"The Last Jedi." Sighhhhhhhhhhhhhhh . . .
If "The Force Awakens" is a movie defined by one or two big bad choices, "The Last Jedi" is a movie defined by a whole bunch of little ones.
Although Space Monte Carlo is pretty close to being a big bad choice, you'd have to say.
Holdo being a blue-haired Tumblrina whose going to put Poe's toxic masculinity in its place: terrible, terrible idea. Maybe Rian Johnson was making fun of that kind of person, but I doubt it.
What even is the point of Holdo otherwise? Admiral Ackbar, an actual "Star Wars" character, could've filled her role in the plot without the stupidity and incompetence. No real officer would keep her entire force in the dark about her plans like that. They wouldn't be an officer.
Confining Poe to the ship was another bad decision. Oscar Isaac is wasted. He should've gone with Finn to Space Monte Carlo. Instead we get Rose, who's not a very interesting character. The way it turned out, she should've died at the end. Let her sacrifice herself for Finn.
Mary Poppins Leia is more cringe than anything in the prequels.
But if you're going to do Mary Poppins Leia, at least try to make it semi-respectable. Have her use the Force to propel herself using a piece of debris or something. Anything would be better than that.
Unlike a lot of people, I think the way Rian Johnson characterized Luke Skywalker was a defensible choice. He's the quarterback who won the big game and has resented it ever since. It's a real personality type. And Mark Hamill pulls it off superbly.
That said, I get why Hamill didn't like it. The idea that Luke would even for a second consider killing Ben is laughable. You want to show Luke failed? Fine. But make it believable. That was another bad choice.
As I noted the other day in regard to TFA, you can see with TLJ how the movies don't really fit together. The most obvious example is the "infinite Rey" scene, which is her equivalent of the cave scene from "Empire." What she discovers is that she's a nobody; it's just her.
JJ Abrams, of course, completely wipes that out in "Rise of Skywalker" with cave scene 2.0 in the wreck of the Death Star where Rey sees herself on Palpatine's throne. Johnson's version and Abrams' version are contradictory.
Abrams in essence makes Johnson a liar about Rey's parentage since in "The Last Jedi" the Force told her she was a nobody. Which obviously turned out not to be true! Here again we see Disney's failure to plan out the sequel trilogy in action. What a mess they made.
"The Last Jedi" is twenty minutes too long. I wouldn't normally say this about a "Star Wars" movie, but it has too many set pieces and they get boring after a while: the assault on the dreadnought at the beginning, Kylo Ren's attack on the Rebel fleet, the casino chase,
. . . the duel in Snoke's throne room, the assault on the rebel base. It's just more and more and more. And in between is so much dull padding, by which I mean everything that isn't Kylo, Luke, and Rey.
Seriously, who the hell thought having the First Order fleet pursuing the Resistance fleet in slow motion was a good idea? That whole thing is misconceived.
Force Messenger is still cool, though.
There's a really good movie in "The Last Jedi." The problem is that it's saddled to a really bad one. And the bad one undermines the good one. That's why I say it's both the best and worse Disney Wars movie. There's a compelling vision there, but it gets blinded too often.
If Rian Johnson had really wanted to be daring, Rey would've gone with Kylo. That's where the logic of his narrative was going, but he flinched. Alas.
Disney should've scrapped "The Last Jedi" when Carrie Fisher died and started over. A lot of what went wrong afterward really started there. That's a very big bad choice. The last of them. Or, rather, the first.
I have a bunch of notes for a "Last Jedi" take I never got around to writing. I think one day I'll have to do that.

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More from @varadmehta

8 Jul
"There's no getting around the reality that the new Supreme Court has its conservative favorites and its progressive enemies, and that the court stands ready to recraft American democracy in its image."

The left is still so mad about Brnovich. slate.com/news-and-polit…
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LOL. slate.com/news-and-polit…
This caterwauling, as much as his expansive and unflinching decision, is why it was so important that Samuel Alito have the opinion in the Brnovich case. newrepublic.com/article/162912…
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8 Jul
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8 Jul
I have a hard time believing the latest numbers from Civiqs, which have Joe Biden's job approval underwater at 44-49. Those absurd Biden +20 polls were implausible, but so is this Biden -5 one. H/t @BarneyFlames. civiqs.com/results/approv…
Biden's approval in Ohio is 39-54. I'm not saying I buy that, but as long as he's underwater in Ohio, Tim Ryan is going to have a tough time winning against any Republican.
Biden's net approval in swing states per Civiqs: Ohio -15, Wisconsin -6, Arizona -15, Florida -12, Georgia -14, Iowa -17, Michigan -7, Nevada -2, New Hampshire +5, North Carolina -6, Pennsylvania -5.
Read 4 tweets
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Being booted from House GOP leadership was supposed to give Liz Cheney a new megaphone to spread her anti-Trump message. Instead, eight weeks later she has barely made a noise. Just as anyone not in the DC bubble knew would happen. My latest for @ArcDigi. arcdigital.media/p/liz-cheney-f…
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6 Jul
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6 Jul
Note how he never says it is right to teach CRT, only that is wrong not to. This reasoning exemplifies the basic incoherence of his argument.
The fundamental incoherence of French's argument, however, is truly revealed in this passage: "A wiser response to problematic elements of what is being labeled critical race theory would be twofold: propose better curriculums and enforce existing civil rights laws."
First, there is no logical reason that an alternative curriculum to CRT would be "better." Or that one is necessary. Removing CRT from the existing curriculum would, from the perspective of its opponents, would alone make it better. Which would satisfy French's first proposal.
Read 12 tweets

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