So other than not wanting to compare Kylo Reb to Mr Darcy, what did you the of The Last Jedi?
Well, overall I liked it.
I’m the right age of course – I grew up watching Star Wars on my parents’ black and white TV, so I’m always going to have an…emotional reaction every time I get to hear the overture in a cinema.
Watching the Last Jedi kind of broke my heart a bit though, because it was so clear how they were setting up for Leia to be the focus of the final film, and now we know that can’t happen.
It felt like there was a certain…lack of focus in the narrative, which didn’t help matters. I thought Rose was adorable, but for its overall importance in the story, I felt her and Finn’s jaunt to the casino planet could have been cut somewhat. And why bring Lupita Nyongo back for only one scene?
I find Kylo Ren’s construction as a villain kind of fascinating – he’s sort of the opposite of Darth Vader, in that the audience is presumed to have a measure of sympathy for him, which the narrative flips on its head. It doesn’t MATTER if you find him sympathetic or not – past a certain point (and I’d argue wiping out even ONE planet is that point), meaningful forgiveness isn’t really possible. Or, put it another way, it doesn’t change anything.
I liked the way they played with Snow White imagery with Rey, and I also liked that they used the Skelligs so much – given their location and climate, only a tiny, tiny number of people will ever be able to see them, and it’s good that Star Wars opened them out to a larger audience.
The new Star Wars seem to have grasped the fundamentally slapdash approach to the material that made the originals so appealing, which is a good thing. The prequels were painfully self-serious, which didn’t do the actors any favours. Getting actors with some skill at comedy (Boyega and Isaac especially) really helps with that – I don’t know that Natalie Portman has ever made anyone laugh.
There’s a limit to how in-depth my reaction can get though – I’m fond of the films, but Star Wars has always been pretty shallow. Which isn’t a BAD thing, it just means I’m unlikely to overflow with thoughts about it.