A new Star Wars happened, and opinions are released upon us like nibbling hounds demanding biscuits

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Gordon_4:
While I?m sure there is military nuance I don?t see, to the untrained observer it looked for all the world that Holdo had her thumbs up her arse and was doing sweet Fred Astaire about the massive capital ship taking potshots at them. Hell I thought she was a traitor who was broadcasting their hyperspace location to the First Order.

The military nuance is that need to know is really strict and when you have a wing commander (or senior air officer after Poe's demotion) who lacks a wing to lead, they will be left out of the loop as to minimize leak potential. But as you point out, the movie fails to make Holdo's actions seem justified and instead makes her come off as a vindictive asshole (though considering the consistent portrayal through multiple scenes, maybe it is intended). This ultimately makes Poe's arc less resonant with the viewers, because we are likely to think that Poe was right to do something when the commander seems to be doing nothing instead of feeling that he learned an important lesson when he didn't listen to the competent and reasonable commander.

As an aside, Holdo's interactions with Poe makes her come off as uncaring and not listening to Poe's legitimate concerns, which is something that's all too common in bad real life bosses. Since most of us are likely to have had a boss like that at some point, it resonates really badly with a lot of us to see the protagonist in a situation that's so relatable, which just further amplifies the feeling that Poe's doing the right thing and Holdo's the one being stupid.

Hawki:
-The power structure is just weird at this point, how the Republic apparently has no navy whatsover now, yet the First Order apparently has enough manpower to size control of the galaxy in a matter of weeks (I know the EU kinda explains this, but if your film needs to rely on external materials...) Also, if they do have such a large fleet, why can't they send another group of ships to intercept the Resistance from another angle?

The only explanation I've seen was that the Republic had actually abolished its military, which I find completely absurd given that they're maybe a few decades out from a galaxy-wide civil war and remnants of the Empire are still out there.

Hawki:
-The Canto Blight arc feels superfluous, or at the least, goes on far too long (seriously, what was the point of the horse stuff? And what was DJ's plan, if he could leave the cell at any time? Just wait for a client to be thrown in with him before he uses the key card?)

Agree with that 100%.

Hawki:
-Holdo has no reason to keep Poe in the dark. I get that it's part of Poe's arc (less trigger happy), but it's a case of character stupidity being used to drive the plot.

100%.

Hawki:
-The humour. Honestly, I was fine with it (I even liked the porgs), but I could get why someone would find it grating.

When a friend of mine made the same criticism - about how Star Wars films had never really been "funny" before - I was like "well, what about Jar Jar Binks? What about the droid soldiers? Or C-3PO and R2-D2? Or Yoda's senile-old-puppet act? Or the Ewoks?"

Star Wars has always had comic relief characters tagging along the protagonists to perform physical comedy and deliver one-liners. TLJ just cut out the middleman and had the protagonists deliver the one-liners personally.

Hawki:
-Subversion aside, the film feels weird structurally in the context of a trilogy. If anything, its ending kind of reminds me of Revenge of the Sith, of ending a trilogy, with the promise that in the next trilogy, things will get better. This could be lumped in with the subversion of Star Wars idea, but in terms of overall story structure...this film is kinda weird.

It does feel weird. Then again, Empire always felt weird once I thought about it, too.

Hawki:
There's other little things that bug me (e.g. Luke tells Rey that he has three lessons for her, but only gives her two - apparently the third was cut from the final version), but those are the main ones.

I can't decide if that was a deliberate anticlimax, or if they were trying to do a thing where the third lesson was actually for Luke and it was when Yoda showed up to lecture him about failure.

I was expecting Luke to be telepathically reaching out to Rey at the last minute to give her the third lesson. Or maybe the third lesson was, like, interstellar astral projection 101. Who knows? Maybe his force ghost might show up in the next film. That'd be neat, actually. A little more Mark Hamill to tide over the absence of Carrie Fisher.

bastardofmelbourne:

Hawki:
-The humour. Honestly, I was fine with it (I even liked the porgs), but I could get why someone would find it grating.

When a friend of mine made the same criticism - about how Star Wars films had never really been "funny" before - I was like "well, what about Jar Jar Binks? What about the droid soldiers? Or C-3PO and R2-D2? Or Yoda's senile-old-puppet act? Or the Ewoks?"

