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  1. - Top - End - #241
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
    Obiwan, Yoda are already Lords/Knights of the Space Aristocracy. The Emperor is.. the Emperor. Amidala is Queen.

    Han Solo is the glorious exception. Poe is already a Space Hero when the movie starts.

    You dont get my point, methink.
    So because they already exist, they don't count?

    It still doesn't address that the only people it matters for are Skywalkers.
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    Quote Originally Posted by littlebum2002 View Post
    It would be nice to just change the title of this thread to be "stuff about Jedi"
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
    Or, ya know, really big fan hangups.
    I'm certain that there were some people who were simply disappointed that Rey doesn't have a famous lineage for no good reason, but there are real problems with Rey's parentage regardless of that.

    Spoiler
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    The reality isn't that Rey's parent's were random nobodies - they were in fact actually horrible people. They, and I'll quote Kylo directly "sold you off for drinking money." This does not match with who Rey is. If you believe ethics are all nurture, then Rey's character makes no sense, and it didn't in TFA either. However, until we knew who her parents were you could justify her ethics in terms of nature (not unrealistic actually there's research to suggest that altruism and similar impulses are at least partially heritable).

    There's also the problem that Rey is chosen by the Force, and the Force has a will. Why did the Force choose someone seemingly at random? That's stupid. If you're going to empower someone, you undertake a careful search - like was done in the first Captain America film - to find someone who fits your criteria for the task. That movie spent a lot of time establishing who Steve Rodgers was and why he deserved to be the first super soldier. Neither TFA or TLJ has done any work to justify why the Force chose Rey. If she'd had famous parents or even just legitimately good parents (Luke Skywalker managed to have both and a surrogate parental mentor) that would have been a reason. Instead there's just a gaping hole.

    The OT involved a farmboy saving the galaxy - with farmboy as a specific proxy for a certain set of values that the audience was expected to identify with (Timothy Zahn in the expanded universe went so far as to call this out explicitly). The ST involves a junker girl saving the galaxy - but completely without the associated proxy values. Rey has been presented as a galactic hero because she is, which is lousy writing.
    Last edited by Mechalich; 2017-12-19 at 10:04 AM.
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  3. - Top - End - #243
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
    Or, ya know, really big fan hangups.
    And that's why its generally good not too get too invested in making points or arguments online. Not much of a point of making an effort.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fawkes View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Fralex View Post
    A little condescending
    That pretty much sums up the Scowling Dragon experience.

  4. - Top - End - #244
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Mechalich View Post
    Spoiler: Rey's parentage
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    The problem with Rey's parents being nobodies is that her potential parentage was the only available hook left to tie her into the story. By confirming that her parents were of no importance and had no significant impact on her character Rey is left as a bizarre blank slate protagonist who the Sequel Trilogy is happening to, rather centered upon. TFA had already closed out all other avenues.

    - Rey comes from nowhere - Jakku is an unimportant planet doing nothing.

    - Rey comes from nothing - she's a junk scrounger.

    - Rey has no major ideological ties - whether the First Order or the Republic or the Hutts or anyone else controls the galaxy doesn't mean squat to a junk scrounger on Jakku. Life will go on. She has no personal commitment to or even opinions on how the galaxy should be governed (contrast this with both Finn and Poe who very much do have such connections and opinions).

    - Rey has no ties to the Jedi Order. TLJ has her deeply committed to fighting for something that she knows only as a fairy tale.

    - Rey's moral foundation is a blank. This is a major problem. Rey is portrayed in both TFA and TLJ as an extremely ethical person. She is kind, generous, and selfless. This is pretty much the exact opposite of what her background as a cutthroat junk scrounger would lead us to expect (we would expect someone with her background to resemble the codebreaker).

    - Rey is a clone of Luke is pretty much every way except the disposition of her parents. Young idealist from a dead-end desert planet with a background in a lousy career that nonetheless provides her with a foundation of deeply practical skills. Only Luke was guided by the good old-fashioned American farm values instilled in him by Owen and Beru Lars (Luke's ideological foundation fundamentally the same as Superman's and prior to TLJ so were his ethics). Luke was pulled into the galactic conflict because of who his father was - that's the reason R2 and 3PO were sent to Tatooine in the first place, because Obi-Wan was watching him, and that's the reason he became more than a moderately important Rebel officer.

    Rey, by contrast, enters the story because she finds BB-8 effectively at random. Snoke says the Force chose her, but why did it choose her and no someone else? Why didn't it choose Finn? Or Poe? They're both far more invested candidates. Had Rey been given important parents/grandparents that would have provided justification for why, out of all the quadrillions of people in the galaxy, the Force chose her. Heck, she could have been given unimportant but morally upright parents who instilled her with a grand sense of ethics (like they could have been random Alderaanian charity workers or something) and that would have at least provided some justification for her as the 'righteous woman' champion of the light. Instead, we're left with 'random' and while random may be realistic, random does not make for compelling storytelling.

    Again, imagine if TFA - which teased this - had made Finn the chosen champion of the light and not Rey. The former child soldier turning against his masters to bring justice to the galaxy - that's at least poetic and certainly superior to what we have.
    Everything you said about Rey can be said about Han. Do you have similar complaints against him?
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    Quote Originally Posted by littlebum2002 View Post
    It would be nice to just change the title of this thread to be "stuff about Jedi"
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    Applying the swarm rules and vampire template to a group of babies strikes me as incredibly funny.

