I try hard to respect my fellow Star Wars fans, so before I begin, I want to disclose that there are MINOR spoilers in this piece.
Like so many others, if there has been one franchise that has shaped my childhood, it is Star Wars. I bought the action figures. I dressed up like characters for Halloween. I even have a bit of Star Wars wardrobe. It is safe to say that I grew up on the Force. Two years ago when The Force Awakens hit theatres, I was so nervous to see what the Walt Disney Company had created. As I questioned in a piece I wrote for Heroic Hollywood, “Was this film going to honor the past and pave the way to a bright, new future for this story? Or was this film going to be overstuffed with negotiations, corny one-liners and a not-so-funny creature who we all wished never happened (sorry, I’m not sorry).”
Although The Force Awakens proved itself to be a strong addition to the Star Wars saga, it set the bar extremely high for its successors. So needless to say, I made it my duty to attend one of the first screenings of The Last Jedi to see how Rian Johnson continued the story.
The Last Jedi is stellar. Not only does it master honoring the legacy of the saga but it also stands alone as a cinematic triumph. Similar to the other films, it is jam-packed with action and emotion. I smiled. I laughed. I teared up. And I was actually surprised.
The twists and turns Johnson has added to the story has added rich depth, and truly pushes the needle when it comes to Star Wars storytelling. He made some bold and brave decisions, but I assure you, Star Wars fans, you will leave the theaters full of hope and excitement for the future of this story and its beloved characters.
The entire cast shines in their roles, however, the stand out performance has to go to Mark Hamill, who brings a new depth to the iconic Luke Skywalker. Hamill steals the scene without even saying a word.
Although this film was brilliant, I will be frank, it was a tad too long. There were some sequences that felt VERY unnecessary to the film’s central plot (sorry Finn, Rose and the entire planet of Canto Bight) and some characters that, in my opinion, were not fleshed out enough (but who are you REALLY, Snoke?).
Final Thoughts: The force is unbelievably strong in The Last Jedi full of laughter, emotion, and adorable Porgs. A definite must-see!