Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by MLutthans, Nov 10, 2015.
Ditto... for me, Rebels is the best thing since TESB... the live action movies pale beside it...
I gave my opinion on what I could tolerate of the movie. The opening should draw you into the story, not induce eye-rolls. And it's not like I haven't seen (in totality) prior installments such as TFA and R1, both being very mediocre and one a SW reboot. Sorry, but this just isn't something I'm interested in anymore.
I have seen the whole film. I concur with Jim B.'s assessment. If this was Doctor Who we were watching then Bonnie Langford just turned up. I've watched DW for over forty years but I am happy to point out when it's crap. 'Solo' was a 6/10 and I enjoyed that but this was movie by committee and it shows. Just looked the director up. Only thing of worth there is 'Brick'. I never realised he directed 'Looper' or I'd have lowered my expectations. My nephew enjoyed TLJ. He's ten.
I watched this again last night (desparate for something new SW's I guess) My assessment really hasnt changed much. There were so many flashes of really good scenes and ideas. Then undone with misplaced humor, plain weirdness and ramshackle editing.
The whole "who are Rey's parents?" mystery bait was a weird let down. Po's character arc and story was off kilter. The rogue thief that betray Fin and Rose was dead in the water and went nowhere. Casino scene with the giant horse lahma's running about was a weird sidetrack that wasted time. Captain Phasma, Phatasma or whatever with no character arc or depth. Snokes demise that made his character useless. Just an evil dude that can be easily tricked and sliced in half for ooo's and awes. And on and on.
What I will say is that I wish JJ had teamed up with Ryan. I think this could have been a pretty good movie with JJ pulling the reigns back on some of the more goofy stuff, editing out more of the uneeded moments and filling out character development. The flow of TFA was very good. He could have helped with that. 30-45 minutes of editing the BS and weird moments and giving a few of the characters some development and twists to who they actually are would have been much more serving to the plot of he movie. Get rid of three thin plots and make the main two stronger. Keep it simple and add depth.
Focus on Rey and Kylo's development without yammering on and on, tweek Lukes scenes (change a few things about them to show Luke is still a bad ass but broken). Completely re-think the New Order/Rebel chase with Fin and Po teaming up and leaving Rose out of the movie. Keep Snoke alive and have him triumphant and even more evil. How would this affect Rey and Kylo since Rey obviously cares about him and he her?
There is a much better SW movie in there somewhere.
There was a good basis in Luke's story. While I realize you either are ok with Luke's character change or not, I think its the best part of the movie. Leaving aside whether one thinks the movie de-heroized Luke, one has to admit (minus a few cringe worthy green milk drinking moments and misplaced humor) Mark Hamill did a wonderful acting job.
He showed the near madness that Luke devolved into and then redeemed himself at the end. His "fight" (minus the silly video game-like obliterate Luke scene) with Kylo Ren was pretty bad-ass looking and a good puncuation/turn of the possibilities of the force. Everyone wanted to see Luke fight and that scene gave us that without some silly over the top force lightening or Luke hurling boulders.
Hero Luke: his 20's and early 30's (what other battled did Luke possibly have during those unspoke of years before the Jedi temple training/master teacher?)
Legend Luke: Hid away to secretly train Jedi before the fall. Bigger than life Luke. And also "folly" as Yoda said.
Fallen/Older Luke: Fear leads to anger and anger to the dark side. Luke thinks to kill Kylo in a weak moment and then tragedy ensues. Guilt and hurt gut Luke.
Redeemed/Hero/Legend Luke- like a great western hero Luke realizes that none of this really matters. Not did it ever. That forgiveness, wisdom through failure and hope are the basis of truely living. He loves Rey and he loves Kylo. I have no doubt he could have killed Kylo. His moves when Rey attacked him were way above her moves. And his knowledge of deeper aspects of the force were way above both Kylo and Reys. But killing him would have been anti climactic. Instead we get a greater lesson and a better hero in Luke.
So much of the movie (Id say 35-40%) was an interesting and involving turn of events. Unfortunately peppered with odd moments and stupid attempts at simply "take you out of the scene" humor. Kylo and Rey's relationship was also good (ruined at times by mistiming and weird scene development) and could have been the catapult to finally usher in the new. But got bogged down with nonesensical moments. What exactly was all the blathering on between those two? Mostly made no sense. And wth did the mirror thing mean? That Rey is her own parent? That she is alone? Well, ok. We kind of figured that. A Star Trek moment was not helpful.
Unfortunately no matter how I try and be balanced in my assessment, this film is simply a mess. Some good and interesing ideas that failed to transpire into a very good movie.
