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Star Wars: The Last Jedi


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Yes, totally agree. It’s also great that Rey has no lineage of import, I get sick of all that guff, trying to link everyone together in a boring incestuous mess. Let the characters just be themselves.

 

Unless in the next flick they reveal Rey is some sort of Force android, and her dad is actually HK-47. That I could really get on board with.

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The part of that flashback scene that had me fooled was the red rectangle in space above Jakku that her parents' ship seemed to be flying to - that convinced me that Han Solo was her father, on account of the freighter he and Chewie were transporting the Rathtars in had a rectangular hatch, with all that red lighting (that and the guilty look Han seemed to be giving Rey in the cockpit of the Falcon as they were landing on Takodana, when she was talking about how she never knew there was so much green in the galaxy). And, now I think about it, I was absolutely certain that Snoke was going to be revealed as some sort of reincarnated Darth Vader, as their heads both seemed to be scarred in exactly the same way. Here's the thing though: I'm glad I was wrong. The surprises at finding my guesses were misplaced were welcome, and I can also see now how much of a disappointment the new film would have been if I'd been right.

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10 hours ago, jerellis1 said:

 

I can shed some light on this (having seen it five times!) It's not Kylo Ren that says it, it's Rey. He goads her into finally admitting what she knows already ("Go on.. say it") and she finally cracks and says something like "they were nobody". He then elaborates on this a bit by describing them as "filthy junk traders", or something along those lines (bit harsh). So I think we can take the revelation about her origins as gospel, rather than waste too much time wondering if it's all just a big Kylo fib.

 

I saw it as he got her to admit what she most fears, abandoning her hope in exchange for accepting what is most likely to be true. She doesn’t know know, she knows the balance of probability says that’s almost definitely the situation; every child abandoned into miserable circumstances clings to the secret dream they’re someone special whose loving parents were forced to leave them for a noble reason, and one day they’ll uncover their true origins and fulfil their destiny. But as an adult she realises deep down that sort of thing only happens in movies and fairytales, so there’s a 99.999% chance she’s a nobody abandoned by a no one who she’ll never see again. All she’s done is admit that to herself (and Kylo).

The third film is now free to leave it at that, but could still do anything they like with it if they so desire.

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12 hours ago, MechE said:

I guess a lot of this comes down to perspective. I liked TFA, but loved TLJ.

 

Rey - For me who Rey's parents were, was not in itself the important thing, but rather that she was trapped by not knowing who they were. Johnson leans into that heavily before finally releasing her to be whoever she wanted to be.

 

Luke - For me it wasn't about what Luke would do when he returned, but rather why had he turned his back on everyone he cared about. Again Johnson explored this in great detail.

 

Snoke - For me, the least interesting character in TFA, was only interesting in respect to his influence over Kylo. Again Johnson examines the limits of this relationship to breaking point.

 

Poe - He could only come off as a pale impersonation of Han Solo if they continued down the lovable rogue route. This is much more interesting direction to take him in without changing what little characterisation JJ gave him in the first place.

 

Finn - In the TFA he was a man who rejected who he was. In TLJ he discovered the man he wanted to be.

 

I honestly saw it as the natural extension of the characters we'd seen in TFA, albeit by a director with different sensibilities.

 

I think this rings true for all of the characters. By the time TFA finished we didn't really know much more about any of the new cast than we did from their opening scenes, with the only notable exception being Kylo Rens family line.

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9 hours ago, jerellis1 said:

The part of that flashback scene that had me fooled was the red rectangle in space above Jakku that her parents' ship seemed to be flying to - that convinced me that Han Solo was her father, on account of the freighter he and Chewie were transporting the Rathtars in had a rectangular hatch, with all that red lighting (that and the guilty look Han seemed to be giving Rey in the cockpit of the Falcon as they were landing on Takodana, when she was talking about how she never knew there was so much green in the galaxy). And, now I think about it, I was absolutely certain that Snoke was going to be revealed as some sort of reincarnated Darth Vader, as their heads both seemed to be scarred in exactly the same way. Here's the thing though: I'm glad I was wrong. The surprises at finding my guesses were misplaced were welcome, and I can also see now how much of a disappointment the new film would have been if I'd been right.

 

To be fair, that does sound awful. :)

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The biggest problem Disney now have is how throughly they have misunderstood half the fanbase.

