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My Obligatory Review of Star Wars: The Last Jedi

I finally got around to seeing Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Sure, it’s been out for quite a while, but I don’t like big crowds at movie theaters so I always wait to go see a film. I typically wait so I’m not in a packed theater with a bunch of people who don’t know how to be quiet. And going to see this movie just validated my thinking since there were only six other people in the theater and four of them acted like they were watching it in the privacy of their own living room. People seem to be a lot ruder at the theater than in the past.

It seems like everyone who has seen Jedi has written a review for it so I suppose one more wouldn’t hurt. And I won’t be holding back on spoilers so if you haven’t seen it yet, you’ve been warned. Actually, if you haven’t seen it yet, you might want to go ahead and read this so you’ll be warned what a piece of garbage you could avoid seeing.

I did not have high expectations for this movie after The Force Awakens. That entire movie was just a reworking of A New Hope, having an almost identical plot but none of the building of characters that A New Hope had done so well I saw A New Hope seven times in the theater. I had no desire to see The Force Awakens again.

The Last Jedi was far worse than The Force Awakens. There were way too many gaping plot holes and ridiculous story points in Jedi. Rian Johnson, the writer, seems to have decided that he could make up brand new capabilities for the force, ignore any semblance of consistency and avoid explaining how certain things happened by just skipping those parts in the plot altogether.

Some observations:

  • The ‘humor’ in the movie was juvenile and stupid, starting right off with the “hello, can you hear me” exchange between Poe and Hux.
  • The Dreadnought ship used by the First Order in the beginning of the film is their latest and greatest warship, but has no shields?
  • The ‘bombers’ used by the Resistance to bomb the Dreadnought were ridiculously slow and obviously written to resemble bombing raids over the European theater during World War II, even including a gun turret on the bottom of the bombers with barrels protruding that resembled the 50 caliber machine guns on World War II-era bombers.
  • The bombers were dropping bombs on a ship in space, where there is no gravity.
  • A big deal was made about Poe taking out all the gun turrets on the Dreadnought so the bombers could attack. The Dreadnought was not the only First Order ship there. The destroyers used by the First Order have no gun turrets? Apparently, we are supposed to forget about that since not a single shot was fired by them.
  • Like many things in Jedi, tracking a ship through hyperspace is something new that Johnson came up with that never existed in the Star Wars world before. The explanation about only one ship doing the tracking seemed lame, but that plot point was necessary for Johnson to explain why only one First Order ship had to be raided instead of all of them.
  • The Resistance ships had shields. First time for shields to exist in Star Wars and we’re to believe the ships the Resistance used had shields, but not the Dreadnought used by the First Order. We’re also to believe the entire First Order fleet didn’t have the firepower to do any damage so long as the shields were up.
  • The transport ships used by the Resistance to escape to the planet were completely unarmed but still had cloaking capabilities. First time for cloaking capabilities in Star Wars and we’re to believe the small, unarmed transport ships had cloaks, but not the bigger ships. Oh, right, those ships had the shields. I guess it’s one or the other, cloaks or shields, but not both.
  • Laura Dern and her purple hair. Please. If I was in the Resistance and saw that, I’d turn myself in to the First Order.
  • When Finn and Rose left to go find the codebreaker, how’d they get away without being seen or contacted by the Resistance or blasted into oblivion by the First Order? Johnson skipped that part of the plot so he wouldn’t have to come up with an explanation.
  • We’re to believe all those rich people on the casino planet got rich by selling arms to the First Order, among others. Which means we’re to believe the First Order bought their arms and didn’t just take what they wanted. Ridiculous.
  • We’re also to believe the rich people sold arms to both the First Order and the Resistance, but somehow there was no mixing of weaponry and both sides had exclusive rights to certain types of ships.
  • Projecting yourself across the galaxy and interacting with someone is something new for the force. If that is a capability, why have the Jedi never used it to project themselves somewhere before? Oh, right, right, Luke died from exhaustion after he did it. But, read my next point.
  • Snoke was capable of projecting Rey and Ren to each other without them knowing even knowing he was doing it. He can project two people just fine but Luke dies after projecting just himself?
  • Snoke has the projection capability, but can’t sense the betrayal from Ren or the lightsaber turning towards him?
  • And speaking of Snoke, this character was the ‘Supreme Leader’ of the First Order in two movies but has now been killed and is gone with no explanation as to his origin or how the First Order came about.
  • We’re to believe a janitor-turned-stormtrooper has all the technical knowledge about First Order ships, hyperspace tracking and the planet killer that was in the previous movie.
  • After Rey and Ren fight with Snoke’s guards, Rey escapes. How does she end up on the Millennium Falcon with Chewbacca? No explanation is given.
  • Towards the end of the film, Rose stops Finn from completing his suicide run and taking out the First Order battering ram. By doing this she condemned all of them to death, had Luke not made an appearance.
  • After Rose and Finn crash to the ground, they somehow traverse the very, very long walk back behind the blast door without being obliterated by the First Order walkers. Another ridiculous plot point that was skipped because no explanation was possible.
  • After Luke collapses and dies, how is it the dice are still being projected and are actually picked up by Ren before disappearing?
  • In The Force Awakens, we’re left to wonder about who Rey’s parents are. That plot point was squandered and it was done in such a way that all the Star Wars mythology about the Jedi has been trashed. If just anyone can use the force as The Last Jedi says, why has Star Wars always made such a huge deal about the bloodline of former Jedi? Now we’re told bloodlines are irrelevant.

There were other things, but this is enough to show how poor the plot and the writing were for this film. It is even worse than The Force Awakens and completely ignores or destroys all that has been in previous films. In The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith, at least those films held to the canons of the original trio of movies, even with the addition of the ridiculous midichlorians.

The worst thing about The Last Jedi is what was done with Luke in this movie. This was not the Luke from the first trio of movies. I know the writer would say that’s the whole point, but I don’t agree. The Luke from Hope-Empire-Jedi would never have abandoned his sister, the Resistance, everyone and everything else in order to go pout on a remote planet while living in a hut built with rocks and sucking milk from sea creatures. Absolutely ridiculous. We’re to believe he wouldn’t give up on rescuing his father from the dark side, facing the Emperor in the process, but he gave up his nephew to the dark side and walked out on his sister, Han Solo and the Republic. I’m not buying it. Well, I suppose I did buy it, but it was a matinee ticket price. And it was not money well spent.

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