The Last Jedi (光か闇か)

1/1/18: watched the Last Jedi. Here are my thoughts on the heart of the movie.

Kylo is drawn towards the dark side perhaps because of a flaw in his character, or maybe he was always fated to be drawn to darkness as glimpsed by Luke during his Jedi training. Whatever Luke saw, it was enough to cause fear, driving him to the Dark Side of the Force or simply some kind of Jedi Master madness. It’s clear that Kylo realizes he’s become a monster, and accepts it. He wears the First Order outfit well.

Rey, we see yelling for her parents/someone to come back when she is left alone on Jakku. She spends her days learning about the world she lives on, accepting Jakku for what it is, until she is finally introduced to the galaxy. A 少女 (shojo) story. Her story compares to even the best 少年 (shonen) anime and as an adult viewer you almost feel bad for her—for seeing the world the way she sees it. Rey’s reality is limited by rules and the desires of others. Unlike Kylo who represents more of an anarchistic way of living, Rey buys into the way life is done on Jakku.

So when these two characters meet via the Force, there’s a volatility, Rey is disgusted by Kylo’s actions (killing his own father, perhaps other things as well). Kylo in an almost prey driven way sees something he can take advantage of in Rey (or maybe I’m reading too much into it?). In my defence, the way he tries to make her feel pain about her parents, and to be her savior leaves you wondering what exactly draws them together. Maybe they both feel like they are saving each other. Hmm…

The galaxy requires order, and the First Order is powerful in this respect. The rebels are constantly on the run, out-gunned and out-numbered. However, they both (in different ways) wish to bring order to the galaxy. The first Jedi texts are gone, and instead their lessons are embodied in the relationship between Rey and Kylo.

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