When you spend so much money on a single movie and have so many people working on it, there have to be some interesting ideas here and there. This can't be used in defense of the mess that TLJ is.
And this is a bad thing?
You do know George Lucas has said he made the Star Wars films for 10 year olds, right?
Yes, but did he LOVE it, like we loved Star Wars when we were ten?
I think honestly that's an unfair burden to place on any future and current Star Wars film. Or any movie for that matter.
It's never going to be the same as when we were kids. To expect the latest Star Wars instalment to recapture the feelings we had when we were 10 is foolhardy, because we simply aren't 10 years old anymore. Most of us here are over 35 after all.
I get the feeling from a lot of the loudest complainers against everything Star Wars post 1983 that the reason they keep rejecting each instalment is that they keep expecting to feel that same sense of wonder and wide eyed sense of awe they felt when they first saw the original Star Wars on the big screen.When they don't, they leave disappointed and some over react and become bitter and literally angry.
We all have to also acknowledge that when Star Wars came out, nothing like it in terms of scope, special effects and pop sensibilities ever existed before. It was the birth of the modern blockbuster and created a new genre.it was all new and exciting.
Now, most of the big theatrical releases are movies of that type. The blockbuster isn't an event anymore and most kids have seen several of these types of movie before seeing a new Star Wars movie. Truth be known, merely liking and overall enjoying the experience for a kid is probably the best one can hope for. Its simply not the same experience for them for a whole host of reasons.
If the standard is that " this movie must make me feel like a kid again and my kid needs to fall in love with it in the same way i did when he/she was my age, or it's crap" ...then we should just completely stop making Star Wars movies or any movies for that matter, because times and circumstances change and to expect things to be like they were 40 years ago is an unreasonable expectation.
I was speaking just to the experience of today's 10 year olds, not mine as an adult. If kids today seemed to be really getting something out of these movies, then I would humbly back off and leave it to them. But I suspect they're just having the same reaction that they do to any big movie, more or less. It's good for a while until the next one comes along. Sooner or later, like the prequels, these movies will have to stand or fall on their own merit.
Yes I do. That is the very point I made.
I was six or seven when I first saw Star Wars. Everything was new & exciting.
I don't watch it to feel like a kid again. I watch it hoping for decent plot & dialogue. This new 'trilogy' / cash cow had neither. Hence my statement that it was crap for me, good for the child it was aimed at.
Does it seem like MH is just trying to appease the fans or calm the fans down who disliked how his character turned out?
I think Mark has gone through the same thing a lot of the loud reactionary sort have had, a complete break with his expectations for the character.
What he's said is that after seeing the movie he understands the arc. It didn't land for some people, which is understandable. When those people turn the rhetoric up to 11 and start calling for the head of the studio...head...then it's got me all like
Sounds like he is being honest. While Mark may not totally agree with his characters arc, he understands it. Sometimes when things hit too close to home the subconscious doesnt like it. Then you become more aware that "Hey, this really is not too far fetched and could very well happen." One of the greatest heroes of all time (whether one sees it as myth or not doesnt matter--so lets please not go there) was David from the bible. Samson was another. Both heroes that were very flawed, did evil things and yet in the end redeemable.
I think those heroes are much more inner'esting. And another reason I dont have an issue with Luke and how things turned out. He is not the youthful spontaneous hero of his youth. He is a wiser hero and in weakness found strength. Still a hero in my book.
This very long but worthwhile article pretty much encapsulates the past seven months for many of us, I think...
The Beautiful, Ugly, and Possessive Hearts of Star Wars
The Last Jedi was garbage. As a person who loved the original trilogy (hated the prequels), it was a huge disappointment. This film could have been so much better had there been more editing done which eliminates the wasteful filler, a more compelling narrative and general story arc, more in-depth development of the characters, and basically more intelligent artistic decisions made. It all feels like a money grab. Empty and hollow. I really do feel that Rian Johnson gave the finger to the Star Wars fanbase, which is a pretty rotten thing to do considering how many people love this franchise. The humor in The Last Jedi was also just weird and uncomfortable. I wonder how the franchise will recover after this clunker?
While this won't settle it for a very loud portion of fandom, this is a brilliant observation that puts Luke's entire arc from the OT to the sequels in perspective.
New Theory May End The Argument Over Luke's Behavior In The Last Jedi
It's amazing how so many who claim to know the original trilogy inside and out misread it so badly.
Naturally, the response from TLJ dissenters on Twitter is "literally nobody I know who didn't like this movie thinks that", so...
