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Outside of his episodes of Breaking Bad, I can't say I know Rian Johnson's work. Is this a good thing, him getting his own trilogy?

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3 hours ago, The Master said:

Outside of his episodes of Breaking Bad, I can't say I know Rian Johnson's work. Is this a good thing, him getting his own trilogy?

I was a fan of his since Brick which fundamentally redesigns a high school film into a hard bitten noir with its own specific dialect. Also a big fan of Looper, a genuinely original time travel crime thriller. What I'm saying is, he's a seriously talented world-builder. Not just in effects but in how the society works ground up.

I'm excited. And expect Joseph Gordon-levitt to be cast.

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I loved it. Cried once and had a big grin several times. Had two glaring issues with the movie though. Didn't really hurt the movie for me since I always remind myself there are always issues with these movies except Empire. I mean after she witnesses everything she has ever known and loved destroyed in front of her Leia spends the rest of Star Wars shooting off witty quips.

My two issues

First if Laura Dern had just told someone her plan there would be no point to either Finn or Poe's plotlines. Second even if she had told someone there would still be no point to Finn's plotline. They kinda get the Han and Leia in Jedi treatment. They're there because they have to be and really the movie is about Rey and Kylo.

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Spoiler

...yeah. Laura Dern literally tells anyone her plan: No Movie.

That said, highly enjoyed it. Rose is my new favorite. All in all, this might be currently my third or fourth favorite Star Wars film.

 

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This is going to be an unpopular opinion, but I didn't like it. I felt like some of the scenes made no sense, and a couple of them were just middle fingers to the fans. 

Spoiler

 

Lea flying through space was the dumbest scene I've seen in awhile.

The vacuum of space doesn't kill people in this universe as shown by the bomber not getting sucked out of their ships and having no trouble breathing when they open the bomb bay doors.

The two biggest questions about two of the biggest characters backgrounds didn't matter because fuck you. One was killed off and the other is said to be the child of nobodies. 

The whole Luke force ghost fight made zero sense. Now Jedis can project themselves and objects across space enough to look and feel real? That would have been handy before. Oh, except it apparently kills you when you do it for some reason. 

The whole space Vegas stuff felt very prequel like.

 

 

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Brief question:

Do any of the young protagonists actually accomplish anything?

Rey had no actual hand in prompting Luke to action. That was all Yoda calling him on his bullshit.

Poe gets a crap ton of people killed when he disobeys Leia, then starts a needless mutiny all because he wants to be the big bad hero.

Finn and Rose go on an ultimately pointless adventure. And you can't say their actions lead to Captain Phasma's possible death, because that was all Admiral Holdo.

Seriously, I cannot think of a single thing they did.

 

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On 12/15/2017 at 2:50 AM, JackFetch said:

 

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Lea flying through space was the dumbest scene I've seen in awhile.

The vacuum of space doesn't kill people in this universe as shown by the bomber not getting sucked out of their ships and having no trouble breathing when they open the bomb bay doors.

The two biggest questions about two of the biggest characters backgrounds didn't matter because fuck you. One was killed off and the other is said to be the child of nobodies. 

The whole Luke force ghost fight made zero sense. Now Jedis can project themselves and objects across space enough to look and feel real? That would have been handy before. Oh, except it apparently kills you when you do it for some reason. 

The whole space Vegas stuff felt very prequel like.

 

 

Spoiler

Ships could have some sort of field that extends outwards. I mean, they have gravity in them.

I liked those twists because they fit in a movie about the past not living up to expectations. The Star Wars films can feel really small just focusing on one bloodline, one character coming from a family of nobodies works in my eyes. I can see how it can be disappointing though.

How I saw the Force projection thing is that because they were where the Jedi began, the Force completely covered the place. It's why there's some wonkiness with Rey's voice carrying through time. It's why Yoda manifested as a physical being, as opposed to a blue ghost. It's why Luke was able to project a convincing doppelganger across the galaxy. Maybe a line or two could have covered this.

 

8 hours ago, The Master said:

Brief question:

 

  Hide contents

Do any of the young protagonists actually accomplish anything?

Rey had no actual hand in prompting Luke to action. That was all Yoda calling him on his bullshit.

Poe gets a crap ton of people killed when he disobeys Leia, then starts a needless mutiny all because he wants to be the big bad hero.

Finn and Rose go on an ultimately pointless adventure. And you can't say their actions lead to Captain Phasma's possible death, because that was all Admiral Holdo.

