Welcome back to my series “Why I love Star Wars”. This is a series that was inspired by reading Ken Napzok’s Why We Love Star Wars: The Great Moments That Built A Galaxy Far, Far Away, a countdown of the top 100 moments from Star Wars that made him love it all, including canon stories from every medium. As I was reading this book, I found myself thinking of some of my own favourite moments and wanted to discuss them.
While there are certainly some films that I do not like as much as others, every movie has some wonderful moments that I would always say outweigh the bad, so for that reason I wouldn’t say that I hate any of the Star Wars films. With the way that too much Star Wars talk has gone down a dark hole in recent years, hopefully reminding ourselves of the great moments and focusing on the positives will help the fandom recover.
Why I Love Star Wars:
- A New Hope
- The Empire Strikes Back
- Return of the Jedi
- The Phantom Menace
- Attack of the Clones
- Revenge of the Sith
- The Clone Wars
- The Force Awakens
- Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Unlike in the book, I will not put the moments in any specific order (I do things like that enough in my Top 10s!) as the order would probably change on every viewing. Today I will be looking at The Last Jedi
Beware: this will contain spoilers for the movie!
So I wasn’t the biggest fan of how Rose was written in this movie, but I thought her sister Paige was amazing. The entire Battle of D’Qar sequence was great but the bit that really does it for me is when Paige destroys the Fulminatrix in her final moments. The music as she tries to unbalance the bomb bay controls while we see Poe trying to contact her builds such emotion that when the control falls past her and we see her catch it, it feels like such a fist-bump moment, which quickly becomes a moment of sorrow as we see the close-up of her face while the fire behind her rushes towards her. She was a wonderful character to follow in the early minutes of the film and such a memorable part of the film to me.
Throne room fight
From the moment that Snoke gets impaled on Rey’s lightsaber through his own hubris and cut apart as the saber is pulled into Reys hands, we begin my favourite fight of the Sequel Trilogy. I know that fight experts may not think that the choreography is the best, but the end result is a wonderful sequence as Rey and Kylo fight the Praetorian Guards, whose variety of weapons helps to keep the fight fresh, while I love seeing Kylo’s furious fighting style. The colours of the heavy red and the black is already great, but then to add in the flaming curtains as the fight goes on just adds to it, while I love how the fight is ended with a slightly more comedic moment of Kylo catching Rey’s saber and igniting it straight into the face of the final combatant.
The Falcon joins the battle
“Oh they hate that ship!”
With the Battle of Crait well underway, we had a great moment as Rose looks to be in serious danger as 3 TIEs are chasing her ski speeder, when suddenly all 3 are taken out by a shot from above. We have no idea who this could be as the Resistance have no air support at this point, until we see a familiar-shaped shadow flying over the salt flat. Even then we get Finn’s cheers before we actually get to see the Millennium Falcon itself as it drops onto the tail of another TIE and blasts it out the sky. While I thought the porgs were horribly overused in the film, the cut into the cockpit of Chewie and the porg both letting out war cries before cutting to Rey having fun in the ventral turret was great. Through all this, hearing the March of the Resistance into the Rebellion’s theme hit the spot perfectly.
While the moment in itself is my favourite bit, the reactions of the other combatants carries it on perfectly as Kylo and Hux direct all fighter to “blow that piece of junk out of the sky!” and every single TIE chases after the Falcon, taking away the First Order’s air superiority in the battle. The Original Trilogy, The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi had built perfectly for Finn to make his line about the First Order hating the ship not seem too cheesy.
The Holdo Manouevre
So let’s take away all the questions and implications about why the Rebels never did this to the Death Stars or anything like that, I think that this is one of the most visually stunning moments in all of Star Wars.
Holdo’s sacrifice, turning the Raddus around and entering hyperspace through Snoke’s flagship the Supremacy leads to a wonderful moment where the film goes silent as we see the Supremacy and all the nearby Star Destroyers being ripped apart, with the sound coming back in a great explosion. Seeing that on the big screen in the cinema was an amazing experience and it still holds up when I re-watch at home.
Luke’s Force Projection
How awesome was it to see Luke facing off against Kylo while the Resistance escaped Crait? The Jedi master was finally here and after a few quick attacks that Luke evaded, Kylo charged forward and cut him in two, turning around to see him… still stood there. Umm what? Kylo stepped up to Luke and impaled him on his saber, which just passed straight through the Jedi. What the actual ****?!
And then we got the reveal, as we return to Ahch-To to see Luke still at the Jedi Temple concentrating hard and levitating above his seat and you realise that he is using the Force to project himself across the galaxy. What an incredible moment.
What makes it even better on re-watch is seeing all the clues that Rian Johnson had laid out that Luke wasn’t really there:
- Leia’s reaction when Luke first touches her. On a re-watch you notice and know it’s because she doesn’t actually feel his touch
- Luke looks younger than he had on Ahch-To, back to how he was when Kylo left Luke
- Luke is using the blue lightsaber that we have just seen broken into 2 pieces by Rey and Kylo and taken by Rey
- When Kylo moves his feet, the salt is pushed aside to reveal the red ground, whereas when Luke moves his, the salt is not moved.
Rian Johnson is one heck of a director!
What are your favourite moments from The Last Jedi?
Thanks for reading. May the Force be with you…