STAR WARS EPISODE 9: THE LAST JEDI – SPOILER REVIEW

HOLLYWOOD – Star Wars Episode 8 The Last Jedi hits screens worldwide this week.

Rian Johnson’s Star Wars Episode 8: The Last Jedi arrives in cinemas but does it blow up the Death Star or just explode on the surface. Here are FIVE takeaways, but be warned these are SPOILERS.

1 The first hour is a real drag. Star Wars was originally inspired by the Flash Gordon Saturday morning serials and here the Star Wars franchise has become like that. Familiar characters go off and do different things. But none of this quite amounts to the status of story. Time and space are manipulated in an offhand way. Travelling across the galaxy with a deadline counted in hours feels wrong. It minimizes the scale we’ve come to expect. And some of the stories feel like TV episode filler. Especially with Finn (John Boyega) and Rose (Kelly Marie Tran) Go to the thing and get the thing that’ll do the other thing while jeopardy happens that’ll take x hours. As much as Force Awakens lacked originality, it was exhilarating. This felt middle-act-humdrum.

2  In a telling scene, Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) tosses the light saber over his shoulder, mirroring the film’s own dismissive attitude to many elements set up by JJ Abrams’ first instalment. Luke for one was this big reveal in the first of the new films. Here, he spends a long part of the movie refusing ‘the call to adventure’, but it never calls again. Rey (Daisy Ridley) and Luke’s relationship doesn’t deepen. The offing of Snoke was a great scene, but again had a Game of Thrones abruptness. It seemed more intent on wrong-footing the audience than anything else.

3  Leia (Carrie Fisher) flying. I get that Leia is essentially a Jedi, strong in the force. But the moment she flew her character – and perhaps the series – hid in the fridge. I feel toward Star Wars now how I felt toward the Harry Potter films. I’ll go and see them and enjoy them. But I’m not invested. All the characters have ‘moments’, but I’ve lost sight of any real arc.

4 The humor. Force Awakens was funny – in a smart TV show way. The Last Jedi is more funny in a Jar Jar way. Cute/disgusting aliens, some comedy gurning – Finn has become a particular adherent, but Domhnall Gleeson and Oscar Isaac run him a joint second. And then the overplayed winking actually detracts from the movie. When Luke flicks dirt from his robe emerging from the lethal bombardment, I felt that was Mark Hamill doing that; not Luke. I could hear the conversation: ‘Hey what if I wink at C3PO?’ Luke’s character was always the most sincere, the most driven. When did he become this jokey semi-serious granddad?

5 Luke’s death. This was the most baffling moment of the film. Why make the twist that Luke is not actually there – using his force to project himself into the minds of the others – to then make the consequences exactly the same as him being there. I loved the moment that he revealed himself to Adam Driver’s Kylo Ren. It was epic. My highlight of the movie. It seemed to go in a really different direction. No, we’re not going to have the obligatory death.

5 b. Not every film has to have the same emotional beat – and this goes with the action too. We don’t always have to have the clock ticking while two sets of characters have to accomplish two different tasks. The algebra is becoming nakedly predictable. This is movie magic by algorithm.

To be clear, I quite enjoyed the film. Especially the last hour. But Star Wars ought to be great and for me this felt like the beginning of the end of my fascination with the series.

5 FACTS WE LEARNED FROM THE LAST JEDI TRAILER

HOLLYWOOD – Star Wars The Last Jedi released a new trailer yesterday.

And now Star Wars The Last Jedi trailer must be analyzed. The film stars Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac and Mark Hamill. Directed by Rian Johnson, it is the eighth episode in the Star Wars saga.

We sent the FACT squad into the heart of the First Order to find out what Luke Skywalker was up to.

1 Still no sign of Captain Kirk. This will be Episode 8 of the saga and yet the Captain of the Starship Enterprise has yet to make an appearance. Many fans expressed their outrage and remarked that the absence of Hobbits was also ‘a disturbance in the Force’.

