Star Wars: The Last Jedi


★★★★★

Directed by Rian Johnson

Starring Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Mark Hamill, Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver, Carrie Fisher, and Domhnall Gleeson

Film Review by Niall Maggs


With the longest runtime in the whole franchise, the 2 hour and 32 minute duration strangely feels a lot shorter than that, which in this case is a good thing! There isn't one scene or act that bores, and the excellent direction and narrative, by Rian Johnson, keeps you captivated instantly. The characters of Rey, Finn, Poe, Luke, Leia, and even BB-8 are fleshed out and explored thoroughly, we even learn more about their interesting pasts, and this is particularly important with the newer characters to the series like Rey and Finn etc. With The Force Awakens, we hardly knew anything about our main heroes, and you couldn't feel attached to them, but The Last Jedi excels at creating multi dimensional and layered characters; they don't seem like cardboard cut-outs in any way.

This is Mark Hamill's best performance as Luke Skywalker, now a slightly crazy, isolated Jedi myth who rejects the Force and everyone associated with it. The effort he puts Into his role spawns nothing but respect from critics and fans alike. The character of Rey has also improved vastly. She is now the definition of a badass Jedi! With a beyond brilliant performance by Daisy Ridley who shines as the main star of this sequel trilogy (The Force Awakens, The Last Jedi and the future untitled Episode IX) and because of the increased humour in this entry, the chemistry between Rey and Finn (John Boyega) is just so entertaining to watch.

The overall plot of Star Wars: The Last Jedi is quite hard to explain; it's very complicated and complex, which is rare for such a well known franchise. However, it benefits from this. It's incredibly unique and doesn't feel like a rip off of a previous entry (many accused The Force Awakens to be an almost identical replica of A New Hope) thankfully, this gives the haters no chance but to applaud the well constructed narrative...although we are sure many will still try.

The structure is interesting. The second half feels almost like another film within the film! This is due to the slow, story-building pace of the first half, then the heart-pumping action and thrill of the second. It combines two styles of filmmaking and it's just brilliant! The shift of pace works really well and gives audiences great action to experience, while also supplying them with a great story to follow, which hooks them instantly with intrigue and wonder.

This is easily the best looking Star Wars film yet, with gorgeous cinematography by Steve Yedlin that just floors you with awe and astonishment. In particular a shot near the end, which is a throwback to arguably the most iconic scene in the whole franchise, will bring a tear to hardcore Star Wars fans without a doubt. With such wide shots, you really get a feel of the immense universe which George Lucas created back in 1977. You could say the film looked epic, because it was.

The third and final act is some of the greatest filmmaking I have ever seen with extraordinary twists and turns which you won't see coming; the chills and goose bumps Star Wars fans, myself included, get just shows the passion we have for this magnificent series.

With few flaws, unless you don't like films that build story slowly, Star Wars: The Last Jedi is a phenomenal entry into the franchise, maybe not one which is as rewatchable as the others, but the expanded building of the Star Wars universe makes for a great experience, and one which can't ever be replicated by any other film this year or ever!

Watch the Star Wars: The Last Jedi movie trailer below...


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