Thursday, December 21, 2017

The Last Jedi and Nihilism (SPOILERS)


This post is definitely a spoiler for a movie I have not seen, The Last Jedi (2017).

I normally dont mind spoilers for a variety of reasons but I tried to avoid them for this movie at the request of Mark Hamill. He suggested that everyone go see this movie knowing as little as possible. I respected that until I started to hear some of the controversy and being a curious person I looked further. And what I found out annoyed me so much that I wrote some nasty emails and this post.

It goes something like this. Rian Johnson comes into something that has been going on for 30 years and decides to shake things up. Show a new point of view. Maybe be a little bit of a hipster. A new direction! Something like that.

A little controversy can be good. It can refresh and empower a franchise that has been around for a while. If you just keep doing the same old thing, blowing up that damn Death Star again, for example, that would be boring.

Its spoiler time, kids.

So this guy Rian Johnson comes in and here is what we get. Rey hands Luke his lightsaber and Luke throws it away. Who are Rey's parents? No one. Trash. What about Snoke, who is he, where does he come from? It doesnt matter, we just killed him. How about that secret mission that so many risk their lives on? It goes south and many people die who might not have died otherwise. It would have been better if they had just followed orders and done nothing at all. As for Luke, well he is dead for no particular reason it seems, too bad.

Star Wars was never about "no meaning".  It was all about "meaning", it was all about "our lives have meaning", there is a purpose to all this, you can make a difference.  This was your father's light saber.  He wanted you to have it when you were old enough.

Darth Vader was never just a bad guy in black with asthma.  He had a history, he had betrayal and murder in his past.  We did not know it at first, but the emperor was not just any old emperor, he was a Sith. 

A light saber was not just a weapon.  It was personally created by each Jedi as part of what made them a Jedi.  It had meaning.  It had purpose.

It was never about "stay home and die, you might fuck things up".  It was about "go out there and fight for what you believe in and you can make a difference".

It was never about "evil has no meaning", it was about "evil has a purpose and you can stand up and thwart their plans and help people".

Well not to Rian Johnson.  His message is that you dont matter, nothing matters, its all random, dont give a fuck.  Just sit there and die.

And they wonder why people are pissed off.

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