Star Wars has always had comic relief characters tagging along the protagonists to perform physical comedy and deliver one-liners. TLJ just cut out the middleman and had the protagonists deliver the one-liners personally.

Cant speak for anyone else, but my problem wasnt that it tried to be funny, hell I prefer bits of comedy in anything I watch. The problem was that it failed on actually being funny most of the time. Alot of the humor it had, did not feel like Star Wars humor. Like, what was up with that "its an evil ship or something, jk its a clothing iron" joke? That felt odd and out of place.

Okay, I'm gonna go a bit more in depth.

I've actually found myself comparing this film a lot more to Return of the Jedi than any other Star Wars film, because when taken as a whole I find it has the same high points: there are some awesome visuals, it goes interesting places (sometimes) and the emotional depth of the film is fantastic. By the same token it's brought down by the forced (geddit?) levity and filler content, both of which are painfully and obviously added in to pad the runtime and fulfill the studio's requirements.


On the whole, I liked more than The Force Awakens. TFA just did what Star Wars does well, and was a basically good movie for it. The Last Jedi is more experimental, and I like that. It doesn't always work, but when it does it's some of the best Star Wars has to offer. I hope JJ can stick the landing with Episode IX.

Hawki:

-The Canto Blight arc feels superfluous, or at the least, goes on far too long (seriously, what was the point of the horse stuff? And what was DJ's plan, if he could leave the cell at any time? Just wait for a client to be thrown in with him before he uses the key card?)

I got the impression he was (trying) to sleep off a hangover/drinking binge when Rose and Finn woke him up.

bastardofmelbourne:

The thing is, it brings up all those visual and narrative cues so that it can play with your expectations of how they turn out.

So you see the Emperor's cool-looking, red-clad bodyguards actually getting to fight instead of just standing there and looking imposing. The Emperor gets killed by his apprentice, but not because his apprentice seeks last-minute redemption, and the Emperor's death changes nothing rather than resulting in instant victory. The AT-ATs show up and the rebels have to get on old speeders to go fight them, but the sally fails, the AT-ATs are completely unharmed, and most of the speeder pilots die for no reason. Puppet Yoda shows up and surprises Luke with a lecture on the positive aspects of failure, a bit of a contrast to his earlier "do or do not, there is no try." Rey visits a place strong in the Dark Side, but rather than getting some grand and terrible revelation like Luke did in Empire, she simply sees her reflection. She tries to redeem Kylo Ren, but he decides to stick with being evil. The rag-tag team of misfits infiltrate the enemy base, but fail, get caught, and make the situation much worse. The Millennium Falcon comes in and shoots up some TIE fighters, but that achieves basically nothing overall - the Resistance guys are still basically doomed when the laser-ram fires - and the eventual rescue later on would've been impossible if the survivors inside hadn't decided to try and escape on their own. And Luke dies, but not passively like Yoda did - he dies after taking action, re-living Obi-Wan's last stand in an unexpected way. (Seriously, in the lead-up to that my friend was like "ugh, they're doing Obi-Wan," and then when they didn't, he went "oh.")

The Leia recording and C-3PO, I got nothing. I don't know why C-3PO is in this movie. But Luke does call out R2-D2 for shameless exploiting his nostalgia. Overall, the film was working very hard to screw around with all your expectations as to how the film was going to turn out, and it largely succeeded.

It succeeded a little too much in my mind, because while having the characters waste a whole bunch of the audience's time on a casino planet for no reward may be very effective at deconstructing the success rate of the average just-crazy-enough-to-work plan, it does still waste a lot of the audience's time.

The problem is that by the time I saw the film I already knew all the big spoilers (Luke and Snoke die, Rey's parents aren't special), as well as had heard it to be "different" in some way. And honestly I didn't care, since I don't go to Star Wars movies to see plot twists on par with the Red Wedding or The Sixth Sense. So I don't think it was unreasonable to expect to see something actually different, and I basically had no expectations whatsoever for how the story was going to go. So suffice to say I was quite disappointed to get yet another movie with Jedi training in the middle of buttfuck-nowhere, another battle with AT-ATs on a bright white planet, another scene in a throne room with red guards where the main villain shows the protagonist her friends are on the ropes etc. The outcomes or reasons behind them may have been different, but we don't get to see how those even pay off until a year from now. Which I frankly don't have high hopes for, considering how many plot points and characters from TFA this movie completely disregarded.