 

They must have had massive confidence in TLJ to announce a new Rian SW Trilogy right before it's release - but I really can't see that happening now. The project will attract such loud, negative clickbait from the 50% of the very vocal fans that hated TLJ - that I can't see Disney wanting to go there. 

 

As has been said - I'm amazed Disney, Lucas and JJ didn't sit in a room for 3 weeks in 2012 and plan out Episodes 7 - 12 (at least) in great detail. Part of the mystique of SW is that George Lucas had it all planned out in his yellow binder in the late 70's. He was just waiting for the technology to catch up. So that Disney has progressed with the main trilogy without a plan for where they are going is almost criminal. And has led to most of the problems we are now seeing with TLJ.

 

Some might see it as brave and exciting. I see it as a clusterfuck waiting to happen.

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2 minutes ago, Dirty Harry Potter said:

Part of the mystique of SW is that George Lucas had it all planned out in his yellow binder in the late 70's. He was just waiting for the technology to catch up.

 

it's part of the mystique of Star Wars, but it's also a bit of a porky pie from Lucas - he never had anything more than a few vague ideas planned out in advance. Darth Vader wasn't Luke's father, Leia wasn't Luke's sister, etc etc. Even when he went back to make the prequels, he didn't plan anything out - Anakin's motivation for going to the dark side wasn't set down until they'd finished principal photography on Revenge of the Sith.

 

The way Disney are doing it now is pretty much fully aligned with Lucas' method in the seventies and eighties.

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Just now, K said:

 

it's part of the mystique of Star Wars, but it's also a bit of a porky pie from Lucas - he never had anything more than a few vague ideas planned out in advance. Darth Vader wasn't Luke's father, Leia wasn't Luke's sister, etc etc. Even when he went back to make the prequels, he didn't plan anything out - Anakin's motivation for going to the dark side wasn't set down until they'd finished principal photography on Revenge of the Sith.

 

The way Disney are doing it now is pretty much fully aligned with Lucas' method in the seventies and eighties.

 

Yup, I think it's in the making of or commentary track, but all the stuff relating to Anakin having a force premonition / dream about Padme's inevitable death was done in reshoots! That's the whole motivation for his turn! If Lucas didn't consider this till after principle photography, then it make the whole love story in AOTC even more banal. 

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Leia being Luke's sister must've driven the geeks of '83 nuts. I wonder what the nerd chat was like on the bulletin boards between Empire and Jedi about Yoda's "there is another" line? I can just imagine the ire when it was revealed to be Leia rather than some badass new lightsaber-twirling Jedi. I wonder if anyone said "it's just a stupid Lucas Mystery Box!"

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11 minutes ago, Pob said:

Leia being Luke's sister must've driven the geeks of '83 nuts. I wonder what the nerd chat was like on the bulletin boards between Empire and Jedi about Yoda's "there is another" line? I can just imagine the ire when it was revealed to be Leia rather than some badass new lightsaber-twirling Jedi. I wonder if anyone said "it's just a stupid Lucas Mystery Box!"

 

People on Telnet just screaming at each other.

 

As lots of people will know, Luke's Sister was meant to be an entirely new character... but Lucas thought "fuck it" and just combined that character idea with Leia. 

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I liked the fact that Rey's parents turn out to be nobodies.

 

But the bit where I really felt a big mismatch between TFA and TLJ was that in the first film, it comes across like she has some very specific reason to expect that her parents would be back soon: it seems like she's only been off the planet and with Han a few hours when she says something like "I've already been away too long."

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(backtracking slightly) who gives a fuck about Rey's parents? 

 

It feels like there is a tendency to dismiss critics of the last Jedi as blowhards who are disappointed that certain character/narrative arcs didn't go according to plan. But the fundamental problems with the last Jedi are just basic ones to do with pacing and continuity and narrative logic etc. 

 

Its totally fine to kill snoke off without much of an explanation as to who or what he is; it's totally not fine to spend half the film building snoke up to be omniscient and then just eliminating him by suddenly establishing him as the worst ever panto villain whose stupidity is boundless.

 

Etc. (On mobile so can't be arsed to type any more)

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19 minutes ago, Nick R said:

she says something like "I've already been away too long."

 

Waiting for her parents to return is the only thing that kept her going on Jakku, its not about who her parents are but all about who she is - which is the irony of that moment as she is on a journey of self discovery as soon as she leaves the planet. 

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3 hours ago, K said:

 

it's part of the mystique of Star Wars, but it's also a bit of a porky pie from Lucas - he never had anything more than a few vague ideas planned out in advance.