  5. - Top - End - #245
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    So because they already exist, they don't count?

    It still doesn't address that the only people it matters for are Skywalkers.
    ...yes.

    Because you are watching a story. Thats the point.
    Last edited by Cikomyr; 2017-12-19 at 10:20 AM.

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Everything you said about Rey can be said about Han. Do you have similar complaints against him?
    ...Han isn't Chosen by the force.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fawkes View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Fralex View Post
    A little condescending
    That pretty much sums up the Scowling Dragon experience.

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
    ...yes.

    Because you are watching a story. Thats the point.
    Yet you don't complain at all about Han, who you admit is an exception like Rey.
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    Quote Originally Posted by littlebum2002 View Post
    It would be nice to just change the title of this thread to be "stuff about Jedi"
    Quote Originally Posted by Emanick View Post
    Applying the swarm rules and vampire template to a group of babies strikes me as incredibly funny.

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
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    Rey is a nobody. Thats hard to accept to the audience, because we have been conditioned to accept that in Star wars, what makes you special is which bloodline you come from.
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    No. We haven't been conditioned by Star Wars. We were led to believe that Rey's parents would be special and would explain her inexplicable competence with the Force and with lightsabers and spaceships.

    You are ignoring that there was a huge marketing effort to make her parents a mystery and suggest that they were important.

    If people feel bamboozled, you can't blame them.

    I never wanted her parents to be special. I hate the fact that Ben is a Solo. I hate the theories that suggest Finn is a Calrissian, or Rey is a Kenobi. I don't care. It's an entire galaxy. Let's move away from a handful of families. Let's focus on merit and training and earned skill.

    So it doesn't particularly bother me that she is a nobody.

    But in the context of the rest of the movie, it's obvious that the whole point was to get everyone looking one way, and come at them from the other side. Luke didn't train Rey or end the war. Snoke is a nobody. Rey's parents are nobodies. Poe is a hindrance to the rebellion. Leia is dead but she's not dead. Luke is not dead but he is dead.

    I'm not invested in Rey being a Skywalker/Kenobi/Solo/Avatar of the Force. I'm just scratching my head wondering what the **** the director is doing.
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  9. - Top - End - #249
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Yet you don't complain at all about Han, who you admit is an exception like Rey.
    ...yes. exactly. Thank you for making my point.

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Samurai View Post
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    No. We haven't been conditioned by Star Wars. We were led to believe that Rey's parents would be special and would explain her inexplicable competence with the Force and with lightsabers and spaceships.

    You are ignoring that there was a huge marketing effort to make her parents a mystery and suggest that they were important.

    If people feel bamboozled, you can't blame them.

    I never wanted her parents to be special. I hate the fact that Ben is a Solo. I hate the theories that suggest Finn is a Calrissian, or Rey is a Kenobi. I don't care. It's an entire galaxy. Let's move away from a handful of families. Let's focus on merit and training and earned skill.

    So it doesn't particularly bother me that she is a nobody.

    But in the context of the rest of the movie, it's obvious that the whole point was to get everyone looking one way, and come at them from the other side. Luke didn't train Rey or end the war. Snoke is a nobody. Rey's parents are nobodies. Poe is a hindrance to the rebellion. Leia is dead but she's not dead. Luke is not dead but he is dead.

    I'm not invested in Rey being a Skywalker/Kenobi/Solo/Avatar of the Force. I'm just scratching my head wondering what the **** the director is doing.
    Blame Abrams, not The Last Jedi.

    Its not Episode VIII's fault that you were sold an empty box. And yet...

    Spoiler
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    a point can be made that Rey's parentage being important IS still a plot point.

    Her completely unremarkable origins is the point. And its important. In fact, its the whole goddamn point of the goddamn movie:

    Killing all the Skywalkers won't mean the end of hope in the Galaxy. Because More Hope can arise from everywhere to challenge darkness.

    Tracking down all people "strong in the Force" wont prevent more to arise, even from nowhere. Like Rey, like the kid at the end.

    In a way, Rey's unremarkable parentage is thus a powerful plot point that is damn necessary to this franchise. Its just not one that people seem to like.

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
    ...yes. exactly. Thank you for making my point.
    Some guy posted some years ago about how these forums have pages and pages of argument, only to eventually find out the people agree with each other. I'm reminded of that suddenly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by littlebum2002 View Post
    It would be nice to just change the title of this thread to be "stuff about Jedi"
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

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    I wouldn't say we were just conditioned by "Star Wars" that Rey's parents were something significant. TFA put some work towards building a mystery around her parentage.

    As for a "Hook", I think this movie made it pretty clear what Rey's Hook is. It's up to Rey to figure out what the next generation of force-user looks like. Luke had received some training from Yoda and Obi-Wan, but they're all dead now. Kylo is the only surviving force-user with any connection (Trained by Luke) back to the Jedi Order, and he flirted with Redemption before rejecting it.

    Heck, Rey doesn't even have a Lightsaber anymore.

    Rey may be a light-side force user, but she's not going to be a Jedi. She has to figure out what that means.

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by BRC View Post
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    I wouldn't say we were just conditioned by "Star Wars" that Rey's parents were something significant. TFA put some work towards building a mystery around her parentage.

