James King, Correspondent
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is the most divisive film in the main canon of the franchise. To say that it split the fan base would almost be an understatement. Ever since this movie came out fans have been arguing whether it’s the best or the worst the franchise has put out. Now personally I do have my problems with it, but I feel that it’s a bit overzealous to say that this is a bad movie by any metric. Though, I feel that this movie is all about subverting your expectations as a Star Wars fan, taking what you know about the franchise and flipping it on its head.
Now in order to talk about this movie, I need to spoil it so if you haven’t seen the movie and have somehow remained spoiler free (and want to remain so) let me just say I think the movie is one of the better movies in the franchise and that you can stop reading here and go watch it and judge for yourself. Now that that is said and done, I can see how this movie is divisive. Luke has gone from a wide-eyed optimistic kid who wanted to be Jedi and turned into a sour old nihilistic man who wants nothing to do with Rey, the Jedi, or the rebels. The rebel forces are on their last legs and about to be snuffed out by the Empire. There is a sense of dread that looms over the movie as everything our heroes try to do backfires horribly in their faces.
The side characters seem to be what is most problematic for people, but I didn’t have much issue with them except for one. The codecracker DJ adds a little bit of grey to the Star Wars movies, challenges the heroes perception of good, and bad and adds to the tension to the movie by betraying the heroes. Rose Tico keeps Finn from running, is set up as a love interest for Finn and her story helps develop that. The character of Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo is the character I take issue with. For a character that is a capable veteran of the war, she allows the most avoidable mutiny to happen under her watch by not sharing her plan and at the end of it all, treats the munity like a minor inconvenience, it. I can forgive some of the questionable logic of the space scenes, but I can’t forgive questionable logic and characterization.
There is a little bit of bad CGI and some bad fight choreography, but nothing too distracting. Other then the space chase, I enjoyed the rest of the movie. I wouldn’t call it as good as the force awakens, but it’s a far cry from something like the Phantom Menace. It subverts what you expect changing characters or changing how things normally play out in Star Wars. Things like
Rey’s parentage or the death of Snoke didn’t hit me as it did for some, they were some of the best parts of the movie because they did something I want from more movies, to give me something I don’t see coming.