The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Graham Kennedy » Sun Dec 17, 2017 1:47 pm

Saw this last night with Ian.

I like this movie but some things bother me about it.

For one, Space Leia was ridiculous. Just plain ridiculous.

For another, Finn's whole side mission. Think about it. He goes off with whatsername, mechanic girl, to get a code breaker from some planet. They completely fail to get the code breaker, but they meet another guy who says he's just as good. They come back with him... and then completely fail to do the thing they were trying to do. So they fail in every step of their mission, and then it never matters because their mission was pointless. You could cut that entire thirty minutes out of the movie and it would make no difference at all.

Likewise, Poe's whole rebellion against the Admiral lady. Turns out her plan was a good one after all, and so his entire rebellion, which set up Finn's mission, was a pointless waste of screen time. And the whole thing could have been avoided if the Admiral had told him her damn plan in the first place! Why didn't she?? Why wouldn't she?! There is no reason whatsoever for her to keep her plan secret, and the only reason it happens is so we can have an entire ultimately pointless chunk of plot whose sole function in the movie is to give characters who would otherwise be extras in this movie something to do that looks superficially important.

And then Finn and Mechanic Lady are... suddenly in love? WHY? When the hell did that happen? Neither one of them shows the slightest inclination towards being attracted to the other at any point throughout the whole film... until she's suddenly in love with him, for no reason whatsoever. And this happens what, six hours after they meet? At which point she shoots him for cowardice, remember. This just came out of nowhere and was a serious WTF moment. The best I can figure is that they had Finn be in love with her because they needed a reason he wouldn't be in love with Rey?

And okay, here's a minor one, but what the hell was with all that red stuff on the planet? Somebody tasted it and muttered 'salt', but that was the only explanation we ever got. I gather the plain has this red stuff underneath and white salt on top? But why do those little ships drag a stick along the surface as they fly around? Was it really just so they could make a pretty pattern whilst they were dying? It seemed utterly pointless and I spent about five minutes of that fight wondering what the hell was happening. I honestly thought they were going to have the red stuff be flammable or something, and they would wait till the First Order walked into it and set it all off under them. But no, it's just there to be there.

And finally, Rey, Luke and Emo Vader astral projecting across the galaxy. Along with Space Leia, that's the second previously unknown Force power that people pull out of their ass in this movie. At least this time they do establish it before Luke uses it in such dramatic fashion at the end, though.

So yeah... not a horrible movie, but one with many random weird elements to it.
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Mikey » Mon Dec 18, 2017 2:23 am

Didn’t feel quite so strongly about some of those nits, but...
Agreed about the WTF-ness of Rose and Finn’s insta-relationship. Heck, I thought Rose was involved with the deceased bombardier. I guess I could see the use of their side mission if it were successful, but here’s what I don’t get: Phasma’s supposed to be a real badass, right? There’s no way Finn should be able to go toe-to-toe with her.

Leia’s new anti-hard-vac power bugged me, but not enough to not let it go. What really bugged me was Dern’s character. How do you get to that position in a volunteer force by being such a jerk?
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Graham Kennedy » Mon Dec 18, 2017 2:46 am

I did like Rey. Yeah, she's a little Mary Sue, but Daisy is a charismatic lady and I just find it easy to like her in this role.

I also liked Luke. I can see why Hamill was so surprised by the choices here, for sure - Luke here isn't the eager hero he was in the original trilogy, for sure. But I think it makes sense. He screwed up, it's had galaxy-wide repercussions, and he's just sick of it all. Makes sense. And I like him as this slightly wild-eyed oldster who just wants to live on his island and is annoyed when Rey turns up. I enjoyed all of that, and I liked him finally showing up at the end. Plus, his brushing off the shoulder moment was soooo funny.

I was a bit WTF over the new Jedi ability of astral projecting across the galaxy, but only a bit. They did go to the trouble of setting that ability up in advance with Rey and Emo Vader (I just CANNOT remember that guy's name), so it's not like it came out of nowhere like Leia's vacuum thing did.

Oh, and it also made me smile to think of the way Discovery had Vulcan telepathic teleconferencing come entirely out of nowhere. Not that I think for a moment one copied the other, it just made me smile to see that both had done it. And this movie at least set it up better than Discovery did (which was not at all).

Funny moment in our cinema - when Snoke's giant ship got chopped in two by the cruiser going to lightspeed, the audience watched that in total silence. And then from about ten rows behind us, this kid's voice just went "WOW!" into the silence, and everyone cracked up. Wow indeed.