    As for a "Hook", I think this movie made it pretty clear what Rey's Hook is. It's up to Rey to figure out what the next generation of force-user looks like. Luke had received some training from Yoda and Obi-Wan, but they're all dead now. Kylo is the only surviving force-user with any connection (Trained by Luke) back to the Jedi Order, and he flirted with Redemption before rejecting it.

    Heck, Rey doesn't even have a Lightsaber anymore.

    Rey may be a light-side force user, but she's not going to be a Jedi. She has to figure out what that means.

    +1 would quote again. I understand that TFA wrote checks that TLJ couldnt bank, but thats TFA's fault. And I still think my idea how you can twist the meaning of "important" still fits..

    Spoiler
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    Actually, i really like the idea of Rey keeping the Old Texts.

    Its like..you found the first edition of [insert religious text] , and you have to interpret it/learn from it without interference from the long line of Priests who each had their own bias, failings and baggage.

    She somehow returned to the source of knowledge, and from there will try to find a new truth, with modern sensibilities

    ..wait, did Rey became a Prophet?!

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    So, seems like this is a nice place full of balanced arguments. Time to force the internet to endure my opinion as though it mattered.

    I saw it. I thought it was great. Far and away better than TFA. I've basically said, TFA is what happens when you sit someone down and say "Make the most generic Star Wars story ever told." That's pretty much what you'd get. You'd have the Empire back for no reason. You'd have a new force-sensitive kid. You'd blow up another Death Star. Yeah.

    Last Jedi took a hell of a lot of risks, and not all of them worked. But enough did that I enjoyed the experience and surprisingly few of my predictions of what was going to happen actually happened.

    I have seen a lot of Star Wars media, and a hell of a lot more that follows the Lucas guidelines on how to do a Hero's Journey. So watching a movie try to do something different while still paying homage to the old plotting techniques was a breath of fresh air.

    And of course, when risks get taken and things don't go the way people believe they are promised, others will find this frustrating. I understand the criticism. Don't agree, but I understand it.

    Spoiler
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    So, I'll go over what I liked.

    1) Getting Snoke out of the way. When I saw Snoke in TFA my initial reaction wasn't "Oh, look at this cool old guy, I wonder about his backstory and how he came into power." It was "Oh... they're doing the Emperor again. Why the Hell are they doing the Emperor again? We saw the Emperor. We saw the Emperor's backstory and it was ****. Do something new."

    So getting him out of the way to start focusing on the actual new interesting dark side force user was great. And something I did not see coming. And having no sources of information about the character, except the two movies, we already kind of know enough about him for him to fulfill his purpose in the plot. He's a powerful, probably ancient dark side force user, that appeared after Luke started training new Jedi. Saw the dark side potential in Ben as an apprentice, and fed it to make him a tool for his own ascension as new overlord of the galaxy. Done. That's all we need to know. Whether he was an Inquisitor or some evil sorcerer from the Unknown Regions, or the reborn Exar Khun. It doesn't actually matter for the story of Ben and Rey, which this trilogy is shaping up to be.

    2) Rey's parents are nobodies. Thank you. This is great to me honestly. Further enforces the notion that bloodlines shouldn't actually mean anything, which comes back at the end of the movie with the kid and his broom. Anyone can be a hero. Way better than the theories floating around that she was Anakin reborn, or Luke's daughter, or Obi-wan's great-great-twice-removed grand niece or whatever.

    Unfortunately, that revelation is still somewhat muddled by the fact that there is still some seemingly heartless random manipulator that gets to pick who gets to be force sensitive and who doesn't. That's a sadly unavoidable problem as soon as you add the divine to any medium. As soon as your God, or Force, or whatever can take an active hand in the setting, as the Force clearly does, then ultimately it gets to decide potential. Of course, you don't need Force powers to be a hero, which we already saw with Han, and now Finn, Rose, and Poe. Sadly their storyline is the weakest of the bunch in this movie. But I'll get to that later.

    3) Kylo is still great. I think I was one of the only people who would have answered "what was your favorite part of TFA" with Kylo. Yep. He's a whiny self-absorbed Darth Vader wannabe. And I love that. Scratch the surface of any Sith and you get a crying child about how life's unfair. Vader kept an aura of cool and aloof and being a violent murder machine, but he was only an interesting character and not just a cool looking stage piece once they added the Skywalker connection and potential sources of emotional turmoil and conflict in ESB and RotJ.

    So many people seem to just want more Darth Vader. And sure, I get that, and that's why I read the Vader comics (which are awesome by the way) but we already have Darth Vader. Why do we need another Darth Vader? Hell, we already have Darth Vader, Darth Malgus, Darth Marak, Darth Krayt, Darth Bane, Jacen Solo, and Ulic Qel-Droma. We do not need another Sith who happens to check all of Vader's boxes while the writer and audience just sort of acknowledge that we're doing Vader again without actually saying we're doing Vader again. Then comes this kid who is clearly obsessively trying to be Vader that it's a plot point, and just falls on his face. And man do I love it. He was the only interesting thing in the last movie.

