(If you’re curious, my review process. It’s also pasted at the end of this post. I don’t believe in Rotten Tomatoes. I just believe in me.)
(***all-purpose SPOILER ALERT*** there may be some in this review)
The Last Jedi
SW SCORE: 40
4 out of 5 🐙
It’s been a long time since The Last Jedi came out. Even though I’m a giant Star Wars geek, I didn’t blog about it at the time. I would like to right this wrong but I don’t have a time machine and if I did I wouldn’t use it to file a half-assed movie review. But, as the tagline goes, I do want to speak my mind about Episode 8. All the reviews are in and the movie is largely out of the theaters now and the outrage cycle has run its course.
The dust has officially settled. So I’m tagging in.
There’s gonna be a shitload of spoilers. Alert!
I have good friends who loved this movie. I have good friends who thought it sucked. And then I have people like me who liked and disliked a lot of things in the movie. I get why my hater friends hated it. I get why my player friends dug it. Here’s an alternating list of likes, loves, dislikes and loathes. And I’ll reveal my overall judgment at the end.
Loved: Porgs. They are fucking adorable. I want one for a pet. Having them overrun the Falcon like Tribbles was great. The scene where Chewie is about to eat a roasted Porg by the fire and stops when he sees a group of Porgs look at him in horror was the funniest and cutest part of the movie. Also, why would the Porgs care if Chewie was gonna eat a cooked corpse? Do they believe in the proper burial of their brothers? And honestly, I just can’t see Chewie killing one of those things for food. You’re telling me there is no food to eat on an island Luke Skywalker has been living on for years? Finally, as much as people bitched that the Porgs were just a merchandising cash grab, they appeared, percentage-wise, in Episode 8 FAR less than the Ewoks did in Episode 6.
Disliked: When Luke milked the bizarre and dumb-looking brontosaurus type creatures for a beverage. Their CGI was lame and it would not be the last time in the movie that some effects reminded me of the prequels.
Loved: The frustrated maintenance “nuns” on Jedi island that kept trying to clean stuff up only to have Rey and Luke fuck shit up all the time.
Liked: Benicio del Toro. Always a good performance. But nothing to write home about.
Disliked: Benicio del Toro. The stutter was stupid and his character’s role in the movie ended up, plot-wise, completely irrelevant.
Liked: Yoda’s wisdom. It wasn’t Empire level awesome but it kind of cleansed my mental palette after the horrific way he was portrayed in the prequels. To decide that his lightsaber fighting style should be jumping around like a goddamn idiot was an affront.
Disliked: The super stupid and nonsensical decision to not inform Poe, the lead pilot and huge rebel hero, about the escape plan.
Loved: When the rebel leader sacrificed herself and her ship by jumping into hyperspace and splitting Snoke’s ship in half. And the directing decision to cut sound completely made it even more awesome.
Disliked: the stupid opening scene Verizon Can You Hear Me Now scene. I don’t care that the movie was irreverent in general. But cell phone jokes are too lame for Star Wars.
Liked: The super slow, weird, and illogical bombers at the beginning. I can’t explain why I liked those slow dummies but I did.
Disliked: The lame little kid at the end looking up at the stars hoping to be a rebel one day. This is so pathetically sentimental that even Spielberg would be embarrassed.
Loved: An amazing display of force power that literally took everything Luke had. If George Costanza was watching this movie, he would fight back tears and say “That was a helluva thing Luke did.”
Disliked: The standoff on the rebel planet base was a straight-up rip off of Hoth. Same cold planet. Same At-At’s. Same last stand for the rebellion. It would not be the only time this movie indulged in a rehash.
Liked: When Luke “brushed” the “dirt” off his shoulder after “surviving” a bazillion At-At guns unloading on him. I immediately thought this: “If you feelin’ like a pimp n***a, go and brush your shoulders off.”
Loathed: Leia’s way over the top outer space Jedi flying powers scene. I’m not trying to be a dick here but if you know Carrie Fisher is obviously not going to be able to be in Episode 9, then why in the world would you save her character from certain death?
Liked: The reveal that the arms dealers sold stuff to the Rebels and the First Order. This was just ok I guess.
Liked: The silver lady stormtrooper and her fight with Finn.
Disliked: When Kylo brought Rey to see Snoke. Come on. A rehash of Vader bringing Luke to the Emperor? We can’t be more original?
Loved: The diverse cast. I guess I’m biased though.
Loathed: Snoke’s CGI. His hologram was creepy and intriguing in Episode 7. In the rehash scene, Snoke was dressed in a brightly colored robe and his head was very oddly shaped and the whole color scheme and smooth lines reminded me of the awful prequel aesthetic.
Liked: Luke being done with the force. Now, this was an original idea.
Disliked: The weird horse things on the casino planet. More of the prequel aesthetic.
Liked: The crystal snow foxes.
Disliked: The casino storyline in general. A transparent rehash attempt at recreating Mos Eisley. But this casino planet had none of the charm and edge and dirt of that awesomely shitty little bar. The casino planet was Disneyworld and Mos Eisley was CBGB’s in the early ’80s.
Loved: The telepathic scenes between Kylo and Rey: an intriguing and fresh idea.
I’m out of dislikes! Here are the last 3 things I liked:
The fight scene between the imperial-ish red guards and the tag team of Kylo and Rey.
Most of the irreverent tone. I like a good lack of respect for sacred cows.
This is just the stuff I remember now. I reserve the right to modify this post with no notification or logic. But I probably won’t since I’m lazy.
Overall I’m going to say I was entertained and this was a bold and fine movie. It sparked the biggest controversy of any Star Wars movie. With the prequels, the critics and the fans hated them. With the original trilogy, the critics and the fans loved them. With this one, the critics loved it and barely 55% of fans liked it. I’m with the professionals this time.
(1) Shark Wrighter (SW) Score: Based on a sum of 5 sub-scores (acting, directing, writing/story, effects: cinematography &/or animation &/or effects, editing) with 1 being terrible and 10 being terrific.
(2) Octopuses (0-5 🐙, with 5 being fantastic and 0 being feces)
(3) Octopuses are my unquantifiable feeling…not that SW score is scientific…but this one is even less so
(4) ++ This optional section includes any incredibly *brilliant observations that don’t fit into simple quantitative slices like the scores and octopuses *(they are likely NOT brilliant)