 

Those might be the actual facts - but why let them get in the way of a good story.

 

George Lucas peddled the fact he had it all mapped out for years and it all added to the anticipation of more SW films the world over. No other saga had that, and it almost feels part of Star Wars DNA.

 

And Disney should have done the same thing again. Teasing that it was all mapped out in secret between JJ and Lucas - and that they now had years worth of new Episodes 7 - 15. Making it up as you good a lot sounds like a great way of turning the whole thing turning into a mess.

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We'll see who Reys parents are in Ep 9 (im guessing Obi-Wans?), ghost-Luke will be back, not sure if Snoke will be back, he might be - and it will be reveasled who he is (probably Pleguis/Sidious/some Sith Legend)?

 

They have to set up a plot and have the protagonist overcome that in one film. JJ make it 3 hours and fill it with nonsense-OT-pandering.

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It does seem to almost forget it’s the middle of a trilogy. 

 

JJ basically handed Johnson a “paint by numbers” sheet to colour in at the end of his film. Johnson chucked that in the bin and did his own thing instead, then handed JJ an almost blank canvas to start with for the concluding part.

 

The opening crawl pretty much has to start with “X years have passed since the near total destruction of the Resistance”, but beyond that anything could have happened between films, and there needs to have been rather a lot of it for everything to now wrap up neatly in two hours!

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Nonsense. You have a protagonist, an antagonist and a basic concept in "spreading the word/iconography of the rebellion as wide as you can."

 

There's a basic idea there, it's just up to JJ and the man that wrote Batman vs Superman and Justice League to deliver. 

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I know very little of the EU, I really can't get into the books cause I never did at the time and can't really get into them now. I'm not a fan of the writing style of the ones I have tried.

 

However, I wouldn't mind an invasion by the Yhuzon Vhong - it would be totally unexpected, and give a reason for Rey and Kylo to team up. Honestly I don't know where else they could go without reviving some OT/PT concept/villain and making him the big bad. Kylo Ren is just too loved atm to be the big bad, and is very poor at ordering an entire Empire about.

 

Of course the Yuzon Vong are the most non-OT-Star-Wars-thing, theyre very Sci-Fi/Star-Trekky in concept - but could work, as a totally unxpected invasion of the Galaxy by these super weirdo beings. I really dunno. This way it would lend credence to having a billion old chartcers appear as Force Ghosts, thanks JJ

 

Have the opening crawl be like "First Order and Resistance have been fighting for X years" and start with them fighting, before some mad invasion. Have no idea where they can go from here.

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26 minutes ago, BitterToad said:

Nonsense. You have a protagonist, an antagonist and a basic concept in "spreading the word/iconography of the rebellion as wide as you can."

 

There's a basic idea there, it's just up to JJ and the man that wrote Batman vs Superman and Justice League to deliver. 

 

You seem to have declared it nonsense to suggest that there’s been minimal set-up and then explained how there’s been minimal set-up :huh:

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3 hours ago, BitterToad said:

Nonsense. You have a protagonist, an antagonist and a basic concept in "spreading the word/iconography of the rebellion as wide as you can."

 

There's a basic idea there, it's just up to JJ and the man that wrote Batman vs Superman and Justice League to deliver. 

 

Well whoever Rey's dad ends up being, we pretty much know her mum's going to be called Martha then.

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This is supposed to be the opening trilogy in a whole new era of Star Wars films, right? Disney want to milk this cash-cow for all it's worth. So it seems quite possible that episode 9 won't end with the good guys' victory. At least, not in the same way as Return of the Jedi.

 

In fact, for that purpose maybe the end of TLJ would have been the best way to end the new trilogy.

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“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” Box Office Has Disney Concerned

January 31, 2018

15 Comments

Joe Hogarty

 

 

 

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Disney might be having more problems than expected with the current wave of Star Wars films and merchandise. Yes, the films have been profitable, but since The Force Awakens made its successful theatrical run in 2015, it appears that box office returns have had less of an impact than analysts had anticipated.

 

Rogue One was a Star Wars spinoff film, but Disney had always stressed that it was an experiment and they wanted to see how the public reacted to Star Wars movies that were not part of The Episodes. Rogue One’s final box office worldwide total was just under $1.1 billion. For an experiment, it performed fairly well. Nowhere near the $2.1 billion that The Force Awakens did, but still very profitable for the company.

