Some Thoughts & Theories From ‘Star Wars: Last Jedi’ (2017) Teaser
The latest ‘Star Wars’ movie is releasing in December 2017. At this weekend’s Star Wars Celebration at Orlando, the powers that be released the official teaser trailer for ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’. Naturally, I have thoughts, questions and some theories as to what all the jumbled images that we saw mean.
So here are some theories and thoughts I have after seeing ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ teaser.
Before we jump into the rampant theorizing, read my breakdown of the ‘Last Jedi’ teaser first.
Also a disclaimer, that I am not and never have been a follower of the Extended ‘Star Wars’ Universe which has encompassed various incarnations of stories told in that Universe, mostly through the novels. So most of my knowledge is going to be based on the ‘Star Wars’ Cinematic Universe, established in Episodes 1 to 7, as well as ‘Rogue One’. Feel free to drop a comment if you have theories to build upon these, or even correct mine.
The Training Montage. Maybe.
A silhouetted Rey (Daisy Ridley) training with a lightsaber on a cliff, as Luke (Mark Hamill) ‘lukes’ on (get it?) is the quintessential training montage that we would all love in a ‘Star Wars’ movie! While Luke in the original trilogy did train with Yoda in a similar fashion, it was less of a montage, and more lessons in enlightenment that provided a break to the more faster paced sub plots happening in the film.
This shot on a cliff confirms the training of Rey’s Jedi powers that was long speculated. Given where ‘The Force Awakens’ left off, and Rey’s obvious command of The Force, it was a foregone conclusion that she was Force sensitive and could even be trained as a Jedi. And by the looks of the first shot of the teaser, it will be an intense training. What’s left now is to reveal the connection between Rey and Luke, as there is an obvious one. This is also where I would theorize, that we’re going to find out a lot of backstory regarding the 30 years between ‘Return Of The Jedi’ and ‘The Force Awakens’, maybe even from Luke himself.
It seems that the continuation of this new trilogy, will be very much rooted in the way things unfolded in the original. As Han Solo (Harrison Ford) took on the role of Obi Wan (the late Sir Alec Guinness) in ‘The Force Awakens’, it seems Luke has taken on the role of Yoda in this one, as he trains a previously unknown Jedi in isolation.
Destruction of Jedi Younglings?
The scene showcasing a hooded figure dropping to their knees (presumably in devastation) beside R2-D2, as what looks like Captain Phasma (Gwendolyn Christie) and a unit of Stormtroopers march out of the fiery destruction of a Temple, could be showing the death of the new set of young Jedis Luke was training, as mentioned in ‘The Force Awakens’. If true, this would be a flashback in the movie, and maybe the first in any ‘Star Wars’ saga movie.
If flashbacks are going to be a part of this instalment of ‘Star Wars’, a portion, if not a significant portion of ‘The Last Jedi’ could be spent focusing on Luke’s motivations for abandoning his friends and family into self exile. Having his new recruits being murdered by the First Order, similar to the atrocities committed by his own father decades ago, could have been the straw that broke the Jedi’s back. This would also play nicely into his last line of the Teaser.
What Is Balance?
The most curious line of dialogue in the teaser has to be those uttered by an aged Luke in the last scene. “… it’s time for the Jedi, to end.”
The easiest explanation is his comment being in direct response to Rey’s desire to be trained, showing his reluctance to be involved in the training of more Jedi to be slaughter by the dark side. His guilt at being unable to stop Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) and Snoke, is what my have caused him to go into self exile all these years. But there seems to be a lot more being dealt with in ‘The Last Jedi’, at least thematically.
During the voice over, Luke (I think) asks Rey what she sees when told to “reach out”. Rey’s claims she sees “light”, “darkness” and “balance”. As the trailer takes a dark turn, the music crescendos as Luke almost rebukes and corrects her a frantic whisper that: “it’s so much bigger!”
Light, dark and balance are the founding tenets around the concept of ‘the Force’. Throughout the ‘Star Wars’ saga, these foundations have been reinforced time and time again. Initially with Anakin (Hayden Christensen) thought to be ‘the chosen one’, to ‘bring balance to the Force’, while we all know how that turned out. It’s a concept that isn’t without it’s flaws, as ‘balance’ in the strictest sense refers to an equality, or status quo where opposing forces are also equally weighted. The prequel Trilogy of Episodes 1-3 showed a world not in balance, as mostly Jedi populated the universe. The original trilogy of Episodes 4-6 gave us a world with a Sith Lord in command and all but no Jedis. Neither situation invokes ‘balance’ in the literal sense of the word.
So ‘The Last Jedi’, and Luke’s words could be signifying a reinvention of these concepts to mean more than the understanding that we’ve held to for decades. The ‘balance’ spoken of could easily refer to one of internal balance, and not external or situational. An internal journey or seeking out of balance between one individual’s own light and dark sides, being accepted and at peace, with neither side dictating or ruling over one’s actions, nor defining them, but parts that determine the whole.
So Luke’s line in the end, can be interpreted as seeing an end of this separation of light and dark, Jedi and Sith, and a new era of individuals with a balance between both sides of the Force. Seeing how George Lucas’s original inspiration for ‘The Force’ and Jedi have been Eastern Asian influences of philosophies such as Taoism and the Tao, ideologies which have always promoted a sense of internal peace and harmony, this interpretation of “bringing balance to the Force” may not be that far fetched.
What, in the possible hell could these, what look like ancient books or text, placed deliberately within a massive sprawling tree-like backdrop mean?
One possible explanation would be that these, are the Journal Of The Whills. So, stay with me here: the Journal Of The Whills, is something that George Lucas originally conceptualized in early drafts of ‘Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope’, as being the Journal that recorded all of the stories of the characters we’ve ended up loving in this universe, having the movie’s story be told by an immortal Guardian. While references to the Journal, or Whills haven’t been made in the movies, ‘Rogue One’ did show us one of those Guardians.
When Jynn Erso (Felicity Jones) first meets Chirrut Imwe, (Donnie Yen) Cassian (Diego Luna) explains how he is a Guardian of the Whills, thus making them canon in the film universe. If this shot in the teaser does refer to the Whills, then the entire ‘Star Wars’ cinematic universe can be going in a totally new direction. Which… is interesting and exciting, to say the least.
Having a greater power, a substantial and tangible thing existing in the ‘Star Wars’ universe that has either recorded, or is involved with the origins of the Jedi can significantly change the landscape of the Jedi ideology that we understand. This could even be in line with the reinterpretation of the Force that I theorized above, that could happen from Luke’s last line, and the title of the movie itself.
Let me know what you think of my theorizing. And please do comment, correct and criticize about them as much as you want in the comments below or on Twitter @theshahshahid