    And he was interesting in this one, as well. We get to see his exact moment of fall, which makes sense in his head. He already had the call of the Dark Side in him, probably from Snoke's manipulations (since we know Snoke can do funky force stuff involving altering people's minds). We get to see his struggle with living up to the expectations of his fathers and how he ultimately rebels against all three of them (Han, Luke, and Snoke). We see his ambition and the tension between him and Rey works fairly well. Snoke connecting their minds to play upon both of their weaknesses only for Kylo to then use Snoke's own powers against him was pretty great. I also rather enjoyed the following fight scene.

    Now we get to see that completely out of his depth child in command of the empire in a way that Vader never was. And it did not disappoint. Constantly using his authority to direct military supplies away from real objectives to assuage his petty vendettas. He's a bully and a hurt child, not a military leader.

    4) Luke was fantastic. It actually played with his character flaws. In the original trilogy, Luke is a pretty flawed character. Impetuous, kind of self-centered, and constantly in over his head, but you don't really get the idea that the movie understands his flaws. We got Yoda pointing them out in ESB, but even then it felt more like lip service. This movie put them on full display. Also, some of the best acting Hamill has done in years. Great job Mr. J. I also really loved that the entire Luke/Rey plotline was an inversion of the standard Hero's Journey. Usually, the hero (Rey) refuses the call, meets the mentor, agrees to the call, yadda yadda we all know what a Hero's Journey is. Occasionally there's like a mini-arc where the mentor needs convincing to actually become the mentor.

    In this, the entire hero arc is given to the mentor. It's not perfect, the failed tests section happens in flashback during the section it should happen in front of you. But really, amazingly done. It also gave a very important voice to the Jedi detractors, The Jedi himself. Let's be clear, the Jedi were a ridiculously flawed institution. And, much like Luke himself, we get the idea from watching the Prequels that Lucas doesn't actually see the flaws. They were just the good guys.

    But we all saw the flaws. Hell, I've had debates about how idiotic some of the old Jedi Order's stances were and how dumb they had to be to use the clones in the first place and do not see the betrayal coming. So to have Luke proclaim the Jedi Order as blatantly flawed as they clearly have an interesting side of the argument on the screen. This realization along with his understanding of his own moral failings when he was tempted to kill his own nephew (even if he wouldn't do it), plus the utter loss his failings resulted in, I can definitely see why he took his next step: He went and found the Sacred Jedi Texts. He went back to the origins to try and find a solution to the problem, and when he found nothing that would solve the intrinsic problems of the Jedi, he hermitted himself.

    And then, when he does finally get his act together and goes to save the day. Hot damn that sequence was just amazing. Luke Skywalker is the symbol of hope for the galaxy. Still a man, still flawed. But there he was, facing down the entire First Order. I was grinning like an idiot watching that sequence. Luke stepping up as the Jedi Master we all want him to be, tricking the entire galaxy to save the heroes, sow dissension among the villains, and inspire the next generation of freedom fighters. That's a way to send off a character.


    But this is the internet, and I definitely don't think this movie was flawless. Better than TFA and the prequels, but not ANH or ESB territory.

    1) The First Order is problematic. I think I understand what they're trying to do. The Empire was always just an expy of fascism drawing mostly from Nazi Germany. And with the whole next generation thing, I think they're trying to show with Hux's bluster and constant reminders he's an angry dog, that these aren't German Nazis anymore they're closer to our own modern day Neo-Nazi's with the angry shouting and the stupid looks. However, that doesn't really work. Because modern Neo-Nazis aren't really a military threat, they're at most a mob. So taking a Neo-Nazi giving them a Nazi uniform and putting them in charge of the actual Nazi Army doesn't fit. I'm of course talking about Hux. The movie seems to constantly make him the butt of jokes, from the very first scene of the movie to the last. Even the chance to reveal he actually had a decent military plan (at least for Star Wars) was undercut by Snoke throwing him around like a ragdoll. The sad thing is, the actor does a fine job pulling off every emotion the director is giving him. From apoplectic rage to sniveling sycophant to fear and indignation. He's fine, but the character just cannot be taken seriously as a threat.

    Which is sad, because a different character in that position actually would make better tension. I joked when I watched the first movie that Hux's character would be better if he was blue, with red eyes, and spoke calmer. And, honestly, I think that holds even truer now. Having a professional military to act as a counterpoint to the narcissism of Snoke and Kylo would have made better tension, even in the last scene. I have a feeling that the "mad dog" is going to have some sort of a payoff in the final movie. But honestly, the damage is done. I can't take him seriously as a threat anymore.

    2) The stranded rebellion. So of all the plotlines in the movie, the Finn/Rose/Poe story is the worst. The message that beyond the fighting the true evil is societal forces and people that gain off of exploitation and violence is a good one. Honestly, probably the most mature message ever in a Star Wars movie. Unfortunately, the story around the message was pretty dull. Now the kids telling stories about Luke's courage and having the stories influence their own morals and ideals was brilliant. Hell, even the reveal that the Admiral who was played by that lady from Jurassic Park with the hair was actually smart is great. Completely changes what we think was going to happen. Hell, even having the heroes being the reason the plan fails is good. Heroes should be wrong more. The problem came from the setup. So, Admiral Jurassic Park could have solved this whole problem by whispering to Poe that they have cloaking on the transports. But, even ignoring that, the trip to Casino Planet wasn't interesting.

