On December 15th, America was split between people who loved The Last Jedi and people who hated The last Jedi. The critics and audience reviews are completely torn. YouTube is having too much fun talking about the good, the bad, and the ugly of The Last Jedi. Rotten Tomatoes has a 92% Tomatometer with a 52% audience score. My friends, who are die-hard Star Wars fans, say that The Last Jedi is a good Sci-fy movie, but not Star Wars movie.
Overall, I thought it was great. Most of the arguments against Star Wars had to do with four things: Porgs, Rey’s parents, Snoke’s origin, and Luke acting differently than the original trilogy. Do not get me wrong; I agree, as a fan, that some of these things could’ve been handled differently. Therefore, I will discuss The Last Jedi in two separate categories: fangirl and movie commentator.
— SPOILER ALERT (But let’s be real. Who hasn’t seen Star Wars yet?) —
OH MY GOODNESS. Did I love this movie? Heck YES. Rian Johnson (Director) has a way of building on Lucas and creating an atmosphere that reflects and magnifies everything good about Star Wars. The scene when Kylo and Rey have to fight the Praetorian guards is in my top two fight scenes in Star Wars behind Luke and the emperor. The porgs were cute. I thought one porg was going to get a lightsaber to the skull, but I’m glad Disney hasn’t gone too dark. I loved the way Luke could send a projection across the galaxy. Some fans (my dad) was mad that Luke didn’t get to show his true power. I would argue that sending his projection reveals that he has mastered the way of the force and that proves his power. The Last Jedi has set the stage for a great Star Wars IX. I know we will see Luke again just as we saw Yoda in The Last Jedi.
Today, I am seeing it for the third time and I am ok with it. Who needs money for college.
I think a conversation between Rian Johnson and Mark Hamill actually got into the film when Kyle Ren said, “Let the past die. Kill it if you have to.” The Last Jedi referred to past films a lot, but it was unlike any other Star Wars film. The film didn’t fit the usual mold of most Star Wars movies. There was no Death Star to blow up. There was no Millennium Falcon escaping the blast of said Death Star at the last second. It was different and I have to give Johnson and his team props for being able to try something new.
The risk paid off, but it didn’t come without whiplash. Fans hated the “slow” plot. I heard one Youtuber say that it was like watching a high-speed car chase in slow motion. I didn’t mind the time length or the way they developed and executed the plot, but I have one huge issue with the plot. Why did Finn and Rose have to go on a side story to: one, do nothing but ruin a town and free animals then two, get themselves and the rebellion in even more trouble? The whole quest left me with more questions than answers.
Another thing questioned in The Last Jedi was Leia using the force in space. I know it seemed random, but I loved seeing Leia finally use the force. I would love to see her using the force more. She will never be a full-fledged Jedi, but having a leader that is one with the force could make the rebellion a force to be reckoned with. (Get it? …force)
Lastly, I love the cinematography in this film. Everyone walked out of the theatre thinking that the visual effects were outstanding. The way the filmmakers presented the fight between Kylo and Luke took me two visits to the theatre to realize the detail put into that fight. First off, the lightsaber Luke had was broken only a couple of scenes before. Then, Luke never made any imprints on the ground when he stepped while Kylo did. This revealing that Luke isn’t truly there with Kylo. The attention to detail, also, makes this film great.
EXPECTATION VS REALITY
When we go anywhere or do anything, we form an expectation of what that thing is going to be like. If we go to sip coffee, we expect it to be hot, and if we are met with cold coffee, then it is unsatisfying. A lot of people entered The Last Jedi with an expectation of figuring out about Rey’s parents and Snoke’s past, but were met with an unsatisfying taste. Also, a lot of people headed into the Christmas season with an unrealistic expectation. If you expected too much but didn’t get everything on your list, then you were disappointed. If you didn’t expect much but got a lot, then you were glad.
Your expectation impacts your reality. Do you walk into hopeless situations with a hopeless expectation? Satan cannot take away the blessing God has given you so he will try to shift your expectation. If he can make the blessing look like a burden, then he can steal your blessing. You may expect God to open a door, but you have to knock first. If Satan can convince you that the door has never been opened and you cannot open it then you will never knock.
William Carey once said, “Expect great things from God. Attempt great things for God.” Let that be the frame of our prayers. In all things, God can do anything, but someone has to be willing to knock for the door to be opened. My expectation is to see God move. My reality will take place in the aftermath of the cross. May we live courageous lives in eager expectation to be the move of God that others need.
For Your Name is my name and my name for Your Glory,
Forever and Ever, Amen.