The Last Jedi is a good film. And there is a lot to cover so this is your only warning. Welcome to spoilertown.
Talking about Star Wars shouldn't be as huge of a thing as it is, but this is the world we live in now, so we either have to be the change or go with the flow, and I'm gonna try to be as normal as I can be about it by treating it like any other movie. I really enjoyed The Last Jedi. Put simply, there are some cool themes like the connections between people, some fun set piece moments that for the world of Star Wars are certainly new, and the cast is still very entertaining to watch.
The stuff I wanna get out of the way first is all the damn theory and lore stuff that plagues the majority of discussions of large fantasy franchises. Yes, they do answer who Rey's parents are. It's a little disappointing, for theory fans, them being simply junkers that sold her off, but I liked how it is presented and what it means for Rey (Daisy Ridley) as a character. It gives Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) more ammo in their yin and yang struggle, both trying to pull each other over to their respective sides, which makes for a compelling story arch for both of them. And they create some more mysteries for the fans. Not huge ones, mind you, but smaller ones that don't detract too much from the main story, the grey mirror in the cave being the biggest of them.
There are issues with the film. It ain't perfect, after all. My main one is with an idea that the movie puts forth: 'out with the old and in with the new'. In many ways it works. They've already killed off Han Solo and in this film they kill not only Snoke (Andy Serkis) but Luke (Mark Hamill) as well, and more symbolically the last Jedi temple as well. So within that world, it is an interesting idea. However, I believe that it goes against everything Disney is trying to do.
Disney's business model is basically "Sell what's already been sold". Sure they put in new mascots like BB-8 and the porgs, and yet R2 and Chewie still exist, because they still sell a shit ton of merch. And even though Kylo destroys his own helmet, symbolizing his rejection of his DarthVaderfan25 twitter handle, Disney will still bank off of their existing brands until the universe implodes. I love what it means for the characters and story, I mean they didn't cut anyone's hand off or say "I have a bad feeling about this", thank god, but they will never get rid of the main merch sellers. Be prepared to see Yoda and 3-PO for the next millennia. It was neat to see that green goblin though. But that just gives my argument more weight.
OK, now that all that other shit is done, I wanna talk about some cool stuff. Something that struck me is the decisions that the characters make. Most, if not all, of the decisions make sense. They are backed up by things that are shown in either this film or the previous. One example being Poe Dameron's (Oscar Isaac) story line. At the beginning, he's shown to be an impulsive and action first kind of character. He basically sacrifices most of their fighter squad to destroy an enemy ship. He gets demoted and when Leia (Carrie Fisher) gets put into a coma from a blast, her replacement Amilyn Holdo (Laura Dern) doesn't tell him anything, knowing that he'll try to do something rash that'll go against her plans, which he does anyway. For the most part, all of the characters make their decisions based on their own logic, and it always feels true to them, unlike Rogue One.
I really wish that the color design had been pushed a little more in the movie, because I love the color in the marketing. The black, white and red is a very cool color pallet, and this was a darker color overall, especially compared to Force Awakens, which was very colorful, but I was hoping to get a bit more. That being said, the salt planet is the coolest setting for the last battle to take place, and the colors did look amazing.
Speaking of battles, the set piece moments of this film are really cool. The opening is fun, and it serves the story, which is nice. It's not just a battle for the sake of it. Though the bit with the girl dropping the bombs was cheesy in it's execution. The casino section was cool, and showed a side of the universe we haven't seen before. And my favorite, the rebel ship slamming into the first order ships at light speed was just fucking awesome.
There is a lot more that I could talk about, including Benicio Del Toro's character, the similarities to the other movies, the theme of connections between people, but I'll have to leave all of that for the podcast. I don't want to make this super long and you don't want that either.