The Last Jedi: A Lukewarm Sequel

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A less than stellar movie

Samantha Mayer, North Staff Writer

Warning: potential spoiler alert.

 

Flying into movie theaters on Dec. 15, “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” fell short of it’s sky high hopes. This 40 year old saga shows no signs of stopping as it brings fans, old and new, together for an unforgettable cinematic experience and making it a commercial success.

The eighth episode of the “Star Wars” saga received a high rating by Rotten Tomatoes critics with a score of 90%, while the audience had a less than favorable score of 49%. Although writer-director Rian Johnson introduced new characters, beautiful visuals and pleasant surprises, they did not redeem the film’s many shortcomings.

One of the film’s major flaws was the writing. The plot had two primary storylines: The first was centered around Rey (Daisy Ridley) seeking out Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), attempting to recruit him back into the Resistance to fight against the forces of the First Order.

The second storyline begins in the aftermath of a battle that left General Leia Organa, played by the beloved Carrie Fisher, incapacitated and despondent for the rest of the film. It also featured Resistance pilot Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac), who underwent drastic character alterations from being a charismatic hero in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” to an arrogant, thoughtless maverick in “The Last Jedi”. He instigated a mutiny against an impressive new character, Vice Admiral Holdo (Laura Dern), who was put into power by the request of General Organa. This lead to many unnecessary and unfortunate deaths including her own heroic demise when attempting to save the remaining Resistance fighters.

Prior to the mutiny, Dameron sent the former Stormtrooper, Finn (John Boyega), the droid BB-8, and new character Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran) an engineer, on a mission across the cosmos to stop the First Order’s fleet from destroying the Resistance. However, this lead to a chaotic series of events that quickly failed, making their purpose in the film irrelevant, and leaving the viewer frustrated and annoyed.

Despite its flaws, “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” managed to deliver an action-packed adventure that all audiences would visually enjoy. Although minimal, one highlight of this film that made it bearable was the Porgs, little puffin-like birds that added the much needed comic relief to the otherwise serious Star Wars universe.

All in all, Rian Johnson’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” was a turn to the dark side for the viewers. However, true “Star Wars” fans may overlook its faults and find the “light side” to this action film.

 

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