 

The Last Jedi, although praised by many critics, had a decidedly split view among Star Wars fans and audiences alike, and that may have impacted the box office. The Last Jedi pulled in $1.3 billion worldwide, but being a direct sequel to The Force Awakens and an episode of the Star Wars Saga, it did fall short of what many analysts expected as the final intake.

 

Solo: A Star Wars Story, the next Star Wars spin off to follow Rogue One, will open theatrically in less than 4 months and that movie seems to have had troubles of its own with the firing of original directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller, needing Ron Howard to come in and re-shoot a large portion of the film, hopefully salvaging what Lord and Miller had already filmed. We have yet seen a teaser trailer or much advertising and with so little time until it premiers, that could hint to something troubling.

 

The Wall Street Journal does make a good point and they aren’t the only ones to see a possible crack in the Star Wars franchise. I have no doubt Disney is fully aware of what is going on and hopefully they are rethinking the current direction that Lucasfilm has taken the Star Wars franchise.

From The Wall Street Journal:

 

Six years after Walt Disney Co. spent $4 billion to buy a single franchise, “Star Wars” is looking a little less stellar.

Despite being one of the past year’s most successful movies, “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” has fallen short of Wall Street’s expectations due to a faster-than-expected falloff at the box office, declining toy sales and a poor showing in China.

 

With $1.3 billion in global box office for “The Last Jedi,” the most of any movie released in 2017 and No. 9 of all time, Disney ’s problems are ones other entertainment companies would kill to have. Nonetheless, for a property as valued as “Star Wars,” any sign audiences are losing faith is concerning and could prove costly down the road if the trend continues.

 

“Disney started off with an incredible touch with Star Wars, but now it’s looking a little less magic,” said B. Riley FBR analyst Barton Crockett.

Across Hollywood, studios have prioritized franchises that spawn sequels, move toys and provide maximum negotiating power over movie theaters. If the Skywalker saga is starting to lose its must-see status, that could spell trouble for the company as it prepares to release new movies from this May well into the 2020s.

 

“The Last Jedi” will soon end its run with around $625 million in the U.S. and Canada, about $200 million short of several Wall Street analysts’ expectations. While few thought it would match the $937 million domestic and $2.07 billion world-wide gross of 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” the franchise’s return to the big screen after a decade away, analysts forecast the new film would come closer.

 

Foreign grosses followed a similar pattern.

 

In the U.S. and Canada, “The Last Jedi” opened to $220 million, slightly behind “The Force Awakens,” which had a $248 million opening. With overwhelmingly positive reviews and an A audience rating according to CinemaScore, it looked like another “Star Wars” movie would have a long, healthy run.But by mid-January, it was grossing less than half as much each day as “The Force Awakens” at the same time two years ago and less even than 2016’s spinoff “Rogue One,” which didn’t feature iconic characters in major roles and opened to $155 million.

 

It’s been 40 years since the original Star Wars film was released and fans can look forward to a regular supply of new films and merchandise in the coming years. But, with the release of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” a small band of rebels—who loved the early films—just can’t take it anymore. WSJ’s Mark Kelly reports.

Disney theatrical distribution chief Dave Hollis said in an interview that “The Last Jedi” box office returns have been “the result we were expecting.” He noted that the second film in prior “Star Wars” trilogies also grossed less than their predecessors.

 

Not all series follow that pattern. Marvel Studios, which Disney also paid $4 billion to buy, has released 17 superhero movies in 10 years with no sign of a box office slowdown.

 

Star Wars toy sales during the 2017 holidays were the lowest since Disney relaunched the brand in 2015, according to NPD Group. For the full year 2017, it was the No. 2 toy brand in the U.S. behind Nerf and down from No. 1 in 2016. Worldwide, it remained No. 1.

 

Josh Silverman, executive vice president of licensing Disney Consumer Products, noted in a statement that Star Wars remained the No. 1 toy franchise during the holidays.

 

Electronic Arts Inc.’s tie-in videogame “Star Wars Battlefront II” is on track to sell between 10 million and 12 million copies compared with 14 million for the first installment in 2015, according to several industry analysts. That is partly due to a plan to sell virtual goods that appeared to give big spenders a competitive edge, which it canceled just before release due to fan outcry.

 

An EA spokesman declined to comment.

 

With blockbuster grosses expected for “The Last Jedi,” Disney was able to demand theaters play the movie for a minimum of four weeks, an unusually long period. That hasn’t been a problem for large multiplexes, but strained single-screen cinemas like Rodney Miller’s Elder Theatre of Jackson Center, Ohio, population 1,400, where screenings were nearly empty later in the run.

