Millions of Star Wars fans got elated when they learnt that a new trilogy is in the works and J.J. Abrams is coming to direct the first part i.e ‘The Force Awakens’. He managed to reinvent the iconic sci-fi franchise with a bang and won fans over as the movie brought classic nostalgia to the fore. Infact, some of the critics said that it felt like a rehash of ‘New Hope’ with latest computer graphics.
Then came the sequel ‘The Last Jedi’ which was the textbook definition of polarization. It divided the fans right in the middle as it was a major departure from original trilogy or the prequels in terms of pace and tone. One one hand, a group of fans heaped massive praise on it while others slammed it for violating the Star Wars template.
It would be not untrue when I say that the aftermath of Star Wars: The Last Jedi was nothing but controversial. No Star Wars fan in his/ her right minds could have fathomed such an alternative ending to one of the most epic characters in the history of movie making.
Fans were left angry; some were upset; some were still in awe, what just happened. Why did they do this to him?? After centuries of being nothing but a top-notch entertainment pedestal for a half-century old franchise, the hero of the Rebel Alliance was given the pink slip.
Luke Skywalker was no more. He died fighting Kylo Ren and became one with the Force.
Luke was a gentle, noble soul that had only the good intentions for everyone in mind. His death was termed meaningless by a lot of angry fans who demanded that Rian Johnson, the director of The Last Jedi Trilogy, explain his actions.
When Rian did that, the explanation as not still up to the mark and it led to an even bigger uproar. Not everyone has the honor of being the director of a Star Wars movie. Rian had it, but fans felt he somehow squandered it away in the name of experimenting with the character that resonated with the greatest hero the Galaxy had ever seen.
His inner demons had taken a major foothold inside him. That was also part of the reason that Luke believed that the best course of action for him would be to exile himself to a distant planet, far away from all the worries and responsibilities. He blamed the Jedi Order for all his setbacks and failures.
He got exposed to the Force early on, he became the greatest Jedi fighter there is. He learned about the prophecy of ‘Chosen one’ and realized it was Ben Solo. He was training Leia and Han’s son at that time so he kept track of him and reformed the Jedi order. But he did not know that Ben would be attracted towards the dark side and become Kylo Ren.
He went into hiding after ‘First Order’ seized control of galaxy, but he never stopped fighting to restore balance. The Ken Liu’s novel has put it very eloquently and it goes like this:
“There are more ways to serve good than by fighting and confronting evil. You also serve the good by standing guard and maintaining pools of tranquility and peace; you also rebuke evil by showing that there is another way than death and violence. We are all connected through the Force, and there’s a time and place to rest, as well as a time and place to act.”
But Rian Johnson turned the warrior Luke Skywalker into a crybaby and a coward. Luke was anything but. His fight with his past, him training Rey the lessons of the Jedi and his final showdown at Crait to right his wrongs – Those were not enough to redeem himself so Rian had him sent off guns blazing.
Luke died a death that was far too mediocre for a hero as Grand as the legendary Skywalker. It was almost offensive for the fans of Luke to see him go down like that without a good fight. Mark Hamill, the actor who plays Luke had expressed his reservations on Luke’s character arc. He debunked the myth that Luke is going to the dark side. Here’s what he said:
“In ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens,’ Luke had lost confidence in his ability to make good choices. It haunts him to the core. But he hasn’t gone to the dark side. This isn’t an evil version of him. But it’s still an incarnation of the character I never expected. It has pulled me out of my comfort zone. It’s a real challenge.”
While there are still several questions regarding Luke’s death, one among them connected to him while he was alive is again rearing its head. Remember Luke’s Lightsaber??
In the previous Original Trilogy movies, it was green in color. But in The Last Jedi, it was blue. How had Luke’s Lightsaber suddenly changed color? Was it one of Luke’s powers that developed with age? Rian Johnson explains further.
According to Johnson, Luke using a blue Lightsaber and not a green one is him trying to use a form of Psychological warfare to manipulate Kylo into committing a fatal mistake. He says:
“[Luke] is basically tailoring this projection to have maximum effect on Kylo,” Johnson explained to IGN. “He knows that Kylo’s Achilles heel is his rage, and so that’s why he kind of makes himself look younger, the way Kylo would’ve last seen him in their confrontation at the temple, and that’s why he decided to bring Kylo’s grandfather’s lightsaber down there — the lightsaber that Kylo screamed at Rey, ‘that’s mine, that belongs to me.’”
Makes sense to me if you ask. Luke, in his years in exile, could have been seen as weak by Kylo Ren, his former student. So in order to make sure Kylo understands Luke’s true power, he wields the Lightsaber used by the Guy Kylo idolizes the most – Darth Vader, Kylo’s Grandfather.
The greatest weakness of Kylo Ren is his rage. Something Luke Skywalker, his former teacher, knows all too well. Luke intends to use that to his own advantage by turning Kylo’s rage as a weapon that he could use.
The Blue Lightsaber opens up a lot of old wounds for Kylo and hence the rage would naturally take over him. Enraged, a man commits silly but lethal mistakes. Something that Luke Skywalker intends would happen.
Johnson also sheds some lights as to how proficient Luke’s Force projection abilities are – VERY!!When Kylo and Rey struggled over the Lightsaber in a Force Tug of War after Snoke’s death, the Lightsaber was destroyed. Rey knew it but Kylo did not. And that is how Luke got away with a blue Lightsaber.
“We as an audience saw that… The truth is, we see the lightsaber split in half — Kylo sees a blinding flash of light and is knocked unconscious, and then Rey takes the lightsaber away before he wakes up,” Johnson pointed out. “So if you really want to dig into it and get an explanation, you can say that he doesn’t 100 percent know what happened to the lightsaber.”
Star Wars: The Last Jedi has already been released and is running successfully in theaters.
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