Star Wars: The Last Jedi (aka Episode 8 or TLJ) was met with set expectations by most if not some fans given its title. There have been mixed reactions to the film and these fans have made their sentiments known through social media in the loudest possible terms.
There are those who did not like the film. There are at least two reasons why these fans have voiced their displeasure. For one, it contained some useless scenes. They could not figure out how they fit in to the grand scheme of things in the Star Wars Universe.
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!
Canto Bight Mission
Perhaps one scene they felt was needless is the one in Canto Bight where Finn (John Boyega) and Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran) went to find a codebreaker who could deactivate a component on a First Order warship to allow the Resistance to escape without being traced.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Verdict
This is considered useless since there has been a plan to outwit the First Order. Admiral Holdo (Laura Dern) came up with the plan which does not sit well with Poe Dameron and Finn who feels they have to lose the enemy but do not see eye to eye with Holdo. These critics feel Finn and Rose should have been given a more appropriate mission.
The Truth About Rey’s Parents
These fans are hoping to see some mysteries unfold in TLJ such as Rey’s origins, probably thinking she must be related to Luke Skywalker or even Han Solo in some way given she is Force-sensitive and she is very handy with machinery (and even Chewbacca likes her). TLJ shot down those expectations when Kylo Ren revealed to Rey her parents are nobodies – a couple of reprobates who sold her in Jakku to support their vices.
Luke and Rey
Many are hoping to see Luke train Rey in almost the same manner Yoda trained him when he arrived in Dagobah in The Empire Strikes Back. They are somewhat surprised that Luke appeared to have turned his back on everything he has fought for when he tossed aside the lightsaber Rey handed to him.
DJ the Codebreaker
One useless character (in relation to the useless Canto Bight scene) is DJ played by Benicio del Toro. It turned out he is the codebreaker Finn and Rose have been looking for. All went well until he betrayed the two to the First Order after infiltrating the flagship. It is quite disappointing since they hope to see him as a new Lando Calrissian who is set to offer his skills to the Resistance cause.
Fans are somewhat disappointed on Captain Phasma’s (played by Gwendolyn Christie) role. Considering she is clad in more elaborate armor, it is expected she would play a key role in the film but none can be found and the focus is fixed on Kylo and General Hux (Domhnall Gleeson). In the latter part of the film, Phasma met her end in the hands of Finn (could this be how Brienne in Game of Thrones will die?) and that is pretty much it.
Snoke is expected to be somewhat of an incarnation of the Sith Lord Emperor Palpatine. But in the latter part, Kylo kills him (more on that later). What is disappointing here is we will never know his origins on how he came about to establish the First Order and rise to power or how he became a Dark Lord.
As mentioned earlier, TLJ has mixed reviews. We have seen what fans did not like about the film. Here are sticking points other fans accepted.
Related Link: The 5 Biggest Problems with Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
The film is not entirely predictable. As fans take their seats before the film rolls, they have formulated expectations on how it will turn out. They are hoping to experience déjà vu much like they have seen in The Force Awakens (TFA). True enough, some scenes are reminiscent of The Empire Strikes Back (ESB) when the Resistance is escaping the First Order and Rey finding Luke on a self-imposed exile in Ahch-To. The Throne Room scene where Kylo takes Rey to meet Snoke will remind you of Return of the Jedi (ROTJ) whe Darth Vader brough Luke to see Emperor Palpatine.
But this is where the similarities stop. The writers threw in a few proverbial curve balls to prevent TLJ from becoming too predictable. As mentioned earlier, Luke trains Rey in an unusual way by not following a program of instruction. His approach is simple yet unorthodox, especially on that part where he tells her to tap into the Force.
In the Throne Room scene, Rey tried to retrieve her lightsaber using the Force like what Luke did in ROTJ. In a surprise twist, Snoke anticipated that and got it back, thus spoiling that déjà vu. In a surprise twist, Kylo uses the Force to activate the lightsaber beside Snoke, killing him. If this contributes anything, we will never see the dynamic between Snoke and Kylo in the same vein as Palpatine and Darth Vader.
As for Kylo Ren, it is apparent he will not be another Darth Vader. First Snoke belittles him, saying he is nowhere near being like his grandfather. This upsets Kylo so much he smashed his helmet. As stated earlier, he killed Snoke, thus eliminating a master who could build him up as a Dark Lord given his unstable personality. Come Episode 9, we expect to see him wielding tremendous power but lacking the maturity to control it. How Rey will deal with him is still up in the air.
Some fans are somewhat disappointed Luke is gone. He went the same way as Yoda, becoming one with the Force after expending much of his energy to Force-project himself in Crait to help the Resistance escape. But for those who have accepted it, this somehow brings closure to Luke’s mortal life. From being disillusioned at the beginning of the film, he found redemption and peace. If it would be any consolation, he might still appear in Episode 9 in spirit form to continue guiding Rey and be a thorn on the side of Kylo (when he said, “See you around, kid”).
It is still a mystery on how General Leia Organa will play a part in Episode 9 since Carrie Fisher passed away. One theory goes Lucasfilms will use their visual effects magic again in the same way they did in Rogue One.
Fans upset on how TLJ turned out are filing an online petition for Disney to rewrite the story in accordance to their expectations. They are hoping it would stay true to the story canon established by George Lucas in the earlier films and post-ROTJ novels which Lucas may have approved. Disney has yet to respond to his clamor. To some, these are the real spoilers, their complaints are ruining an otherwise great movie.
As for the rest who praise Star Wars: The Last Jedi, they have accepted the outcome. They are happy in a way the film is not too predictable or a rehash of the earlier films. They understand this new trilogy is for the current generation and must suit their tastes. The iconic characters of the past have been given closure (even the actors feel they need to give way to the new characters) and the current characters are expected to carry on.
With that said, Star Wars: Episode 9 promises to be exciting. While we are waiting for it to finish, there is Solo: A Star Wars Story to keep us occupied. While we may be formulating what will be, let’s try not to issue spoilers for this one.
Featured Image Source: Lucasfilms/Disney Studios