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Post #1415130

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The Rise of Skywalker: Ascendant (Released)
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Date created
5-Mar-2021, 7:41 PM
Last modified
5-Mar-2021, 8:53 PM
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I’ve given myself such a headache over this.

I grabbed my copy of the TROS novelization and reread the Ahch-To chapter; it specifies that Rey arrived in the evening as the suns were setting and, after talking to Luke and receiving Leia’s saber, Luke had Rey sleep through the night to rest before heading off. When she woke in the morning, Kylo’s ship was now smoldering. Rey went and retrieved the Wayfinder from Kylo’s ship, watched Luke lift his X-Wing from the ocean as the suns rose, then set course for Exegol.

So what I propose is that we slightly tweak the edit, and here’s why:

The visual dictionary for TLJ contains a map of the island:

As you can see, the map depicts a bird’s eye view oriented with the bottom coast being the one we see in the TROS establishing shot of the island (which most shots of the island through the three films are also from). Here’s proof:

In the final scene of TFA, the Falcon approaches the island from this angle which lines up with how the TLJ VD map shows the ship parked on that coast. The map shows Luke’s X-Wing on the far left side of the island from this orientation- in TROS, the establishing shot of the island shows Rey burning Kylo’s ship in the same area of the island. Let’s call this spot the “inlet” as the TLJ VD does. Since Rey hears Luke first start lifting the X-Wing while she’s digging the Wayfinder out of Kylo’s ship and then is able to run over in-time to see it lifted, that further confirms that she burnt Kylo’s ship right at the inlet. Next, the TLJ VD map shows that the temple cliff where Luke dies is also directly next to the inlet. I checked the TLJ novelization which says that he’s watching a sunset as he dies, not a sunrise, which means the suns must set in the direction the inlet is facing. Since the original TROS shows the remaining sunlight in the establishing shot coming from that direction, it lines up with the novelization saying this occurs at sunset. At the end of the Ahch-To scene when Luke lifts his X-Wing from the ocean, he’s facing the ocean from the inlet and the sun rises behind him, which again confirms our now well-established sense of geography.

Sorry if that was dense and confusing, but what I’m trying to say is that in the current state of Neverar’s edit, we’re assuming that we’re seeing the break of dawn, and then as the scene goes on, the suns rise and Rey leaves. If we slightly tweaked this, it would not only be more accurate to the other two movies, but it would make the passage of time clearer AND accurate to what the novelization clarifies. Here’s what would need to be changed:

-We now know that the sun is setting instead of rising at the start of the scene, so leaving this the same is more accurate canonically.

-When Luke tells Rey that she has everything she needs, she seemingly starts to leave the hut, and the way the original movie flows, it seems like she just runs to the ship immediately. I assume that this was the filmmakers’ intention and the novelization corrected this since otherwise, the sunrise position would be inaccurate in the first shot. If we simply cut the shot of Rey off right before she takes off (or just cut the entire shot of Rey, Luke finishes his entire line in the shot facing him), it would seem as though Rey stays in the hut, which she canonically does and helps give off the idea she stays the night in the hut to regain her strength.

-The current edit tries to make the scene start at dawn and progress the sun, so the scene progression of establishing shot > Rey burning the ship > Luke’s talk > Hut scene > Lifting the X-Wing gets a bit lighter each time. This could probably be fixed by either slightly lightening the establishing shot or darkening the hut scene.

-I’m not sure how well the scene would flow after trimming the last shot of the Hut scene, so maybe we could add in a new shot of the island here? With the color correction applied, it would help make the transition from late evening to early morning clear. Maybe we could also try a night shot or two to make the passage of night clearer.

-The rest of the edited scene stays the same for Rey retrieving the Wayfinder and Luke lifting the X-Wing at sunrise.

Figuring all this out ended up being a far longer process and comment than I expected haha so thanks for reading this far. As someone who’s passionate about canon, I’d love to see this tweaking realized (hopefully this post doesn’t sound like a demand) and while I can’t do any color correcting myself, I may try to make a mockup of the other changes I suggested.