We also seem to have different standards for playing with audience expectations and narrative deconstruction. Because I don't think "do the exact same thing as before, but change the ending" counts as "deconstruction". Neither is an offhanded line about rich people playing both ends bringing shades of moral grey into the franchise. And having a 30-minutes long, utterly pointless sidequest that doesn't affect the narrative in any way is definitely not subversion, it's just bad writing. Getting to see the red guards fight, or any other plot points you mentioned for that matter, could only be "subverting expectations" to someone if they expected TLJ to be a carbon copy of "Empire" to the same degree The Force Awakens was of A New Hope. So IMO calling TLJ "deconstructive" or "subversive" in any way is a pretty tall order.

Saelune:

bastardofmelbourne:

Hawki:
-The humour. Honestly, I was fine with it (I even liked the porgs), but I could get why someone would find it grating.

When a friend of mine made the same criticism - about how Star Wars films had never really been "funny" before - I was like "well, what about Jar Jar Binks? What about the droid soldiers? Or C-3PO and R2-D2? Or Yoda's senile-old-puppet act? Or the Ewoks?"

Star Wars has always had comic relief characters tagging along the protagonists to perform physical comedy and deliver one-liners. TLJ just cut out the middleman and had the protagonists deliver the one-liners personally.

Cant speak for anyone else, but my problem wasnt that it tried to be funny, hell I prefer bits of comedy in anything I watch. The problem was that it failed on actually being funny most of the time. Alot of the humor it had, did not feel like Star Wars humor. Like, what was up with that "its an evil ship or something, jk its a clothing iron" joke? That felt odd and out of place.

In regards to humour my biggest gripe is complete disregard to pacing and 'tones'/emotions. It's like in one scene they try so sooooo hard to depict melodramatic, sacrifice scene to the point they imo go overboard with pathos. Next scene. Space equivalent of fart jokes. Like wtf?
Director and script writer must have snorted cocaine out of eachother buttholes while procuring this, ie. they created twisted bond in which to them these irrational mood swings felt juuuuust riiiiight. Not so much to normal people.

Next thing is what you mention. Most of this humour feels like created by people who feel disdain for 'geeks and nerds' and all they find dear to them, so 'jokes' are overflowing with thinly veiled resentment to the fact it's ok now to like such things openly. End result: this humour was directed at and actually funny to people that loath Star Wars or just don't care and enjoy lowbrow sense of humour but completely lost on actual Star Wars fans who loved this sci-fi universum.

I wasn't big on some of the humor either (but the fish maids were brilliant, fite me), but just because humor didn't land for you doesn't make it an attack on Star Wars fans, sheesh.

altnameJag:
I wasn't big on some of the humor either (but the fish maids were brilliant, fite me), but just because humor didn't land for you doesn't make it an attack on Star Wars fans, sheesh.

Don't be so defensive about the criticism. It's not the 'attack' it's type of humour used. I said it resonated well with a large audience but it was at the expense of SW not humour within SW. Type of humour that is just 'not funny' if you actually care for SW.
Fish nuns were ripped right out of Monty Python. Absurd, funny but not really original and imo out of place in SW (though yeah, funny).

You don't need to grab that criticism and kindap into insanity of being attacked, taking offense, edge lords, triggering and snowflakes territory. Making fun out of geeks and nerds isn't an attack. Not liking them isn't a crime.

Jamcie Kerbizz:

altnameJag:
I wasn't big on some of the humor either (but the fish maids were brilliant, fite me), but just because humor didn't land for you doesn't make it an attack on Star Wars fans, sheesh.

Don't be so defensive about the criticism. It's not the 'attack' it's type of humour used. I said it resonated well with a large audience but it was at the expense of SW not humour within SW. Type of humour that is just 'not funny' if you actually care for SW.
Fish nuns were ripped right out of Monty Python. Absurd, funny but not really original and imo out of place in SW (though yeah, funny).

How is it any more "out of place in Star Wars" than what we've seen before?

