Star Wars: The Last Jedi review (NO SPOILERS)
Ever since Disney bought the Star Wars franchise, a lot of consideration has been put together from the fans about whether the output of more content will make the popular series less special. It's safe to say that Star Wars is more then a fun space opera; it's a story that changed how Hollywood defines blockbusters. I've gone over this more in my Force Awakens review, but I mentioned that before Star Wars was made, most science fiction films were scene as fun little B movies that, while having an audience, didn't have a lot of respect when compared to classics like Citizen Kane and Ben Hur. Of course, things are different.
For a while, most people seemed to be happy with the original trilogy. Then in the late 1990s, George Lucas returned to make a prequel trilogy that had gotten a mixed response. Even with that, people seemed to be content with that, along with a galaxy full of novels, games, and content that expanded on the universe of Star Wars. Now whether more movies like Force Awakens, Rogue One, and more will make it less special seems like an odd question. People already seem to be used to them, and if The Last Jedi shows anything, that it's not stopping anytime soon.
General Leia (played by Carrie Fisher) is evacuating the Resistance from a planet when the First Order tries to take them out. Hotshot fighter Poe (played by Oscar Isaac) takes down a destroyer, but ends up getting fellow fighters killed doing so. Though the Resistance escapes, they are followed by Kylo Ren (played by Adam Driver) who sends several TIE fighters to take them out for good. In this process, Leia is injured, leaving Admiral Holdo (played by Laura Dern) in charge. Not agreeing with her strategy, Poe, Finn (played by John Boyega), BB-8 (played by Bill Hader) and ship mechanic Rose (played by Kelly Marie Tran) embark on a secret mission to find a code breaker that could get them in to the First Order Battle Carrier.
Meanwhile, Rey (played by Daisy Ridley) and Chewbacca have found Luke Skywalker (played by Mark Hamill) on an isolated world where they see that he wants nothing to do with the current fight. Rey eventually gets him to train her on the Force and the ways of the Jedi. While doing so, she learns some things about Luke and Kylo that questions just who is right and whether Luke can even help the resistance.
The Force Awakens, though I liked, did borrow a lot from A New Hope. I can say that while The Last Jedi does take a little from Empire Strikes Back, it mostly feels like a more original story. A very entertaining story to say as this had to be one of the few Star Wars stories that I didn't know where it was going to go. This finally found the right balance of good story, great action, and of course, strong characters.
If the last movie proved to be phenomenal for Harrison Ford, this movie reminds me of how good both Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher are. It's fascinating to see a more distraught Luke Skywalker given everything he's gone through. You get an understanding of him, but he pushes himself further away to make you question if he's the hero you've always seen him as. Carrie Fisher would be glad to hear that her final performance may be her strongest as Leia. This time, we get a sense that even she doesn't know if hope isn't coming this time, thus a sadder, but interesting kind of Leia.
I can say that both John Boyega and Daisy Ridley continue to prove why their personalities and charisma make them ideal Star Wars actors. Their likable and both characters go through character arcs that I won't spoil. Both Adam Driver and Oscar Isaac, who didn't have a lot of screen time in Force Awakens, not only have a lot more to do this time, but they too have large character arcs that are just as fascinating as Darth Vader and Han Solo's in Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Again, not spoiling anything.
I'll give this five blue lightsabers out of five. Director Rian Johnson has not early improved on the mistakes of the pervious movie to craft an amazing Star Wars movie, but an amazing movie in general. I didn't even mention that that cinematography and special effects are just as good as the story, but what you don't know make this a great movie. I'll simply say go see it, and may the force be with you.