Finally, after two years of waiting, we were given the next episode in the Star Wars saga this past weekend. The Last Jedi made its way into theaters with lots of fanfare and excitement. However, for some, that excitement quickly wore off.
Fans are torn and divided over The Last Jedi. I had a chance to see it and I’ll be sharing my thoughts without spoilers. First, I will say I loved the movie. I’ve been a fan of Star Wars since I was a kid. I saw The Empire Strikes Back on VHS when it first came out and saw Return of the Jedi in theaters. So, I have a few years of fandom under my belt.
You may ask “Why is Pophorror doing a Star Wars review?” Well, because this would be the Pop part of Pophorror. Also, this installment was one of the darker of the Star Wars films, so it seemed like it would fit here. Over the years, The Empire Strikes Back and Rogue One have been my favorites so far. Notice, I tend to like the darker stories.
I’m not sure yet where The Last Jedi fits in, but I’ll definitely be watching it a few more times just to take everything in. Without giving away too much, Luke’s line from the trailer holds true for the whole film. “This is not going to go the way you think.” No, it doesn’t. Take any theories, ideas and conspiracies you thought you had on what Episode 8 would be and throw them out the window.
There were a few parts I’m not quite sure about, like they didn’t feel entirely necessary, but overall, the film was heavy with a lot of layers. Some of the topics to unpack on this film are things like sexism, being let down by our heroes, is there really such a thing as good and evil and what things can the Force do that we haven’t seen yet? There are a lot more things, but after a first viewing those are my initial takeaways.
For those upset about these various things, I suppose its good to remember we are talking about space wizards fighting with colored laser sticks and using magic to throw things at each other. So, it’s not too far a stretch for the things that happened to have happened.
As far as horror elements, this obviously isn’t a horror film. Though, there is a lot of death in this one. More death than a usual Star Wars film. I don’t want to give away spoilers, but if you consider this the 2nd act of a 3 part story, things do not go well for the resistance and at times look all out dismal.
If you want a fun, nostalgic Star Wars film, this isn’t it. This one will have you confused in places, cheering in others and crying at other times. Sometimes everything at once. There will be places where you aren’t even sure who you should root for, and that is what makes this film so amazing. By the time you walk out, you’ll be emotionally exhausted. If you haven’t seen it yet, I’d suggest watching it for yourself before buying into any reviews who say not to check it out. If you have seen it and you hate it, I’d suggest watching it a few more times. I remember a lot of people hated Empire when it first came out because it was too dark and felt the “Father” twist was lame. Now its viewed as a classic. I think given time, The Last Jedi will be up there as well.