Over the past month, I’ve seen reviews both praising and condemning the new “Star Wars” film. It’s not just the critics that are torn either. Depending on who you ask, “The Last Jedi” is either a complete waste of time or the best “Star Wars” to date.
I find that the people that are the angriest at the film tend to be those that care the most about the canon, the lore, and – for lack of a better term – the physics of the series. No, I don’t mean that if you liked it then you don’t know or care about the series. I simply mean that you didn’t focus on the inconsistencies. You were able to move on, unlike myself.
Before I continue, I’ll say that if you’re anything like me, you grew up loving “Star Wars” to an almost awkward degree. With that love came an incredible knowledge of the world, enough to know all the ‘in’s and ‘out’s of the franchise. Also, if you’re anything like me, when the new movie conflicts with what you already know, it may confuse or anger you.
That’s exactly what “The Last Jedi” is. It contradicts my past knowledge at basically every turn, but does so in a beautiful way.
For example, arguably the coolest scene of the film – mild spoilers ahead – features one cruiser crashing into another at light speed. What happens on screen can only be described as a blue ribbon of perfection: 10 seconds of utter beauty as one ship tears the other to shreds.
It had me slack-jawed with both amazement and actual disbelief. Disbelief because what I saw made absolutely no sense. You see, the reason why we never saw Han Solo hit anything while traveling at light speed in the original trilogy wasn’t because he was some master cartographer and knew where every planet was. It was because when a ship is in light speed, it phases through everything in its path.
Throughout “The Last Jedi” there are oodles of instances of the film breaking the rules of its own universe, and this is what I think divided the audience. Those that focused on the conflicting information, like myself, got hung-up and frustrated, and those that were able to move passed it were able to fully soak in the amazing display in front of them.
That said, I do know some people that disliked “The Last Jedi” because of poor acting in instances. In which case I say, have you seen the original trilogy lately? I know when you’re a kid it’s easy not to see the blatant cheese and corn that both Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill practically exude, but at some point, it has to smell like gouda.
“Star Wars” even likes to contradict itself. Remember earlier when we talked about how that whole light speed scene made no sense? Well, as a friend of mine pointed out, it was Han Solo that said “[w]ithout precise calculations we could fly right through a star or bounce too close to a supernova and that’d end your trip real quick, wouldn’t it?”
My point is that no matter how much we may want it to be, “Star Wars” science isn’t real science. Sometimes a director may break a rule or two in order to make a scene that s/he otherwise wouldn’t have been able to.
For me, there was so much about the film that I loved that it would be crime to let all of these inconsistencies ruin that for me.