    I don't care about Finn and Rose. Finn, to me, was the biggest failure of a character from TFA, and this movie did nothing to change my opinion. Here's a man who was a stormtrooper, who betrayed the First Order. That's awesome. That's a new way to look at the setting. There's tension when we see these Troopers are actual humans, worse, they're child slaves. Finn didn't even have a name. Wow, that's awesome. I wonder where they'll take this thread? Nowhere. In TFA there is nothing to show that Finn is any of those things other than having occasional helpful knowledge. That holds true here. Finn's pretty much a failed experiment at this point. Other than her initial great introduction, I couldn't tell you much about Rose other than she's a mouthpiece about oppression, and spelling out the themes for the audience.

    Even when I like the themes they're trying to go for, the whole sequence just is dumb. They could have gotten away with their hacker if they just parked somewhere normal. That was their whole problem. And then, when they can't get their hacker they just get another hacker anyway. And then after they cause all the problems that basically got the entire Rebellion killed, there is no scene to show them regret their decisions. Having flawed characters fail, that's fine. Having your protagonists cause more harm than good, that's fine. But then not taking the time to explore what that failing means to them is the problem. It just makes them seem inhuman. Sure my idiocy just killed everyone I know and may have doomed my entire cause. But I'm not going to acknowledge it and everyone is still going to like me. Yeehaw!

    3) The humor. I touched on this one already, when talking about Hux. But it bears repeating, humor is a powerful tool for a movie to warp our opinions of characters and events. Need to let off a little steam after a very tense sequence? Tell a joke. Want the audience to immediately see a character as unimportant? Make him a joke. They don't even really have to be good jokes (though admittedly good is better), but the existence of them helps to set our emotional balance in a place better to be affected by the next tense or dramatic scene.

    This movie has a problem understanding which jokes should have been left on the cutting room floor. Clearly turning Hux into a joke was one. But the other big one, to me, where those damn gerbil penguins. **** them. They were fine, not great, but fine on the planet with Luke and Rey. They added some humor while we mulled over the latest sequence of Luke or the rebels in whatever bad situation they were in. Hell, I even gave a quiet "heh" at the scene where Chewie was gonna eat one of them. But in the final fight sequence? When tension supposed to be at the highest? When we should be at the edge of our seats completely caught up in the experience? That's when you cut to these damn gerbil-penguins mugging at the camera three times in a row? Who thought that was a good idea? How? God that pissed me off.

    4) The mixed message about personal sacrifice. The movie tries to take an actually kind of interesting point that suicidal sacrifice is ultimately counterproductive and a bit of a stupid way to run a war. Or at least, morally problematic. Poe gets yelled at for sacrificing all bombers to destroy the dreadnaught. Rose gives her big speech to Finn, which was the culmination of their arc in this movie about how we win by defending our friends and loved ones not by trying to get ourselves killed. Yeah, ok. I can see how society needs to stop romanticizing death. I don't 100% agree when looked at from a totally militaristic point of view. But whatever, I'm willing to see how this plays out. Only, the two biggest moments of the film were about heroes self-sacrifice. Admiral Jurassic Park's hyperdrive suicide run and Luke's confrontation with Kylo. They've muddled their own message, and in doing that they call into question the whole big speech with Rose. And since I've already said how much I don't like the Rose/Finn plot, I think having even further outside forces pointing that the revelation of their story arc is wrong is just another problem that this film doesn't need.

    5) Where they go from here. So this isn't a point against the movie, so much as me dreading what's happening next. I don't trust Abrams to follow this up with anything original. But even worse than that. If the next movie forces me to sit through a tangled love rhombus where Finn and Kylo love Rey, but Rose and Rey are in love with Finn. And Rey doesn't know what to do. Then I will punch someone.

    Last edited by Dienekes; 2017-12-19 at 11:27 AM.

  15. - Top - End - #255
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Your criticism #4

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    about the value of self-sacrifice

    Thats probably one of the most genuinely solid criticism leveled against this movie. It does not bring the movie down, but its sad that they stick with an aesop only to shoot themselves in the foot

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    As for the film itself, I liked it, but I'm a little worried that JJ abrams is coming back for episode IX.
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    TFA was a Star Wars Movie made by somebody who LOVES Star Wars, and I think it suffered for it, because it was trying to be The Most Star Wars a movie can be, with lightsaber fights and evil empires and superweapons and dogfights in space. You had cosplay Darth Vader, and CGI Emperor palatine. TFA was about "Hey, Star Wars is cool!".

    THIS movie was kind of a rejection of Star Wars. The Jedi Order is gone. The Snoke/Kylo dynamic was burned to the ground, and will never again resemble the Emperor/Vader dynamic. Thematically, the whole "High Risk Heroic Mission" thing gets slapped in the face. Poe gets most of the Resistance killed off, Finn and Rose's mission just gets more people killed, Poe's Mutiny does nothing. Heck, even the Trailerbait "Blow up the mini-death star" thing goes nowhere.

    Luke's whole gambit at the end only works because Kylo is just as obsessed by this whole "Single Hero" Narrative as everybody else.

    It's got flaws, sure, but I wouldn't call the central themes flawed.

    IF episode IX continues this trend, that would be a nice thematic journey for the series. First, a movie very much in the romantic "Heroes Save the Day" Vein. Then a movie about how "Heroes Doing Risky Things" Doesn't work. The third movie is about something new.

