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ErikModi

Everything Great About Star Wars: The Last Jedi

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I watched this last night, and debated about posting a link to it here.  But after the debacle that the last thread that revolved around liking/disliking the current state of the Star Wars franchise turned into, I decided against it.  Hopefully this thread won't suffer a similar fate.

Once he's done going through the movie, he does bring up some good discussion points about the vitriol that is aimed towards the film.  I especially liked his observation about how TLJ keeps getting attacked for lack of quasi-scientific realism when the rest of the films (original trilogy included) suffered the exact same flaws, and that many of the so-called "plot holes" are actually answered if the viewer bothers to pay attention to the film, and that the previous films suffered from similar "issues."

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Agreed.

I think he's right, and I thought it myself and saw others noting the same thing when TLJ came out in theaters. . . Empire was considered a vastly inferior sequel when it was released, and RotJ was considered a return to form.  It wasn't until the trilogy was complete and people could watch it backwards and forwards on home video that Empire came to be regarded as the best film in the franchise.  And I think a lot of the same issues apply to TLJ, and it won't surprise me at all if, in five or ten years, people look on TLJ much more fondly.

It's kind of sad, though, that out of a forty-minute video, at least fifteen of it is him not talking about the movie, but talking about people talking about the movie, and not in a good way.  You can't just talk about the film, you have to talk about all the dren around the film.

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They killed Phasma which was a good step, hopefully killed her, or her new name is Kenny.......

They killed Adm Holdo which is no loss. Snoke I guess is dead, but if Phasma survived being in the garbage disposal on Starkiller who knows...

Too bad they didn't cross off Hux and Poe, the collective character ensemble IQ would shoot up 50 points......

 

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10 hours ago, Donovan Morningfire said:

many of the so-called "plot holes" are actually answered if the viewer bothers to pay attention to the film

Well to be fair, those answers are very easily missed for those who haven't seen the film. Just because we have doesn't mean we can get on our high horses and claim that their criticism makes no sense and that our opinion is more informed.

EDIT: And due to the very real chance of running into Poe's Law, I will clarify that that the above statement was intended as sarcasm.

Edited by penpenpen

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2 hours ago, penpenpen said:

Well to be fair, those answers are very easily missed for those who haven't seen the film. Just because we have doesn't mean we can get on our high horses and claim that their criticism makes no sense and that our opinion is more informed.

EDIT: And due to the very real chance of running into Poe's Law, I will clarify that that the above statement was intended as sarcasm.

Thank you.  Before getting to the edit, I was going to repost my "if you haven't even seen the film, you abdicate your right to whine about it" argument from the other thread.

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5 hours ago, ErikModi said:

Thank you.  Before getting to the edit, I was going to repost my "if you haven't even seen the film, you abdicate your right to whine about it" argument from the other thread.

That's nonsense, and no one is abdicating any rights, but thank you for going toxic by excluding others because they don't meet your standards.

Your suggestion is as absurd as school children and gun owners arguing over school shootings. We get the children saying that gun owners that haven't personally experienced a school shooting have nothing relevant to say while gun owners counter-reply that school children that do not personally own guns have nothing useful to add, then we get back to this level of toxic non-conversation.

Another example is tobacco smoking. Someone doesn't need to smoke tobacco themselves to know they don't like the smell of it on others, or to know that it helped to kill someone they love by contributing to that person's cancer.

Edited by HappyDaze

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18 hours ago, Donovan Morningfire said:

I watched this last night, and debated about posting a link to it here.  But after the debacle that the last thread that revolved around liking/disliking the current state of the Star Wars franchise turned into, I decided against it.  Hopefully this thread won't suffer a similar fate.

Not posting it was probably the right idea. There are many, many more videos that can be linked to that show the counterpoints to the one in the OP. Do we need to see those added too?

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Yeah, no.

