Star Wars: The Last Jedi Review & Parental Guidance

We saw Star Wars: The Last Jedi on Friday night. I wanted to share our Last Jedi review and some parental guidance for this PG-13 movie. It took me a couple days to write the review to reflect on the disparity of the movie’s feedback and figure out how to share our thoughts without divulging spoilers beyond what is in the trailers.

Star Wars The Last Jedi - Chewbacca & a Porg - Photo: Industrial Light & Magic/Lucasfilm..©2017 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Thoughts

As the credits rolled on Star Wars: The Last Jedi, my first thought was it was great movie but I was disappointed that certain things weren’t resolved.

One criticism of The Force Awakens was that it was very derivative of A New Hope and a bit nostalgic. I definitely didn’t feel that The Last Jedi was too derivative. Yes, there are some parallels: 

  • Rey is separated from the other characters training with Luke much as Luke was on Dagobah
  • The battle on Crait, the salt planet (white surface with red underneath) is reminiscent of the Battle of Hoth (except it ends the movie instead of starting it)
    Star Wars: The Last Jedi - The planet Crait
  • As the second film, in the series, the ending also leaves you wanting more
  • At least one other that would be too revealing to share here

However, there is no big reveal such as “No, I am Your Father” that makes Empire Strikes Back. 
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High Points

Star Wars: The Last Jedi is full of action. Despite its 2.5 hour run time, the movie did not drag. The movie keeps a brisk pace with the action between the Rebellion and the First Order contrasted with Luke and Rey’s scenes.


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Star Wars has definitely taken strides to have a more gender balanced cast. Unlike the original trilogy which basically featured Leia and Mon Mothma and the prequels which had Padme and a few Jedi, there are many more female characters throughout the film. In addition to Rey and Leia, Captain Phasma and Maz Kanata return. Introduced in The Last Jedi are Rose, a new main character working with Finn, and Vice Admiral Holdo as well as women in various supporting roles such as fighter and bomber pilots, support staff, and more.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi - Rose & Finn

 

Disappointments

This is the hardest section to keep spoiler free. As a standalone movie, it was mostly great. However, the disappointments come when looking at it’s place in the Star Wars universe. Some plot points seem at odds with established Jedi lore and existing character development. Additionally, I was disappointed in how some lingering questions from Force Awakes were wrapped up or not addressed in this film.

Additionally, we were left with some strategy and physics questions from the ongoing battle between the First Order and the Rebellion.

Personally, I was surprised that certain characters did not survive this film (and that one did). I’m also still waiting for answers on a few mysteries from Force Awakens. At least one of these, I’m hoping we get more of an answer than what was revealed in The Last Jedi.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Trailer

About Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Lucasfilm provided the following description of Star Wars: The Last Jedi:

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Poster

In Lucasfilm’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi , the Skywalker saga continues as the heroes of The Force Awakens join the galactic legends in an epic adventure that unlocks age – old mysteries of the Force and shocking revelations of the past.

The film stars Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, Gwendoline Christie, Kelly Marie Tran, Laura Dern and Benicio Del Toro.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi is written and directed by Rian Johnson and produced by Kathleen Kennedy and Ram Bergman. J.J. Abrams, Tom Karnowski and Jason McGatl in are the executive producers.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi opens in U.S. theaters on December 15, 2017.

Parental Guidance for Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Star Wars: The Last Jedi is rated PG-13, mostly for sci-fi violence. There is no sexual content and very minimal bad language.

The PG-13 rating is earned on the basis of violence. There are numerous fight scenes. I was also surprised that there were a few significant deaths that I wasn’t expecting at this point in the trilogy.

If your child has seen the other Star Wars movies, they should be fine to see The Last Jedi. It is definitely more mild than Revenge of the Sith, the first Star Wars movie with a PG-13 rating. I would recommend the movies for ages 8+

Final Thoughts on Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Overall, we enjoyed Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Our issues with the movie were mostly from how Character and Star Wars History were potentially compromised.

We do recommend seeing Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and even see it a second time in theaters.  Our second viewing was at State Theatre. While I love their renovation, it is not the best venue for an epic adventure film like a Star Wars film (especially after seeing it in IMAX 3D the first time).

Did you see Star Wars: The Last Jedi? Share your thoughts in the comments – but please try to keep it spoiler free.

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Anna Mae

Anna Mae owns & operates Ann Arbor with Kids, a website dedicated to Family Activities in Ann Arbor. My husband and I moved to Ann Arbor in 2003 and our daughter joined the family in 2006.

Anna Mae

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