    But, with JJ Abrams back at the helm, the third movie is likely to feel more like TFA, which would be servicable, but make the trilogy a thematic mess.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Everything you said about Rey can be said about Han. Do you have similar complaints against him?
    This is, in my mind, the difference between Rey and Han:

    -Han is introduced as a smuggler with a starship. Throughout ANH he proves to be a good shot with a blaster (which is either implied or outright shown in his first scene, depending on how you interpret it), charismatic (makes sense for a smuggler), and able to fly a starship. His moral character is also a bit vague, as he decides to cut it and run but then has a change of heart. In the next two movies we see him becoming more of a leader, but he's still mainly being charismatic, a good shot with a blaster, and a starship pilot, which was established from the first film.

    -Rey is introduced as somebody who collects junk. She's shown to be good with technology and able to use a staff. Then she's shown to be able to fly a starship, alright it's not like characters in the OT didn't have diverse skillsets. Then she's given a blaster by Han, despite already having a weapon that'll serve her well in the situation they're getting into, and is able to use it competently (note that Finn, who is amazing with blasters, is shown to be somewhat poor at CQC). Then she's shown to be a special force person who is strong in the force, enough to resist Kylo. Then when she finally escapes she puts one of those earlier skills to use by beating a not completely together Kylo in a lightsaber duel. Then we come to this movie, which keeps most of the the stuff from TFA but also shows that Rey knows how to use estalished forms of lightsaber combat without training, and is still a special force person.

    Annoyingly, I like Rey as a character especially after TLJ gives her a potential flaw or two, but her skill set is 'everything important to the movie'. If she'd been the pilot good with technology and a staff she'd have had enough skills to have a role in the story. Or if she had been the tech-savvy Jedi (Poe not being with the others as the pilot character is still one of my big gripes about TFA). Or potentially the Jedi pilot (hello Skywalker 2.0). But she's everything, revealed over the course of the films as it's needed to be, while Han's primary skills are the first things we see and then we see his morality develop, unlike Rey where we see she's a good person (and that doesn't change over these two films) and then see her reveal more and more sills.
    Last edited by Anonymouswizard; 2017-12-19 at 11:54 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
    Blame Abrams, not The Last Jedi.

    Its not Episode VIII's fault that you were sold an empty box.
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    I'm blaming The Last Jedi. Because that is the movie obsessed with subversion and deconstruction. And I'm blaming The Force Awakens because it hyped up several themes that they had no intention of delivering.

    It's a trilogy. One is a sequel to the other. They go hand in hand.

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    a point can be made that Rey's parentage being important IS still a plot point.

    Her completely unremarkable origins is the point. And its important. In fact, its the whole goddamn point of the goddamn movie:

    Killing all the Skywalkers won't mean the end of hope in the Galaxy. Because More Hope can arise from everywhere to challenge darkness.

    Tracking down all people "strong in the Force" wont prevent more to arise, even from nowhere. Like Rey, like the kid at the end.

    In a way, Rey's unremarkable parentage is thus a powerful plot point that is damn necessary to this franchise. Its just not one that people seem to like.
    Dude. I agree that Rey shouldn't have remarkable parents. It's what I wanted. You're ignoring the fact that they framed it as something else. You're ignoring the hype that they generated around it. It's not that people don't like that she's not a Skywalker. It's that people were expecting an explanation for her powers and what we got was "Have you ever seen the Matrix Reloaded? It's like that."

    You can easily make a movie where Luke and Leia and Han are trying to defeat the First Order, trying to be the heroes and legends that they were, and they can't. New blood is necessary. But are they Skywalkers and Solos? No. They're just regular people with the character, skill, and resolve to take up the mantle where the others left it.

    That's perfect. No need to give her remarkable force powers and pretend that she has special parents and then pull the rug out from under everyone.

    You're taking the goal (you don't have to be special to be a hero) and saying it has merit, and using that to justify the storytelling that we got. That's not how that works.

    You can kill all the Skywalkers and Solos in the galaxy, but there will always be force sensitive people. So you should train them. But if you train them, others will gain power to balance it out. So you shouldn't train them. But how do you make sure that no one will realize their force potential? You can't. So what is the point that the movie is making?
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  19. - Top - End - #259
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    Rey is nothing like Han, not in character, or in purpose to the plot.

    Han is somebody introduced with a motive for wanting a lot of money fast as well as just getting off the planet, and as having the skills necessary to do the job. His personality, origin, skills, and motive are all established in the Catina and nothing more is necessary for his role in the story at that point. When he later grows as a character, that is because of the direct interactions between him and everyone else.

    Then in the next movie we learn more about his background.

    Rey is introduced as a cypher, a nobody on a planet of nobodies, that just happens to wander into a droid. Luke is actually much the same way, but with Luke he is quickly I brought in by Obi-Wan right into the thick of things using the hook that Luke could learn more of his father and become a hero.

    Rey remains a cypher throughout TFA. Her mysterious origins are deliberately invoked and questioned again and again. It happens when we learn she’s been abandoned as a child, again when Luke’s lightsaber calls to her (Maz even emphasizes the question), and other characters (like Han Solo) question who she is. In the new movie, its one of the first things Luke asks her (and repeats it), its the question Ben Solo keeps talking about.