2 However, we do have the sighting of a Tribble. So most Trekkies will be happy with that.

3 They’ve gone to a planet with a color scheme similar to the poster which is convenient.

4 The First Order – like the Galactic Empire – still seem to believe in having walking vehicles rather than, you know, use wheels.

5 Gandalf has a metal hand.

For more FACTS click here.  

THE LAST JEDI: STAR WARS 8 GETS TITLE AND POSTER

HOLLYWOOD – Star Wars Episode 8 has a title and poster: The Last Jedi.

Disney and Lucas Film revealed the title for the new Star Wars film: The Last Jedi. Rian Johnson directs and Mark Hamill stars as Luke Skywalker. He’ll join the young generation of new heroes played by Daisy Ridley and John Boyega. The studio issued a note with the poster that read:

For Star Wars: The Last Jedi we are taking out inspiration from a classic film by Michael Mann. Star Wars has always taken audiences to different worlds. The ice world of Hoth, the desert world of Tatooine, another ice world and another desert world, the names escape me. Anyway the point is we’re running out of climate zones to take the adventures. So we figured when Star Trek was running out of ideas, they’d visit planet Bonanza and all dress as cowboys. Or planet World War Two… you get the picture. Hence The Last of the Jedi.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi will be released December 15, 2017.

Image courtesy of @ThePixelFactor.

PEOPLE FORGET TO TELL SPOILER PHOBIC STAR WARS FAN FORCE AWAKENS IS OUT

NEW YORK – An obsessive spoiler phobic Star Wars fan has been told that he can come down and watch the film now, three weeks after the films release.

Obsessive Star Wars fan Colin Hardwright was so worried about hearing spoilers, or having The Force Awakens spoiled via teaser trailers, posters or story leaks that he built himself a fifty foot high pedestal in Manhattan, New York and scaled it on February 16th, 2015.

Colin’s wife Phyllis Hardwick explained Colin’s thinking to the Studio Exec:

Colin is a die-hard Star Wars fan and has been super excited about the new film ever since it was announced. He managed to avoid the first trailer but he knew that there would be more promotional material and he also knew that people might tell him something, even innocently, about I don’t know, the casting or something. So he had been reading about early Christian mystics and he got this idea of going up a pedestal until it was all over.

So then why didn’t he come down for three weeks after the film’s release?

The only problem was we were all so used to him being up there and we were excited by the film and then I wanted to see it again with my new husband. Then there was Christmas and the whole thing in the holidays. You know how during the festive season you forget what day it is, and you’re like, is it Thursday? and I sort of did that but with Colin. I mean, I’ve got a horrible feeling I might have inadvertently committed bigamy.

So what was Colin’s reaction when he finally saw the film?

We didn’t realize it, but he was quite weak. I mean his muscles had atrophied from always being in the same position. So after he descended from the pillar we were getting him to the other side of the road, but he was quite slow and he got hit by a bus.

Oh my God. Is he okay?

He’s kind of dead.

But at least he saw the film, right?

No he died instantly. I mean bang! Weren’t you listening?

Star Wars The Force Awakens is in theaters.

 

NEW FORCE AWAKENS TRAILER IS 90 MINUTES LONG

HOLLYWOOD – The new international trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens is over ninety minutes long and features tons of new footage.

The new international trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens dropped on the internet today via Japan. It is ninety minutes long and features entire scenes and much of the story. So far was have had character poster (CLICK HERE) and a shorter trailer from which we already learned 117 things (CLICK HERE).

The new trailer features Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Daisy Ridley, and John Boyega, but still no Mark Hamill and no Hayden Christensen as yet. J.J. Abrams spoke EXCLUSIVELY to the Studio Exec about the new international trailer:

We began with teasers and just glimpses and everyone got really excited so then we decided to give you basically two thirds of the film. With mainly got music on it and a few other things, but this way there’s only going to be about half an hour of stuff you haven’t seen. It’s going to be marvelous.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GBT4QxC6eJs

 

For more Star Wars CLICK HERE.

