Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Rian Johnson, 2017)

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tenia
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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#401 Post by tenia » Sat Oct 06, 2018 5:12 pm

nitin wrote:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 7:05 pm
tenia wrote:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 10:03 am
I think they felt less ambitious than the newer ones. Like they weren't taking themselves as seriously than the new ones. That can make a lot of difference on how one can overlook a movie being insubstantial, inconsistant or cartoonish.
Well yes (I did say in my post that I think the first 2 films are great), and I don’t think either of the new ones are anywhere in the same league as those first two overall, but they are better than ROTJ and any of the prequels and Rogue One, all of which did take themselves very seriously and many of the same criticisms apply to them.
True and I actually thought of ROTJ taking already itself quite seriously. However, I'd counter-argue that the prequels were getting a lot of flak at the time (and still do), so I suppose one can attack the newer episodes AND the prequels. And I'd also argue that Rogue One was taking itself so seriously that combined with Ep 8, Disney had to make Solo as a lighter funnier movie because of that.

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#402 Post by What A Disgrace » Sat Oct 06, 2018 5:43 pm

I always thought the ewoks and Jabba's palace were the best parts of Return of the Jedi. The problem is that *those* were the best parts of Return of the Jedi.

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#403 Post by Big Ben » Sat Oct 06, 2018 5:54 pm

The Ewoks were made specifically for toy sales and their buffoonish behavior was intended to appeal to children. Even then some the juxtaposition between them and the serious confrontation Luke has with Vader at the end always struck me as fairly bizarre. As a kid it sure was fun but fifteen years later I just went "Huh?". I think they're a sore spot on what I consider the worst film in the original trilogy. I understand why they're there but they strike me now as little more than toy sales.

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#404 Post by What A Disgrace » Sat Oct 06, 2018 7:10 pm

I've always felt that the goofier elements of the original trilogy were a big part of its heart. In the case of the Ewoks, in keeping with the thematic tradition of Yoda, I appreciate how they're a deadly serious (and deadly in general) bunch of critters despite their goofy, silly exterior, and the Empire suffers for their foolishness in underestimating them - they even give our heroes a run for their money. The fact that they are not CGI, but real actors in real costumes, limited by the technology of the time, certainly makes them more palatable than stuff in the prequels, where they had the material freedom to do almost anything, and reminded us, thus, why material restrictions aren't always such a bad thing for viewers.

I think Jabba's Palace, while the highlight of the movie as far as entertainment value goes, maybe, is practically irrelevant to the main plot of the movie (which only really starts afterwards), and doesn't have much thematic resonance with the rest of it, in my opinion. Worst of all, Harrison Ford pretty much phones in his Han Solo, so the rest of the movie just feels like its coasting on fumes from the earlier two movies after a brief, fans-need-it interlude that takes up 1/3 of the movie.

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#405 Post by bunuelian » Sun Oct 07, 2018 1:24 am

One component that gets lost in the argument that the originals were just as banal as the rest is that the originals involved original invention of a lot of the look and sound of the "universe" that is simply be copied with minor embellishments in the present iteration of the franchise. The present films are simply repeating and rehashing the old films, with standard Hollywood comic book film components layered on top for contemporary audiences. For me the new films are disappointing because they are simultaneously thinly veiled remakes and uninspired sequels, rather than something entirely new and risky.

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#406 Post by moreorless » Sun Oct 07, 2018 1:42 am

What A Disgrace wrote:
Sat Oct 06, 2018 7:10 pm
I've always felt that the goofier elements of the original trilogy were a big part of its heart. In the case of the Ewoks, in keeping with the thematic tradition of Yoda, I appreciate how they're a deadly serious (and deadly in general) bunch of critters despite their goofy, silly exterior, and the Empire suffers for their foolishness in underestimating them - they even give our heroes a run for their money. The fact that they are not CGI, but real actors in real costumes, limited by the technology of the time, certainly makes them more palatable than stuff in the prequels, where they had the material freedom to do almost anything, and reminded us, thus, why material restrictions aren't always such a bad thing for viewers.

