Tag Archives: Balance in the Force

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Teaser Breakdown

The wait is over and the first teaser for Star Wars: The Last Jedi is here. But while this tantalizing two minutes of footage has finally given us the first glimpse of the upcoming sequel, it’s as deliberately vague as the various teasers for The Force Awakens were. Yes, the cinematography is beautiful. The flashes of Rey’s training are intriguing, and the few brief seconds of space battles are thrilling, but it’s the hidden Easter Eggs that really tell a much bigger story.

What at first looks like some kind of asteroid, a rocky surface in a dark void, is just a stone on the island on the world of Ach-To, where Luke Skywalker has exiled himself. Rey has fallen. And in a way, so has Luke.

The opening then pans up and over the island on the world of Ach-To

The opening pans This appears to be the same flat, cracked surface where Rey had her hard landing. She stands facing the ocean, a calm figure facing a raging sea. Writer-director Rian Johnson has come up with a clever counterpoint to a young Luke staring up at the twin suns on Tatooine and dreaming of adventure. Rey now looks out and sees turmoil and danger.

We don’t know how or why she has stumbled, but we saw Luke collapse plenty of times in The Empire Strikes Back as he grappled with his nascent Force powers. You’ve got to learn how to fall, before you learn to fly. Or, in this case, float.

Rey is practicing with the blue lightsaber that once belonged to Luke and his father before him. Luke watches from afar, but we don’t see him wielding the weapon she tried to return to him. Daisy Ridley said that Rey hoped Luke would take the sword and return to battle. But he no longer sees himself as the warrior.

It’s possible Luke has found the original Temple of the Jedi and it’s teachings. We already know Luke goes into exile after his attempt to raise a new generation of Jedi ends in disaster. Han Solo’s the one who says that the people who knew him best think he went looking for the first Jedi temple. Why would he do that? In such a time of crisis, it might be just the comfort he needs to cling to while his wounds heal. There’s also a chance he’s looking for answers. If he can find the original founding lore and prophecies of the first Jedi, maybe he can figure out what has to happen next, as in the Star Wars universe, these Force-sensitive trees can connect with this unseen power in the same way as some humans, but here we see what look like roots, reaching around a small shelf of similarly ancient-looking books

We see a page from original founding lore and prophecies of the first Jedi Order, but this image is familiar. It’s not just the symbol of the Jedi order, it’s the starburst of a lightsaber from the posters for 1977’s original Star Wars…

This looks like it may be a continuation of the flashback scene, since the design and atmosphere looks a lot like the vision Rey had in The Force Awakens of Luke Skywalker amid the destruction of his new school for Jedi. Johnson says this movie will explain why Luke’s decision to flee and isolate himself was the right one, and not an act of cowardice.

The Planet Crait

This is great scorched blood-red scene as speeders lined up in formation to fly along the surface of the new planet Crait, dragging stabilizers that rip up the scorched surface into blood-colored plumes of ash on this very remote and uncharted mineral planet.

The shot of these small ships darting toward gigantic new “gorilla” walkers mimics the snowy Hoth battle sequence from The Empire Strikes Back, but this white crust is salt over a red, ruby-ish mineral base.

According to Ryan Johnson, Crait is the site of an “an old rebel base there that’s now abandoned” and the planet was one of the first things he had in mind when planning The Last Jedi.

Some new vehicles, reminiscent of B-wings from the original trilogy.

Another visual rhyme from Johnson: the upswept hair of this cloaked figure momentarily creates a Vader-like silhouette, but it is his daughter, Leia Organa, once a princess, now a general, who stares into this map of the galaxy the same way Rey stared at the tumultuous ocean.

Poe Dameron doesn’t have a signature starship. Maybe because he keeps losing them. Here’s another for the scrap heap.

In The Force Awakens, we saw Vader’s scarred and burned mask — a treasure of his grandson, Kylo Ren. But in The Last Jedi, we see Ren’s own shattered helmet. The aftermath of a battle — or one of his own tantrums? Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy said the film is about handing off power from one generation to the next. After Kylo Ren killed his own father, he may no longer need to hide his true self behind a mask.

Captain Phasma leads soldiers into battle. Is the inferno around them part of that memory of a Jedi school in ruins, or just reflecting the same imagery. No doubt the chrome-armored Stormtrooper’s natural habitat is full of brimstone.

And we couldn’t have a trailer without the classic falcon scene, but although Han Solo may be gone, the Millennium Falcon flies on, still racing into battle to take out TIE Fighters. The question is, who’s in the cockpit? The last we saw of this corellian freighter, Rey, Chewbacca, and R2-D2 were taking it to find Luke Skywalker. Perhaps they weren’t the only ones, and is this their departure?



The final shot of the teaser is of Luke Skywalker in shadow as he emerges from the Force Sensitive tree or Jedi Temple.

These leaked set shots show the tree and opening from which Luke is leaving in the scene from the teaser trailer, a tree very symbolic of the Jedi Order emblem.

So what does this all mean “I only know one truth,” he says. “It’s time for the Jedi to end.” There’s something so crushing in hearing the idealistic boy become the world-weary older man. And it turns out the title The Last Jedi does not refer to him, does not indicate Rey, but is instead a mournful pledge.

“Light. Darkness. A balance.” This is what Rey whispers in the opening shots of the teaser trailer, and they could have a huge significance. If Luke wants to breed a new kind of Jedi, it could be a kind known as the Gray Jedi in the Star Wars universe. Gray Jedi don’t hurl themselves into the light, but they don’t really dig deep into the dark side either. Gray Jedi strike a perfect balance between both sides of the Force. “It’s so much bigger,” a voice says. This could mean they’ve figured out the true secret to mastering the Force. By remaining neutral between the dark and the light, one might wield the ultimate power over those who pick a side.

The thing is, Rey is the perfect candidate for a Gray Jedi. After all, she seems very intent on pressing herself into the good side, but we’ve seen glimpses of evil in her as well. Based on the way she uses the Force in The Force Awakens — I mean, she almost straight-up murders Kylo Ren — she could succumb to her darkness. Then there’s the fact that she might be a Palpatine as well. Think of this, though: if Rey could harness the powers of the dark side and combine it with Luke’s Jedi training, it’s possible she should strike this “bigger” balance.