Posts Tagged ‘Star Wars’

So I’ve just rewatched The Last Jedi for the fifth time now. And I want to talk about why it may be… time for the (Last) Jedi (hate)… to end.

And why this film flourishes emotionally and viscerally, even as it collapses logically and critically. I wish I could outright hate this movie or outright love it – as it is, however, I’m in the frustrating position of both hating and loving it at the same time – and I really can’t figure out how I’ll feel about it five years or ten years from now.

In this ‘re-evaluation’ or essay or whatever you want to call it, I want to reappraise my views on The Last Jedi, see what’s changed over time, and essentially conduct something of a defense of this movie – even though I could write another equally valid piece on everything that’s wrong with this movie.

This is motivated in part by how bored I am with all the ongoing hate for The Last Jedi – some of which is valid, and much of which has been excessive. But it is also motivated by how much the film has improved for me in these nine months. I also want to talk about how the Five Stages of Grief relate to my/our response to this movie and I also want to talk about The Last Jedi in the context of The Phantom Menace.

I have to say, it’s a film that seems to get better and better the more I watch it. It’s a film that grows over time – not a film that necessarily enamours you on first viewing.

I certainly wasn’t enamoured with The Last Jedi back in December: but to be clear, I never totally hated it. My initial review of the film was balanced between praise for the film’s significant strengths and pleasures – and dismay at some of the storytelling choices, character portrayals and frankly bad structuring.

My sense of the film now is still generally the same: I love lots of it, I definitely have an emotional response and engagement in key scenes, and I adore the cinematography and the visual tone and dynamics of this movie. But I still dislike some of the story choices, am still baffled by some of the lapses in logic, and I still question – as I always have – whether these sequel films needed to exist at all. (more…)

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Is The Last Jedi the ‘worst Star Wars movie ever’? Possibly. Even probably. But what does that even mean? It could be the ‘worst’ Star Wars film and still be really interesting and have great stuff in it.

Needless to say, this is my provisional review of The Last Jedi. And yeah, it’s probably going to get ugly at times.

I say ‘provisional’ because I have only seen the film once, a few days ago.

I plan to see it again, to try to understand it better and see if I feel better about it the second time – which is a distinct possibility. And I usually don’t write Star Wars reviews until I’ve seen the film more than once – however, my sense of dismay and confusion from this experience was so strong that I have felt compelled to write this out earlier than I would’ve done.

Writing this review – and thinking all of this through – has actually been a form of post-The-Last-Jedi therapy for me. And I needed that. If any of you out there have also been suffering from post-The-Last-Jedi psychological issues or distress, then perhaps reading through this might help you a little too.

I saw the film on Saturday night. I’ve been aware that there’s been some degree of ‘backlash’ online, but I haven’t looked at any of it, having been mostly off-line for a few days. (more…)

As Episode 8 of the Star Wars saga hits cinemas and adds a new chapter in the mythology of the galaxy far, far away, here’s a timely revisit to all the existing films in the epic, magical universe Uncle George made.

Even die-hard fans have mixed feelings about the various films, particularly in regard to the prequel trilogy, which has been excessively and mostly unfairly maligned. But here is a loving and critical look back across cinema’s greatest saga, with the added power of hindsight and greater perspective.

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There is something that occurred to me ever since seeing The Force Awakens for the first time. It’s a theory based firmly in the mysticism and esoteric nature of the Star Wars mythology that has always been there.

And I want to lay it out here – before people go to see the new film.

As the next chapter in the Star Wars film saga sees general release, I’m taking a last chance to bore everyone with my juvenile fan-boy theorising and wide-eyed analysis: and, in this instance, to explain why I think there’s a hidden story in The Force Awakens and that it wasn’t entirely the film we thought it was.

For anyone who’s not particularly a Star Wars fan, I apologise – for what is going to read like a lot of rambling, geeky nonsense.

I’ve posted this theory elsewhere too; but I wanted to make sure I shared it here as well. I can’t say, of course, whether The Last Jedi will validate any of this or not. But you will need to rewatch The Force Awakens after reading through this – in order to test the argument out.

An alternate title for this could be ‘ANAKIN SKYWALKER WAS IN THE FORCE AWAKENS AND WE DIDN’T NOTICE’. (more…)

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So Inauguration Day in Washington came across as a decidedly odd, even slightly unsettling, affair: which is perhaps the only fitting end-point for what has been a decidedly odd, even slightly unsettling, presidential race.
It also seemed to affirm my fears that we’re falling deeper into a bad place.

What was most striking about the scenes is how low-key, even grim, the mood and atmosphere was, feeling slightly more like a Soviet-style event than an American presidential inauguration. Something similar was noted by Russian chess legend Garry Kasparov recently in regard to Trump’s first press event. (more…)

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I’ve been feeling a little weird lately, particularly over the Christmas season. A little off-balance. It was a weird sort of year.

And this feeling was amplified a day or two after Christmas when Carrie Fisher died – something that was not only very sad for me, but also seemed to mess with my sense of reality in a weird way.

I usually like having my sense of reality messed with, by the way – I always find it engaging, because it forces me to think and to also go back to thoughts I’ve had periodically over the years concerning what the real nature of reality is. But no so much this time; not when it involves a sad event or the death of a personal (and, as it happens, massively popular) icon.

It wasn’t the only thing lately, however, that got me thinking outside of the box. And for the first article here this year, I decided to take things in a different direction for a moment. (more…)

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You never forget your first love, they say.

Carrie Fisher was my first crush – and my infatuation with Princess Leia as a little boy was the closest to falling in ‘love’ that a five or six year-old boy is likely to experience.

Princess Leia – to my childhood eyes – was the most beautiful human being that could’ve been conceived of. To my more grown-up eyes now, nothing has really changed. Carrie Fisher in that role is still my absolute standard by which ‘beautiful’ is measured.

And I still retained my crush on Carrie Fisher and Princess Leia all through these years. (more…)

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So yesterday was Star Wars Day.
I’m a day late, but I spent most of yesterday getting back to my foremost passion in life – defending the genius of George Lucas and trying to explain that he created one of the greatest and most under-appreciated works of art in all history.

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Here is the latest podcast, featuring the Burning Blogger of Bedlam and old-time film reviewer and now international jet-setter Mumra 2K; with discussion of the Star Wars: Rogue One  trailer and various other subjects. (more…)