Then there's the "Legends" continuity, which I'll remind you was considered canonical prior to the Disney buyout:

And that's not even getting into the plethora of spoofs and parodies out there, some of which involved Mr. Lucas himself (apparently he's a fan of that kind of stuff).


image

The point I'm trying to make is that Star Wars has poked fun at itself on many occasions prior to TLJ. People who say otherwise are suffering from a bad case of nostalgia goggles.

altnameJag:
but the fish maids were brilliant, fite me

Why would I? They kind of remind me of Cthulhu Mythos Deep Ones, but they're also nuns, which immediately called to mind images of Jedi Pope Francis fighting a Shoggoth with his lightsaber papal ferula. ... don't ask.

I liked it. It's a movie with lots of niggling, weird things that weren't executed as well as they could have been (Superleia, Rose's final act twist, the stupid Marvel quipping). I think a lot of the criticisms are really stupid however (like moaning about force powers, or Luke being a failure).

Neverhoodian:

Jamcie Kerbizz:

altnameJag:
I wasn't big on some of the humor either (but the fish maids were brilliant, fite me), but just because humor didn't land for you doesn't make it an attack on Star Wars fans, sheesh.

Don't be so defensive about the criticism. It's not the 'attack' it's type of humour used. I said it resonated well with a large audience but it was at the expense of SW not humour within SW. Type of humour that is just 'not funny' if you actually care for SW.
Fish nuns were ripped right out of Monty Python. Absurd, funny but not really original and imo out of place in SW (though yeah, funny).

How is it any more "out of place in Star Wars" than what we've seen before?



The point I'm trying to make is that Star Wars has poked fun at itself on many occasions prior to TLJ. People who say otherwise are suffering from a bad case of nostalgia goggles.

You have there 'an error', Yoda pretending to be a madmen to test Luke, R2 collapsing and Ewoks. It's all part of humour in SW I talked about. Even JJ knew how to do that in TFA. Then you have the parody of SW. There's nothing out of place with that. SW is so quirky itself it's pretty easy to make parody of it and since it became part of pop-culture a lot of artist did that and good.

However, unless Disney comes out and says: surprise we were making a parody trilogy of SW in the loving memory of Space Balls, then we'll make actual trilogy that will continue previous 2 trilogies of SW, you have no point. I actually would love them to do just that...

It's the entire premise I mention. Creating SW, as if that were SW parody but telling every fan 'this is your SW now, deal with it, it's always been just a dumb eat-popcorn-suspend-belief movie anyway'. It oozes with contepmt to SW or complete lack of understanding why people loved original content.

maninahat:
I liked it. It's a movie with lots of niggling, weird things that weren't executed as well as they could have been (Superleia, Rose's final act twist, the stupid Marvel quipping). I think a lot of the criticisms are really stupid however (like moaning about force powers, or Luke being a failure).

Nobody makes this kind of criticism.

Luke has been 'a failure' to begin with and he had a life journey out of being a whiny redneck. Complaint is, that he was poorly re-written back to 'being a failure' point, just to make way for new characters. Motivation being outlandish and inconsistent with character development, character regress non-explained. All virtue of character willing to sacrifice himself for friends and lose a limb in the process, sacrifice himself again just to have a shot at redeeming his murderous, sadistic father etc. all of that written off for no aparent reason.

It reeks of either poorly written fanfiction where author tries to deal with his personal demons or just really shitty, lazy writting, where producers told to make way for 'new merchandise' and it has been done with a hatchet in the most crude 'who gives the f-k' way.
To be frank, if that hermit ex-Jedi, that cut himself off from the force, living in middle of nunsville, was not Luke, this actually wouldn't be a bad character, because there would be free reign on shaping his past and character development.

The other large complaint is not about 'force powers' themselves but their inflation and casual use and inconsistency. That use to be a mixed bag in EU but somehow is now part of the core, just to serve as a get-out-of-jail card when they write so many plot holes everything starts falling apart. People use to love displays of 'the force' in the movies in key moments but it degenerated to It's the force ok? Force can do anything, ok? Now stf-up and eat your pop-corn you nerd. sort of thing.

That's what doesn't feel right to SW fans which you casually mirepresent and try to depreciate its validity as 'being stupid criticisms', yet don't provide any arguments to support that claim.

Jamcie Kerbizz:

maninahat:
I liked it. It's a movie with lots of niggling, weird things that weren't executed as well as they could have been (Superleia, Rose's final act twist, the stupid Marvel quipping). I think a lot of the criticisms are really stupid however (like moaning about force powers, or Luke being a failure).

