On December 14th, 2017, Star Wars: The Last Jedi was shown to the United States for the first time ever. I went with a few of my friends to the event at the 10 PM showing in Cinemark’s high-definition XD theater. We waited in line with people who were dressed from head to toe in Star Wars costumes and other apparel. As someone who has loved Star Wars my whole life, it was a big deal to me to witness the next installment to arguably the greatest movie series of all time. The theater was just as packed as I went to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens in 2015, which made me happy that people were still hungry for more Star Wars after the copy and paste of what The Force Awakens was.
As the previews rolled through, my expectations were high. With a great young cast like Adam Driver (Kylo Ren), Daisy Ridley (Rey), and John Boyega (Finn) mashing up with Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker) and Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia), this movie couldn’t possibly fail.
But unfortunately, it did. In a lot of ways.
The opening scene was fantastic, one of my favorite characters in all of Star Wars, Poe Dameron, played by Oscar Issac, teamed up with BB-8 to be the hardcore and swagger-filled Resistance fighter to cripple a First Order ship. The battle scene was great and kept me on the edge of my seat, but then the rest of the movie played on. Actually, it didn’t just play on…it dragged on.
Later in the movie, Rey met with the mentally-troubled Luke Skywalker. She demands his help against the fierce Kylo Ren, but Luke shuts her out and continues his life on his classified island. When I was shown how Luke was living after the mistakes he made while training Ben Solo (now Kylo Ren), it disgusted me. He was shown drinking green-gooey milk straight from alien utters, and while the audience laughed, I was in disappointment. This is supposed to be the most powerful Jedi in the history of the galaxy, and Disney is making him look like some old bum.
However, some of the biggest problems in this movie didn’t come from the dialogue, but from the plot and character development. I was looking forward to learning more about Finn after The Force Awakens, but he was taken on a stretched out journey with a new and annoying character named Rose, to find a code breaker to sneak them onto the First Order ship. This journey to find the code-breaker was dragged on for about 35 minutes, and for every second of it, I was banging my head off my armchair wishing we could just move on from a lesson about animal cruelty and the whole scene in general.
Also, the plot was essentially the First Order’s massive ship chasing down the Resistance’s ship almost the entire movie. With dragged on scenes with a new annoying character and two-hour chase between the First Order and the Resistance, I was losing interest VERY quickly. There was also Princess Leia flying through the air, Chewbacca, and R2-D2 getting little screen time, and shirtless Kylo Ren that made me turn to my friend and whisper “what the hell” while watching the cringest parts of the whole Star Wars series.
But near the end of the movie, with a concussion from the constant banging my head off my armchair from the horrendous middle parts of the film, I was able to enjoy was really felt like a Star Wars movie.
When Kylo Ren and Rey teamed up to kill Snoke and defeat the crimson guard protecting him, I was in total awe. I love Kylo Ren and Rey as characters, to see them fight back to back, take down the leader of the First Order AND his elite bodyguards, it left me jaw-dropped and wondering where this action was the entire film.
To put the pretty cherry on top of a terrible looking ice cream sundae, the showdown between Luke and Kylo was a heart-pumping confrontation that reminded me why I love Star Wars so much. As Luke staged himself as a hologram to confuse Kylo, the theater erupted in applause while I joined in as well. Later, Luke had a peaceful send off to death as he was too exhausted of projecting himself as a hologram all the way from his island to battle Kylo, and even though my heart snapped when he faded away, it was the send off he deserved.
Overall, Star Wars: The Last Jedi was a disappointment aside from the ending. Characters didn’t get the development they needed, there were too many what-the-heck moments while watching it, and the entire thing was dragged out and was terribly slow.
I rank this movie 7th out of the 9 Star Wars films.
FINAL SCORE: 5.8/10
You know this is just my opinion….right?