Come to think of it, that was kind of set up in Rogue One, when we see Rebel ships try to go to lightspeed and smash against a Star Destroyer. So kudos there.

Incidentally, I think this movie has set out to deliberately subvert a couple of the things that old Star Wars leaned fairly heavily on. One is the whole "chosen one/chosen family" thing, in which the whole of Star Wars is basically the Skywalker story. People have been speculating like crazy about who Rey's parents were, and I kind of love that the answer turned out to be that they were nobody special, just some average guys who sold her for beer money, left without a second thought, and are now dead in the desert somewhere. That, along with the Force-kid at the end, says to me that the underlying message is now more like "Not everyone can be a hero, but anybody can be". And I approve of that.

Intertwined with that is that Star Wars was always kind of mythological, with designated heroes doing great deeds whilst normal people just kind of help out a bit. Which is what you think Poe and Finn are doing, but then it turns out that the whole thing was a colossal waste of time and it would all have turned out pretty much the same if they'd just never bothered. Again, the message seems to be that success can come from anywhere. I think it's weird that they took so much time doing that, but it's a decent message.

I also really liked Yoda. "Page turners, they are not!" LOL

What's with the ever larger ships? Is there really a point to that? It's not even like it makes them any harder to defeat, for pete's sake. It reminds me of that Futurama episode where Bender wants the biggest Pyramid ever...

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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby mwhittington » Mon Dec 18, 2017 2:58 am

Did anyone else notice that Yoda was a puppet again and not CGI? I actually appreciated that. I went to go see this with my daughter Ashley yesterday in 3D and when Luke "became one with the Force" near the end, she almost cried :cry: Heck, I almost cried. And yeah, Luke brushing off his shoulder, great LOL moment!
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Nutso » Mon Dec 18, 2017 3:33 pm

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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Mikey » Mon Dec 18, 2017 6:39 pm

mwhittington wrote:Did anyone else notice that Yoda was a puppet again and not CGI? I actually appreciated that. I went to go see this with my daughter Ashley yesterday in 3D and when Luke "became one with the Force" near the end, she almost cried :cry: Heck, I almost cried. And yeah, Luke brushing off his shoulder, great LOL moment!


I took my kids too, and at that moment my son (8 years old) almost exploded in his seat as the parallels between Luke and Obi-Wan struck him (failed as a teacher/student became the current Big Bad, faced down said student, allowed himself to be absorbed into the Force during said showdown, etc.

As far as most of the other contrivances in the film, I thought they were in general set up - if not seamlessly organically, then at least enough to not be completely outre. I will never be convinced that the existence of Laura Dern's character was anything other than simply a concession to her desire to be in a SW movie, stamping her foot, and yelling that she used to be in Lynch movies and does anyone know who her father is. The existence of her character adds nothing, and could have been dispensed with without adversely affecting the film. I thought everything else was given some bit of justification, including the struts on the landspeeders. Would've liked to see a bit more clarity regarding the relationships between Finn and Rose, and Finn and Rey, but again I sort of expected some ambiguity as the price of being the penultimate (rather than ultimate) movie.

BTW, how great was the series of emotions running through Chewie as the porg (sic?) was watching him roast its friend?
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Captain Seafort » Mon Dec 18, 2017 6:55 pm

mwhittington wrote:I went to go see this with my daughter Ashley yesterday in 3D and when Luke "became one with the Force" near the end, she almost cried :cry: Heck, I almost cried.


I found Luke fading, against a twin sunset and to the old Tatooine theme, almost cheerful rather than tearing up. R2 digging out the old hologram was another matter.

Graham Kennedy wrote:What's with the ever larger ships? Is there really a point to that? It's not even like it makes them any harder to defeat, for pete's sake.


Of course it does - the cruiser we saw in TLJ looked about Home One-scale, and could therefore probably have overmatched the cruiser from TFA. Bigger ships mean more reactor power and greater volume for ground troops, and if you don't build bigger then you'll be outmatched when the other guy does. You might as well ask why the US built the Forrestals when the Midways were already the most powerful warships on the planet.

Incidentally, I think this movie has set out to deliberately subvert a couple of the things that old Star Wars leaned fairly heavily on. One is the whole "chosen one/chosen family" thing, in which the whole of Star Wars is basically the Skywalker story. People have been speculating like crazy about who Rey's parents were, and I kind of love that the answer turned out to be that they were nobody special, just some average guys who sold her for beer money, left without a second thought, and are now dead in the desert somewhere. That, along with the Force-kid at the end, says to me that the underlying message is now more like "Not everyone can be a hero, but anybody can be". And I approve of that.