Nobody makes this kind of criticism. [proceeds to make that kind of criticism] Luke has been 'a failure' to begin with and he had a life journey out of being a whiny redneck. Complaint is, that he was poorly re-written back to 'being a failure' point, just to make way for new characters. Motivation being outlandish and inconsistent with character development, character regress non-explained. All virtue of character willing to sacrifice himself for friends and lose a limb in the process, sacrifice himself again just to have a shot at redeeming his murderous, sadistic father etc. all of that written off for no aparent reason.

The Last Jedi makes most of Rey's arc on the island about trying to figure out how Luke has become this no-hoper sourpuss - they explain it in a lot of detail; about how his temple got wrecked, his students killed, and how he became instrumental in turning his nephew into the new Darth Vader during a brief moment of desperation. He realised he was a crap teacher who wasn't immune to dark thoughts, and who messed up his one big opportunity to bring back the Jedi. That's why he's undergone such a transition over the last couple of decades. And also it sets up his sacrifice at the end, redeeming himself.

The other large complaint is not about 'force powers' themselves but their inflation and casual use and inconsistency. That use to be a mixed bag in EU but somehow is now part of the core, just to serve as a get-out-of-jail card when they write so many plot holes everything starts falling apart. People use to love displays of 'the force' in the movies in key moments but it degenerated to It's the force ok? Force can do anything, ok? Now stf-up and eat your pop-corn you nerd. sort of thing.

That's what doesn't feel right to SW fans which you casually mirepresent and try to depreciate its validity as 'being stupid criticisms', yet don't provide any arguments to support that claim.

New Jedi powers has always been an ad hoc thing in Star Wars, for the purpose of a magical get-out-of-jail free card. the whole "Force can make shit fly" was bullshit invented by Empire Strikes Back, as was the "stop lasers with hand" move, the "see ghost versions of dead jedi" trick, the "super jump", the "force visions", and the "make long distance calls". Jedi ups it with goddamn electricity hands. The force is a vague collection of magic tricks that the writers give Jedi, deus ex machina style, whenever they feel like it. Those SW fans are somehow pretending they didn't watch it happen in all those other perfect movies, only to get mad when it crops up this time around.

maninahat:

Jamcie Kerbizz:

maninahat:
I liked it. It's a movie with lots of niggling, weird things that weren't executed as well as they could have been (Superleia, Rose's final act twist, the stupid Marvel quipping). I think a lot of the criticisms are really stupid however (like moaning about force powers, or Luke being a failure).

Nobody makes this kind of criticism. [proceeds to make that kind of criticism] Luke has been 'a failure' to begin with and he had a life journey out of being a whiny redneck. Complaint is, that he was poorly re-written back to 'being a failure' point, just to make way for new characters. Motivation being outlandish and inconsistent with character development, character regress non-explained. All virtue of character willing to sacrifice himself for friends and lose a limb in the process, sacrifice himself again just to have a shot at redeeming his murderous, sadistic father etc. all of that written off for no aparent reason.

The Last Jedi makes most of Rey's arc on the island about trying to figure out how Luke has become this no-hoper sourpuss - they explain it in a lot of detail; about how his temple got wrecked, his students killed, and how he became instrumental in turning his nephew into the new Darth Vader during a brief moment of desperation. He realised he was a crap teacher who wasn't immune to dark thoughts, and who messed up his one big opportunity to bring back the Jedi. That's why he's undergone such a transition over the last couple of decades. And also it sets up his sacrifice at the end, redeeming himself.

The other large complaint is not about 'force powers' themselves but their inflation and casual use and inconsistency. That use to be a mixed bag in EU but somehow is now part of the core, just to serve as a get-out-of-jail card when they write so many plot holes everything starts falling apart. People use to love displays of 'the force' in the movies in key moments but it degenerated to It's the force ok? Force can do anything, ok? Now stf-up and eat your pop-corn you nerd. sort of thing.

That's what doesn't feel right to SW fans which you casually mirepresent and try to depreciate its validity as 'being stupid criticisms', yet don't provide any arguments to support that claim.