What I'm saying is, while taking reviews and word of mouth and deciding that a particular piece of art is of no interest to you (and probably almost as old as art itself, I picture two Neanderthals talking about a brand new cave painting and one saying "eh, I stick mammoths with spears every day, I'll pass"), once you've made that decision, you really can't contribute to the conversation beyond that.  Talking about what you've read or seen or heard that makes you uninterested, and if you're open to your opinion being changed, hearing responses to that, is one thing.  Citing criticisms second, third, fourth, fifth, and sixth hand as indisputable "facts" for why a given work of art is objectively bad is quite another.

You really can't have an informed opinion about things you yourself have not experienced.  And just to short-circuit this, your analogies are flawed.  School shootings are bad, that's all there is to it, but what should be done is a much more complex and nuanced discussion than "all guns bad" "hands off my guns" that everyone wants to seem to boil it down to, and this is not the right place to discuss it.  As for smoking. . . well, yes, even if you don't smoke, you've experienced cigarette smoke for yourself, by smelling it on others, and can make the informed decision whether or not that smell is appealing to you.

Moreover, neither of those arguments have anything at all to do with art.  Shooting innocent people is objectively bad, that's all there is to it.  Art, however, is subjective, and opinions on art are a subjective of a subjective.  Art, quite simply, cannot be objectively good or bad.  Even technically. . . techniques can be used deliberately poorly to create a specific impression in the audience, and an audience can forgive poorly-executed technique if the result still speaks to them on some level.

And of course, I may have made a poor word choice when I said "abdicate your right to whine."  You can speak your mind about anything you like.  But Freedom of Speech comes with the corollary of "Freedom To Not Listen."  If you choose not to make your opinion informed, you really shouldn't expect anyone to care what it is.

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1 hour ago, ErikModi said:

You really can't have an informed opinion about things you yourself have not experienced.  And just to short-circuit this, your analogies are flawed.  School shootings are bad TLJ is divisive, that's all there is to it, but what should be done is a much more complex and nuanced discussion than "all guns of the film is bad" "hands off my guns film" that everyone wants to seem to boil it down to, and this is not the right place to discuss it.  As for smoking TLJ. . . well, yes, even if you don't smoke, see it you've experienced cigarette smoke secondhand exposure for yourself, by smelling it on others, and can make the informed decision whether or not that smell is appealing to you.

There, now you can see how it relates to TLJ perfectly.

Edited by HappyDaze

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1 hour ago, ErikModi said:

(snip)

That's definitely wrong from what I experienced among my friends when it comes to Movies and Music.

I know what kind of Movies they like a lot, which are "brains out, get the popcorn" and which are just plain "nearly fell asleep while watching" AND I know which friend differs from my tastes in specific areas and as well as who is on the same page.

Therefore I'm able to sort out statements like for example: "I enjoyed it a lot but it's pretty strange, like A Scanner Darkly" and "It was so bad I had to turn it off, like A Scanner Darkly" depending from whom I hear it. Which tells me if I'm very very likely to actually like the Movie like A Scanner Darkly, or not.

The chances to get the assumption right, if I will enjoy/hate it, even increases a lot if there are spoilers and further information why they enjoyed/hated the Movie in question involved.

A Good example for me right now is Solo, I haven't seen it yet but what I heard (including some spoilers) from different sources I'm almost 100% sure that I will enjoy it when I finally watch it, as a lot of the good Feedback I got was from people with very similar or even more critical tastes.

I don't know about you, but I can trust this method with Movies and Music among my close friends. So the whole "you can't say anything if you haven't experienced it yourself" is wrong from my own experience.

This is no Modern Art Movement debate like: "Someone said the Art Exhibition in question ist too much Cubism for them, so I'll also pass on it as I "hate" Cubism and only like Impressionism"

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13 minutes ago, Malashim said:

That's definitely wrong from what I experienced among my friends when it comes to Movies and Music.

I know what kind of Movies they like a lot, which are "brains out, get the popcorn" and which are just plain "nearly fell asleep while watching" AND I know which friend differs from my tastes in specific areas and as well as who is on the same page.

