Theaters: December 2017
Streaming: March 2018
Runtime: 152 minutes
Genre: Action – Fantasy – Science Fiction
Amazon: 3.5/5 stars
Rotten Tomatoes Critics: 8.1/10
Rotten Tomatoes Audience: 3.0/5
Metacritic Metascore: 85/100
Metacritic User Score: 4.5/10
Directed by: Rian Johnson
Written by: Rian Johnson (screenplay), George Lucas (characters)
Music by: John Williams
Cast: Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Andy Serkis, Benicio del Toro
Film Locations: Bolivia, Croatia, England, Ireland
Worldwide Box Office: $1,322,000,00
Resistance forces are fleeing their home base while the First Order fleet prepares to destroy them. Attempting to buy some time for the evacuation, the Resistance attacks and destroys a First Order dreadnought, aka battleship, allowing the rest of the evacuation forces to escape into hyperspace. The Resistance, after their jump, believing they had bought themselves some time, soon learn that their enemy can track them through hyperspace, leaving them with but a few hours to bring about a miracle or perish.
Meanwhile Rey (Ridley) travels to Luke’s (Hamill) planet for some badly needed lessons in light sabre use, force projection, and dark side avoidance. Luke has other ideas.
Rian Johnson, writer and director of the original, exciting, thought-provoking, and well received Looper movie, takes his turn in the revolving Star Wars franchise door, by writing and directing The Last Jedi. He succeeds in producing warm milk. Not horrible, but he definitely is not going down in the annuals of great Star Wars directors and writers. Then again George Lucas couldn’t direct a golf cart to the first tee either. Johnson brings together some of the elements of a great space opera; breath-taking special and visual effects, great acting, and a wonderful score but the story is just a tedious collection snippets strung together to produce a very long movie. Ok, some of the snippets are quite good such as DJ’s (del Toro) bit pieces of breaking in and out of places that he shouldn’t be able to break in and out of.
This movie is the last that will contain elements of the old guard. Harrison Ford killed himself off in VII, Carrie Fisher passed away, and Hamill, he can act–who knew, will not be returning for IX, so Johnson spends an inordinate amount of time on character development of all the new faces. It’s all so unnecessary, mostly immaterial and boring. The development of the players can be spread out over the life of the franchise, no need to force-feed the audience the entire buffet in one sitting.
In the end this is a fair movie; there just wasn’t enough story to hold you for 2 hours and 32 minutes.