New Jedi powers has always been an ad hoc thing in Star Wars, for the purpose of a magical get-out-of-jail free card. the whole "Force can make shit fly" was bullshit invented by Empire Strikes Back, as was the "stop lasers with hand" move, the "see ghost versions of dead jedi" trick, the "super jump", the "force visions", and the "make long distance calls". Jedi ups it with goddamn electricity hands. The force is a vague collection of magic tricks that the writers give Jedi, deus ex machina style, whenever they feel like it. Those SW fans are somehow pretending they didn't watch it happen in all those other perfect movies, only to get mad when it crops up this time around.

You confuse insertation with explanation. They made up 'I forsaw dark future and decided for a moment to kill my twin sister's son over it' and reapeated it few times like washing powder commercial trying to make it stick. It doesn't though, because it is contradicting to his past character development and his decision and deeds in far more grim circumstances.
This is why, if that were a new character this whole arc could have been salvaged and play out well. Dropping Luke into it is just pretentiously dumb (Oh look mom! I re-wrote Luke!) or unimaginatively devisive, done for practical reasons (understandable but still petty).

Yes, as I mentioned 'inflation' was a thing before and yes, it was used in key moments before and it were celebrated. The difference here is it becomes effortlessly casual ie. can't be arsed to pick up my broom and self spiteful ie. force is not for lifting rocks - protagonist lifts rocks to save the day, we need to kill Ackbar but Leia should live - princess gets dragged back into the ship in grotesque statue pose by the force... JJ showed off and added to that 'inflation' ie. laser bolt frozen mid-flight, protagonist playing with her victim while performing mind-trick but this time it was just tasteless cringe. Even Snoke's skype calls, mind rape and toying with protagonist or Luke blowing up a hut and ripping off Matrix some people liked I found rather out of place. Entriety felt forced or mockingly used with obligatory See I am now using this dumb force to patch up this plot hole, see how idiotic it is?, which maybe made director all feel good and smart about himself but just wasn't what fans wanted to see SW depicted as.

Silvanus:
Well, Holdo does chew out Poe for his behaviour during the bombing raid, saying it cost them their bombers. She does this just after Poe tries to introduce himself.

I had it pointed out to me that Poe straight up lies to Holdo when he introduces himself. He says he's Commander Dameron, when a just few hours earlier he had been very publicly demoted to Captain. Holdo quite obviously knew this, and this punk trying to claim privileges he no longer has probably put him right on her shit list. In my own head canon I imagine Leia was rather soft on Poe when the resistance had better days, being an exceptional pilot and his character probably reminded her of the old days with Han and Luke, but that leniency has now come to bite her in the arse when she needs discipline. As you can probably tell, I don't have a problem with the whole 'why didn't she tell him' thing. She felt this information was on a need to know basis, and this undisciplined punk with an attitude didn't need to know.

Anyway, I really liked the movie. I loved hermit Luke, the Rey/Ben dynamic (I even liked General Hux as the Imperial buttmonkey) and the overall themes of the movie. I guess I'm one of those Star Wars fans who liked having their expectations messed with.

Though I did have some annoyances with it. I thought Holdo was a bit of a wasted character (and it's totally not because Laura Dern was my first celebrity crush). I originally felt that she was being built up as the new leader of the resistance, when Leia inevitably passes the torch along. But she gets hyperspaced, quite literally. At least she went out in total style.

Phasma got punked again. She's supposed to be this total badass, but she's had precious little opportunity to show it. I'm going by the 'no body, not dead' rule of thumb so hopefully she actually has something to do in the next film.

I think Poe's epiphany on the nature of command and leadership could have been a bit more explicit, considering the battle on Krayt is his fault. He did send a low-level rank-and-file ex-stormtrooper and a ship's engineer to do a spec-ops job, it's no wonder they failed.

I didn't hate the Canto Bight stuff, but I think it was, as someone described it a few pages back, too normal. It was too much like a casino you'd find in any city. They were playing roulette, craps and not some strange and interesting alien games that would have made the place more...star warsy.

Same with super Leia. Didn't hate it, I could imagine she's picked up a few force tricks over the years but this did feel somewhat overblown.

I will be interested in how Episode IX is going to play out now. I'm assuming the original plan was for Leia to pass on the torch in that movie, but.....well. I think a time skip is inevitable, but I don't think they'll off Leia completely off screen, I think that her death will be an important plot point. I also hope force ghost Luke sticks around to annoy Kylo.

Kyrian007:
And there it is. So it wouldn't be a problem "in the current Zeitgeist" if the character was Ray and male? And suddenly we're back to it being a problem because of gender, and not because of how the character was written.

