There were a lot of spectacular things to come out of The Last Jedi this past opening weekend, but one of the coolest things was the Force itself being used in a few different ways that we’ve never seen before in the previous movies. Some of the skills being exhibited rubbed fans the wrong way but had the majority of fans geeking out at unseen levels. Last Jedi director Rian Johnson had this to say to the L.A. Times in regards to the force skills on display in Episode 8. There are spoilers if you haven’t seen the movie so beware!
The truth is, because Star Wars until The Force Awakens has been set in amber and we hadn’t had a new Star Wars movie in 10 years, you forget that they were introducing new Force stuff with each movie, based on the requirements of the story. Force-grabbing didn’t come around until Empire, it wasn’t in A New Hope. Same with Force ghosts. They’d introduce new ideas of what could happen with the Force each time.
When Luke shows up he’s projecting, it’s like a hardcore variation of what Kylo and Rey have been doing the whole time and that’s why it takes so much out of him. In the version that we play, no. We tried to play really, really fair. In terms of his footsteps – we removed all of his foley — there are no footstep sounds. They never touch. And if you look, the salt flakes that are falling are sparking off of Kylo’s saber and not off of Luke’s.
The one point where we do introduce a bit of a twist in terms of Force ghosts is where Yoda calls down the lightning onto the tree. That, I think, is a tantalizing hint of the potential of someone who is a Force ghost interacting with the real world.
Careful! More major spoilers for The Last Jedi follow!
So just to recap the movie, the Force moved past picking up rocks and levitating lightsabers, even though we saw both of those at one point in the movie. The first sample of the Force being used in a unique way came from General Leia herself, proving that the good ‘ol Skywalker blood is strong even in a non-Jedi member of the family. But who knows, maybe Luke taught her at some point while he was still around? A lot of people had an issue with the visual of Leia pulling herself back to the resistance cruiser, but seriously, being weightless in space means you only need a tap to move in a certain direction or trajectory. Leia used the most basic of Force powers and grabbed onto the ship to propel herself towards it. If Yoda can raise an X-wing from a swamp why can’t she latch onto a capital ship?
Speaking of Yoda, the Force ghost aspect of the Star Wars universe pitched out quite a game changer, with Yoda being able to manipulate things in the real world. And by manipulate I mean he was able to summon lightning easier than it is for me to order a pizza. Is Yoda only able to exhibit that kind of power as a Force ghost in a place strong in the Force like Ahch-To, the planet where the Jedi began?
To me, one of the most interesting powers that made up some of the best exchanges in the movie between Rey and Kylo Ren was the Force mind bridge that Snoke created. As Kylo Ren said to Rey, there was no way she could have done that because the effort would have killed her and most likely him as well. Being able to communicate by seeing and hearing the other person halfway across the galaxy is a pretty impressive feat for any Force user and it goes to show you that Snoke was insanely powerful. There would have been no chance of Rey and Kylo Ren defeating the Supreme Leader head on so it makes much more sense that Kylo went the route he did to betray Snoke.
As much as Snoke was incredibly powerful in the force to create mind bridges and see into people’s minds and rip out whatever he wanted, Luke by far had the most impressive use of the Force in the film and it explains a lot as to why Snoke was so scared of Luke. To close out the movie, it turned out that the Luke Skywalker on Crait facing down his fallen nephew wasn’t actually even Luke Skywalker physically. Luke was so powerful that he was able to project himself all the way from Ahch-To across the galaxy to Crait. Sure, the effort killed him, but it proved that he was the ultimate Jedi Master. There were so many subtle hints about Luke on Crait that should have made the audience wonder, from Luke’s haircut, his blue lightsaber and his feet not shifting the salt on the ground. But all of us were so enthralled by seeing Luke about to go into combat that we didn’t even care until Kylo Ren’s lightsaber went straight through his uncle Skywalker.
Whether it’s the Legends characters in the world of the Star Wars novels or the new canon, the Force has been used in a number of ways we haven’t seen in the movies yet. There have been mind wipes using the Force, scrambling security cameras and even time travel, to an extent. Hell, for the people complaining about Leia flying through space, in the Episode II novelization Count Dooku levitated himself down to face off against Obi-Wan and Anakin before their final duel, as opposed to flipping down as he did in the movie.
The Force can be used in so many different ways, and with Rian Johnson opening the door for more extreme uses it’s making me excited all over again anticipating Episode IX. What are some Force powers everyone wants to see in Episode IX? Let us know in the comments!
Source: L.A. Times