I think Jabba's Palace, while the highlight of the movie as far as entertainment value goes, maybe, is practically irrelevant to the main plot of the movie (which only really starts afterwards), and doesn't have much thematic resonance with the rest of it, in my opinion. Worst of all, Harrison Ford pretty much phones in his Han Solo, so the rest of the movie just feels like its coasting on fumes from the earlier two movies after a brief, fans-need-it interlude that takes up 1/3 of the movie.
I felt Yoda in The Last Jedi actually summed up the films rather condescending view of the originals, it seemed like a characterisation based on some vague memory of watching Empire Strikes Back 20 years ago. In that film the "crazy Yoda" we see when Luke first meets him is actually revealed to be an act to test him, after that point the character is very serious and even a little threatening "I'm not afraid" "you will be, you will be". Johnson though has the character as "silly Yoda" thoughout even when delivering a serious scene.

I would agree the films having a bit of character to them was certainly part of their charm but I would say the Ewoks became rather too broad, prior to that as with Jabba's Palace I think you get the mixture of the outlandish and the threating. Honestly if anything I feel that the sequels actually feel like they follow on from the prequels more in terms of tone, however downbeat the story of those films was sposed to be they ended up being rather silly packed full of goofy aliens and rogering robots with little sense of menace to them.

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#407 Post by tenia » Sun Oct 07, 2018 5:24 am

bunuelian wrote:
Sun Oct 07, 2018 1:24 am
One component that gets lost in the argument that the originals were just as banal as the rest is that the originals involved original invention of a lot of the look and sound of the "universe" that is simply be copied with minor embellishments in the present iteration of the franchise. The present films are simply repeating and rehashing the old films, with standard Hollywood comic book film components layered on top for contemporary audiences. For me the new films are disappointing because they are simultaneously thinly veiled remakes and uninspired sequels, rather than something entirely new and risky.
For an universe which is supposed to be huge and extended, I always have been surprised by how, much like the MCU or the DCU, all the main subsequent movies are just holes-fillers. They never truly create anything new or wander about within all that the universe has to offer, but instead either fill holes (The Clone Wars, Rogue One), serving as Origins Stories (the prequels, Solo), or continuing the past stories (the new movies).
The worst is how it often feels as if the holes are created on purpose so that something can fill it up later. "Let's leave a gap between Ep 2 and Ep 3 so we can have a TV show to fill it up." "Let's leave a gap between Ep 3 and Ep 4 so we can have stuff to fill it up."

In a way, it's true that the reception of the newer movies can't be the same than the older movies' one, simply because it's not new anymore, and "original" anymore, but we have this SW background now that probably bias our way of watching those new movies. This is an additional prism we didn't have 40, or maybe even 20 years ago (I discovered the OT before the PT, but not in theaters).

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#408 Post by Big Ben » Sun Oct 07, 2018 6:46 am

bunuelian wrote:
Sun Oct 07, 2018 1:24 am
One component that gets lost in the argument that the originals were just as banal as the rest is that the originals involved original invention of a lot of the look and sound of the "universe" that is simply be copied with minor embellishments in the present iteration of the franchise. The present films are simply repeating and rehashing the old films, with standard Hollywood comic book film components layered on top for contemporary audiences. For me the new films are disappointing because they are simultaneously thinly veiled remakes and uninspired sequels, rather than something entirely new and risky.
I disagree rather strongly with the last part here. The Last Jedi blatantly rewrites basic concepts of the past six films, particularly Lucas' obsession with the monomyth. Rey's existence in the narrative itself exists contrary to both Luke and Anakin.
SpoilerShow
She's essentially a nobody and not some preordained mythic character. She's essentially a peasant without any famous lineage. The film also implies that many people can learn to become great and do not have to be a part of some chosen path. This is contrary to Lucas' insistence plot-wise on the contrary for the past six films. Also the new films have no problem killing off main characters. Something Lucas expressly forbade due to his belief that doing so would diminish toy sales. A dead Han Solo and dead Luke Skywalker are a big deal.
There are most certainly narrative similarities but this idea that no risks were taken just doesn't strike me as particularly true especially when looking at Lucas' past narrative bullet points from both behind and in front of the camera.

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#409 Post by tenia » Sun Oct 07, 2018 10:37 am

Just a guess of course but I'm quite certain that a movie, book or TV show will explain us it actually just was a wordplay and she actually is somebody.

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#410 Post by Kirkinson » Sun Oct 07, 2018 1:38 pm

Maybe, but that would clearly be a retcon and not a reflection of Rian Johnson's intentions, so Big Ben's point stands.

It's also worth pointing out that, despite Simon Pegg's comments on the subject that sucked up a lot of headlines, Daisy Ridley has claimed (or at least strongly implied) that Abrams & Johnson were on the same page regarding Rey's lineage.

