Category “Star Wars”

The Last Jedi Thoughts (No Spoilers)

Monday, December 18, 2017 21:30
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lastjedi

So this is a rather polarizing film, isn’t it? I’m guessing the filmmakers are pleased about that in a way (so long as the box office is strong… which it is). They’ve shaken up the Star Wars universe and have people talking about it again beyond the superficial.

But what do I think about the film? (Let’s pretend for a minute that it matters to you!) It’s okay; a perfectly acceptable blockbuster. But it’s my least favorite Star Wars film.

I don’t mind that Rian Johnson is trying to do something different; the problem is he’s turned historic Star Wars strengths into weaknesses. Several of the reasons Star Wars has always been successful (and why fans like myself have always been able to count on the films to avoid the negative trends in the film industry) is the following:

  1. The films traditionally have had strong central through lines that don’t lose their focus.
  2. The stories have a strong sense of continuity.
  3. Each film has gamechanging revelations and consequences for the main characters that make the two hours invested seem worthwhile.
  4. While the writers may spinkle in some comedy, the plots maintain their serious tone, especially while building towards their climax.
  5. The films are very tightly edited from beginning to end.

Johnson’s script struggles with all of these, with an unfocused, meandering story that does all it can to ignore its prequel while telling us little new about the characters.

And yet all the same, The Last Jedi does have its strengths. The acting (which has not always been good for the franchise) is wonderful, with Mark Hamill, Daisy Ridley, and Adam Driver delivering powerful performances that help carry the film. The idea that not everyone has to be a Skywalker to be important is a welcome treat. (And let’s not take John Williams for granted. The 85 year old composer delivers another stunning score.)

But there are many other films with great actors and great music. I go to Star Wars to see something more. I want to see another part of an established mythos that avoids the faults of the traditional summer blockbuster and gives me food for thought.

The Force Awakens did that. The Last Jedi didn’t. But your mileage may very, and I have no problem with a Star Wars movie made for other people. It’s possible that these sort of films have simply passed me by.

Irvin Kershner Dies

Tuesday, November 30, 2010 7:40

Old Irv finally kicked the bucket. He directed my favorite Star Wars film, The Empire Strikes Back.

Star Wars in 3D

Wednesday, September 29, 2010 16:02

All six Star Wars films are going to be re-re-re-released – this time in 3-D. I suppose it’s just a matter of time before The Lord of the Rings is re-released in the same way.

Here’s the information from StarWars.com:

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Making of Empire Strikes Back Book

Thursday, September 16, 2010 17:16

Empire Strikes Back is my favorite Star Wars film, and so the newest book on my wishlist is “The Making of The Empire Strikes Back”, which even has its own preview trailer:

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LA Times Talks With Cameron

Thursday, August 26, 2010 9:08

There’s an interesting article about James Cameron in the LA Times here that mentions Tolkien, Roddenberry, and Lucas. (That was enough to get my attention!) In short, James Cameron doesn’t want his Avatar world to be “one and done” and wants it to live on like Middle-earth and the Star Trek and Star Wars universes. Of note, he says:

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Return of the Jedi Deleted Scene

Sunday, August 15, 2010 6:34

TheForce.Net has gotten a hold of some footage that was deleted from the beginning of Return of the Jedi. As readers of the novel will know, at the beginning of the story Luke constructs his new lightsaber at Obi-wan Kenobi’s abandoned residence while the droids wait for instructions…

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Patrick Stewart Turns 70

Tuesday, July 13, 2010 18:28

Sir Patrick Stewart turns 70 years old today, which just doesn’t seem right. (It doesn’t help that I watch Star Trek The Next Generation all the time, and actors never age when you’re watching them on an old DVD if you know what I mean.)

Meanwhile, Harrison Ford is just behind him, turning 68 today.

Here’s what’s interesting to me:

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Star Wars In Concert

Sunday, July 11, 2010 12:20

I went to Star Wars in Concert last night in Milwaukee. It was fantastic, though it was nearly identical to a DVD I have. I’ve listened to the music of Star Wars literally thousands of times throughout my life while doing such things as homework, housework, walking the dog, going to sleep, waking up, and what have you. I’m a fan of the Star Wars films as well, but it doesn’t compare to how much a fan of the Star Wars music I am; I know every note. So it was quite an experience to have it played live before me with Anthony Daniels (who was most impressive) personally introducing each number. (The funny thing is Anthony didn’t even get the biggest reaction from the fans. The audience was pretty mellow throughout the night, but for whatever reason – probably because she was cute – when they showed the girl playing the triangle up on the big screen during the encore, somebody just spontaneously shouted “Oww!!!” at about 200 decibles and the whole audience broke out in laughter and applauded her. It was actually kind of funny to see her try to keep her concentration but break into an embarrassed smile.) Anyway, Here are some photos from the event:

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Q&A with Anthony Daniels

Thursday, July 8, 2010 20:58

Anthony Daniels (“C3PO” in Star Wars) answered questions for a Star Wars news site about “Star Wars in Concert”, which has been on tour for three years and which I will see in Milwaukee this weekend. Here’s what he had to say:

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Star Wars Versus Star Trek Part 498

Saturday, June 26, 2010 18:09

I realize with The Karate Kid kicking butt at the box office it’s further proof that the 80s are back in style and all, but really… do magazines and newspapers still have nothing better to do than stories about Star Wars versus Star Trek? Apparently the Vancouver Sun thinks there’s still more to mine in this “feud”. My take is that the two things are so different, it’s really not worth comparing them.

Grey HR Line

U.S. Residents Can Now Purchase a signed copy of The Lord of the Films for $5

Or Purchase the Book From These Retailers:
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