Seriously, I cannot think of a single thing they did.

 

 

Spoiler

It definitely stands out once you put it like that. However, I think you can say the same for Empire. It could also be commentary about the efforts of young people going to waste through forces beyond their control.

 

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Spoiler

I'm not shook about if anything undertaken by the young characters was accomplished as long as there's sufficient character development. Much of the failures in this movie seemed to be very intentionally orchestrated by Johnson, not only to subvert expectations but to further the themes of breaking free from said expectations to become something new. 

 

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1 hour ago, Donomark said:
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I'm not shook about if anything undertaken by the young characters was accomplished as long as there's sufficient character development. Much of the failures in this movie seemed to be very intentionally orchestrated by Johnson, not only to subvert expectations but to further the themes of breaking free from said expectations to become something new. 

 

Also learning from your failures is a major theme of the movie. As sagely noted by

Master Yoda

Having watched it a second time the exposition in very clunky. The dialogue in the Force Awakens was much better. I mean Rey says to Luke that Kylo Ren is super strong and the Resistance needs him like half a dozen times.

  Laura Dern not telling anyone her plan still annoys me. The casino stuff felt prequelesque. However, I liked the stuff with the orphans more and very much liked that Rey is no one. The moral that you don't need to be a Skywalker to be important to this story really worked for me the second time.

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I want to say something about Rey. There is nothing in the Force Awakens that's points to Rey's parents being a mystery. She says she is waiting for them, has a flashback of being abandoned, Maz tells her what she already knows that no one is coming back for her she needs to move on with her life. That's a full and complete arc. The only reason to think otherwise is bringing your own baggage in from the other movies that everyone is connected. And even then the only reason Leia is Luke's sister is that George Lucas' wife, and more importantly editor, left him and between that and how much he hated the process of making Empire didn't want to make Star Wars movies anymore so the one woman in the movies became Luke's sister by default.

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On 12/15/2017 at 2:50 AM, JackFetch said:

This is going to be an unpopular opinion, but I didn't like it.

You are Desmond Reddick and I claim my £5.

In all seriousness, I thought this was terrific. I need to see it again, but I think this is going to be another Star Wars/Empire situation for me, where the second movie is, by almost any objective measure, a better film, but I think I find The Force Awakens to be a more fun and enjoyable experience.

Kelly Marie Tran is a goddamn delight.

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I might see it again. I liked it, but I agree with Mike from Twitter that the directing was a step down. Scenes ran too short and there was a ton of cutting from character to character in ways which felt over-edited. Nitpicky, I know, but I kept feeling like we weren't being given enough room for the scenes to breathe before we checked in with the other characters.

But the online debate over the film is not what I expected at all. People are saying they hate this film, in not-small numbers. I didn't see that coming. Sure, this movie kicks to the curb a few conventions, but I can't see anything in it worth hating. The fan backlash has been fascinating to watch.

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"Change is scary and I don't like it" is essentially 90% of the backlash. I'm old enough to remember people walking out of Empire really unhappy that it was so different from Star Wars and didn't even have an ending and are we seriously supposed to wait until 1983 to find out WTF is going on with Vader and Luke and etc. etc. etc. Also, we as fanboys have been trained to assume that anything we don't know is a deep and important mystery to be unraveled, and the idea that sometimes something we don't know yet isn't an elaborate puzzle box, but rather just a piece of semi-interesting information we haven't been given yet, people lose their shit and feel betrayed. Because entitled fanboys are the literal worst.

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Every "worst film ever" complaint I've heard and read center around

Luke's death. Instead of focusing on how badass his final moment is -- and the awesomeness of the reveal that he did it remotely and the tenderness he showed Leia and the cheeky wink to 3PO -- they're screaming about losing their hero. Which, okay, I get to some extent, but what? Did they expect another three movies out of Hamill after Episode IX? Dude's 66. Do they not think he'll return as a Force Ghost in the next one? Furthermore, no one who's screaming has articulated what they wanted from Luke. The movies can't be about him; hell, they haven't been about him since 1999.

A question about Snoke's voice:

At times I thought he sounded like mixtures of Mark Hamill, Sam Jackson, Andy Serkis, and other actors. Is this the case, or was it Andy Serkis alone?

