MOVIE REVIEW: Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi

The Last Jedi is thrilling, funny, and emotional. It is also one of the best Star Wars films ever made.
Rey faces a number of challenges as she tries to understand the Force and herself in The Last Jedi. (© 2017 Lucasfilm Ltd.)


Whether a new Star Wars film is good or bad, we all know that it is going to be a hit. That's why it makes us really happy to say this...

Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi (which opens this Friday) deserves to be a hit. Because it is really, really good.

An intense space battle opens The Last Jedi with a bang. (© 2017 Lucasfilm Ltd.)

The second part of the newest trilogy, it is fast-paced, and full of new (and sometimes adorable) creatures, tense scenes, jaw-dropping visuals, and powerfully emotional moments. It's also pretty funny without ever making things silly. And best of all (especially after eight other films and endless Netflix series), it's unpredictable.

A world of their own

luke last jedi

Luke wrestles with his faith in the Jedi religion. (© 2017 Lucasfilm Ltd.)

When Episode VII: The Force Awakens came out in 2015, many people were curious to see what it would be like (some fans expressed that the prequels that came out between 1999 and 2005 weren’t as good as the originals). But while The Force Awakens was solid, it had strong similarities to 1977's Star Wars: A New Hope (compare the plots of the two movies).

The Last Jedi, however, is its own film. The way that the plot feels like Star Wars, yet goes in new, different directions, is a big part of why the movie is so great.

Even original trilogy characters, Luke and Leia, have grown and changed to suit the film. Luke's hope has been replaced by regret, fear, and a desire to stay away from everyone and everything he once knew. And Leia leads the Resistance with a wisdom and unshakable calm that she has earned over time. Together, they work with the newer characters to bring Star Wars to a place it has never really been before.

The new generation grows

Kylo Ren isn't so sure about his mask these days. (© 2017 Lucasfilm Ltd.)

Speaking of those new characters, Rey, Kylo Ren, Finn, and Poe, all deliver even better performances than before. It's tough to talk too much about any of their journeys without giving things away. (Avoid all spoilers because some of the twists are amazing!) But each character makes choices and reveals issues that blur the lines between good and evil, hero and villain. Some burning questions are answered. Others are made even stranger. But all of it is satisfying.

Chewie puts up with a nosy porg on the Millennium Falcon because, #adorable. (© 2017 Lucasfilm Ltd.)

Like any great second film in a trilogy, The Last Jedi feeds your craving, while somehow leaving you even hungrier than when you entered. Star Wars fans generally agree that Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (1980) is the best film in the series. The Last Jedi is probably the best film since that one, which sets us up for a great finish!

Watch the trailer for the 79th time below.


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