I think what others have been trying to say is this: It would still be a problem; it just would be a problem without cover to prevent it from being addressed and possibly corrected. Right now there's more than one article circulating the Internet forwarding the premise that anyone with a problem with Rey as presented (and in some cases, the greater movie) must be a misogynist, with zero regard for what they might actually say or the arguments they might make.

"Girl power, yay!" is a perfectly fine sentiment to have, but it shouldn't be mistaken for a serious analysis or an argument, much less the argument that should be allowed to shout all others down.

PsychedelicDiamond:
There's a lot of anger and negativity surrounding this movie so I'm gonna go ahead and assume I'm gonna like it a lot.

I watched all 8 Star Wars movies in one sitting, straight through, after this movie, and yes, Episode 8 made 7 much more enjoyable, and yes, Rey's Mary-Sue tendencies are overwritten by the fact that she blatantly and literally is shown in the film to be drawn to the dark side with no hesitation or qualms. I just hope she doesn't end up being some grey jedi stain on the franchise, because "I can use dark side powers without succumbing to the dark side" is bullshit writing.

Gethsemani:

Jamcie Kerbizz:
no plots or character development is really moved forward in any meaningful fashion in this movie

It is totally fine to not like the movie, but you don't need to exaggerate/lie about what it does. If there's one thing TLJ does, it is provide character development. All of the four new main cast (Rey, Finn, Poe, Kylo) get a clear arc in this movie and resolve it neatly with some character growth:

Rey: Learns that her heritage is unimportant and stops trying to find surrogate parents to cling to.
Finn: Gets to see the logical end point of his "I don't want to get involved"-stance and realizes he does not want to become like DJ, thus galvanizing him to take a stand against the First Order.
Poe: Has to face the realization that winning the battle is not winning the war and has to come to terms with following orders and trusting others to do what's right, instead of rushing off to do his own thing.
Kylo: Stops trying to mimic Vader, realizes that Snoke is manipulating him and resolves to reshape the galaxy to his own ideals.

Whether these arcs and plots are any good can be discussed, but they are undoubtedly there.

Kylo became the hero of the new trilogy because he proved he is the only one with character development and a mind of his own, Poe learned that the Empire was right all along, shut up and do as you are told, even if what you are told wastes a tactical advantage that ends up being a major plot point that you were right and the entire resistance would be dead without your "Pointless Sacrifice" of a few bombers that would have been in a hangar that was destroyed less than 15 minutes later anyway, and Finn goes from being... A guy who willingly and eagerly slaughters his former allies and possibly even friends to a guy who... Attacks the people he used to work with and for because they are evil, even though they are all brainwashed and unable to see that what they are doing is wrong, thus making him a brutal murderer of innocents who have no control over their own actions.

Yeah, this movie is way better than Episode 7, but in the same way that my shit that smells kind of like a Triple Whopper is way better than a diarrhea shit that smells awful.

Gethsemani:

This is actually one of the parts where I felt the movie actually kept the Resistance looking like a proper military force. Poe is a Commander, demoted to Captain. That means that at best he's a wing commander responsible for some half dozen ships and pilots. As a Captain he's the lead wingman in a fighter pair. Why should this guy, hero or not, be briefed on a plan that's devised by an Admiral (some six or seven ranks above the commander) and hinges on secrecy to be successful? For all the Resistance knows, there's a mole on their ships that's feeding the First Order their location and that's how they got tracked.

By brushing Poe aside and telling him to suck it up, Huldo is actually acting in a way that I'd expect a military leader to act. They aren't going to brief every random joe in their organisation personally on the grand strategy of the war, they will tell those people to get back in line and wait for orders. This also makes Poe's arc and the way it is played a nice deconstruction of the Ace trope. Poe might be the Ace, but the Resistance is still a military organisation with a clear chain of command and they are not making exceptions just because that one guy is a damn good pilot.

Demotion or not, Poe is still highest ranking Squadron Leader which makes him Commander Air Group, fourth in line for command, behind Admiral Buzzfeed, the Captain of the ship they are aboard, and the XO of the ship they are aboard.

