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The Last Jedi: Official Review and Opinions Thread ** SPOILERS ** — Page 260

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Plinkett’s Last Jedi review has inspired me to re-evaluate what makes Star Wars work so well, and it lead me to realize that Star Wars '77 has, in many more ways than a normal movie, the form and function of a dream.

Consider that Star Wars perfectly captured a moment in the American zeitgeist of the hippy counterculture rebelling against the establishment machine, using visual references drawn from sources that lingered in the subconscious of that generation. Metropolis, Flash Gordon, WWII propaganda film - all these things were at least a generation out of date when Star Wars premiered, ensuring that while the references would be felt, they would not draw undue attention to themselves.

Consider also the simple and efficient plot populated with archetypal characters that resonate with people of any time. Any specificity in the film is a reference to an unknown, alien technology or knowledge structure, anchoring the film in a timeless void where everything is approachable and everything is endlessly immersive.

Finally and most importantly, consider that the characters and the director construct the myriad conceits of the movie in complete earnest. Nowhere is there a wink to the audience to let them know that they are in a movie, never is a threat taken lightly. When Leia begins to treat her oppressors with mocking disdain, they are quick to destroy her entire planet.

These things all conspire to immerse the audience in what can only be described as a movie equivalent of a dream.

Now compare this to The Last Jedi, which although it goes some way in grounding itself in the visual references of the past, has no interest in generating or sustaining immersion in the audience. This fact above all else is, I believe, why so many in the audience failed to connect with it - The Last Jedi finally awakened them from the seven film dream.

DuracellEnergizer: “^He’s embraced the absurd. Don’t expect to gain any conventional understanding from his posts.”
A New Hope Technicolor Recreation (Released!)
The Force Awakens Restructured (V2 Released!) and The Starlight Project

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 (Edited)

Though I obviously disagree that the film “has no interest in generating or sustaining immersion in the audience” (I think there’s more to immersion than lack of “winking” jokes, plus wouldn’t that disqualify TFA as well? Hell even AOTC had at least one winking reference to the original film), I must say you have a well made point in stating that the film is perhaps less earnest than it’s predecessors. Though that doesn’t mean it isn’t earnest at all, and I’m not even sure that gets to the root of many fans issues with it. Some of the most widely criticized elements of the film are Leia in space, Rose Tico, and the Canto Bight escapade, all of which are, for my money, as earnest as anything else in the franchise.

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I’m referring more to the OT in this regard, and yes, TFA really started the trend - ‘Who talks first’ and the joke about Daniel Craig dropping his weapon probably counts here - but overall the characters take the situations seriously and it goes a long way to legitimizing even the more absurd moments of the movie.

In comparison, Boyega has pretty much patented a look of baffled skepticism with regards to TLJ’s dumber moments:

Finn questions the situation

Everyone questions the situation

When your co-lead looks embarrassed with the BS, you’ve got a problem.

You mention Space Leia, Rose, and Canto Bight as being very earnestly implemented and I agree. Rian seems quite interested in being serious in the parts of the story that he likes, while treating the bits he doesn’t like as punchlines. Just little things like Anakin’s lightsaber, Snoke, Maz, Hux…

DuracellEnergizer: “^He’s embraced the absurd. Don’t expect to gain any conventional understanding from his posts.”
A New Hope Technicolor Recreation (Released!)
The Force Awakens Restructured (V2 Released!) and The Starlight Project

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NeverarGreat said:

I’m referring more to the OT in this regard, and yes, TFA really started the trend - ‘Who talks first’ and the joke about Daniel Craig dropping his weapon probably counts here - but overall the characters take the situations seriously and it goes a long way to legitimizing even the more absurd moments of the movie.

Reactions to Kylo’s tantrums, the whole shield scene with Phasma, that one line about how the force works, etc. TLJ is just continuing what’s already there.

In comparison, Boyega has pretty much patented a look of baffled skepticism with regards to TLJ’s dumber moments:

Finn questions the situation

Everyone questions the situation

When your co-lead looks embarrassed with the BS, you’ve got a problem.

That’s kind of a warped interpretation of those moments. He’s reacting to Maz implying she been, uh, intimate with the codebreaker in the first, and BB-8 in the walker in the second. Both humorous moments, both reactions there to enhance the humor.

You mention Space Leia, Rose, and Canto Bight as being very earnestly implemented and I agree. Rian seems quite interested in being serious in the parts of the story that he likes, while treating the bits he doesn’t like as punchlines. Just little things like Anakin’s lightsaber, Snoke, Maz, Hux…

I don’t really understand why people have this impression that he’s “making fun” of things from TFA he “didn’t like” or whatever. Injecting humor doesn’t mean he’s disparaging those elements. Rian’s been very forthright about wanting a lot of comedy to keep the film from being too dark. If he “didn’t like” those elements they just wouldn’t be there at all (he easily could have cut Maz out, and given Snoke and Hux roles as small as theirs in TFA). As is he gave us a Snoke that was far more interesting and intimidating than in TFA, a Hux that was far more memorable with a more worthwhile place in the story, and a Maz that wasn’t any goofier than her TFA appearance. As for the lightsaber, Rian made it an integral symbol for Luke and Rey’s journey throughout the film… even as JJ cut and reshot its symbolic importance out of TFA.