    Rey’s origins are not something the fits one of the boxes of character archetype like Han Solo at all. She does not simply have a humble unimportant origin like Anakin in Phantom Menace. Her origin question is constantly being reinforced, questioned, and driven home.

    Rey is a character with a giant hole in her origin story that is constantly being poked. TLJ decides to keep poking, decides to make it a central question for Rey and those interacting with her.

    Finally it
    Spoiler: Rey’s Origin
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    decides to pull the equivalent of saying the question never really mattered in the first place. Rey’s parents are nobodies and there is no particular reason why she, of all people, was the one blessed by the Force to be Kylo’s superior equal.


    We don’t even get a pseudo-scientific explanations like midichlorians.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reddish Mage View Post
    Rey is nothing like Han, not in character, or in purpose to the plot.

    Han is somebody introduced with a motive for wanting a lot of money fast as well as just getting off the planet, and as having the skills necessary to do the job. His personality, origin, skills, and motive are all established in the Catina and nothing more is necessary for his role in the story at that point. When he later grows as a character, that is because of the direct interactions between him and everyone else.

    Then in the next movie we learn more about his background.

    Rey is introduced as a cypher, a nobody on a planet of nobodies, that just happens to wander into a droid. Luke is actually much the same way, but with Luke he is quickly I brought in by Obi-Wan right into the thick of things using the hook that Luke could learn more of his father and become a hero.

    Rey remains a cypher throughout TFA. Her mysterious origins are deliberately invoked and questioned again and again. It happens when we learn she’s been abandoned as a child, again when Luke’s lightsaber calls to her (Maz even emphasizes the question), and other characters (like Han Solo) question who she is. In the new movie, its one of the first things Luke asks her (and repeats it), its the question Ben Solo keeps talking about.

    Rey’s origins are not something the fits one of the boxes of character archetype like Han Solo at all. She does not simply have a humble unimportant origin like Anakin in Phantom Menace. Her origin question is constantly being reinforced, questioned, and driven home.

    Rey is a character with a giant hole in her origin story that is constantly being poked. TLJ decides to keep poking, decides to make it a central question for Rey and those interacting with her.

    Finally it
    Spoiler: Rey’s Origin
    Show
    decides to pull the equivalent of saying the question never really mattered in the first place. Rey’s parents are nobodies and there is no particular reason why she, of all people, was the one blessed by the Force to be Kylo’s superior equal.


    We don’t even get a pseudo-scientific explanations like midichlorians.
    You just said everything I was thinking, thank you.
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi - There At First.. wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Reddish Mage View Post
    Rey is nothing like Han, not in character, or in purpose to the plot.

    Han is somebody introduced with a motive for wanting a lot of money fast as well as just getting off the planet, and as having the skills necessary to do the job. His personality, origin, skills, and motive are all established in the Catina and nothing more is necessary for his role in the story at that point. When he later grows as a character, that is because of the direct interactions between him and everyone else.

    Then in the next movie we learn more about his background.

    Rey is introduced as a cypher, a nobody on a planet of nobodies, that just happens to wander into a droid. Luke is actually much the same way, but with Luke he is quickly I brought in by Obi-Wan right into the thick of things using the hook that Luke could learn more of his father and become a hero.

    Rey remains a cypher throughout TFA. Her mysterious origins are deliberately invoked and questioned again and again. It happens when we learn she’s been abandoned as a child, again when Luke’s lightsaber calls to her (Maz even emphasizes the question), and other characters (like Han Solo) question who she is. In the new movie, its one of the first things Luke asks her (and repeats it), its the question Ben Solo keeps talking about.

    Rey’s origins are not something the fits one of the boxes of character archetype like Han Solo at all. She does not simply have a humble unimportant origin like Anakin in Phantom Menace. Her origin question is constantly being reinforced, questioned, and driven home.

    Rey is a character with a giant hole in her origin story that is constantly being poked. TLJ decides to keep poking, decides to make it a central question for Rey and those interacting with her.

    Finally it
    Spoiler: Rey’s Origin
    Show
    decides to pull the equivalent of saying the question never really mattered in the first place. Rey’s parents are nobodies and there is no particular reason why she, of all people, was the one blessed by the Force to be Kylo’s superior equal.


    We don’t even get a pseudo-scientific explanations like midichlorians.
    QFT

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    I agree.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reddish Mage View Post
    Finally it
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    decides to pull the equivalent of saying the question never really mattered in the first place. Rey’s parents are nobodies and there is no particular reason why she, of all people, was the one blessed by the Force to be Kylo’s superior equal.


    We don’t even get a pseudo-scientific explanations like midichlorians.
    You're sure that wasn't just a taunt? I'm pretty sure it's just a taunt, and IX will tell us how they're actually important.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JBPuffin View Post
    You're sure that wasn't just a taunt? I'm pretty sure it's just a taunt, and IX will tell us how they're actually important.
    Then suddenly the past IS important all over again.

    I said that TFA set itself for questions it can't answer in 8.
    And whilst I can't predict 9 as well as 8 fit all my predictions, they are setting themselves up for a split fanbase.

