Tag Archives: Star Wars

Star Wars Episode VIII Review: “The Last Jedi” *Contains Spoilers*

It was feeling like everyone else in the world had seen this movie already except me, but I finally made it out to the theater today and watched The Last Jedi, the latest installment in the Star Wars saga. My thoughts…well, let’s review the plot first. I know I was happy to discover what it was since the trailers revealed few details (obviously spoilers are forthcoming).

According to the opening crawl, the Republic is no more. The First Order has crushed it completely; Leia’s band of resistance fighters is the only thing left of order and democracy. And Kylo Ren is leading the charge in a desperate attempt to prove to Snoke that he has what it takes to follow in Vader’s footsteps (apparently Snoke is conveniently forgetting the Vader destroyed the Emperor and returned to the light side). Poe, a freshly-recovered Finn, and their new friend Rose work on a scheme that will let them disable the First Order’s lightspeed tracker and allow the rest of the Resistance to escape unharmed. Meanwhile, Rey tries to persuade Luke to return to his sister’s side and aid her in their fight against the First Order. But as we heard Luke ominously warn in the trailer, “This is not going to go the way you think,” and he was right on all fronts. The best laid plans go horribly awry; Kylo Ren finds the strength to murder Snoke and claim leadership of the First Order, and Rey, who has searched for the truth for so long, finds it a bitter pill to swallow.

Is it true that Rey’s parents were nobodies, just junk dealers who sold her for drinking money? Who knows. We don’t know how much we can trust Kylo at this point; he clearly has his own motives. But something tells me Rey’s story isn’t over yet.

As for Luke–why was it necessary to kill him, Rian Johnson!? Why!? It was bad enough we lost Han in The Force Awakens, but now Luke is gone, too! Plus Carrie Fisher is dead, so no more Leia. Why are you taking away all of the happy endings? Is this your way of trying to make your own characters look better? If so, you needed a better tactic.

Not going to lie, the movie felt way too long. Part of the problem was the whole sub-plot of Finn and Rose trying to find a codebreaker. That felt like enough material to be its own movie.

I still can’t take Kylo Ren seriously as a villain. If he didn’t look like a big, sad puppy all of the time, he would probably be very effective. But Snoke was correct when he called Kylo “a child in a mask”, and unless he does some serious growing-up in Episode IX, I think that’s all he’ll ever be. The same may be true for Rey as well–in Empire Strikes Back, I felt that Luke had at least learned humility after his confrontation with Vader. With Rey, I don’t get the impression she’s learned anything after her encounters with Snoke and Kylo. Luke’s lessons were vital to his maturity in Return of the Jedi. Will Rey show the same maturity? I certainly hope so. While she’s not as impulsive as Kylo, she still does not control her emotions very well and is too easily swayed by the dark side. Perhaps she’ll read those Jedi texts she rescued from the tree and gain some useful knowledge.

I will say this for The Last Jedi–it wasn’t a carbon copy of an earlier movie. It was its own thing, and I liked that. I just would have preferred it if it had had a little more of a hopeful feel to it.

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So Apparently “The Last Jedi” is Retconning the Chosen One Prophecy

It came to my attention today that The Last Jedi is rumored to reveal that Luke Skywalker operated under the belief that Kylo Ren was the Chosen One. And now he might believe that Rey is the Chosen One. Naturally, my jaw was on the floor. Everyone knows the Chosen One was Anakin/Vader–George Lucas himself confirmed it multiple times–so how they think they can get away with saying he wasn’t the Chosen One is beyond me. We spent six movies with this character with the knowledge he was the Chosen One; you can’t just change that on the fly! They even stated it explicitly with the Mortis storyline from The Clone Wars!

But that’s not all. They are also completely retconning what the Chosen One prophecy stated. I don’t believe it was ever recited in full, but the gist of it was that there would come a Jedi who was conceived not by a human father but by the midichlorians, the microscopic life forms that allow people to commune with the Force, and this Jedi was destined to overthrow the Sith order and bring balance to the Force. But now they are changing the prophecy; now it says that the Chosen One is the reincarnation of the founder of the Jedi Order.