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NeverarGreat said:

Plinkett’s Last Jedi review has inspired me to re-evaluate what makes Star Wars work so well, and it lead me to realize that Star Wars '77 has, in many more ways than a normal movie, the form and function of a dream.

Consider that Star Wars perfectly captured a moment in the American zeitgeist of the hippy counterculture rebelling against the establishment machine, using visual references drawn from sources that lingered in the subconscious of that generation. Metropolis, Flash Gordon, WWII propaganda film - all these things were at least a generation out of date when Star Wars premiered, ensuring that while the references would be felt, they would not draw undue attention to themselves.

Consider also the simple and efficient plot populated with archetypal characters that resonate with people of any time. Any specificity in the film is a reference to an unknown, alien technology or knowledge structure, anchoring the film in a timeless void where everything is approachable and everything is endlessly immersive.

Finally and most importantly, consider that the characters and the director construct the myriad conceits of the movie in complete earnest. Nowhere is there a wink to the audience to let them know that they are in a movie, never is a threat taken lightly. When Leia begins to treat her oppressors with mocking disdain, they are quick to destroy her entire planet.

These things all conspire to immerse the audience in what can only be described as a movie equivalent of a dream.

Now compare this to The Last Jedi, which although it goes some way in grounding itself in the visual references of the past, has no interest in generating or sustaining immersion in the audience. This fact above all else is, I believe, why so many in the audience failed to connect with it - The Last Jedi finally awakened them from the seven film dream.

I kind of see what you are trying to say and I’ll have to sit down to watch the Plinkett review sometime soon. That being said, I can honestly say I enjoyed TLJ more than most of ROTJ. Ewoks seriously took me out of the immersion. They are warriors that look like cuddly teddy bears that the main characters see as harmless comedic relief and they are certainly taken lightly in that regard.

For me, SW was a movie very much of the time it was made in, obviously. It was pushing the envelope with visuals and the story was basically the hero myth surrounded by a space western. Many of the facets of SW was a homage but when put together ended up being fresh and new. I liken IV to the Beatles in the sense that their talent came at the right time in the right place. There is no doubt imo that they are one of the greatest bands like SW is one of the greatest movies. But place their birth ten years later and I think things would be quite different. They would still be great but not as unique.

Finally, movies are just made differently now. TLJ is a sign of the current reflection of that in many respects. I am a middle aged male who has seen social media become close to intolerable for me. Outside of well moderated blogs like this is a sea of anonymous hate and personalization of every topic I can think of. SW is treated no differently now. There were those who really did not like ESB when it came out either and there were the vocal critics who were only heard because someone put a microphone in their face when they came out of their theater. I don’t think those folks would be as caustic as today if twitter and Facebook existed then…Maybe I’m naive but I can recall very clearly when my first foray into social media happened and I ran into the first trolls. I was genuinely shocked as if the the person was standing in front of me calling me a “F’n piece of shit” or some other off the cuff insult. Just because I dared to feel differently then they did.

All of this is to say that TLJ and TFA (the latter to a lesser degree because it didn’t even think of breaking the mold) are a sign of the times that have less to do with their respective stories but more to do with us out here watching them and how we communicate (as to your thoughts on why TLJ was less liked than the OT). Social media has become a double edged sword that has changed people in some pretty frightening ways.

Anyway, this post went longer than I first thought it would and in directions I didn’t anticipate. LoL.

Cheers.

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Finally watched Plinkett’s review of TLJ, and it seems to me that his biggest complaint is that the movie is structured like a comedy, and also complains about how characters act like idiots.

Plinkett’s review of TLJ is just hilarious, and I really lost it when the video of Rich Evans as Rian Johnson pours red wine on top of a table next to an empty cup.

Still, my opinion of the movie has not changed at all. Star Wars:The Last Jedi is my favourite of the saga and that’s all that matters to me. Really looking forward to Rian Johnson’s SW Trilogy.

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The circle is now complete?

“I am a writer. Therefore, I am not sane.”

― Edgar Allan Poe

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Isn’t 27B/6 the A/C repair paperwork from Brazil

The Drink in Question

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Isn’t 27B/6 the A/C repair paperwork from Brazil

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Now there are three of them!

“I am a writer. Therefore, I am not sane.”

― Edgar Allan Poe

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originaltrilogy.com Moderator

Where were you in '77?

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I really truly love that moment and nothing you can say will change my mind.

she/her