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Film Review: ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Turns Up the Volume

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CHICAGO – Everything that could be thrown into the Stars Wars legend – and the official story – is present in “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” With three concurrent stories converging into an amped-up climax, all manner of Star Wars-mania and fan satisfaction can be realized in Episode 8.

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

Taking over for Episode 7 director J.J. Abrams is Rian Johnson (“Brick,” “The Brothers Bloom”), a more independent and offbeat helmsman. He obviously wanted to establish his own heartbeat in the series and did it by the balancing act of the complex stories (he also wrote the script), that all erupted over each other to effectively emerge together at the conclusion. It is an epic tale, much like the audacity of a seafaring novel written in the 19th Century, with conflict and emotion that have a bearing on both the older and new characters in the canon. This is not your Daddy’s Star Wars, but this is also not your Daddy’s time, and that all becomes necessary to evolve to the new cast and potential for the series.

The film picks up where the last film, “The Force Awakens,” left off. Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) has been found by the mysterious Rey (Daisy Ridley), in hopes of having him join the Resistance fight… which is being led by his sister General Leia (Carrie Fisher). Skywalker’s reluctance becomes part of Rey’s new evolution in Jedi training, and at the same time she has communication visions with a key enemy in the First Order, Kylo Ren (Adam Driver).

Meanwhile, the Resistance is going badly, as their main space port is being savagely attacked by the First Order and Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis). Finn (John Boyega) is going rogue in hopes of short circuiting a superior First Order technology, and enlists a mechanic named Rose (Kelly Marie Tran) and a slovenly space pirate (Benicio Del Toro) to infiltrate it. They also seek the aid of pilot Poe (Oscar Isaac), but it’s up to their guile and Force within them all to complete it.

”Star Wars: The Last Jedi” opens everywhere on December 15th in regular and 3D IMAX versions. See local listings for 3D IMAX theaters and show times. Featuring Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Adam Driver, Benicio Del Toro, Laura Dern, Peter Mayhew, Anthony Daniels. Written and directed by Rian Johnson. Rated “PG-13”

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”

The Cast of ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’
Photo credit: Walt Disney Studios

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”

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