A porg from “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” Photo by Lucasfilm Ltd.
This review of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” contains mild spoilers. Read at your own risk.
The Star Wars franchise has been causing quite an uproar in the media ever since Disney announced the newest trilogy. After watching “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”, fans have been waiting two years to see what fate held for some of their new favorite characters Resistance pilot, Poe Dameron, and the ex-Stormtrooper, FN-2187, now dubbed Finn. Fans of the films lined up on Dec. 14 to finally see what was awaiting Rey after she found Luke Skywalker, and how Kylo Ren was dealing with his embarrassing defeat on the now demolished Star Killer base. “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” does just that, keeping viewers enthralled while playing with the thin line between the light and dark sides of the force.
It’s no surprise that fans of the series are split down the middle, some loving the movie wholeheartedly, while others claim it to be the worst one yet. While that decision is made by the individual viewer, no one can deny that the movie has some interesting moments. Rian Johnson, who wrote and directed “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”, delivers quite a few surprising scenes, from lots of sarcastic humor to an unexpected backstory between Luke Skywalker and Kylo Ren. Johnson introduced new characters, such as Rose Tico, who have quickly gained quite a supportive following.
The plot itself is quite refreshing, but what really grabs your attention throughout the two-and-a-half-hour-long movie is the audio. The original soundtrack was both composed and conducted by John Williams, who also composed the soundtrack for “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”. The instrumentals do an astonishing job at eliciting emotions where needed. An exhilarating tune plays to keep you on the edge of your seat during the final battle while upbeat dance music plays to lift one’s mood during a fun casino scene. Each song takes into account exactly what is happening in the scene and how the viewer needs to feel while watching it.
However, the best use of sound in the movie was the lack of sound. Near the end of the movie, tensions are high as the audience are worried for the survival of all their heroes. In a moment of pure selflessness, a main character sacrifices themselves making a bold attack. In this riveting scene, all sound is cut out from the film for a full ten seconds emphasizing the intensity and gravity of the scene. This moment of silence is deafening and elicits chills every time I watch the movie and represents a smart move made by the production team.
“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” just goes to show that while script, cast and set design are all important when making a movie, but a phenomenal use of audio can make a good scene a great and memorable one. The end of the movie left viewers with questions, wondering how exactly the Resistance will move on from the events of the movie, and once again fans are left to wait another two years for the answer.