Mark Hamill, Daisy Ridley, and Adam Driver in Star Wars: The Last Jedi

POLL: Rate Star Wars The Last Jedi

The Last Jedi is well on its way to the second largest opening weekend in history (behind only The Force Awakens).  For both that film and Rogue One, we ran month-long reader polls so everyone could weigh in with their score on the newest entry in the Star Wars Saga.  My review of Episode VIII was very mixed after one viewing, but Cinemascore is tracking audiences giving the film an “A” rating commensurate with Episode VII and Rogue One.  I’ll be very interested to see your ratings and hear what you thought (without trolling me, please, no one loves Star Wars more than I do and I really could do without a reader revolt) of the film.

Following this poll will be our biggest of the year: our SIXTH annual reader’s choice for Best Film of the Year (which has been won the last two years by Star Wars films).

Daisy Ridley as Rey in Star Wars: The Last Jedi

15 thoughts on “POLL: Rate Star Wars The Last Jedi”

  1. Disappointed with Last Jedi? I’ll fix the franchise for ya.

    Episode 9: The Secret Army

    Rey has been frozen in carbonite for ten years. After being freed by a disreputable treasure hunter, she discovers that the entire Resistance, including Leia, Finn, and Poe, has been slaughtered by the First Order while she was in hibernation. She vows revenge on Kylo Ren. As she nears his fortress citadel, where he sits on an enormous throne, consumed by the anger inside him, she begins to gather many disciples, who she trains in the ways of the force. Rey is a stoic figure, like an old Western hero. And she becomes a guru/prophet.

    The foreboding locations of the film include an industrial wasteland planet, a cemetery planet, and a garbage planet. On the garbage planet, Rey and her army discover Threepio, Artoo, BB-8, and all the other Resistance driods, who are kind of in bad shape, but have always had faith that they would be reunited with Rey.

    The army faces a series of dangers. It fights an enormous, dragon-like monster. It engages an army of Mandalorians, all decked out in shiny Boba Fett armor, armed with gadgets.

    By the time Rey’s army reaches the citadel, her army has grown large in number. The big climactic final sequence is an epic battle between the good, lightsaber-wielding army, and Kylo Ren’s Sith-like army of darkness, consisting of solders wielding red lightsabers. The battle ends with Rey cutting off Kylo Ren’s arms and legs as he burns near a molten pit. She turns away, unable to kill him, figuring he’s as good as dead.

    Then she thinks better of it, turns, and gives him a final killing blow.

    The final shot is Rey standing on a cliff, overlooking her army of new Jedi.


  2. I got swept up by The Last Jedi. I have to admit it. But I think I might have been fooled. The visuals of the movie, and the action scenes, were so good, they should have come straight out of the greatest Star Wars movie ever made. If Canto Bight, and the throne room lightsaber battle, and everything else, had been properly contextualized in a film with the right plot, the right characterization, this would have been the greatest SW film. Because the scope was insane. The action was insane. The detail and visual imagination were beyond belief. And Luke was back, baby…before he died.

    I think I might have been fooled.

    Because this is a…I won’t say it’s a bad movie, because it is far from that, it is very well made. It is a wrongheaded movie. It is the best wrong movie ever made.

    I do not understand so much. I knew that Leia was going to use the Force in this movie. I just knew it. Leia using the Force was a scene guaranteed to bring the house down. There were not many scenarios where the audience was not going to cheer, but TLJ found one. It was a very weird scenario, but Johnson zeroed right in.

    I will have to see the film again to fully process it. I had a really fun time watching it the first time. It’s an action movie, maybe the most entertaining one I’ve ever seen…on the shallow, limited level of an action movie, and divorced from the larger saga. But there is so much wrong with the movie as I run it through my head, so much Johnson does not see, or understand, or maybe even care about (God I hope that last part isn’t true) that I’m a little flummoxed. Scratch that. Way flummoxed. I do not know what happened.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, Johnson wanted to turn our every expectation on its head, and yeah, he succeeded. And I love a good expectation when it’s subverted.

        For example every little thing in the PT was different than what you would have expected. It was obviously Lucas’s guiding creative principle. And today, I think I am the only person who loves those movies as much as I do, because the rest of the world seems to only want comfort and reiteration. But there is a way to subvert what an audience wants without giving them a kick in the teeth, and telling them they were foolish for speculating about anything at all.

