(Spoilers galore. But if you haven’t seen it by now, I don’t think you’re going to be bothered by spoilers.)
A couple of days after my birthday in 1999 (I partied like it was), I sat in a theater at midnight with a few friends and several hundred new acquaintances and watched the curtain rise on the first Star Wars movie in over fifteen years. George Lucas had decided to embark on filming more of his original vision for the Skywalker saga, and the people in the theater could not have been more excited. The world was going to end in a few months if all the news was any indication, but nobody in that theater cared; we would at least go out having seen a new Star Wars.
Two years ago, these were the closing words of my post about The Last Jedi.
We’ll find out in a couple of years whether Abrams is up to that task. Past performance does not guarantee future results, but I don’t like the odds.
Having seen the movie a few hours ago (I’m living in the future right now), I can tell you the accuracy of that statement was somewhere between 0 and 100%.
Come back in a few days and I’ll try to narrow down the range.
This seems like something the Empire should have thought of sooner.
Or has Gaylen Erso struck again?
(Spoilers galore. You had five days; if you haven’t seen it by now, you don’t really care what someone says about it, anyway.)
The most obvious thing after watching Last Jedi a second time? Rian Johnson loves Star Wars, he just doesn’t love your Star Wars. If there was any doubt, he scatters hints throughout the script.
Luke: This is not going to go the way you think!
Yoda: We are what they grow beyond.
And, most telling:
Kylo: Let the past die. Kill it, if you have to. That’s the only way to become what you are meant to be.
No spoilers. Yet. I avoided them all, including the trailer, so I won’t ruin your fun, either.
I’m on record that however good the experience of watching Force Awakens was, the movie itself was essentially a remake of New Hope. I watched it again yesterday in anticipation of … well, you know. After a year away from it, the first 50 minutes are really, really good. And then the Death Star 3 shows up and it’s Newer Hope and you remember who directed it. With Force Awakens, what we knew about J.J. Abrams turned out to be true — he knows how to start a great story, but has no idea how to end one.
A couple of weeks ago, as we were leaving the church building, our pastor called me over and said, “Don’t you think that Harry Potter is essentially the same as LOTR, Star Wars, and Indiana Jones, just set in a sorcery and wizarding context?” As I stared at him blankly, he said, “Something to think about. Might make a good blog post.”
I was staring at him blankly because his question was the literary/movie equivalent of asking him, “Aren’t all religions essentially the same?” It’s not that the question is difficult, it’s that there are so many things racing through your mind it’s hard to know where to start.