Fans Are Still Conflicted Over ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Two Years Later

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker comes out on Dec. 20, 2019. The final installment of the Skywalker saga, it comes two years after Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Even though Star Wars: The Last Jedi came out over two years ago, fans of the franchise are still conflicted over the movie.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi
‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ cast | Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images

John Boyega said he was ‘iffy’ about ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’

For starters, one of the lead actors in the Star Wars franchise had criticism for Star Wars: The Last Jedi. In an interview with Hypebeast, John Boyega, who plays Finn, discussed his time in the franchise.

“The Force Awakens I think was the beginning of something quite solid, The Last Jedi if I’m being honest I’d say that was feeling a bit iffy for me,” Boyega said.

He continued, “I didn’t necessarily agree with a lot of the choices in that and that’s something that I spoke to Mark [Hamill] a lot about and we had conversations about it. And it was hard for all of us, because we were separated.”

Boyega explained his point by comparing the friendship between Leia, Luke, and Han Solo from the original trilogy to Finn’s friendship with Rey and Poe Dameron.

“I guess the original Star Wars films there was much more of a trio feel where it was essentially about Luke’s journey, but Han and Leia there was a strong dynamic, which I think, I don’t know how quickly we’re going to be able to establish that longterm dynamic with [Episode] Nine,” he said. “I do feel even after three films still, we don’t know them as much as we got to know Han, Luke, Leia.”

Critics enjoyed the ‘Star Wars’ movie

As a whole, critics enjoyed Star Wars: The Last Jedi. The movie has a 91 percent critic score on Rotten Tomatoes. In a recent piece with Nerdist, Lindsey Romain defended Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

The Rise of Skywalker marks the first time the three main heroes will interact as a core group. But that isn’t the fault of The Last Jedi or Rian Johnson, and framing it as such feels misguided,” wrote Romain. “The Force Awakens also kept those characters apart. They’ve never functioned as a trio or been set up as one. Rian Johnson inherited a host of cliffhangers and half-finished arcs in The Last Jedi that Abrams teed up in The Force Awakens.”

Scott Tobias also defended the movie, tweeting, “THE LAST JEDI was the best, liveliest STAR WARS movie since EMPIRE STRIKES BACK. To demand that the series adhere to the narrowest possible parameters for what a STAR WARS movie can be is everything wrong with mainstream filmmaking today.”

‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ attempted to evolve the franchise

While a majority of critics spoke highly of the film, fans did not. Starkly contrasting with the 91 percent critic score on Rotten Tomatoes, the movie only has an audience score of 43 percent.

Matt Singer analyzed why fans have such a distaste for Star Wars: The Last Jedi in an article with Screen Crush. He found it came down to the fact director Rian Johnson attempted to evolve the franchise past the tropes the franchise is known for.

The Last Jedi suggests this series needs to evolve beyond what it has been for 40 years if it’s going to remain relevant. The Last Jedi is his attempt to start that evolution — and to warn longtime Star Wars fans that they may need to loosen their grip on this thing that they love so dearly,” wrote Singer.

Singer continued, “Some fans don’t want Star Wars to grow beyond what was in the Original Trilogy. They still want Star Wars to be about Luke Skywalker, the superhero who saves the day and redeems his dad.”

Fans’ opinion of the movie is mixed

This theory seems to be proven if one ventures onto Reddit or Twitter. While there are a minority of fans who like the movie, a majority of Star Wars fans seem to hate it.

“I know a lot of people roll their eyes when people say that TLJ ‘ruined Star Wars’ for them, but I honestly think there is a shred of truth in that for a lot of people. I’ll probably never have the same enthusiasm for the franchise that I once did after TLJ. I re-watched the OT and even that was a little duller knowing what ends up happening to those characters,” one Reddit user wrote.

Despite the conflict within the fandom, some fans appear to like Star Wars: The Last Jedi as well.

“Unpopular opinion: The Last Jedi is so underrated and doesn’t deserve the hate that it gets and it has the best cinematography of any Star Wars film,” tweeted a fan.

“The Last Jedi is the best Star Wars movie since the original trilogy and I’m in a fight with anyone who disagrees,” another tweeted.