The Force is alive and well, and Star Wars fans could not be happier - or more excited - for December 15's premiere of The Last Jedi.
The Force Awakens left Star Wars fans everywhere once again hopeful that yes, incredible additions to the Star Wars saga would be forthcoming. While there was hope that the prequel series of films from 1999 to 2005 would be as gripping as the original three films from 1977 to 1983, the prequels just did not deliver the spirit of the original Star Wars films, and when Star Wars was ultimately sold to Disney, with further films being announced, everyone was more than a little nervous. People were excited that the original cast was to be reunited, but what of these new characters and actors? Would they hold up?
We need not worry. Whether people were captivated by Daisy Ridley's portrayal of desert scavenger - and potential Jedi-in-waiting - Rey or intrigued by Stormtrooper turned Resistance fighter Finn (John Boyega) or charmed by heroic x-wing pilot Poe (Oscar Isaac), The Force Awakens hit all the high notes for most Star Wars fans. As the date of The Last Jedi premiere looms ever closer, though, can audiences still expect a quality film that is not a rehashing of Empire Strikes Back, as some have feared? After all, The Force Awakens felt very much like an updated version of Star Wars: A New Hope in order to draw in 21st century audiences, so there are some who were wondering what The Last Jedi might bring.The answer appears to be a resounding yes. After the premiere of the film in Los Angeles on December 9, several of Hollywood's elite took to Twitter to proclaim it as one of the best films they have seen from the saga. Mark Hamill, who has considerably more to say in The Last Jedi than he certainly did in The Force Awakens, said that he felt that The Last Jedi was his favorite film since Empire Strikes Back.According to USA Today, everyone from directors to the managing editor of ticket site Fandango.com were raving about The Last Jedi director's work on the film, in addition to praising the cast as a whole. Logan director James Mangold said that Johnson delivered "a great chapter of a blockbuster franchise, spectacular and unpredictable, but also his own voice shining through... kudos!"
Such unofficial reviews are enough - possibly - to bring balance to the Force once again, and if the early word on Carrie Fisher's final performance is anything to go by, Star Wars fans everywhere are going to be in for an incredible ride.