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#411 Post by bunuelian » Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:05 am

Big Ben wrote:
Sun Oct 07, 2018 6:46 am
The Last Jedi blatantly rewrites basic concepts of the past six films, particularly Lucas' obsession with the monomyth. Rey's existence in the narrative itself exists contrary to both Luke and Anakin.
I see your point, but I think the "blatant rewriting" is rather too self-aware. In a sense it is taking the opposite tack of what has come before, but in doing so it is still heavily dependent on the model of its predecessors. The inversion of the original can't exist without the original as its reference point.

Of course, inverting original concepts can lead to interesting results, but here I think Disney's fundamentally conservative approach to this property is preventing things from getting more interesting. Lucas took significantly greater risks with the prequels (mostly for the worse). Hardly a surprise that Disney would take this route.

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Re: Star Wars Franchise (1977-∞)

#412 Post by moreorless » Fri May 31, 2019 12:45 pm

bunuelian wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:05 am
Big Ben wrote:
Sun Oct 07, 2018 6:46 am
The Last Jedi blatantly rewrites basic concepts of the past six films, particularly Lucas' obsession with the monomyth. Rey's existence in the narrative itself exists contrary to both Luke and Anakin.
I see your point, but I think the "blatant rewriting" is rather too self-aware. In a sense it is taking the opposite tack of what has come before, but in doing so it is still heavily dependent on the model of its predecessors. The inversion of the original can't exist without the original as its reference point.

Of course, inverting original concepts can lead to interesting results, but here I think Disney's fundamentally conservative approach to this property is preventing things from getting more interesting. Lucas took significantly greater risks with the prequels (mostly for the worse). Hardly a surprise that Disney would take this route.
Dragging this up again with the third film on the horizon.

I'd agree with you the biggest weakness of Last Jedi to me is its conservatism, indeed to me it feels like a film that doesn't really follow though on its own ideas for fear of shifting the franchise. The idea for example of Luke shifting to a philosophy that acknowledges the dark side seems to be hinted at but then not adopted, I think that could have been an interesting direction to go in switching from undermining a characters simpler personal heroism in Empire Strike Back to undermining a simplistic view of morality. I'm guessing though Disney probably feared such a switch wouldn't be as marketable as the simpler Jedi/Sith divide. Equally the film spends much of its time setting up Rey potentially allying with Kylo and then rejects it favour of both characters switching to simplistic heroism and villainy.

Looking at the films structure I wouldn't be surprised if the while section on the Hoth mk2/Salt planet was a product of Disney mandated large scale rewrites, equally the resistance plot and its endless illogical twists feels like its present to set up that second climax.

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Re: Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Rian Johnson, 2017)

#413 Post by ford » Fri May 31, 2019 2:13 pm

Every time I go back to this movie, it looks better and better. And the fan outrage seems weirder and weirder.

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Re: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (J.J. Abrams, 2019)

#414 Post by cdnchris » Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:21 pm

I really dont get the hate for Last Jedi. The only one for me that beats it is Empire Strikes Back and I just dont understand any of the criticisms against it and I've read them all.

(I understand the ones made by fragile men, but those criticisms are just a reflection of the people making them.)

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Re: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (J.J. Abrams, 2019)

#415 Post by RIP Film » Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:25 pm

mfunk9786 wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:19 pm
RIP Film wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:11 pm
I get the feeling this will be the only decent one in the trilogy, as if they’re just learning from the mistakes of the first two.
*whispers* The Last Jedi was the best Star Wars film to date
That overwritten piece of claptrap? I still can’t get over how Luke “I see good in the most the most evil person in the galaxy” Skywalker, wanted to stealth kill his nephew because he might be a bad seed.

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Re: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (J.J. Abrams, 2019)

#416 Post by mfunk9786 » Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:29 pm

cdnchris wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:21 pm
I really dont get the hate for Last Jedi. The only one for me that beats it is Empire Strikes Back and I just dont understand any of the criticisms against it and I've read them all.

(I understand the ones made by fragile men, but those criticisms are just a reflection of the people making them.)
Watching these films without the baggage of fervent, mouth-foaming nostalgia and the demands that come with it has been nice. I just go to them and see them and if they're well made, they're enjoyable experiences and if they're not, well, they're not. Rogue One did nothing for me because I don't care how it loops into the first film and found it a little low rent. But some people just want Easter eggs for something they already enjoy, not actual new films that might stand on their own. But The Last Jedi was the first time I ever saw a Star Wars film and thought it held up as an excellently made piece of work on its own.