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    I bet that if the Snoke backlash is hard enough, then he will be force Possessing Kylo ren or something and so his backstory is of a evil spirit or something, and then force luke defeats force Snoke so that he does something more worthwhile then force project and then have an ultzer and die.
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    A little condescending
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    Quote Originally Posted by JBPuffin View Post
    You're sure that wasn't just a taunt? I'm pretty sure it's just a taunt, and IX will tell us how they're actually important.
    It wasnt just a taunt. It's a "ANYONE could be a history-altering "Great Man" no matter their humble origins" story that has to play off JJ's mystery box with "Rey has been obsessing over this the same way the audience has. Really, there's nothing here, and she knows it."
    Last edited by Rakaydos; 2017-12-19 at 12:45 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JBPuffin View Post
    You're sure that wasn't just a taunt? I'm pretty sure it's just a taunt, and IX will tell us how they're actually important.
    I mean, what was said and Rey's family being important aren't actually mutually exclusive. It just removes that particular possibility.

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    I don't expect Episode IX to pull out a 'you were secretly Yoda's niece all along' plot twist, but I'm saying it's not impossible.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reddish Mage View Post
    How come those who liked the movie do not have much to say in detail, while those who hated it can detail every twist and detail they hated.
    Can't speak for anyone else but for me it's because I got back at one in the morning. I have no desire to speak at length about stuff at that time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Samurai View Post
    What is the difference between a “fanboy hangup” and legitimate criticism of the movie I wonder. I wait with bated breath...
    A legitimate criticism of then film would be "I think the casino in space scene went on a little longer than it needed to". Fanboy hang up would be "BUT WHY IS REY'S PARENTS NOT IMPORTANT????".

    One is a genuine criticism that I ultimately disagree with, the other is a genuine misunderstanding of the entire point of the film.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Yet you don't complain at all about Han, who you admit is an exception like Rey.
    Han is obviously a rogue, who is in it for the money. Yes, yes, he develops beyond this, but his initial motivations and portrayal are *not* lily white.

    That's, yknow, part and parcel of that whole "shot first" debate.

    Not everyone needs to be related to one another, but folks do need motivations for their actions.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaZodiac View Post
    One is a genuine criticism that I ultimately disagree with, the other is a genuine misunderstanding of the entire point of the film.
    You know there have been like 3 writedowns of why people where upset her parents where not important that had nothing to do with fanboying about bloodlines but its dismissed anyways.

    How the POINT is executed poorly, and how it comes off more as lazy storytelling then a creative artistic decision?

    Can we then call people who defend this movie Fanboys then? Is Fanboy the next conversation ender?
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    Okay, so, thinking about it, I think we're looking at a very interesting interaction between two, very different types of filmmakers.


    JJ Abrahms LOVES Star Wars. He's also a big fan of The Mystery Box, building hype around "Mysteries", where the answer is less important than the audience asking the question.


    RoTJ ends with the Empire defeated, the Republic Reborn, and Luke, having emerged as a fully-fledged Jedi, ready to rebuild the mythic order of Jedi Knights. Han Solo has gone from scoundrel to War Hero. Leia is forever Leia. The story of The Rebellion vs The Empire had ended.


    But, Rebellion vs The Empire IS Star Wars, and JJ Abrams LOVES Star Wars. So, TFA was a deeply regressive film, mostly interested in recreating the same dynamics of the original trilogy.

    Luke's New Jedi Order? Gone. The only remaining Jedi is a space hermit. The Republic that they fought so hard to Rebuild? Impotent to the point of Irrelevance until it gets destroyed by the New Empire's New Superweapon. Han Solo? Back to being a scoundrel with a ton of enemies.

    The Emperor? Well, now there's a NEW EMPEROR. He's even BIGGER and MORE DEFORMED than the last one! JJ Abrahms got to make HIS Version of Star Wars! Because, to him (And a lot of people), Star Wars was Rebellion vs Empire.
    The way TFA ended, The Last Jedi Could have been a Shot-for-Shot remake of Empire Strikes Back, because they ended in basically the exact same way.

    Now, that isn't to say everything is exactly the same, and JJ Abrahms packed a lot of those differences away in The Mystery Box. Who are Rey's Parents? Where did Snoke come from? Who is this Kylo Ren Guy anyway? A lot of "Why is this not just A New Hope" is hidden away as a "Big Secret" to be revealed later.

    (Personally, I actually really like Kylo Ren as Cosplay Darth Vader.)

    But, The Mystery Box isn't about answers. It's not a storytelling technique, it's a marketing technique.

    So, He got to make his Star Wars, and then he handed the movie off to Rian Johnson.
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    And Rian Johnson had ZERO interest in answering any of the questions JJ Abrahms left behind, because the Mystery Box isn't about Answers. In The Mystery Box, giving answers is a chore, something you have to do because you asked the questions.

    He's also actually interested in moving the story forwards. The Rebellion is now down to a handful, the Empire may still be strong, but they're now led by an emotionally compromised, headstrong idiot.
    Whatever Rey is, she's not going to be a Jedi.


    And I don't think either approach is necessarily a BAD one (Although, I'm a bit more partial to Johnson's). But, they don't work especially well TOGETHER. You're not wrong if you are upset about the big questions being tossed aside, because The Force Awakens put a lot of work into getting you invested in those very same questions.
    Last edited by BRC; 2017-12-19 at 01:29 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scowling Dragon View Post
    Can we then call people who defend this movie Fanboys then?
    For the record, Fanboys is a fantastic movie.
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