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Addressing Common Complaints/Arguments Against TLJ- Discussion

Discussion in 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' started by The Birdwatcher, May 31, 2021.

  1. The Birdwatcher

    The Birdwatcher Rebel Official

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    Okay. I was inspired to make this thread because I once again found the "parrot" discussion/reiteration of arguments against this film.

    (I hope people know how to use common sense/analysis.).

    Okay. Some points to start this.

    Point 1: There was no plan for the sequel trilogy, thus why TLJ suffered, because of TFA's mistakes and incorrect set-up.

    Answer: Yes, it is fair to say that there was no plan. Probably a lack of inspiration, too, at the beginning- there seems to be evidence for this in The Art of The Force Awakens, which mentions several artists making abstract art in order to generate ideas.

    As for why this would make the quality of the film suffer is a whole other domain. A lot of SW, historically has had several drafts (the fourth draft being made on-set with the original Star Wars), and some of it is downright on the fly/improv.

    There, at the most was a rough ideas/outline with the OT, and there are some radical changes/different ideas between the first and last/complete drafts/script of ROTJ. There are differences in approach- Lucas wanting the more fairytale approach in ROTJ, as opposed to both (characters and fairytale) in TESB (and there seems to be more sophistication/American Graffiti slant in ANH as well).

    The storyboard meeting in July 1981 is Lucas and co. (director, editor-writer, producer) throwing a bunch of ideas together and hoping that it would work. Also, Lucas was hoping that others could finesse the details and make things or larger plot points seem less stupid like the Emperor being on the Death Star. Also, there is evidence of ROTJ being a remake of ANH, since Lucas told a number of reporters this back in the day of release. TESB is an inverse of ANH, too.

    They were burned out (Lucas said to have run out of steam two years prior to ROTJ's release and running on momentum), too.

    Despite this, a lot of people will defend ROTJ, and say that TESB is the best (myself included) SW film.

    The most planned out SW has probably been in production is the PT (since Lucas's outline in 1981 does mostly reflect the PT plot with ROTS), and even there are changes/ideas added to the roster.

    Would a straightforward plan have made the ST any better? Maybe. But I can't really say if SW has tried it before, and when it has in the prequels (ROTS)- How was it executed? Were there critical changes anyways to motivation? (Anakin being more sympathetic, being tricked in ROTS, as opposed to the less tragic and more villainous confidence and cutthroat nature of ANH and TESB Vader). Then there are questions of consistency and quality of the retcon/ideas being shown.

    I actually think (TROS included) that they did a pretty good job of trying to linking together other ideas, despite the sheer amount of retcons and inconsistencies that it's picked up. So no, while a plan would affect the ST, it doesn't necessarily denigrate its quality. I think inspiration and understanding are more important than, say- x must lead to y. Or, this must be here and that will be here, etc. Because even if a plan is laid down, critical changes can be made within that particular plan that contradict other themes/vision/intentions.


    Point 2: Luke sucks and is out of character because he wants to die on an island and is avoiding helping his friends. The OT Luke, that we all knew and loved would never do this.

    Answer: First off, there are 3 Lukes in the OT. Not one Luke. And I could argue that there could be more based on the phases of production in the OT (whether Gary Kurtz was around or not, may have made a difference in areas). Each Luke was influenced by a pre-production stage with specific directors, writers, and producers.

    There is also the whiplash effect with the success with SW's marketing at the time having an effect on the film, as well as fan feedback (needing to answer the audience's question of whether Vader was telling the truth or not, when Luke himself believes it and the visions that he has/the Force-feeling imply that it's true in Empire).

    Also, Luke was suicidal in ROTJ, as along as the Rebellion was okay, he was fine with dying on the Death Star with the Emperor. He had little concern for the feelings for his friends with dying (he says Leia is the only hope for the Rebellion if he doesn't make it back, meaning that he's unsure but later on in front of the Emperor says that he will die- unless Luke is cocky and lying bold-faced to the Emperor) or didn't look for alternative means of avoiding death. Luke also tossing away his lightsaber and made his claim to the Emperor despite having been told by Yoda to not underestimate the Emperor's abilities and having been shown that the Emperor can utilize the Force, which I think would be a sacrifice. He begs for his life afterwards, meaning that maybe Luke didn't expect it, but Luke has plenty of other evidence. Either that or Luke is actually being stupid or going this far to have Vader have a change of heart- though Luke actually looks and sounds scared (cries at one point) while being electrocuted, meaning that he had no idea what he was going into.

    Also, Luke HAS put his friends in danger before as well, so going alone on an island to die isn't out of character. ROTJ Luke shows recklessness at several points, letting most of his friends get into danger easily in order to let Jabba have multiple chances (mercy/pacificism/evasion of the dark side for Luke), despite his friends agreeing with the plan. His friends just sort of go with Luke's plan, even Han's reaction to Luke having a plan is "oh, great" instead of really being ticked off like when after he was tortured by Lando and upset right before he was being put into carbonite freeze (Han doesn't know what's going on but is suspicious), which is said at the time to kill or not kill him. But this underwhelmed/non-? reaction from his friends towards Luke makes it appear that Luke isn't putting his friends in any danger or isn't responsible, imo, so there isn't much of consequence.

    And then there is the odd stuff, like Luke saying that he expects to die (along with the Emperor, meaning he expected the Rebels to blow him and the Emperor up) in front of the Emperor before the Emperor says that the Rebels have fallen into a trap. Wouldn't this be a betrayal of later joining with the rebels/if there is any aftermath to fighting the Empire/not really caring for his friends' feelings if he dies when there might be other solutions than just turning himself in, when both Vader and the Emperor knew that there were Rebels on Endor- Luke knows that Vader will permit a search from one of his officers for Rebels, so why doesn't Luke try to get back to his friends/help them if the Empire is making a search to his knowledge?

    And then, Luke's sacrifice to the Emperor prevents more accountability because Luke doesn't want to kill the Emperor because "his journey to the dark side will be complete?", according to the Emperor. I mean, why even listen to the Emperor, he's pulling this stuff out of his butt. One action will condemn Luke to the dark side? Even though technically the Emperor is ARMED with the Force. Because Luke doesn't want to kill the Emperor, if any of his friends escape, they will be subject to the tyranny and power of the Emperor and his command.
     
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