Therefore I'm able to sort out statements like for example: "I enjoyed it a lot but it's pretty strange, like A Scanner Darkly" and "It was so bad I had to turn it off, like A Scanner Darkly" depending from whom I hear it. Which tells me if I'm very very likely to actually like the Movie like A Scanner Darkly, or not.

The chances to get the assumption right, if I will enjoy/hate it, even increases a lot if there are spoilers and further information why they enjoyed/hated the Movie in question involved.

A Good example for me right now is Solo, I haven't seen it yet but what I heard (including some spoilers) from different sources I'm almost 100% sure that I will enjoy it when I finally watch it, as a lot of the good Feedback I got was from people with very similar or even more critical tastes.

I don't know about you, but I can trust this method with Movies and Music among my close friends. So the whole "you can't say anything if you haven't experienced it yourself" is wrong from my own experience.

This is no Modern Art Movement debate like: "Someone said the Art Exhibition in question ist too much Cubism for them, so I'll also pass on it as I "hate" Cubism and only like Impressionism"

Well, that's exactly what I'm talking about.  You know your friends' tastes, you know what they do and don't like about movies, so you can make decisions based on if you're interested in the film or not based on their opinions.  You still form your own opinion after having seen it yourself, though.  And everybody does that all the time every day.  Taking in information about a film or show or book or whatever and deciding if you're interested in experiencing it for yourself.  That's not the problem.

What annoys me is people regurgitating other people's opinions as facts.  First, opinions are not facts.  They are opinions.  Second, retelling someone else's opinion means it is now colored by your own opinion about what they said.  A great example of this pertains to this very movie:  a lot of people have quoted Mark Hamill as saying he fundamentally disagreed with Luke's arc in this film, and even told Rian Johnson point-blank to his face that "I disagree with every decision you're making in this film."  So many people quote this as "fact" that Mark Hamill himself hates the film, therefore it is objectively bad.  Never mind that Mark Hamill has cleared up his quotes many times, stating that he likes the final product of the film, and considers it "one of the greats."  You can also see, as EGA points out, Mark Hamill pouring everything he's got into his performance as Luke, which he may not have done if he hated everything about it.  But people who don't like the film want their opinions propped up, so they take Mark Hamill's comments to mean he hates it, too.  But you don't need your opinion propped up, it's yours and no one can take it away from you.  Even if your opinion is "every source I respect says this is horrible and I have no interest in it," that opinion is perfectly valid and no one gets to tell you it's not.  But you then also don't get to explain to people who have seen the film and do like it why their opinion is wrong.

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6 minutes ago, ErikModi said:

What annoys me is people regurgitating other people's opinions as facts.  First, opinions are not facts.  They are opinions.  Second, retelling someone else's opinion means it is now colored by your own opinion about what they said.  A great example of this pertains to this very movie:

Says the guy that started the thread by posting someone else's opinion piece on the film.

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17 minutes ago, ErikModi said:

You still form your own opinion after having seen it yourself, though.

No, I have intentionally dumped some Movies because all Feedback from sources I could trust in the specific genre was negative, so I spared myself from wasting lifetime to just prove that point (i probably should add that this doesn't make those bad Movies for everyone - just for me).

That is part of the "Learn from the experience of others (which you can trust in the specific matter)" thing, but I agree - no one should be bashing anyone for just another opinion because as we all know "Opinions are like a**holes — Everyone's got one"...

Edited by Malashim

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3 minutes ago, Malashim said:

No, I have intentionally dumped some Movies because all Feedback from sources I could trust in the specific genre was negative, so I spared myself from wasting lifetime to just prove that point (i probably should add that this doesn't make those bad Movies for everyone - just for me).

That is part of the "Learn from the experience of others (which you can trust in the specific matter)" thing, but I agree - no one should be bashing anyone for just another opinion because as we all know "Opinions are like a**holes — Everyone's got one"...

