This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Cary’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
My Star Wars disclaimer:Never grew up with Star Wars. Prior to this year(2019) I’ve only seem new hope, rogue one, and force awakens. My opinions are really based as a film fan not a Star Wars fan. I can care less how the fandom ranks these movies or thinks of them. These are my opinions and if my opinions are unpopular then so be it
SO THAT TENET PROLOGUE
I’ve only ever seen digital imax so it was a treat seeing true 70mm imax for the first time. I’ve only seen it when it’s compared to CinemaScope on YouTube with different scenes from Nolan movies and I fell in love immediately. Seeing it in person is so astonishing and overwhelming.
It’s action packed with a tremendous score that keeps you entertained while not fulling showing all its cards. It’s my most anticipated film next year and I can’t wait to see the full thing.
NOW TO STAR WARS
So let’s talk about the positives.
Best sound design and editing in a film this year. Literal perfection. The VFX were incredible except for Palpatine’s lightning to the sky. That looked kinda iffy.
The cinematography would have been my top pick for this year(still held by Joker) but one scene ruined it for me. When Poe Finn and Chewie try to escape Ben’s destroyer it should have been a long take similar to Daredevil’s Season 3 prison break scene. They first hint at this and it gets so suspenseful then it is ruined by a cut to quick paced action.
Poe’s continued arc from TLJ is appreciated.
Same with Kylo’s even though it isn’t fully handled well.
Now let’s talk my problems with this movie
This movie had the potential to be a top tier in the franchise. It had all the right pieces but failed to use them. It’s like watching a slightly more polished Gemini Man.
What really ruins the movie for me is the first act. It is so rushed and the pacing in the first half of the movie is too quick. The first act is so underdeveloped and rushed that it makes the rest of the movie feel rushed, unearned, and unsatisfying. There are some great moments in this film but this makes them feel a bit off. This rushed first act makes most of act 2 feel rushed and it really saddens me.
I really wish we got more Rose. She should have went with the team. The fact that they indulged the disgusting people who harassed her is horrible.
Hux being the spy kinda makes sense but also doesn’t.
Rey being palpatine’s granddaughter is a no go for me. It really ruins Rey’s arc from TLJ but it does open the doors for some interesting storytelling and themes in this movie. It’s just hard to get over at first because I love Rey’s arc so much in TLJ.
Finn just like in TFA isn’t given much of an arc.
Leía being shoehorned in with unused footage felt unnatural because it made her uncharacteristic. I get what they were going for but it just didn’t work for me.
It’s not a train wreck or a bad film. If the first act was more developed and polished I would have been fine for the most part about this film. It would have made every following moment better.
I feel like I’m gonna return to this review time and time again to edit it so it may change a few times. I may rewatch this film in theaters but other than that I’m done with Star Wars films to a new one comes out.