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Star Wars: The Last Jedi

December 14, 2017

Star Wars: The Last Jedi (***) PG-13

Before I get on with the business of reviewing one of the most anticipated films of 2017, I’ll go on and acknowledge that, yes, I’m well aware that this is the kind of film that is critic proof. And, yes, I’m also well aware that anything I have to say about this latest Star Wars entry isn’t going to make much of a difference in terms of whether anyone chooses to see it or not. Still, it’s a critic’s duty to be fair and state the case for or against a film as honestly as possible, so here goes.  Despite a mid section that threatens to collapse under its own weight at times, Star Wars: The Last Jedi is still a worthy addition to the Star Wars universe and one that will be certain to please longtime fans of the series. And as far as pleasing longtime fans of the series, would one expect anything less? I think the answer is a resounding no.

In the interest of trying to remain as free of spoilers as possible, it’s best to simply note that, unsurprisingly, the film picks up exactly where the box office behemoth, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, left off two years ago. It was at the conclusion of that film that the Jedi heroine in training, Rey (Daisy Ridley), was dispatched to the isolated island where Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) currently resides. Rey’s hope, of course, is to get the legendary Jedi to join the rebellion lead by his sister, Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) and to impart some of the Jedi wisdom he’s accumulated. Luke wants no part of it and wishes only to put the past behind him.

Daisy Ridley & Mark Hamill in ‘The Last Jedi’

The film crosscuts between various subplots much in the same vein as its predecessors did as the rebels try to defeat the first order, mostly represented by General Hux (Domhnall Gleeson), Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) and the supreme leader, Snoke (Andy Serkis). Resistance fighter Poe Dameron, the character played by Oscar Issac and barely given anything to do in the first film, gets a chance to shine, as does John Boyega as Finn. The inner conflict that Kylo Ren feels after having killed his father, Han Solo, in the last film is also a major story thread. Among the new characters the one that leaves the strongest impression is underling resistance fighter, Rose (Kelly Marie Tran) who teams up with Finn to give the First Order a run for their money, so to speak.

The problem with this Star Wars entry, like so many other films these days, is found in its overlength. This is a good one and three quarter hour movie stretched very thin into two and one half hours and you can easily feel it. Also the film insists on ham fisted jokes and a preponderance of CGI creations that are simply put into place to sell merchandise as they do nothing to advance the film’s plot. Writer-director Rian Johnson does a capable job and the results are good. I was just hoping for a little more.   

Star Wars: The Last Jedi opens this week all around this area.

Questions or comments? Write Adam at filmfan1970@hotmail.com.

 

ARCHIVES:

The Disaster Artist, Wonder Wheel

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri • Last Flag Flying

Justice League • Lady Bird

Daddy’s Home 2 (**) PG-13

Murder On The Orient Express Thor: Ragnarok

Suburbicon & The Florida Project

All I See Is You & Only The Brave

Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down The White House

Blade Runner 2049

Brad’s Status & Battle Of The Sexes

American Made

mother!
Kingsman: The Golden Circle

It

Good Time

Logan Lucky • Crown Heights

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth To Power • Wind River

13 Minutes & In This Corner Of The World

Annabelle: Creation & Detroit

A Ghost Story

Maudie & Atomic Blonde

War For The Planet Of The Apes • Dunkirk

The Big Sick • The Hero

Spiderman: Homecoming

The Beguiled & Baby Driver

All Eyez On Me

It Comes At Night & Paris Can Wait

The Lovers • The Mummy

Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales & Wonder Woman

Alien: Covenant

Snatched

Guardians Of The Galaxy & Volume 2

The Lost City Of Z

Colossal

The Fate Of The Furious & Going In Style

T2 Trainspotting

Life • Wilson

The Sense Of An Ending

Kedi

Kong: Skull Island

I Am Not Your Negro & Logan

Get Out & The Red Turtle

A Cure For Wellness & Fifty Shades Darker

Rings & John Wick: Chapter 2

Gold

Split • The Founder

Silence • Patriots Day

A Monster Calls & Hidden Figures

Paterson & 20th Century Women

Jackie

Fences • Sing • Rogue One

Nocturnal Animals • La La Land & Collateral Beauty

Why Him?

Manchester By The Sea Allied • Loving

Rules Don’t Apply • Moana & Bad Santa 2

Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them • Moonlight

Arrival & Dr. Strange

Hacksaw Ridge

Inferno & Ouija: Origin Of Evil

Jack Reacher: Never Go Back

The Girl On The Train & The Accountant

Masterminds • Deep Water Horizon • Birth Of A Nation

Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children

Snowden & The Magnificent Seven

Bridget Jones’ Baby & Blair Witch

Sully

The Light Between Oceans

Hell Or High Water & Don't Breathe

Sausage Party & Indignation

Florence Foster Jenkins & Pete's Dragon • Café Society

Eat That Question & Suicide Squad

Star Trek Beyond & Jason Bourne

Lights Out

Ghostbusters

The Purge: Election Year

Independence Day: Resurgence • The BFG

Free State Of Jones & DePalma

Now You See Me 2 & Finding Dory

The Conjuring 2 & Me Before You

X Men: Apocalypse Love And Friendship

The Lobster & The Meddler

Money Monster • The Nice Guys Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising

Miles Ahead

Elvis And Nixon Green Room

Midnight Special Everybody Wants Some

The Jungle Book

I Saw The Light • The Boss

Hello My Name Is Doris & Krisha

Divergent: Allegiant & Batman v Superman

10 Cloverfield Lane & Brothers Grimsby

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot & London Has Fallen

Triple 9 & 45 Years

Eddie The Eagle• The Witch

Where To Invade Next & Son Of Saul

Deadpool • The Choice • How To Be Single

Hail Caesar & Fifty Shades Of Black

The Finest Hours & The 5th Wave

Mustang & The Lady In The Van

Anomalisa • 13 Hours: The & Secret Soldiers Of Benghazi

The Revenant • Youth

Carol • Joy • The Hateful Eight

Star Wars: The Force Awakens • The Big Short • Concussion

Daddy’s Home • Alvin & The Chipmunks: The Road Chip

In The Heart Of The Sea • Krampus

Creed • Brooklyn

Spotlight

‘Mockingjay Part 2’ • All Things Must Pass • The Night Before

Trumbo

Spectre & The Peanuts Movie

Steve Jobs & Our Brand Is Crisis

Crimson Peak & Room

Bridge Of Spies & Goosebumps

99 Homes

The Martian • Sicario & The Walk

The Intern • The Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials • Everest

The Visit & Black Mass

Mistress America

The Diary Of A Teenage Girl A Walk In The Woods

American Ultra • No Escape • Sinister 2

Straight Outta Compton, The End Of The Tour, The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Irrational Man & Fantastic Four

Ricki And The Flash & The Gift

Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation • Southpaw • Vacation

Ant-Man & Trainwreck

Self/Less

Amy • Magic Mike XXL, Terminator: Genisys

Me & Earl & The Dying Girl, Ted 2

Inside Out & Dope

Love and Mercy & Jurassic World

Insidious Chapter 3

San Andreas & Aloha

Poltergeist &
Tomorrowland

Mad Max: Fury Road

Hot Pursuit

Avengers: Age Of Ultron

Ex Machina

While We’re Young & Unfriended

The Longest Ride

Fast & Furious 7

It Follows

Divergent

Cinderella

Chappie

Focus & The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

Hot Tub Time Machine 2

Fifty Shades Of Grey

Jupiter Ascending

Still Alice

The Imitation Game A Most Violent Year

American Sniper Inherent Vice

Selma & Taken 3

Unbroken

Big Eyes • The Interview

Night At The Museum The Secret of the Tomb • The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Top Five • Wild • Annie

Foxcatcher

Whiplash & The Theory Of Everything

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 • Horrible Bosses 2

Dumb And Dumber To

Birdman & Interstellar

Nightcrawler

Ouija

Fury

The Judge

Annabelle & Gone Girl

The Equalizer & Happy 75th, GWTW!

The Drop • A Walk Among & The Tombstones

No Good Deed

The Identical

As Above, So Below & November Man

If I Stay & Sin City: A Dame To Kill For

The Giver • Code Black & The Expendables 3

Boyhood • Into The Storm & Magic In The Moonlight

Get On Up & Guardians Of The Galaxy

Lucy

Begin Again & The Purge: Anarchy

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes

Chef & Tammy

Transformers: Age Of Extinction

Jersey Boys

22 Jump Street & How To Train Your Dragon 2

The Fault Is In Our Stars & Edge Of Tomorrow

A Million Ways To Die In The West

X-Men: Days Of Future Past Maleficent

Godzilla • Summer Preview

Neighbors • Godzilla

The Amazing Spiderman 2 & Belle

The Other Woman & Brick Mansions

A Haunted House 2 & Heaven Is For Real

Oculus & Rio 2

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Noah

Divergent

The Grand Budapest Hotel & Veronica Mars

300: Rise of the Empire

Non-Stop & Son Of God

Three Days To Kill

Robocop & The Past • About Last Night

The Monuments Men

Labor Day

I, Frankenstein

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Lone Survivor & August: Osage County

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About Time & All Is Lost

Thor: The Dark World & 12 Years A Slave

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Captain Phillips, Enough Said & Machete Kills

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Prisoners & Rush

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Riddick

Getaway

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The Heat & White House Down

Monsters University, World War Z, Before Midnight & The East

Man of Steel & This Is The End

The Internship & The Purge

After Earth, Now You See Me & Frances Ha

The Hangover Part III Before Midnight

Star Trek: Into Darkness & Fast and Furious 6

The Great Gatsby & Frances Ha

Iron Man & Peeples

Pain and Gain & Mud

Oblivion & Lords of Salem

42 and Scary Movie 5

Evil Dead & Jurassic Park 3-D

G.I. Joe: Retaliation Tyler Perry’s Temptation

Spring Breakers Admission

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