Shopping Maul said:
I love what you’re saying Rogue (not that I necessarily grasp all of it of course, but I like the vibe of it!) but I would add that attaining the ‘effortlessness’ implied in the Taoist way would (ironically) require effort. Think of it in terms of being a musician. It would take hours of blisters and finger-cramps and listening and learning for a guitarist to be in that zone. No-one’s going to pick up a guitar and nail it first time just because they had their baser thoughts in check. That’s the beautiful thing about the Karate Kid - he had to wash cars and stand like an Ostrich and go through all kinds of stuff to get to that place. Kershner famously said he wanted “something powerful going on in Luke’s soul” and within the (arguably) limited framework of a SW film he achieved that. The SE feels more like bullet points - ‘we need lightsaber fights, we need a Dark Lord, we need a cantina’ etc etc. Any depth to Rey’s experience seems (to me) to being created by the fans themselves rather than by anything JJ and/or Rian are doing.
Well, to use your Karate Kid example I think the idea in the ST is that Rey has essentially spent her whole life waxing cars (whereas Luke is mostly just any old kid, wasting time with his friends between chores at home).
I believe I have said much the same thing before.
As have I. We’re arguing in circles. The way the force works in the films is not narrowly defined so the interpretation that the ST takes is not a canon-betraying one, regardless of whatever Lucas may or may not have said outside of the movies (I was reading the Rinzler ESB book and at one point he suggested stating outright that Luke is a level 2 and he needs training to face the Emperor who’s a level 9 or something - that’s dumb as fuck and should be ignored as it’s not in the movie). The new films should be able to forge their own path.
Whether you like it or not is a different matter. But the approach is justified.
I disagree. I think Lucas’ words are clearly reflected in the six films he created both in the way he displayed the process of becoming a Jedi, and in the way things are shown to spin out of control once you stray from that path. So, in my view the ST is inconsistent, and offers only a flimsy explanation as to why that is.
Going back to the PT, the force is out of balance. The Jedi are diminished. Palpatine has started his plan. Anakin comes into the picture. Because they refuse to properly train him and because Palpatine becomes his non-Jedi mentor, Anakin’s fate is sealed. Yoda saw his future as clouded where Qui-gon was certain. Politics and tradition stopped them from training him properly. But I fear that the properly he needed did not exist due to how traditional the Jedi had become and how scared of the dark side they were. They weren’t seeking balance, only the light. So Palpatine spends years whispering in Anakin’s ear and when the time comes, Anakin follows Palpatine, not the Jedi. In the process, we get the twins - Luke and Leia. Luke grows up with his step-Uncle and Aunt and spends more time playing than working. Things catch up, he meets Obi-wan, Han, Leia, eventually Yoda. And again Luke is too old (older than Anakin), but Yoda breaks with tradition out of necessity and trains him. Luke goes on to face Vader twice and is not turned and passes the test. In the process he is the catalyst to get Anakin to turn back and destroy Palpatine at last. So the path of the PT was already broken by the path the OT took in the training of Luke vs. Anakin. Yoda broke with tradition, didn’t have much time, imparted the most important lessons, and it worked.
Coming back to Rey, if the old ways are broken (which is what I glean from the PT and OT), then it is time to find a new way. Luke uses that in how he teaches lessons to Rey (I think he was trying to discourage her but at the same time give her the tools to cope).
So I don’t see things spinning out of control if you stray off the path. I see that the old Jedi path was the issue (how many PT Jedi turned to the dark side?) and straying from the path and re-finding the pat they are supposed to be on is where this trilogy is headed.
Then why call Rey a Jedi, if Jedi-hood is the issue? TLJ works very hard to backtrack on any new direction it hinted at in its final act. This line of thought also ignores the fact that the Jedi guarded the peace for over a 1,000 generations. That’s just too good of a track record to ignore, or to state that their way is flawed based on how a small representation of them behaved in the PT era. The PT era Jedi may have strayed too far from the right path, seems a reasonable point of view, but that’s not what TLJ is saying, and only through the words of a very cynical Luke, I might add, who then later reverses his position by saying he will not be the last Jedi.