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SPOILER TALK - The Last Jedi (open spoilers allowed!!!)

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1 hour ago, Chen G. said:

you "agree with the pacing" being an issue?

 

Anyway, its far from the film's only weak spot and, unfortunately, all these minor quibbles form into something substantial.

 

Still a good movie, just not the great movie that people were hoping for.

Do you think people watch Star Wars expecting to see a Best Picture nominee?

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1 hour ago, Chen G. said:

Nevertheless, the criticism of this film isn't without reason. It has pacing issues in all parts of all three acts, some of the characters aren't fully realized, parts of the film lack polish, the comedy - while funny - doesn't always feel in place, and the film feels subversive to a fault.

 

That's a lot of (admittedly small) things wrong with a film that people were hoping would be excellent, and that has excellent parts. Makes it all the more jarring.

 

What boggles my mind is remembering that The Force Awakens received a less divisive opinion amongst fans besides the comparison to A New Hope. Han's death was a powerful, emotional moment in the film and shows Kylo officially turning away from the light of the force. The ending with Rey and Luke was such an impact on screen that it left fans holding extremely high expectations for The Last Jedi.

 

However, I notice that it is a controversial film here at JWFan. Was TFA bashed as considerably two years ago as TLJ has been these last few weeks? Were our expectations too high like the moment we started listening to TLJ's John Williams score expecting a plethora of new material which never came? Was this film doomed from the moment JJ Abrams left us with a tonne of unanswered questions regarding the storyline?

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It has a bit more polish, its a much more linear and well-paced film, its just as funny without being jarring in the application of humor, and it doesn't have anything like the Rose/Finn storyline, which just doesn't work on any level whatsoever. Overall, even the performances are better: the bad guys in this are too over-the-top.

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16 minutes ago, Chen G. said:

It has a bit more polish, its a much more linear and well-paced film.

 

Disagreed! At several points the film comes to a complete halt and has characters reciting loads of exposition to move stuff along. 

 

There's some very unpolished and clunky storytelling in TFA.

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When pacing issues plague just one part of the film (e.g. the second half of the second act in The Force Awakens), its not a big issue. When they plague two parts of the narrative or more, and especially the first half of the second act, that's when people will groan.

 

In The Last Jedi, all parts of all three acts could have used an additional editor's touch. The first act is exciting but overdrawn (Poe's prank-call joke alone feels like forever), the second half of the second act has way too much stuff going on simultaneously, and the third act almost feels redundant, but again - its the first half of the second act where you expect a film to start soaring and here, thanks to Finn and Rose, it just doesn't.

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That seems to be a very arbitrary "letting TFA of the hook" while punishing TLJ for the same.

 

It will be interesting to see how Ep 9 is perceived 2 years from now, and of the flaws of TLJ will be as easily forgiven.

 

I suspect so.

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5 hours ago, Denise Bryson said:

and even, in this case, feels like a middle finger to the fanbase, then they have good reason to complain.

 

I've heard a lot about the fan unrest over the actual story and direction they took with the characters, but to me the movie has more serious things wrong with it. For example there's an entire subplot, with an awful set piece as its focal point, which feels entirely redundant in what is a stupidly long SW movie already.

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I had a very interesting time showing TFA to someone who had never seen a Star Wars movie and didn't have a clue about the franchise (they exist), and then latter when we went to see The Last Jedi.

 

Some aspects of The Force Awakens definitely don't fully work. She said it was too predictable and the film falls flat with some of Abrams meaningless dramatics, like the destruction of that planet. On the other hand she really liked Rey and found Kylo's tantrums hilarious. (She was convinced that Rey would be Luke's daughter). Later we had a great time with TLJ, where her only complaint was that it was "a bit too intense with a lot of stuff happening at the same time at some point" and that's it. She seems to really like the new characters, particularly after the sequel, and doesn't have a problem with the characterizacion of the older characters or anything of the sort.

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2 minutes ago, Quintus said:

 

I've heard a lot about the fan unrest over the actual story and direction they took with the characters, but to me the movie has more serious things wrong with it. There's an entire subplot, with awful set piece as its focal point, which feels entirely redundant, in what is a stupid long movie already.

 

Indeed!

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There's also an issue with this trilogy as a whole regarding stakes. Usually, you want at least one of the three films to be more scaled-back in terms of the personal nature of the stakes. Think about The Empire Strikes Back: Outside of the Battle of Hoth, the survival of the rebellion isn't at stake, just our main characters. Think about Skyfall: The villian isn't trying to take over the world.

 

In The Force Awakens, we have Starkiller Base, and in this we have The First Order decimating the Ressistance, and I can't imagine something too dissimilar to that in Episode IX. When all three films have world-altering stakes, the audience becomes saturated in it quite quickly.

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Not the same. That's one film in three parts. It has a singular narrative thrust throughout.

 

Garrett Stiger (who, it should be said, liked The Last Jedi) had the same criticism for Avengers: Age of Ultron, and I think its fitting here as well:

 

Quote

another destroy-the-world plot.  Think about successful sequels like “Skyfall” and “The Empire Strikes Back.”  No fights for world domination, no planet-destroying battle stations.  Just personal struggles that make the stakes that much higher.