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Re: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (J.J. Abrams, 2019)

#417 Post by Mr Sausage » Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:32 pm

RIP Film wrote:
mfunk9786 wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:19 pm
RIP Film wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:11 pm
I get the feeling this will be the only decent one in the trilogy, as if they’re just learning from the mistakes of the first two.
*whispers* The Last Jedi was the best Star Wars film to date
That overwritten piece of claptrap? I still can’t get over how Luke “I see good in the most the most evil person in the galaxy” Skywalker, wanted to stealth kill his nephew because he might be a bad seed.
The point of the force is the constant inner struggle between light and dark. It’s also the Luke who nearly let the emperor goad him into killing his father. The Luke who confronted a Vader hallucination on Dagobah only to find his own face behind the mask.

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Re: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (J.J. Abrams, 2019)

#418 Post by ford » Tue Oct 22, 2019 2:19 pm

mfunk9786 wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:29 pm
cdnchris wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:21 pm
I really dont get the hate for Last Jedi. The only one for me that beats it is Empire Strikes Back and I just dont understand any of the criticisms against it and I've read them all.

(I understand the ones made by fragile men, but those criticisms are just a reflection of the people making them.)
Watching these films without the baggage of fervent, mouth-foaming nostalgia and the demands that come with it has been nice. I just go to them and see them and if they're well made, they're enjoyable experiences and if they're not, well, they're not. Rogue One did nothing for me because I don't care how it loops into the first film and found it a little low rent. But some people just want Easter eggs for something they already enjoy, not actual new films that might stand on their own. But The Last Jedi was the first time I ever saw a Star Wars film and thought it held up as an excellently made piece of work on its own.
Agreed. I actually want to understand just how others can't see this. I love pretty much everything about it (best cinematography in a Star Wars film since Empire) but clearly it's more than a few pissed off fanboys who hate it so maybe we're just deluded. I will admit to being bizarrely and obsessively captivated with that Cronenberg-esque red throne room.

Most shockingly of all, it made Luke a truly interesting character. His pseudo-face-off at the end was beautifully executed.

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Re: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (J.J. Abrams, 2019)

#419 Post by Brian C » Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:26 pm

ford wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 2:19 pm
Agreed. I actually want to understand just how others can't see this.
Start by reading the hundreds of posts in this very thread, many of which are critical about various things in the movie, and none of which are written by "pissed off fanboys".
Last edited by Brian C on Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Rian Johnson, 2017)

#420 Post by Cold Bishop » Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:26 pm

Is it possible to like what Last Jedi tried to do but feel the execution was sloppy? Because that’s where I am with the film. Deconstructing the ethos of the Jedi and Force? Great. Pointing out the cyclical nature of these intergalactic conflicts? Wonderful. But the casino planet really was a dull dead end of a detour that could have been integrated better, and the return to unapologetically elastic CGI undid the one thing Abrams unquestionably did right with his film.

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Re: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (J.J. Abrams, 2019)

#421 Post by mfunk9786 » Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:39 pm

Brian C wrote:
Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:26 pm
none of which are written by "pissed off fanboys"
With you on everything but this part

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Re: Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Rian Johnson, 2017)

#422 Post by Brian C » Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:54 pm

Maybe some pissed off fanboys that I forgot about.

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Re: Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Rian Johnson, 2017)

#423 Post by Shrew » Tue Oct 22, 2019 6:02 pm

Cold Bishop wrote:Is it possible to like what Last Jedi tried to do but feel the execution was sloppy? Because that’s where I am with the film. Deconstructing the ethos of the Jedi and Force? Great. Pointing out the cyclical nature of these intergalactic conflicts? Wonderful. But the casino planet really was a dull dead end of a detour that could have been integrated better, and the return to unapologetically elastic CGI undid the one thing Abrams unquestionably did right with his film.
Co-signed. I think the strengths outweigh the weaknesses, but it's at least one rewrite away from greatness. But that's a problem that affects all the Disney movies (Force Awakens is easily the cleanest script), and seemingly the process most affected by the two-year schedule.

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Re: Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Rian Johnson, 2017)

#424 Post by cdnchris » Tue Oct 22, 2019 7:13 pm

I won't argue about the casino planet portion. I was intrigued by how it offers a look at this universe outside of the central conflict (rebels vs. whatever overreaching evil power), which the other films never really did (everything revolved around that conflict). Unfortunately it's not executed very well and drags that portion of the movie, and then leads to a final shot that's a bit much. But I still found everything else around that pretty great.

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