To be fair, the moment in ROTJ when Luke realizes he's gone too far is pretty unmistakeable. Luke a) attacks Vader in a rage, b) performs the same injury on him that Vader had done to himself prior, c) is very clearly horrified by what has happened (thank you Mark Hamill!), and d) throws his lightsaber away and addresses the Emperor - NOT Vader.
(note: this video is pretty fragmented but the relevant section starts at 1m5s)
Found the comments at that link more insightful than the article
I thought that was pretty explicit in Return Of The Jedi.
I wholeheartedly agree. Luke came very close to turning to the Dark Side in Jedi. It was only in choosing the non-violent path, throwing his lightsaber away as he did in The Last Jedi, that he was able to defeat the Emperor’s plan to turn him. The Emperor’s defeat is evident in his reaction. He reacts the only way he knows how, with anger, violence, the Dark Side.
In reading this article, I’m convinced that that is precisely what Yoda meant when he told Luke that he must confront Vader in order to become a Jedi. He tried to stop Luke from confronting Vader in Empire, because Luke wasn’t ready to choose the path of non-violence. He was still far too aggressive.
And we see the experienced-yet, still very human-Jedi’s path of non-violence played out beautifully in Luke’s showdown with the First Order.
This article paints the prequels in a very interesting light. It was the Jedi Order as much as Palpatine that created Darth Vader. As pointed out by Luke in The Last Jedi, at the height of their power, the Jedi Order allowed the Sith to rise and wipe out the Jedi and the Republic. It was Luke’s decision to throw his lightsaber away that ultimately defeated Vader and the Emperor.
Well...since I couldn't find anyone posting about it already,I resurrected this thread to post my thoughts on Star Wars youtuber Ivan Ortega's reedit of The Last Jedi. Before reading my thoughts or commenting on my...comments,I suggest you all go and watch it at this link....
Ok...so now I'm going to assume you have seen it. Spoilers ahead....
First off ...I was pleasantly surprised that Ortega didn't butcher the film or completely ruin most of the best bits of the movie. He's very solidly in the "Dizney ruined muh childhood and muh Star Wars" club so I expected a terrible, cliched and fanboy wet dream edit that drastically altered the story to it's detriment.
Stunningly, until the last five minutes or so,it looks and feels largely like a more judicious edit of what was released, successfully trimming away some of the fat, slightly refocusing the story where it needed to be focused, and overall making a leaner and less cumbersome narrative. I've said before that this movie's biggest sin is some of the bloat and less than stellar pacing and editing in spots, and with a bit cut here and there and some resequencing,it would be a great Star Wars movie, and Ortega's edit ,for most of the first two hours or so is proof of my thesis.....
....until he nearly completely ruins all good will and my willingness to give him benefit of the doubt with two decisions that reminded me why the "Dizney ruined muh life" social media brigaders should never ever have their hands on this or any franchise. More on that later.
First,the changes I liked: (keep in mind I just saw it like an hour ago and I'm going off memory,so if I fail to mention something,forgive me.)
Cutting the "yo'mama" Poe Dameron/Hux joke- I didn't hate it,but it sort of hurt the momentum of the beginning of the original cut. So it works well excised. Gives more urgency to the battle scenes and the whole sequence has more tension.
The quick line about the magnetic bombs: again, not something that bothered me in the original cut,but some were bothered and it's just literally a very quick overdub that would have nearly cost nothing to implement in the original cut to toss it in as an explanation to the nit pickers, so it works.
The Snoke throwing Hux around scene: I didn't have much issue with it,but it was a bit of bloat easily cut. I didn't notice it was missing until it was nearly over,so that says something.
The addition of the cut Poe/Finn and Finn/BB8 snippets- we got precious little Finn and Poe interaction in the original cut. Quick scenes of continuity housekeeping and linking back to TFA,but it works.
Cutting the Sabre toss- I still think people made too big of a stink over Luke tossing the light Saber and I liked that scene as was,but reediting it so that Luke looks at the Saber before handing it back to Rey worked ok. The ADR'd new Luke dialogue was awful though. (More later)It works better If he just hands it back to her without saying a word and walks away to his hut.
Adding the short deleted scene of Luke overcome with emotion over Han's death : should never have been cut in the first place . The cut to Leia as she mourns too works well.
Cutting out Leia Poppins - while what we get is choppier without it, and I get and liked the idea she was potentially as powerful as Luke,but the scene just looked awkward. No doubt had Carrie lived to do reshoots Johnson probably would have reshot that sequence or reinterpreted it,but as is...it probably should have been cut. Thankfully Ortega didn't kill Leia off outright as some of the Last Jedi haters wanted,so kudos to him there.
Cutting large parts of the Canto Bight, particularly the Fathier chase- biggest improvement of the movie IMO. The fact the film loses nothing narratively by trimming this whole scene down and completely out in some cases tells the tale.