 

Garrett Stiger, Avengers: Age of Ultron

 

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I feel I need  to see 9 to form the final opinion for 8 but 8 is an undeniably curious movie with many curious choices.

 

Least of all having such an open ended conclusion in that no story threads are established for 9.

 

The entire point of a franchise in some cases is the opportunity to tell a larger more expansive story where the earlier films do the heavy lifting with the exposition while latter films can run with the story.

 

8 essentially restacks the deck. Meaning the table is almost reset and 9 will once again have to spend a lot of time to set up its plot and story from scratch since nothing is set up here. That's a very bad choice from a storytelling point of view.

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26 minutes ago, TheUlyssesian said:

All previous movies set up the next film. Except 8.

 

ANH doesnt set up TESB at all. TESB only sets up the rescuing Han part, but nothing from the actual plot of that film, which is about another Death Star.

It even seriously contradicts a few things from TESB.

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Of course. Carbon freeze adds twenty pounds and untucks your shirt. 

 

The prequels do a very bad job of setting each other up because (they suck and) there are so many years between them.

 

It's like if someone wanted to show your school upbringing, so they picked first grade, ninth grade, and twelfth grade. All the other years are in comic books or TV cartoon shows. 

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Well, it's the Sith way.  The idea is supposed to be that when Vader is on his own, he can freely discuss his mutinous ambitions. Once the Emperor arrives, his boss shows up, and he needs to behave. 

 

If Luke were to unite with Vader, it would be curtains for the Emperor. But with the Emperor watching, the best Vader can hope for is to defeat his son and secure his loyalty with his Master. Because otherwise he knows he will be replaced by this boy with three real limbs if he loses. 

 

But Luke doesn't want to play the Emperor's game, which opens the door to his father's salvation. 

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Yoda dies...because ummm...Luke has to be the last Jedi left?

 

Oh and there's another Death Star. But right, flawless movie otherwise.

 

2 minutes ago, Woj said:

Well, it's the Sith way.  The idea is supposed to be that when Vader is on his own, he can freely discuss his mutinous ambitions. Once the Emperor arrives, his boss shows up, and he needs to behave. 

 

If Luke were to unite with Vader, it would be curtains for the Emperor. But with the Emperor watching, the best Vader can hope for is to defeat his son and secure his loyalty with his Master. Because otherwise he knows he will be replaced by this boy with three real limbs if he loses. 

 

But Luke doesn't want to play the Emperor's game, which opens the door to his father's salvation. 

 

So do you even believe this BS?

 

It struck me as inconsistent when I first saw ROTJ, and it strikes me as inconsistent today.

 

Fanboy nostalgia will be a hugely limiting factor in this new series.

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1 hour ago, TheUlyssesian said:

8 essentially restacks the deck. Meaning the table is almost reset and 9 will once again have to spend a lot of time to set up its plot and story from scratch since nothing is set up here. That's a very bad choice from a storytelling point of view.

 

You don't need HOURS to establish something. That's bad writing. A good script would make 9 work on its own.

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21 minutes ago, karelm said:

ANH did not know there would be additional entries when it was made.

 

Exactly. So that's the exception.

 

42 minutes ago, Brónach said:

 

You don't need HOURS to establish something. That's bad writing. A good script would make 9 work on its own.

 

A good script in these sort of films is very hard to come by right? Most of these movies have extremely labored plots which take a lot of time to set up. So it will of course be a challenge.

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1 hour ago, Woj said:

What joy is there in The Empire Strikes Back? 

 

Okay, discovering that Luke survived the night, and when he meets Yoda. That's it. 

 

The Han/Leia/Chewie banter is very fun.  There are whole sequences that are exhilarating and extremely satisfying (Asteroid belt).  The failed light jumps throughout (until the end).  Perhaps you've not seen the film.

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9 minutes ago, Woj said:

 

Ricard, take Professor Karelm out back and plug him into the hyperdrive. 

 

Sometimes I just don't understand Woj.  After all, I'm only trying to do my job in the most...ahh forget it.  I found this book for you Woj, it might explain the story at your level.

06c95b7bda5a0b1f04229f1c084732b7--pop-up

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4 hours ago, Chen G. said:

It has a bit more polish, its a much more linear and well-paced film, its just as funny without being jarring in the application of humor, and it doesn't have anything like the Rose/Finn storyline, which just doesn't work on any level whatsoever. Overall, even the performances are better: the bad guys in this are too over-the-top.

 

Also, it doesn't turn Han into an arsehole they way TLJ does to Luke.

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I don't think Luke is an arsehole in this. I appreciate that he's old and weary. I still think its out-of-character for him to be contemplating killing his own nephew where, even under much greater duress, he refused to kill his father.

 

But otherwise I really like Luke in this, and as I said in my review, this is probably the best Mark Hamil has even been in a live-action role, although to speak again to the film's pacing issues, I really didn't need to see as much of his daily routine I did.

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