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Star Wars: The Last Jedi


Star Wars: The Last Jedi

We didn't quite make it to see this latest Star Wars film on its first day, but were there the day after.

In fairness to the effort that has gone into making this film, I am going to refrain from saying too much, although if you want to be totally surprised, then don't read on! This film works as a stand-alone piece, but of course for those of us that have watched the odyssey unfold there is so much more.

Rey (Daisy Ridley) returns, still trying to understand what it is within her that makes her different, and still trying to get Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) to teach her in the ways of the Force.

The Resistance is in full retreat, with Domhnall Green playing General Hux, the evil if somewhat accident prone commander of the First Order's battle fleet. The ultimate bad guy, however, is Supreme Leader Snoke, who puts up with Hux despite his failings. Snoke is also displeased with Kylo Ren (born Ben Solo), which leads to an interesting apparent meeting of minds between Kylo Ren and Rey, all done telepathically through the Force, of course. At this point we are not sure whether Kylo Ren is turning away from the Dark Side. Subsequent events tend to support this possibility. But this is Star Wars, where plot twists and the power of the Dark Side are always going to shape events.

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Exodus: Gods and Kings

We saw Exodus today. The reviews have been pretty awful and there's been a bit of a fuss over the casting white actors in the lead roles. Not a good start then!

Exodus: Gods and Kings

I think I must be reasonably easily pleased as I didn't find it all that bad. I agree that the lead players didn't come over as very Egyptian, so perhaps some of the criticism is warranted. The story was sufficiently dynamic for me not to find the 154 minutes running time overly long, which can't be said for some films of that length. The special effects were, as you would expect, impressive. We've become so used to computer generated scenes now that they're no longer quite as awe inspiring, but the long list of computer design artists shown in the credits gives you some idea of the amount of work that goes into creating these simulations.

I must admit that my biblical knowledge is limited but I found it quite shocking how the Egyptians supposedly suffered at the hands of God. He seems to have lost that inclination nowadays as otherwise there would be quite a few people out there who might be feeling his wrath. Depicting God as a child was also an interesting take on things. Or was it just that Moses saw him as a child because of his longing for his own son?

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Life of Pi

We saw The life of Pi today and it was quite incredible. Ang Lee can be relied upon to produce something special and this is no exception. The film obviously relies heavily on CGI but the brilliance lies in the fact that it's only your intuition that informs you what is likely to be real and what is generated in a computer. The 'joins' certainly aren't visible and suspension of disbelief is easily realised.

And the ending is both unexpected and superficially baffling. It's only when you start to think about it, that you realise that you are being asked to make a personal choice, and that the choice you make is effectively a reflection of your beliefs. If you've seen the film and are still struggling with the ending, try Screenrant.

Brilliant film and amazing cinematography. Interestingly in France the story is entitled L'Odyssée de Pi, which is probably more descriptive, as an odyssey it certainly is.


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