The "new" Luke/Rey training sequence- again, horrible new cliched"Luke" dialogue not withstanding (huge rant on all that still coming), repurposing some of the existing footage and using behind the scenes shots to create a decent training montage is pretty good editing. Skillfully done. Glad also he didn't cut the Luke trolling Rey with the leaf scene. Again,I'm impressed thus far overall with the care and restraint not to completely give in to the dark side of " fanboy"pandering to change stuff and cut stuff just because he can. He's actually making changes that make sense and actually are in service to the story. So far so good.
More to come....To be continued next post.
What changes I liked continued...
Showing what Luke saw in his visions of Ben's future- yes,it was video game cut scenes and a couple deleted shots from TFA tossed together,but it's not a bad idea to glimpse what Luke saw in Ben's head and why he instinctively went for his lightsaber before coming to his senses. Honestly it wouldn't have hurt to show the audience this to better sell the idea of Luke's moment of weakness(of course Ortega blows it by altering the scene so that Luke doesn't draw his saber on Ben...but that's part of my larger Luke rant later)
Changing how Finn's suicide run was stopped: Again,glad he didn't fully give in and kill off Finn as so many TLJ critics seem to have been strangely eager for. He just has a first Order Tie Fighter take out Finn's skimmer instead of having Rose kamakaze him. An improvement.
Giving Luke the green lightsaber and keeping the Force projection ending. I didn't mind the Blue Saber in the Force projection,but it was cool seeing the green one again, so I'm okay with that bit. Also,huge Kudos for actually keeping Luke on Crait as a Force projection and not giving into his likely own preference of having Luke physically there to duel with Ben. I'm glad he keeps that whole sequence intact.
Changes I didn't care for- these are more general things for the most part-
Cutting out too much of the humor. Getting rid of the Yo Mama joke? Good. Cutting out Luke milking the sea cow? Okay. However,I did miss the bits like Leia telling threepio to wipe off his nervous expression,or the creature putting coins into BB8 at the casino. Etc. Little moments that their presence didn't hurt the story or pacing. Plus, I disliked how they also cut all of the instances of Hux getting thrown about. I quite enjoyed watching the little Nazi wannabe get bitch slapped by Kylo Ren.
The fetishising of Akbar. I don't really understand why so many people hold Admiral Akbar in such high esteem. He's a freaking meme from 1983 for God's sake. Keeping him alive just for the express purpose of having him doing the lightspeed suicide shot does nothing to improve the story, and it's just a petty move to unceremoniously kill Holdo off camera for "reasons" . I guess we should all be grateful Ortega didn't have Akbar say "No,it's a trap" like some of the fan fictioners would have done. No,I don't think killing off Akbar so unceremoniously in the original cut was a great idea,but it was never this horrible insult to the fans as some say, and I vastly prefer how the suicide lightspeed sequence was in the original film.
Cutting out most of the scene where Luke has Rey reach out into the Force. Yeah I'm glad Ortega kept the "troll" part of that scene,but the rest of that was in my opinion the best examination of the nature of the Force since Empire. It returned some mystery and some of the magic of the Force that was lost in the Prequels and instead Ortega replaced it with a generic ADR'd sound sorta like of 20 year old Mark Hamil spouting dialogue straight out of bad Star Wars fan fiction and the worst of the old EU. A huge step down from the original and a change for the sake of it.
Needlessly replacing much of the original Throne Room fight scene musical cues with a bad rendition of Duel of the Fates just because. That Original Rey/Kylo vs. Snoke's guards scene was damn near perfect right down to Williams music. So why replace it with a synthesized reprise of Duel of the Fates from the prequels? It sticks out like a sore thumb. Bad call.
Getting rid of Luke's wink to threepio. There was no need to. I liked the fact Luke got a moment with R2, and a little moment with threepio here,if only fleeting.
Next Post....what my big problem with this edit is and why I now finally am completely sure now Luke had to die in VIII.
So,overall I think this was a good edit. Hell until the last minute I was actually going to praise it for the most part,but Ortega makes two huge blunders in my opinion that really make me glad this isn't the official version and that people with his mindset weren't in charge of this story.
The first of the two is most of the changes made to Luke's arc ..the biggest being that ultimately in this version,Ortega does his damnest to make Luke as boring,by the numbers and cliched as possible. He does his best to put Luke back on his pedistal and make him the all wise,all powerful cypher of much of the old EU books,or at least the worst ones.
