After a pretty barren year - I think I only saw 6 or 7 movies at the cinema (shout-out to Tim & Gregg!) all year - last week was quite busy, with 2. The first one affected me quite a bit - it took me 3 or 4 days of soul-searching to admit to myself that I did NOT like The Last Jedi.
It had some very good preformances - specifically Ridley, Driver and Hammil (hamming it up like crazy at times, but he has earned it); it had some great set pieces - loved the big fight in the throne room; I loved most of the choices Rian Johnson made - the reveal (?) re Ren's parentage was spot-on, and I do hope the sequel does not walk it back.
I was just bored for way-too-long streches of that movie. The whole Fin and Tran thread felt like a giant waste of time (and of a great character from the last movie), even if it did bring what could have been a bit of very welcome, "Occupy Wall-Street"-type political vibe to the series. I was glad that they put another woman - an Asian - in a leading role, but Tran was just not very interesting, and her big moment with Fin towards the end felt out of left-field, completely unearned. All the weird handeling of time (the main problem I had with The Empire Strikes Back), the baffling movie-long space chase, rebel commanders not bothering to let their commanding officers in on major plans (leading to disaster) - I could go on all day. I think the biggest problem is the path this trilogy was set on with the first film: we had the rebellion against a powerful, evil empire in the last trilogy - and the good guys won, against all odds! But now - waddya know?! There's another evil empire, and we have to fight it - AGAIN!! Wheeeeee! Isn't it fun?!
Fuck this - I'm out.
And then - a few days later - Jumangi, which I enjoyed immensely (or is it tremendously? I'm not sure which words we can use in the Trump era without coming off as sarcastic). Long story short: not a masterpiece, but it does the job of helping you pass a couple of hours, enjoying yourself (which could not be said for TLJ). I still don't see the appeal of Kevin Hart ("He's black and he's angry - but he's tiny!!"??), but Dwayne Johnson was just great, Jack Black was actually good, and Karen Gillan...
Well, here is the thing. I have a crush on Karen Gillan. Loved her in Doctor Who (even as I started to progressively hate the Moffat-helmed series), Lovedlovedloved her in the late, lamented series Selfie, and I hated the way Marvel wasted her in Guardians of The Galaxy. And now, here she was in all of her red-haired, long-legged dimpled glory, in a leading role - and I LOVED HER!!!!!! But, apparently, that was Wrong - because by liking her depiction in this movie, and proclaiming my liking of it, I was supporting the objectification of women. Or something. I dunno, I'm an old, I don't understand anything, anymore. I'm very left-wing (if I veered any more left I'd go right off the face of the Earth), I'm a self-proclaimed SJW, consider myself "woke" (whatever the hell that means), I'm ecstatic that scumbags like Weinstein and Kevin Spacey are finally getting the light shining on their crimes against humanity and made to pay - but, apparently, if I say I enjoy seeing Karen Gillan Dance-fighting two goons, clad in what is pretty much a bikini, I'm a scumbag who objectifies women and helps keep the Patriarchy in power...? I dunno, again - maybe it's just that I'm too old, but something seems off.