 

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I'm still processing the movie as a whole and its larger themes, but here are some random, spoiler-free thoughts:

  • When BB-8 came around the corner and saw those guys playing cards, I thought for sure we were going to get a redux of the Teek scene in The Battle for Endor.
  • What Admiral Holdo does and the way it was filmed made every last person in the packed theater hold their breath then gasp. Brilliant filmmaking that shot.
  • Benicio Del Toro annoyed the hell out of me. His stutter was inconsistent, distracting, and seemed like an actor's choice rather than something that was truly part of the character. It also seemed mean-spirited.
  • More on DJ: They were clearly trying to make him a combination of Han and Lando, but it felt so very flat because he was on screen for maybe five minutes.
  • Captain Phasma looks cool, but I still do not care about her, her fate, or her feud with Finn.

 

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I definitely thought Snoke at times sounded like Mark Hamill's Solomon Grundy voice acting.

Spoiler

I think my biggest niggle was that I wanted more Luke as well. For a day. After thinking about it, he was given more screentime than Qui-Gon or Obi-Wan in terms of a mentor, and Mark Hamill killed it, even though to my mind he was kind of playing himself, which wasn't a bad way to go anyway. The "dust off my shoulder" move was effing awesome. But you can't gimmie a better ending to Skywalker's story than that last shot of him watching the double sunset as he fades away. THAT was PERFECT, and better than any sort of violent death he could've had in a fight against Ren.

 

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Luke seeing the twin suns killed me. Hell, I'm welling up right now thinking about it. But here's the question: were there really two suns, or was Luke hallucinating them in his final, weakened moment? Either way, I don't care. It was so damn powerful. But I can't recall if we saw two suns around the planet earlier, which leads me to an Inception / top moment.

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Is there ANY possibility that Episode IX DOESN'T have Glowy Blue Luke pop in to give Rey a ration of shit at some point?

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Unless Mark Hamill passes away before he can film his scenes, zero. Absolutely zero percent chance it won't happen.

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Saw it today.

I think the word I would use to describe it is "unnecessary."

Nothing was accomplished. It was two and a half hours of padding.

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Saw this earlier today with Pandy, having watched the original trilogy and TFA earlier this week. Thoughts in brief:

- Mark Hamill was excellent. Great, different performance with a particularly fine showdown scene. Seeing him onscreen with Carrie Fisher packed a bigger emotional punch, given the latter's passing.

- This has to be the best Star Wars film in terms of acting quality (with maybe Rogue One). Possibly because it didn't involve either Lucas or Ford....

- Rey, Poe and Ben came off the best in terms of advancing their characterisation. 

- Finn wasn't as fortunate and his subplot not only sidelined him from the characters you wanted him to interact with, but led him on a weird jaunt through a casino planet in order to get him back onto a rebel ship. His showdown with Phasma Fett rang hollow as the emnity hadn't been built up nearly enough (that's equally a failing with TFA).

- Speaking of said jaunt, I'm middling on Rose - particularly given the online reaction I have since absorbed. Certainly didn't dig her as much as Will did, but I felt she added something. I liked the arc between her and Finn, but I think it needed a more focused backdrop.

- It took me ages to work out if the code guy was Benecio del Toro or Andy Serkis double dipping. I somehow missed his tic.

- Similarly, I completely missed Adrian Edmondson being in this movie.

- Even if he's too young to be a General IMO, Dohmnall Gleason has been one of the unsung best things about the new trilogy.

- I felt the film's length. Not in a good way.

- Surprised how Smoke jobbed out. Again, not in a good way, although the resulting lightsabre battle took my mind off of it at the time.

- Agree with a lot of the NO MOVIE sentiment. Laura Dern fucked up by not handling Poe better from the outset, then Poe/Finn trying to figure something out for themselves caused an even greater FUBAR. I get the line given by the most welcome character cameo that "failure's the greatest teacher" but this was one MASSIVE failure.

In spite of its problems, I like the film subverting a number of expectations. At the same time, like many films that attempt this, it doesn't always succeed. Then again I tend to like spotty ambitious blockbusters (TLJ, some current DC movies) over paint-by-numbers successes (TFA, many MCU movies). I'm still under 12 hours removed from my first viewing of TLJ so I'm not quite ready to say it's a better film than TFA, but I need to sleep on it.

 

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18 hours ago, slothian said:

- Even if he's too young to be a General IMO, Dohmnall Gleason has been one of the unsung best things about the new trilogy.

 

Totally agree. Before I even recognized him as Bill (that was it, right?) Weasley and started seeing him in other things like mother! and The Revenant, I always liked the unsubtle, old-school goofily nazi-ish villainy of Hutz. So glad he survived the movie.

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