Logan Kenny’s review published on Letterboxd:
still one of the best movies of the 2000s despite being utterly fucking ludicrous at every opportunity, its general strangeness helps counteract the genuine overwhelming bleakness of its content, making it the ideal Star Wars to me. describing the plot of this movie makes me inconsolably sad, a man corrupted by paranoia of losing the one he loves whose fear and anger ends up causing her death, a man watching as his brother destroys himself and the world around him, capitalism evolving into fascism, the system spiralling into chaos as children die and evil becomes the mainstream.
but the way they're constructed & the idiosyncrasies between the tragedies means that none of them are relentless in their tragedy, they're not painful to experience as a whole, they are wacky & creative & stupid, darkness of narrative contrasted with lightness of presentation. which is why I think the lava scene at the end hits so hard, there is nothing but pain here, nothing but the seething oranges and bitter contempt, the mutual agony between two men whose love for each other has not faded. it's the way mcgregor sells it that strikes me, his initial posturing as he tries to grasp onto his jedi training, the ideology that helped create this modern hell, and the more he fights his brother, the man he loves like his own blood, the more he shreds the emotionless shell he's supposed to be. by the end, he's just as broken and destroyed as his love turned bitter enemy, screaming into the void about what could have been. even after leaving him, he loses the woman he fought so hard to save. he is destined to lose everyone, his mentor, his protege, his friend, his ideology, his way of living, and eventually his own life. this is his fate.
yet even the final shot has hope for the future, a husband and wife holding the baby that will be theirs, staring at the sun with no knowledge of the tragedies to come and the wonders that will rise from them, just embracing the light for as long as it lasts, knowing that darkness can't last forever.