 

NEW FORCE AWAKENS CHARACTER POSTER REVEALS SURPRISE

HOLLYWOOD – Star Wars: The Force Awakens character posters have been released and reveal a surprising inclusion alongside Princess Leia, Han Solo, Rey, Kylo Ren and Finn.

There is no Luke Skywalker, but the Star Wars: The Force Awakens character posters did reveal one surprise inclusion: Anakin Skywalker, played by Hayden Christensen. It seems unlikely that Anakin will appear in the main action in the film but his appearance has led many commentators and bloggers to include that there might well be a substantial flashback section of the film, relating to the early and much loved prequels. Christensen’s inclusion in the cast had already been revealed by the Studio Exec when we published Exclusive images: click HERE. He will join Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Daisy Ridley, and John Boyega as well as Mark Hamill, presumably. But not Alec Guinness as we learned here

Xavier Poulis, owner and commentator of ManyBothansDied.Net, writes:

Hayden Christensen’s inclusion does seem to screw with the timeline and one can only assume that J.J. Abrams is returning to the prequels to try and rectify some plot points. What will be interesting is how this works out with the other stories that we know are taking place and what this back story will mean to the actual action of the film. I think I am not alone in saying that all fans will be pleased to have Hayden Christensen back in any shape or form. He is a class act. I do worry about the story of his inclusion in Rogue One though.

However, some have claimed that the delay in the release of the Hayden Christensen and the slightly different aesthetic might indicate that it is in fact a fake. Perhaps placed by Christensen himself who is still waiting for production to begin on Jumper 2.  This theory was put to rest by an email received last night from J.J. Abrams which said:

Hey, Studio Exec!

Hayden Christensen is definitely in the movie. He has a small but really important part and he is an excellent actor. I think Jumper 2 is going to blow us all away.

Best Wishes

Hay  J.J. Abrams.

Image courtesy of @ThePixelFactor.

For more Star Wars CLICK HERE.

5 FACTS WE LEARNED FROM THE FORCE AWAKENS TRAILER

HOLLYWOOD – Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer debuted on the internet, yet what did it really tell us about the film due out on Christmas Day, 2015? A previous Force Awakens post gave some ideas but to be sure we sent our Padawan FACT team to FACT-touine to find out.

1. Folk singer and misanthrope Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) from the Coen Brothers’ Inside Llewyn Davis gets to fly an x-wing over a lake. As well as an exciting moments of derring-do, Davis will no doubt be offering a song on acoustic guitar, perhaps as a melancholic prelude to a massive battle sequence, à la Pippin in Return of the King.

2. Stormtroopers are going to fight on the beaches of Normandy. Whether they have broadened their admission policy to included people who are not Bobba Fett’s father, or is Attack the Block’s John Boyega doing a bit of garbage compactor style disguise? This we are yet to see, but knowing Abrams’ fondness for visual quotes (inspired by a love of the original and/or a lack of original ideas) my credits would be on the latter.

3. Andy Serkis/Benedict Cumberbatch/Adam Driver’s voice-over is the kind of gravel strewn larynx work that usually can be heard on commercials for bourbon or Monday night football. The intoning about darkness awakening and light too is all a bit silly and made me miss Yoda’s thrilling précis to the Phantom Menace trailer, which was – let’s not forget – an exciting trailer.

4. Bad Robot is not just JJ Abrams’ production company, but an ethos. If you hated flying CGI R2D2, you’re going to loathe SPIN-EE Bad Robot Spin.

5. Sith Lords are so bad ass that even the safety guard on their lightsabers can cut your fingers off. The Millennium Falcon loops the loop (bit of lens flare), Daisy Ridley tools around on a landspeeder turned sideways and Voldemort lurks North of the Wall. What more could we want?

For more Movie FACTS CLICK HERE!