 

“The first week was good, the second week was pretty decent, and the third and fourth weeks were disasters,” he said.

The new film’s take on Star Wars mythology, in ways a rebuke to the nostalgia pervasive in “The Force Awakens,” alienated some hard-core fans who criticized “The Last Jedi” online and didn’t return for multiple viewings as they have for prior installments.

 

Mr. Hollis said the box office take for “The Last Jedi” was more front-loaded than he had expected and said the days that holidays fell on the calendar and strong competition from other films, particularly “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle,” may have impacted its January gross.

 

Overseas, “The Last Jedi” has grossed close to $700 million, about $180 million more than “Rogue One” but $430 million less than “The Force Awakens.”

The biggest chunk of that shortfall came from China, where “The Last Jedi” has grossed a weak $41 million, just one-third as much as “The Force Awakens” and 41% less than “Rogue One.” Despite aggressive promotional campaigns including pop songs and Stormtroopers on the Great Wall, moviegoers in the world’s most populous nation have proved less interested in Luke, Leia and lightsabers.

 

Mr. Hollis said the “Last Jedi” China gross was disappointing and said Disney is still “digging into” the reasons and potential solutions.

If audiences need a break from “Star Wars,” they won’t get one this year. A spinoff focused on a young Han Solo opens Memorial Day weekend.

 

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The Last Jedi was always going to perform the way it has.

 

TFA opens and it’s the first Star Wars film for 10 years, and potentially the first decent Star Wars film for over 30 years. Everyone goes to see it, fans and non-fans, multiple times. It’s a phenomenon.

 

The second film is the difficult second album. It’s neither the beginning of the story or the end, and you get the fans and the casual fans, but the non-fans that went to see TFA and weren’t impressed won’t be returning.

 

The third installment has the novelty of ‘ending the story’, and will sit somewhere between TLJ sand TFA as you pick up a few more people who are interested to see how the trilogy ends. $1.7 Billion I’ll say.

 

It’s the same thing that happened with TPM, AOTC and ROTS. AOTC had a similar drop-off.

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I imagine AOTC earned the least of the prequels because it was also the shittest.

 

According to BO Mojo, TESB ($538m) earned more than ROTJ ($475m) lifetime/global. Presumably because it was the better film and got more love for the special editions. Either way the third SW instalment doesn’t always necessarily see an uptick from the middle film.

 

Who knows whether JJ can outdo TLJ with EPIX. But where I a betting man I’d say it will gross less than TLJ, and that before that, SOLO will do comparatively poorly too cf. R1.

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16 hours ago, MrPogo said:

She doesn’t know know, she knows the balance of probability says that’s almost definitely the situation; every child abandoned into miserable circumstances clings to the secret dream they’re someone special whose loving parents were forced to leave them for a noble reason, and one day they’ll uncover their true origins and fulfil their destiny. But as an adult she realises deep down that sort of thing only happens in movies and fairytales.

 

Star Wars fits both of these descriptions. It always has and always should. Lucas understood this for better or worse. Johnson seems to struggle with the fairytail aspect. Either going too far (Liea's space walk) or not far enough (making Ray just a pleb who happens to be able to wield a lightsaber like Darth Maul with a Gundark up his arse).

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6 hours ago, Hanzo the Razor said:

 

Star Wars fits both of these descriptions. It always has and always should. Lucas understood this for better or worse. Johnson seems to struggle with the fairytail aspect. Either going too far (Liea's space walk) or not far enough (making Ray just a pleb who happens to be able to wield a lightsaber like Darth Maul with a Gundark up his arse).

 

My god, you can’t just have some pleb wielding a lightsaber. What was Johnson thinking? I’m not paying good money to watch some oik; I want my Jedi to come from good families. 

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1 hour ago, K said:

 

My god, you can’t just have some pleb wielding a lightsaber. What was Johnson thinking? I’m not paying good money to watch some oik; I want my Jedi to come from good families. 

 

No. She had no experience of the weapon before she handed Kylo his arse in TFA. That always really bothered me. Whether she comes from some Jedi lineage or not doesn't matter. I just don't find it believable that she could be that good with it with no training. She swing it about a few times in TLJ before the Kylo/Snoke scene but that was it.

 

I had the same problem with Finn using it in TFA.

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