By Daniel Occelli (Mexico City)

 

Finally after 2 long years, the beloved saga comes back with its 8th installment, this time directed by the amazing Rian Johnson who delivers a new and fresh take on the franchise that might piss some fans off. The film takes place right after the events of The Force Awakens only this time the stakes are higher for the resistance and they are running low in time and in numbers, while this is happening Rey is training with a troubled Luke, while trying to solve her own struggles.

Without diving too much into the plot of the movie, the only thing I can say right now is, I absolutely loved The Last Jedi, after watching it twice I can safely say this is one of my favorite Star Wars Films to date, it deals with some important topics, it’s not scared to get political, it manages to give a developing arc to almost every character we see in screen, old and new. The movie manages to go in different directions and still pay homage to the previous films without it seeming forced, every call back works perfectly but it still feels like such a different film in comparison to the rest of the saga, and that is exactly what I was hoping to see in this film. Something fresh and new, I wanted these characters to go in different directions and I wanted the director to take risks, which he did and most of them payed off.

All the performances in this film pay off, when talking about the classic characters, we see Leia and Luke portrayed maybe better than ever, especially Luke, Mark Hamill gives the best performance in his career, he shows a new face to this character, and despite him not liking the decisions Rian made for his character, he puts everything aside while delivering an A+ performance. Daisy Ridley was great as Rey again and Oscar Isaac did an amazing job with Poe Dameron, giving his character a lot of depth.

John Boyega starts to act a little like Han which I absolutely loved and Chewbacca and C-3PO are played exactly as they are played in every movie. The best performance in this film, which I hope gets recognized this award season, is Adam Driver as Kylo Ren, his eyes alone say so much in every scene, his character’s motives and ambitions shift throughout the film and he delivers a perfect performance with every shift. If he is sad you feel sorry for him but if he is angry you are terrified, that speaks of an amazing performance, he was intense every second he was on screen and he stole every scene.

Technically the film is beautiful, the score was great but not John Williams’s best, the cinematography worked perfectly and the editing was off the charts, especially in some scenes involving Rey and Kylo. As for the directing, you can actually see Rian giving this film his own style, I loved that about this film, the same happened with JJ in TFA, I love they are giving this directors the freedom to show their vision and style into this huge blockbuster films.

As you can see, I loved this film, but it is not perfect, it does have some issues in a couple of scenes that I won’t spoil, the characters that were introduced last film like Maz Kanata and General Hux, do not fit in this film, a couple of jokes did not work at the moment and they still struggle with Motion Capture, I’m not saying it is bad, but some characters do feel like they belong to a different world, like Supreme Leader Snoke, he looks great but not as good as Caesar from the Planet of the Apes new trilogy, or Gollum, they still need to work with that.

Most of my issues have to do with spoilers of important scenes but I will say this, I loved the Casino scene, it gave it a political undertone that was needed much like some scenes in Rogue One, some people are hating on that scene, but that is not my case.

Finally the thing I disliked the most, was Captain Phasma, again she did not fit in the story, she was unnecessary, and she was just shoehorned into the third act because she exists. Poor writing and honestly a poor performance by Gwendoline Christie. I’m also tired of R2 being a plot device, make him cool again.

Before I give my final grade, without spoiling anything I have to say, the ending of this film was perfect, not the last scene, but the ending of The Last Jedi story, with the characters we love, it was touching and beautifully managed, I have to say it made me shed a tear or two.

I will give Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi a 9.4/10. Amazing film

Rating: 5/5

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