That was one of the things that felt wrong with the film. Star Wars has always had it's "normal" characters playing a central role (Han saving Luke's bacon at Yavin, Lando rescuing the main gang in ESB, Wedge and Lando taking out the Second Death Star), but it's heart has always been the the Skywalker family drama. The galactic war going on around them has always been inextricably linked to that drama, just as the Wars of the Roses were inextricably linked to the Plantagenet family squabble. For that reason I'm going to reserve judgement on whether or not the newly minted chief bad guy in search of an apprentice was telling the whole truth about whether or not the insecure orphan he was trying to recruit was or was not the heir to a family with a long tradition of kicking the shit of obnoxious little gits like him. Especially when they're related to said obnoxious little git.

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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Graham Kennedy » Mon Dec 18, 2017 10:09 pm

Captain Seafort wrote:
Graham Kennedy wrote:What's with the ever larger ships? Is there really a point to that? It's not even like it makes them any harder to defeat, for pete's sake.


Of course it does - the cruiser we saw in TLJ looked about Home One-scale, and could therefore probably have overmatched the cruiser from TFA. Bigger ships mean more reactor power and greater volume for ground troops, and if you don't build bigger then you'll be outmatched when the other guy does. You might as well ask why the US built the Forrestals when the Midways were already the most powerful warships on the planet.

But in story terms, it makes no difference at all. Big ship shows up, big ship gets blown up. Bigger ship shows up, bigger ship gets blown up. Even bigger ship shows up, even bigger ship gets blown up.

And it never has anything to do with reactor power or anything like that. Every ship gets blown up by a last ditch desperate effort by a small handful of ships. A handful destroyed the Death Star, another handful destroyed the much larger and more powerful Death Star II, another handful destroyed the even larger and more powerful Starkiller base. A handful destroyer the Dreadnought, a single person destroyed whatever Snoke's Super-Dooper-Star-Destroyer ship is called.

No matter what giant megaship the bad guys build, nobody ever says anything like "So we'll gather a giant fleet and batter this XXXX into destruction!" Within a margin of error, destroying enemy ships takes exactly the same amont of effort no matter what.

That was one of the things that felt wrong with the film. Star Wars has always had it's "normal" characters playing a central role (Han saving Luke's bacon at Yavin, Lando rescuing the main gang in ESB, Wedge and Lando taking out the Second Death Star), but it's heart has always been the the Skywalker family drama.

Yeah, and I can absolutely see why fans would feel that way. Efforts to reinvent Star Wars don't bother me because I've never been especially invested in it. But you may have noticed my reaction to the recent reinvention of Star Trek was a little less than positive. :)

Incidentally, this movie is rating 93% with critics on Rotten Tomatoes. With fans, it's 56%. It seems like it's very divisive.
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Mikey » Tue Dec 19, 2017 6:51 pm

Naturally. It is impossible to have a topic into which people are as emotionally invested as SW and not have any discussion regarding it be anything but divisive.
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Graham Kennedy » Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:47 pm

A New Hope has a critic rating of 93% and a fan rating of 96%.
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Mikey » Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:33 pm

Graham Kennedy wrote:A New Hope has a critic rating of 93% and a fan rating of 96%.


ANH was also the baseline for comparison.
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Graham Kennedy » Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:53 am

Mikey wrote:
Graham Kennedy wrote:A New Hope has a critic rating of 93% and a fan rating of 96%.


ANH was also the baseline for comparison.

Indeed.

Now if you want divisive... my favourite Star Wars movie is Return of the Jedi. :)
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Bryan Moore » Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:10 am

This was puzzling and bad... and yet I want to go see it again. I'll recap in full after my second viewing.
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Mikey » Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:40 am

Graham Kennedy wrote:
Mikey wrote:
Graham Kennedy wrote:A New Hope has a critic rating of 93% and a fan rating of 96%.


ANH was also the baseline for comparison.

Indeed.

Now if you want divisive... my favourite Star Wars movie is Return of the Jedi. :)


I may mildly disagree, but I wouldn’t call that opinion divisive or even odd.
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Re: The Last Jedi - spoileriffic thread

Postby Sonic Glitch » Wed Dec 20, 2017 3:39 am

Bryan Moore wrote:This was puzzling and bad... and yet I want to go see it again. I'll recap in full after my second viewing.

I respectfully disagree. I found it puzzling and pretty good ... and yet I need to see it again before writing more.

Suffice to say I liked it. I enjoyed that for the most part I really didn't know what was going to happen.
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