All of the new ADR'd dialogue almost sounds like it was copied from old EU books (the bad ones) and to add insult to injury, the person they had doing the voice sounds like young 1983 Mark Hamill and not the Mark Hamill of 2017. At least the Akbar sound alike was fairly accurate ( but the dialogue was even worse there).
The problem of course is because so much of Mark Hamill's existing performance is intact,that when in combination with the new direction Ortega attempts to try to shoehorn in, it's in such vast conflict with each other that Luke almost comes off like he is suffering from borderline multiple personality disorder. I mean,you have Luke spouting off the usual standard "wise old all powerful Jedi" dialogue when training Rey in one scene, and the next he is back to rejecting such dogma.
To be fair, Ortega probably would have loved to have completely rewritten Luke in the mould of Alec Guinness' Obi-Wan and gotten rid of any actual character arc or nuance with Luke and kept him the all wise and powerful cypher that he and others expected to see and didn't get.
Of course, he didn't have Mark Hamill around to reshoot, so he tries to work around what's there and the result is uneven. It could be much worse...but still not great. I vastly prefer the arc and resolution we get for Luke in the original. Big miss in my opinion.
The other thing that hurt this reedit, and to me just feels petty and childish, is the first credit that reads "Written , edited and directed by people who actually care about Star Wars".
Fact is, 90 percent of the film you have here was written and directed by Rian Johnson . Hell it's pretty much the same movie except you didn't kill Admiral Akbar until later and kept Luke alive.
Now, Ortega deserves credit for doing a decent somewhat professional edit with limited funds and resources and he has good editing and pacing skills. Other than below average new ADR'd dialogue,Ivan Ortega didn't write anything,and he sure as hell didn't direct it. That's still 80-90 percent of Rian Johnson's movie and he should be shown due respect even if you didn't like all his Original choices.
In other words, don't be a dick. Give credit where credit is due.
One thing though I am grateful for after seeing this is that I'm finally at peace with the killing off of Luke in this movie.
I've always thought the arc that Johnson had for Luke in TLJ was one of the best parts and the central story of Luke,Rey and Kylo/Ben was masterfully done,but I've gone back and forth whether this still could have worked just as well if it didn't end with Luke passing into the Force. After seeing an ending where Luke doesn't die...I can say for sure now that this films arc just loses a lot of thematic and emotional payoff if Luke just goes on without any consequences and sticks around as Mr. Duex ex Machina.
He pulls off the greatest recorded feat of force ability ever to save his sister and her comrades,knowing the cost. It takes a toll. He forsakes his physical self to join with the Force,like Obi-Wan and Yoda before him. It's sad. We as an audience don't want to see Luke die,but die he does and it's powerful. It's a sad,but also nobile ending to this phase of Luke Skywalker's existence.
By contrast the ending Ortega has just feels hollow. Yeah Luke is alive. Great. You get swelling heroic music and Luke is now Mr. Jedi Jesus now. Yay! He lives to fight another day! It ticks all the fanboy warm and fuzzy boxes, and keeps your childhood safe and keeps the viewer from having to lose his or hers childhood hero,but it doesn't make for good drama nor good story material for a continuing story as it moves to it's last chapter.
I mean,given Luke can do what he does here ,that level of ability , without any real consequences, then are there any limits?How is there tension when it's entirely possible Luke could just wipe out the whole first order single handedly? How does Luke not dominate the next chapter?
This is supposed to be Kylo and Rey's story. If Luke stays around, it can't be their story. Thus, narratively and thematically,Rian Johnson was right. At this point,Luke had to die. So I owe Ivan Ortega thanks for clarifying that and now I am at peace with it after seeing a "what if "?
Anyway,all in all I still say it's worth a watch, and a lot of it is strong and well done. It shows that it Johnson had an editor with an independent eye,TLJ could have been a masterpiece up there with The Empire Strikes Back. I just would like to see an edit that takes Ortega's approach to trimming the fat and some of the questionable stuff but leaves the whole Luke,Rey, Kylo parts largely untouched.
Okay guys. That's a wrap. Sorry for the long posts!
I enjoyed reading your very long posts, but I will not be watching this fan-edit. I watched one of his behind the scenes videos awhile back and found the man to be completely obnoxious. That pompous “credit” you posted just reaffirms what I already believed. He shuffles a few things here and there and actually has the audacity to take credit for somebody else’s work?
The problem I have with this fan-editor is the problem I have with many fan-editors. He hates the movie, so he invests time and effort to “fix” it? 1. It’s not yours to “fix.” 2. Why bother with something you clearly hate? Why not not move onto something else? I don’t know. Maybe watch another movie that you may actually like? 3. Why not use your time and energy more productively? You know, make your own movie, or write your own screenplay, rather than altering another artist’s vision.