STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI Review — Far Far Away the Year's Best Film

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by Lisa Johnson Mandell

THE LAST JEDI Review I’ve been waiting all year for a film that would make me want to stand up and cheer—a film that would renew my joy in cinema, as well as my faith in Hollywood. Wonder Woman was exciting and inspiring, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri blew me away with its outstanding performances and nuanced craftsmanship. But finally, along comes Star Wars: The Last Jedi and I am left in wonder, awe, and yes, even joy.

Now having told you that, I can’t tell you much more about the movie, because a big part of the enjoyment of the film comes from discovering everything on your own. To even hint at a spoiler would be robbing you of the ultimate Star Wars: The Last Jedi experience.

What I will tell you is that it’s fun for the whole family. Even the little ones, who might not be able to follow the plot, will be dazzled by the wonder of the special effects. And there are several new adorable creature breeds for them to fawn over. Blatant merchandising plays be damned, the big eyed Porgs, the crystal fox Vultpex and the equine Fathier are wonderful—at least they don’t sing, so you won’t have to listen to the same tune over and over as the kids play with them.

As for the more communicative characters, both human and otherwise, let’s just say many of your old friends return, and you will be delighted by the new ones. You will also be justifiably outraged at the evilness of the villains, both old and new, although the line between villainy and heroism is a bit blurry at times, which is one of the film’s best features. Surprises abound.

Along with non-stop action, there seems to be more wonder, whimsy and humor in The Last Jedi, some of it (like a scene involving a household appliance) deliciously subtle. All hail writer/director Rian Johnson, who is also responsible for Looper (one of my favorite sci-fi flicks, as well as some of the best episodes of Breaking Bad, one of my favorite TV series).

I will say no more, other than you absolutely must experience it for yourself. What are you waiting for? Go buy tickets now. You will thank me later.

Rated PG-13

2 Hours 32 Minutes

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by Lisa Johnson Mandell

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Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell is an award winning journalist, author and film/TV critic. She can be heard regularly on Cumulus radio stations throughout the US, and on BBC Radio.

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