        I loved the look of TLJ, the action, the music, the acting, the feel, the CGI effects were top notch, even on a character with as much screen time as Snoke. But story and script. Wow. I just do not understand why Johnson even wanted to make Star Wars, if this is what he thinks SW is.

        Rey’s parents being nobodies I actually loved. Time to start a new Jedi Order, right? That’s what is brewing. The Jedi used to detect Force sensitives, and bring them into the fold. I think Rey is the first of a new breed of Force sensitives that are just born. Hopefully the next Jedi teachers are wise. This all takes us back to the original SW.

        Truth be told, I always had a problem with the Emperor/Vader dynamic being played out again in Snoke/Ren, and when Snoke bit the big one I had never been so thrilled to be so surprised. Here I thought he was the arch villain, and nope! Outta here, and it’s not even the third film. I feel sorry for all the people who put so much thought into guessing his identity, but the scar shaped like a giant question mark on his forehead should have been a giveaway to us all.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I think you can tell that I am ambivalent about this movie. I love the idea of this movie, of taking a movie like TFA, which is a beloved film to me but also as formulaic as they come, and retconning it into a magic trick, a vessel for misdirection. I cannot put my finger on what is disturbing me about the film, if I enjoyed it so much, and thought it was so much fun. Maybe it’s that Luke once considered killing his nephew? Luke once refused to kill Darth Vader, a mass murderer, because of their familial connection. Luke allowed himself to be tortured to the brink of death instead. In what universe would he kill a younger relative, a kid like a son, because he saw a dark future?

        Luke’s death was bizarre too, is the ability to send your image to people across the void of space something explored in the EU, and does it take so much exertion that it kills you? Even if that were cannon, I would kind of block it out. And how that did Threepio see Luke? Does the Force allow you to manipulate the brains of DROIDS so they can see and hear you?

        Just one of a million and one questions. This week I shall go to see it again, and set the bar a little higher, because the bar was LOW last time.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. It’s a maddening film. It has moments of greatness (everything on the island and the throne room), but the longest, dumbest chase scene in cinema history caused by the refusal of Voldo to share her plan tacked on 40 minutes of unnecessary Canto Bight subplot that robbed the movie of momentum and that Finn and Poe spend the whole movie being literally slapped around by women and told how stupid they were was off-putting. There were characters it was like Johnson flat out didn’t like so he spent the film offing or torturing them. What was the point of Snoke or Phasma? We’ll never know. I can’t put much hope in JJ Abrams either because he was fully onboard with this and he’s not a sequel guy. Remember his last sequel? He’s an idea guy. He has a special talent for infusing new life into dead things, not closing trilogies. I think Luke’s projection was awesome. I think making everything that happened a giant misunderstanding that stemmed from some genuine fear in Luke makes him a much more interesting character. I loved every minute of Hammill’s performance. But why he had to die, I don’t know. And to take Admiral Ackbar, and just disrespect him like that while Leia Mary Poppins herself around without explaining anything about it was when the movie went off-track. Up to that point, it was great. But then we get Voldo, whose refusal to communicate her plan, for no reason, causes the entire Canto Bight mess. All props to the maestro though, because this was one of the best scores of the Saga. WIlliams is a wonder. The sad part is…..why speculate as to Episode IX? Every question we had scrutinized for years we were singled out on and told “well that doesn’t matter”. So I’ll pay attention to Episode IX when we get closer to a trailer. It’d be a gift from God if Solo was somehow good, because I need it to restore some faith in Star Wars after this jumble.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Why was the Emperor’s theme played during Snoke’s scenes? He has a story. He turned Ben at a young age. How? Who was he? It matters! He pulled together the remnants of the Emprie. HOW? It matters. Just offing him because apparently Johnson didn’t like the character shows no respect for the storyarc of the trilogy or TFA. He was a fascinating character with potential and yeah his death was a great scene, and I’m sure he’ll get a novel or something to explain all this, but he was tied into everything and now we’ll never know how. I hate that and I hate that Rey’s parents were nobodies. A lot of people are saying Ren was lying to her, but she was the one who came up with it. The last Skywalker is an irredeemable villain. They’re the villains of the SW story now. Flawed people who ruined the galaxy. And in those 3 lessons Rey got everything she needs to start a new order at 19 years old? It’s not just that the film was uneven. It impacts future possibilities so negatively and disrespects past films. I’m so disappointed in it I really don’t even want to talk about it. Just move on to something positive, but in that I feel I lost Star Wars, because I don’t think Abrams can fix it and Johnson, whom I trusted implicitly, is the future. And he doesn’t get it.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Well, here’s the deal. I never wanted them to make proper Episodes past episode 9 anyway. Maybe they will decide not to. Last I heard it was not a done deal, and Daisy Ridley wants out (though those kinds of decisions often don’t take). My point is, even if they cannot fix this trilogy, perhaps there is hope for the standalones, and perhaps we will start seeing other corners of the galaxy, other places, other times. Regardless of how the episode 9 story turns out, I have a hard time believing that JJ will stick to the weird, over the top style Johnson established. 9 will feel like a more traditional SW movie again. Then, let’s see some other kinds of stories. Maybe the Skywalkers, and the people who can say they knew the Skywalkers…maybe they can all take a rest.