What the–YOU CAN’T RETCON THE CHOSEN ONE PROPHECY! IF YOU HAVE TO RETCON ANYTHING, WHY DON’T YOU MAKE JAR JAR THE SITH LORD HE WAS ORIGINALLY SUPPOSED TO BE!?

I really, really hope a lot of this stuff turns out to be rumors, and they leave the prophecy alone. My geek rage levels will not be pretty if it’s true.

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May the Force be with You in Middle-Earth

It’s Star Wars Day, and I figured I’d do something a little different by going into the similarities between Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings. It’s kind of a running joke in my family that Star Wars is really just The Lord of the Rings in space, and here I shall prove it to the world. Some of these may seem fairly obvious; others may be completely bonkers, but all should be entertaining.

Luke Skywalker = Frodo Baggins

Frodo and Luke

 

Ordinary guy (but with famous relatives) living a pretty ordinary life suddenly finds himself in the middle of a plot that could destroy the world.

Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader = Bilbo Baggins

Darth Vader and Bilbo

First in the family to have epic adventures, is temporarily under the influence of the Dark Lord but fights off the influence and becomes one with the Force/sails to the Grey Havens.

Obi-Wan Kenobi = Gandalf

Obi-Wan Kenobi and Gandalf

The man responsible for seeing both generations off on their respective adventures–also dies and comes back in a more powerful form.

Emperor Palpatine = Sauron

Emperor Palpatine and Sauron

Do I really need to explain this one?

Han Solo = Aragorn

Han Solo and Aragorn

Ruffian who turns out to be a hero.

Princess Leia = Arwen

Princess Leia and Arwen

A princess who always has a plan and is not afraid to make sacrifices for the people closest to her no matter what the personal cost.

C-3PO and R2-D2 = Legolas and Gimli

C-3PO and R2-D2 and Legolas and Gimli

Best friends who are always bickering.

Lando Calrissian = Eomer

Lando Calrissian and Eomer

The friend who shows up in Part II and is crucial to helping win the battle in Part III.

Count Dooku = Saruman

Count Dooku and Saruman

Former good guy who turned traitor. Bonus points for both parts being played by Christopher Lee.

Yoda = Gollum

Yoda and Gollum

Odd-looking creature with a weird speech pattern who shows our hero the way to complete his quest.

I know, I know, I couldn’t find parallels for all of the LotR characters (which makes me sad because I would love to know who Eowyn and Sam are analogous to), but I think these are pretty accurate, nonetheless–and funny, too, which was the whole point behind this post.

Happy Star Wars Day!

 

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Star Wars: Episode VIII Title Released!

We now know what the title for the next Star Wars movie is! Are you ready? It’s (insert drum roll) The Last Jedi.

As titles go, it’s not terrible. I guess I was a little disappointed that it broke the theme of the second leg of the trilogy having a title of four words (Episode II was Attack of the Clones; Episode V was The Empire Strikes Back). It’s probably a dumb thing to be sad about, though, so I’ll probably get over it. It definitely is interesting, so I’m certainly eager to see what the next chapter is.

I just hope it doesn’t turn out to be a rehash of The Empire Strikes Back.

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A Star Wars Fan Film That Would Make an Awesome Canon Story

I’m not normally one for fan films, but this one was so well done that I thought it deserved a mention. Titled “Hoshino”, it follows the story of a blind Jedi Master and her rise to power. It’s only seven minutes long, but the story it manages to convey in those seven minutes is so intriguing that I think it should have a place in the official Star Wars canon.

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Jedi vs. Sith in Star Wars: The Old Republic

Over the last few months I’ve been playing Star Wars: The Old Republic because how could you not want to play a game that gives you a lightsaber and sends you on adventures throughout the galaxy? I started as a Jedi, but I eventually added a Sith because I was curious about the similarities and differences between the two, and I wanted to see if one was easier to play than the other. Ability-wise, they’re pretty evenly matched, but I have noticed some differences in how they fight. The Jedi seems much more fluid and in control in her movements whereas the Sith seems to have a…well, the only way I can think to describe it is a harsher quality; her movements seem ragged, and she seems to be relying on instinct rather than skill (which I suppose is normal for Sith). Now this could just be an example of not knowing what I’m doing (I’m not a gamer, and I doubt I’ll ever get that good), but I think it could also be a sign of how different the Jedi and Sith codes are (found on Wookieepedia).