That right there is reason enough to keep him in the loop, since a catastrophic loss of command has already happened once today, and other officers who should outrank Poe keep going down with their ships instead of retreating to safety, further proving Admiral Holdo is a fuckwit who wasted lives and materiel.

altnameJag:

Fischgopf:

Why can she, with no prior explanation of how to even do it, force pull a lightsaber from a significant distance and great speed to herself when Luke struggled to accomplish pulling one to himself that was merely a few feet away despite the fact the he was further along in his training?

Where he was concussed by a Wampanoag and hung upside down, where the sum total of his training was "block these blaster bolts" and "just feel the shot"?

You mean the way Rey would have had a concussion from being tossed more than fifteen meters through the air to strike her head and back against a tree that was behind her, then fell five more meters to the ground?

Rangaman:
Back on topic over here, I liked it. There were a few odd momements (the chase scene in the Casino Town came far too close to something out of the prequels for my liking). There were some convienant plot holes and Finn's sidequest went preciesly nowhere, but I still enjoyed it, moreso than TFA and definitly more than Rogue One.

What I don't see is how it's worse than the prequels. Anyone who says that should be forced to rewatch those atrocities; remind themselves that the sequel triology couldn't possibly be worse than those movies.

I watched all 8 of the current bluray movies in one day, and the prequels are still better than the sequel trilogy

Spade Lead:
The problem is that Holdo's move breaks Star Wars combat forever. One ship took out an entire fleet. They now have to explain why no one has ever done this before and will never do it again

This is just conjecture, but perhaps it's not done for the same reason high-speed impacts in space are so dangerous in real life: it tends to create a cloud of fast-moving debris that can ruin the day of anyone that crosses its path. If you've ever seen the movie Gravity, it's like that.

It's the reason space agencies are so meticulous about keeping track of every object they've left up there, lest something they send up collides with something else, the debris of which smashes another, which then smashes another, and so on in a domino effect. This is called the Kessler syndrome and if it cascades enough, it can render space activities extremely risky to impossible because our orbit is full of schrapnel wizzing around like hypersonic bullets.

How does this relate to Star Wars? Well, Holdo's kamikaze would be much, much, MUCH worse. Hit something at lightspeed and you can have debris moving at relativistic speeds. At those velocities even tiny objects carry a fuckton of energy. As in 'hits like a nuke' and above levels of energy. And they won't ever slow down or stop until they hit something, which may be millennia later.

The movies have at various times stressed how important it is for the navigation computer to calculate a safe route before jumping to lightspeed, because flying into something while travelling at c would really suck. I can imagine space travel would lose some of its appeal when everybody starts doing Holdos, filling up the most travelled routes with near impossible to detect or track swarms of relativistic death.

Silvanus:

Gethsemani:
However, the outrage against it can not be chalked up only to its' weird pacing, few weird character moments (Holdo's adamant refusal to tell Poe [...]

I thought this was odd while I was watching the film, but after thinking about it, I don't think it was terribly strange after all. Holdo is a commander; Poe is a pilot, not an adviser, vice-admiral, or commander. It is not his job to know the broader strategy behind decision-making-- it's his job to fly an X-Wing.

Military commanders in the real world do not tend to inform soldiers of broader strategy.

If Holdo and three other people (all located in the same compartment of the ship, just like when Leia and Ackbar were shot into space along with 99% of the Resistance leadership) died, Poe would be the next in line for command. Your military analogy is flawed in that you actually don't seem to know how a chain of command is actually organized. Poe isn't just some pilot, he is CAG, Commander Air Group, only outranked by his ship's Executive Officer, the Commanding Officer, and any Admiral aboard.

Chimpzy:

Spade Lead:
The problem is that Holdo's move breaks Star Wars combat forever. One ship took out an entire fleet. They now have to explain why no one has ever done this before and will never do it again

The movies have at various times stressed how important it is for the navigation computer to calculate a safe route before jumping to lightspeed, because flying into something while travelling at c would really suck. I can imagine space travel would lose some of its appeal when everybody starts doing Holdos, filling up the most travelled routes with near impossible to detect or track swarms of relativistic death.

True, but at the same time, if your choice is Alderaan dies or you jump your X-Wing into the Death Star, destroying it and possibly throwing some shrapnel around at relativistic speeds, surely the better option is to save Alderaan. Besides, relativistic shrapnel will clear the galaxy pretty quickly in the grand scheme of things. Just make sure the shrapnel is aimed at an enemy formation or territory as well.

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