Episode VIII: A Step in The Right Direction

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“A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away” the best movie ever was sent to Earth Dec. 15, 2017, directed and written by Rian Johnson. The eighth addition to the “Star Wars” family, “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” sprawling, occurrence and character-pressed spectacle that continues from the ending of “Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens” and leads the series into an exciting and highly anticipated territory. The action-packed, science-fiction and fantasy film has a massive cast comprised of 71 actors such as Daisy Ridley (Rey), John Boyega (Finn), Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker) and Carrie Fisher (Leia Organa), to name a few.

The Skywalker adventure proceeds where the heroes of “The Force Awakens” come together with the galactic legends in a blockbuster experience that opens aged mysteries of the Force and reveals shocking information from the past. The film is one for all time and was a great achievement, rapidly becoming a standout amongst the most prevalent films being released as it racked up 220.1 million dollars in sales thus far. “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is everything a “Star Wars” fan could ever wish for and then some, from its twists and turns to its action-packed scenes to the visuals of the film. The film is filled with images that evoke awe and stimulate gratification, as well as creatures that appear out of distant childhood dreams.

Regardless of the film containing bits and pieces of things we have been encountering straightforwardly in previous “Star Wars” films, “The Last Jedi” still figures out how to move in ways not expected. Johnson does this beginning with the choice to assemble an entire film around a retreat where the objective is not to win, but to try to prevent being wiped out. “The Last Jedi” features great organization of all previous and new “Star Wars” characters with its action-filled scenes as well as the ability to make a character cry and the audience being able to sympathize with that character. Johnson also litters the film with jokes, some of the best obviously alludes to several fan speculations that have sprung up in “The Force Awakens” and suggestions to different movies, all of which convey warmth and amusingness to a story that is, at its core, intense. This is not meant to be a spoiler, but the jokes occur rather frequently as the film is absorbed with grief for the past and transcending it as well as the fear of the population being snuffed out. “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” clearly does a greater job than most of the previous “Star Wars” movies as it gave the audience not only what it wants but what their mind did not even know it wanted.

The chemistry between the characters on screen is applaudable. Johnson gives characters from previous “Star Wars” episodes such as Chewbacca and R2-D2 and those from “The Force Awakens” enough screen time to highlight them at their best while also introducing fascinating new faces such as Vice Admiral Holdo (Laura Dern) and Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran). The characters seemed extremely comfortable on screen as they have been acting together for a while, except the new faces, which gel right in with the veteran actors. Of the many twist and

turns in the film, the shocking death of one of its leads, Fisher, was one for the books. Johnson gave her a lot of screen time and had her do a lot of thrilling things, but this is because she will not appear in any other “Star Wars” films.

“Star Wars” has been around for four decades now, recounting that same basic story in an arrangement that is overpowering and inundating. With mind, ability, and love, “The Last Jedi” takes up the baton and carries it for a new generation. It paves the way for new and most importantly, highly expected “Star Wars” films without essentially forgetting the first ever “Star Wars” movie.

Rating: 5 out of 5 paws.

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