The Last Jedi took some serious risks with its style, and it still managed to deliver. It was a decent movie overall, but it did disappoint many fans who wanted something more like The Force Awakens. Odd pacing, multiple climaxes, pointless scenes, the dismissal of several teased plot points from TFA, and an uncharacteristically cheap sense of humor were major problems that could have been solved easily, but the plot also had some big issues that could easily have been fixed.
Before we begin, SPOILERS — but I doubt there is anyone who hasn’t seen it yet. And if you haven’t read it already, you might want to check out my review of The Last Jedi before you read this.
Problem #1: For the first time in any Star Wars movie, there was no lightsaber battle. You can’t even count the skirmish with Snoke’s guards as one since the guards had different, though still awesome, weapons. Snoke died without ever igniting his blade, if he even had one. Not even Luke drew his green one when Rey pulled hers (or rather, Luke’s other one) on him. Luke and Kylo did clash a little on Crait, but you can’t count that because it was only a few strikes and Luke wasn’t even there.
Solution: The easiest way to fix this does not involve Rey or Snoke (Snoke’s death was too good to change it). Luke’s fight with Kylo before the new Jedi Order was slaughtered could be shown, which would solve this problem as well as explain why Luke couldn’t defeat him. That would allow the movie to keep its final battle the same, but still have a traditional lightsaber fight.
Problem #3: Captain Phasma, the new Boba Fett, died in the same way as Boba and Jango: an easy, cheap skirmish that really should have gone down the other way. Her entrance with a squad of Stormtroopers marching through the flames was very promising, but her death was a massive disappointment for fans, who were hoping she would be better than the other Boba equivalents in their respective trilogies.
Solution: She could survive and come back for episode IX. But the better solution would be to let her kill Finn and have Rose sacrifice herself the way Finn tried to. Although it kills a lot of characters, the bad guys didn’t get many new recruits for The Last Jedi so it would level things out. In addition, it would give the entire movie more weight, which is never a bad thing.
Problem #2: Ackbar’s death was waved off as if we weren’t even supposed to know who he was. Not only did it happen off-screen, it was done inconsequentially and without much thought. Ackbar has been around since the Empire, making him almost as experienced as Leia. He didn’t deserve to be dumped out of the script so easily.
Solution: He should have been the one to smash Snoke’s star destroyer with a hyperspace jump. It would have provided the weight for his death that he deserved, and it would have avoided an emotional death for a character we barely know and replaced it with a well-deserved, timely death for a character who we know well enough to miss.
Problem #4: Holdo existed. Withholding a plan that was not need-to-know was not only pointless but jeopardized the trust of the crew and caused the mutiny, which Poe was right to start: she wasn’t transparent with her own crew, so she had something to hide. While a corrupt Resistance commander is not a bad thing to include in the movie, the fact that Leia trusted someone like that more than anyone else in the crew is strange, to say the least, and not fitting for her character at all.
Solution: This is a tough one, as her arrogance and stupidity (or was it treason?) were crucial to the plot, which makes her character basically irreplaceable. Ackbar couldn’t take her place entirely either, as it would be completely out of character for him. However, instead of trying to “redeem” herself by sacrificing herself for the rest of the Resistance, Ackbar could have been the one to save the day instead, which would solve two problems in one.
Problem #5: One of the most iconic lines in any Star Wars movie, second to “may the Force be with you,” was never actually heard in The Last Jedi. In fact, it is the only movie so far where not a single character utters the famous one-liner, “I have a bad feeling about this.” This would be an unusual lack of attention to detail on the part of the filmmakers…
Solution: Watch the movie again! While it may not be spoken in English (or, I should say, Basic), it’s in there. BB-8 is the one to say it this time, as evident by Poe’s reaction to it in the very first scene.
So, do you agree with these, or did you like it the way it was? Do you have any better solutions? Let me know!