There is no emotion, there is peace.
There is no ignorance, there is knowledge.
There is no passion, there is serenity.
There is no chaos, there is harmony.
There is no death, there is the Force.

Peace is a lie, there is only passion.
Through passion, I gain strength.
Through strength, I gain power.
Through power, I gain victory.
Through victory, my chains are broken.
The Force shall free me.

Playing the game has definitely given me new insights into the Jedi and the Sith. It’s one thing to just watch the movies, but it’s another entirely to “live” the experience, so to speak. I think my Sith character is probably stronger, but my Jedi character seems calmer and more focused and, consequently, more efficient. So I think the Jedi win at the end of the day.

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Some Thoughts on “Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force Awakens” *Massive, Massive SPOILERS!*

I have finally gotten to see The Force Awakens in the theater, and as I mentioned earlier, I am here to review it for all to enjoy. There are going to be lots and lots of spoilers, so turn back now if you haven’t seen it yet and still want to be surprised!

Where to begin, where to begin? First, let us observe a moment of silence for the Darth Jar Jar theory. Lumpawarroo, if you somehow manage to see this post, I still believe.

One of the few complaints against this movie was that the plot was simply a rehash of A New Hope, and it basically was. Sending the droid off with the secret plans, getting stuck on a desert planet, escaping with the Millennium Falcon–yep, we’ve seen this all before. And then the First Order builds the Starkiller, which is basically just a gigantic Death Star–really, guys, is that the only design you have? It’s been, what, 30 years since Return of the Jedi; didn’t your engineers come up with a different plan by now? And then the Resistance destroys it in exactly the same way. Come on, J.J., get creative!

It wasn’t all bad; I really like the new trio of Poe, Rey, and Finn. I hope we get to see more of Poe in Episode VIII since it seems he was barely in this one. And I must admit that the trailers had me convinced that Finn was the Force-sensitive character of the new trilogy, so I was genuinely surprised when it turned out to be Rey. I’m fairly certain Rey will turn out to be Luke’s daughter for a number of reasons:

  1. We’ve already seen how strong she is with the Force–she resisted Kylo Ren’s attempts to read her mind; she tricked a guard into letting her go, and she was able to ultimately beat Kylo in their lightsaber duel.
  2. She can fly any ship she gets her hands on, a trait she shares with Anakin Skywalker. In the Rebellion of the original trilogy, Luke was also an exceptional pilot.
  3. When both Rey and Kylo were trying to summon Luke’s lightsaber, it flew to Rey. Kylo claimed the lightsaber rightfully belonged to him, but the fact that it preferred Rey indicates that she had the greater claim.
  4. If Rey is a Skywalker, why should we think she’s Luke’s daughter? Well, Leia and Han didn’t recognize or acknowledge her as their daughter, so if she has Skywalker blood, it must be through Luke.

Speaking of Kylo Ren…I’m sorry, I cannot take him seriously as a Sith Lord. He’s too young; his hair is too fabulous, and he’s too whiny. How did he wind up so angsty after coming from such awesome parents as Han and Leia? (As an aside, if you want a good laugh, check out the Emo Kylo Ren Twitter account.) My initial theory about his identity, that he was a former student of Luke’s who turned against him, turned out to be correct, so I was happy that I had guessed that part.

It wasn’t all sunshine and nostalgic rainbows in this movie, though. J.J. Abrams committed the unthinkable act of KILLING HAN SOLO. One of the most iconic characters in all of Star Wars is no more; a piece of my childhood has been crumpled up and tossed in the trash can. It’s…it’s kind of hard to cope with this, guys.

All things considered, I did enjoy this movie. In previous posts I had mentioned my concerns that this was going to turn into another Hobbit debacle, but there weren’t any huge deviations from established canon. Of course, if I go back and rewatch all of the other movies, I’ll probably find an inconsistency somewhere, but for now I think I’ll just enjoy the warm fuzzy feeling that comes from having watched Star Wars on the big screen…even if the villain was more amusing than terrifying.

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