The Last Jedi, we pick up right where we left off where Luke and Rey have met on a deserted island. Although, this isn’t the Star Wars we remember as Luke is hesitant about the future. “The Jedi must die”, says Luke, a surprisingly glum version of the Luke we came to know and love. It was much preferable when he said things like “But I was going into Tosche Station to pick up some power converters!”. Gloomy Luke leads most of the important parts of the film, along with Kylo Ren, the villain we are supposed to feel bad for. After Kylo killed Han, his father, his dark side became much stronger, leading him to be a more powerful force this time. Although, as a villain he still seems to be lacking the sense of antagonism needed, but this may be since his actions divert between light and dark.
We meet up with Fin again but this time his story seems like filler. He meets Rose, a mechanic in the bellows of the ship who just lost her sister in battle. Fin and Rose have an adventure that is at the least very entertaining, but plot wise it was completely unnecessary. It seemed as though Rose could have been cut from the film, and the plot would have stayed the same for the most part.
The big polarizing debate about this film comes from the choices made for the characters and the unnecessary plot points, but these complaints are justified. However, despite the negatives of the characters’ actions and the narrow plot, the visuals and the action make up for it. The very first scene of the film brings us right into an intense battle sequence that immediately grabs our attention, and this is just the first of many similar sequences. The stunning cinematography throughout is enough for the film to be rewatchable.
The wonderful element of this trilogy so far, is that it seems to be paying homage to the three original Star Wars films (Not the prequels which seem more like outcasts to the rest of the series). The visuals, the music and the humor are much like the classics, giving super fans plenty to enjoy with The Last Jedi. In a sense, this film works perfectly well as a Star Wars film that stays original, but is unfortunately missing some important pieces that would make it into the new Empire Strikes Back.
Rated PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi action and violence.