I'm sorry, I'm really not seeing the point of disconnect here.  I'm agreeing with you. . . you can make a decision whether or not to see a movie for yourself based on what others are saying about, and you're agreeing with me that this decision is yours and doesn't impact anyone else's decision whether or not to see it or whether or not to enjoy it, so I'm honestly not certain where the disagreement is coming in.

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Correct me if I understood this wrong but wasn't one of your subcontext points that no one should form an opinion about a Movie itself (and not just not going to watch it) through other sources than their own experience and then join the discussion with those points of view about the topic at hand?

 

If I got that context wrong - my bad!

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Not precisely.

My position is, it's perfectly okay to decide you're not interested in seeing something based on the conversation around it, and even to raise specific things you've heard that lead to that decision.  Beyond that, I believe, there's just nothing meaningful to contribute to the discussion without having seen it yourself.

My problem -- and this is what cropped up in the other locked thread people are referring to -- is when people bring in second, third, fourth, and fifth-hand opinions, and restate them as facts for why the movie is objectively bad.  Bringing overblown, grown-legs-in-retelling statements that just really don't have anything to do with valid complaints about the film.  Like "I'm not a fan of Luke's character arc."  That's a valid complaint, though not one I share.  But going from that to "Luke's a completely depowered utter coward who makes everything worse" is gross hyperbole that doesn't accurately reflect the intent or content of the film.  It makes it impossible to discuss Luke's character arc, love it or hate it, in any meaningful way because the starting point is from someone who didn't even make an attempt to try and understand it.  That's what annoys me, and that's what I meant by "abdicate your right to whine."  You can't discuss the salient points if you aren't aware of what they are, only what you've been told they are.

I fully support people's ability to decide for themselves whether or not to experience a piece of art for themselves.  I even support bringing up the reasons they made that decision in the conversation about that art, whether they're open to having their minds changed on that decision or not.  Heck, you can even go so far as to say "I haven't seen it (yet), but I've heard this happens, and if that's true that's awesome/horrible."  What I'm rallying against is, without even having experienced that art for yourself, claiming that the reasons you made that decision apply equally to all human beings on the planet, and thus that any human being who made a different decision is deficient.

Edited by ErikModi

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15 minutes ago, Malashim said:

Correct me if I understood this wrong but wasn't one of your subcontext points that no one should form an opinion about a Movie itself (and not just not going to watch it) through other sources than their own experience and then join the discussion with those points of view about the topic at hand?

 

If I got that context wrong - my bad!

No. The main argument we have maintained is that such opinions can’t be taken as gospel, and are not objective facts. From my own personal perspective, however, while having another person’s opinion as a gauge to discern potential interest, when it comes to art, first hand experience does enable you to form a more “informed” opinion and argument for the purpose of further discussion. 

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"For the purpose of further discussion" would depend on the actual point of discussion I tend to believe. I won't go into TlJ examples as there already was too much talking in circles in the other Thread, but some points for Movies like overall Story Arcs can be shortened to just a few words and you don't need to watch Avatar (the Pandora one) to develop a justifiable opinion about the potential Pocahontas rip off.

But you actually must have seen Avatar if you want to talk about the (at least I think) amazing visualization - although 3D was unnecessary.

 

So the overall demonization of opinion building through second-hand sources (and communicating it) on pretty much every aspect isn't helping anyone, as well as the tendency of the people against the new Trilogy to lose a lot of "Discussion Etiquette".

But no matter what - I can't imagine that there is anything that hasn't been said already regarding TlJ somewhere on the internet - so I should stop myself trying to ride that dead horse.

Edited by Malashim

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Everyone’s opinion is valid unto themselves. That’s pretty much it. I’ve been pretty vocal about my disdain for this film and that’s not changing. Others absolutely love it and that’s not changing. Debating the validity of others opinions is nonsense. Debating the opinions is not. 

Edited by AnomalousAuthor

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