Star Wars: The Last Jedi review: The Force is strong with this one | Films | Entertainment

It’s not easy. 

Let’s just say it takes place in a galaxy far, far away. 

There are feats of derring-do, spectacular aerial battles, brave souls willing to make the supreme sacrifice, fantastic beasts, betrayal, death and a great deal more of Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker. 

In short it is a dynamic, action-packed addition to the 40-year-old series that no self-respecting fan will want to miss.  

We last saw Rey (Daisy Ridley) making contact with a grizzled Luke Skywalker on a craggy, storm-tossed island in the middle of the ocean. 

Luke seems old and defeated and is not easily persuaded that the tradition of the Jedi needs to continue. 

Why he has chosen exile is just one of the questions to be answered in the film. 

Elsewhere, the Resistance is locked in mortal combat with the First Order and Domhnall Gleeson is still hamming it up something rotten as spineless villain General Hux.  

Finn (John Boyega) is deciding where his loyalties lie and even finding a touch of (very chaste) romance with fighter pilot Rose (Kelly Marie Tran). 

Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac) appears to have assumed the Han Solo role of hot-headed, daredevil pilot and fearless defender of Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) and her ever-dwindling Resistance forces. 

The film is fittingly dedicated to the late Carrie Fisher who invests Princess Leia with a weary melancholy as those around her continue to fall and all hope seems lost. 

The Last Jedi is very much a reckoning with the past and a moment when everyone must decide exactly where they stand.  

The most compelling element of the story is the battle of wills between Rey and the dastardly Kylo Ren (Adam Driver). 

Both of them believe they can influence the other towards a different path.

Kylo may have killed his own father but Rey believes that there is a goodness in him that can still be reached whereas Kylo believes Rey could be tempted towards the dark side, especially if he offered to share the galaxy with her. 

Their struggles both physical and mental lie at the film’s heart.  

There is a great deal going on in The Last Jedi and the way it splits off the main characters into separate but intertwined stories makes for a long, over-plotted fi lm that even starts to drag a little in the middle. 

But when all those elements come together for a rip-roaring, heart-in-the-mouth final showdown, you realise that it has all been worthwhile and has been heading towards a greater purpose. 

Filled with amazing action sequences and edge-of-the-seat encounters between warring enemies, The Last Jedi maintains the impossibly high standards of the series.

It allows the story to go marching forward and a new generation to carry the hope that victory will be secured. 

It is a triumph of storytelling for director Rian Johnson. 

The Force is strong with this one. 

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Written by sortiwa

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