        We will see how TLJ does by the end of its run, and whether Johnson gets his own corner of the galaxy. TLJ feels like its own weird corner already. Although I’ve always said that announcing that new trilogy weeks before TLJ was released…it always felt like a publicity stunt to me. As far as I know no contract has actually been signed yet. Do you think that maybe they were waiting to see how TLJ performed, like normal human beings? Believe you me, Disney was not 100% behind this film like the hype told us. This film is basically a reimagining of the SW franchise. Not a sure thing at all.

        I did not realize how much I appreciated Snoke until he was gone. I did not go for Ren and the other villains in this movie, they were like the keystone kops.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Well that CinemaScore comes from a lot of devoted SW fans. I saw the film with non diehards but I had taken the time to teach them the lore, and they were open to it. I fon’t know what casuals will think on weekend three. We shall see.


  3. So 220 million domestic and while this is not a form of methodology I talked to people today. In my sphere of the world everyone seems to love this movie. The A CinemaScore proboby means that the low audience rating on rotten tomatoes is a fluke. The RT audience score is sooooo unscientific and arbitrary to begin with. Throw in a movie interested in totally changing a revered old franchise with obsessive nerds as a core fan base, and, I don’t know, an organized effort maybe by people against Disney’s acquisition of Fox? And what a prescription for a skewed rating you’ve got. It does not reflect reality. This movie will be huge for the right reason: most folks love it.

    Luke is gone because out with the old, in with the new. No other reason. Phasma joins the ranks of barely glimpsed fascinating side people in SW. I am not bothered at all. Every resistance leader seemed to be female, and while I have no issues in priciple, these women did not get to where they were by rising through the ranks and proving thier mettle. They rose because the screenwriter had an agenda. I am not commenting on the agenda, just saying that SW was always above political agendas. It was also above jokes that made the heroes and villains, the ones who were not sidekicks, look foolish for laughs.

    And yet, I had more fun than I can remember ever having in a theater. Three days later and I accept the professional fanfic called Disney’s SW. I loved the end, I do not think the point was to show that this kid would save the resistance by joining it when he got older. I think the point was that the magic of a story was going to carry him. TLJ did not carry the story forward much. It will not be hard for them to wrap of this trilogy. Not like you think. And the next steps are foggy. I would say that TLJ becomes a template, but it is way too idiosyncratic.

    If Solo is awesome even though it’s old-school, HOPE! Otherwise I will wait for the next one, quieter about it this time, before I speculate, because you are right, we might as well have been speculating about Twin Peaks.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sorry for beating a dead horse here, but I just read that Johnson received no directives whatsoever before he started writing this movie, other than it follow the vague, general lines of any trilogy in the world. I somehow missed that leading up to the film. I thought that JJ had passed on SOMETHING. Apparently not.

    Billions of dollars at stake, and generations of fans, and Disney is winging it. The Last Jedi is a GOOD movie, I really believe that, but with all the goodwill from TFA and R1 it did not NOT need to be a weird improvisatory reimagination of SW that made the road ahead more difficult. I could understand the film if it had been Episode 7, but two years ago Disney made a different film, a film that showed you could get an insane success out of a traditional formula. Why the Last Jedi? Why now? Couldn’t they have at least waited until the old ways stopped working for them? I wanted my beloved franchise to have a smooth path from now on, and suddenly it seems like Disney is actually inviting rough terrain.

    I wish I loved the MCU as much as SW. I wish I loved anything as much as SW. I used to love Twin Peaks almost as much as Star Wars, but the new season made me realize that David Lynch is an abject shyster, albeit a very charismatic and erudite one, and also a man whose mind I don’t want to touch. If I lose SW, I’ve got almost nothing in pop culture to latch onto, except the unexpected stuff that pops up with less and less frequency nowadays.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s