In a Galaxy Far Away: The Newest “Star Wars” Chapter

The moment every “Star Wars” fan has been waiting for is here and VALLEY has the scoop on the newest edition to the “Star Wars ‘franchise … “The Last Jedi,” but beware of spoilers ahead!

The highly anticipated second film in the Star Wars sequel trilogy premiered on December 15th with new characters and more high-stakes adventure. The film picked up where “The Force Awakens” left off, with protagonist Rey seeking out Luke Skywalker, the last remaining Jedi, and another phase of the Resistance’s battle for supremacy against the First Order.

In this chapter, Rey travels to the planet Ahch-To determined to recruit Skywalker for the Resistance and hoping he will bring back the Jedi order, but to her dismay Skywalker firmly believes that the Jedi must end.

However, Skywalker senses a strong amount of the Force in Rey and reluctantly agrees to train her despite being afraid of how much raw power she has.

Meanwhile, his sister Leia leads the Resistance in an escape from the First Order to save what is left of rebellion forces. With most of their leaders taken out by Kylo Ren, a new character takes over Leia’s position of command while she is incapacitated from the attack. Unhappy with the new admiral’s strategy, Poe, Finn and BB-8 along with another new character, Rose Tico, set out on their own mission to save the day.

Throughout the film we learn a series of revelations and experience many plot twists which keep us on the edge of our seat for the full two and a half hours.

First we learn what made Ben Solo into the villainous Kylo Ren and the details of how he turned on Skywalker during his Jedi training. And after two years of waiting we finally get to learn about Rey’s parents though the reveal was less than what we hoped for.

The entirety of the film focused on Rey’s self-discovery and—knowing this—most fans expected her to be apart of a legendary Jedi bloodline. Fans were disappointed to learn her parents were gamblers who sold her off for drinking money.

However, this goes along with the theme that Jedi’s and heroes can be anyone. That anyone can have the Force no matter who you are.

By the end of the film, it is determined that Luke Skywalker will not be the last Jedi and that there is still hope for the Jedi to return. Rey’s heritage is proof that this is true and that anyone can rise up. The final scene of the movie even shows a slave boy who has the Force which hints at a possible rebirth of the Jedi in a film to come in the future.

The film pays homage to the original “Star Wars” trilogy, though not as much as “The Force Awakens.” Director Rian Johnson instead separated it from the original series and made the central theme about letting the past die.

Kylo Ren is an example of this, as he is seen severing ties to his past and forging his own path throughout the film. The plot itself is also creating its own story in this new age of “Star Wars” as it slowly eliminates the original characters with Han Solo’s death in the first movie and Luke’s in this one.

Kylo tells Rey that she is no one and that there is no place for her in this story. Had this been one of the old films, this would be true as she is not Jedi royalty like the protagonists in the original films were, but this trilogy is about new characters and new stories to tell. The same elements of the dark versus the light side of the Force are there but this Star Wars offer many new concepts as well.

For one, we see more about how powerful the Force is. These new elements of the Force were a highlight of the movie to many.

Sophomore Ally Bardusch is a “Star Wars” fanatic and said she thought that Kylo and Rey using the Force to telepathically communicate was a unique touch, as was Skywalker using it to project himself onto another planet.

“This was one of my favorites so far,” Bardusch says, “The ending was especially powerful and made me look forward to the next movie.”

A “Star Wars” movie wouldn’t be complete without unanswered questions and fans are already eagerly awaiting the next film. See “The Last Jedi” in theaters while you still can and may the Force be with you.


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