It’s safe to say that a new Star Wars movie unleashes a lot of opinions. The films have been so deeply intertwined with so many people’s pop culture education and appreciation, it can often be hard to be objective when a new one comes around. With The Last Jedi barrelling into theaters (with what is sure to be a box office record-breaking run), critics have been overwhelmingly positive in their reviews, including ours.
However, the early fan response has been mixed. While the audiences at Thursday night and Friday morning showings were likely hardcore fans, the audience score is surprisingly low. Like, lower than Justice League low. According to Rotten Tomatoes, despite a critics score of 93%, the audience score has plunged to 56%. To compare, Justice League is at 40%/80%.
To keep things vague and appropriately spoiler-free for an opening night, The Last Jedi does feature some changes to the franchise that fans probably did not anticipate. To quote Luke Skywalker, “this is not going to go the way that you think.” If you take a quick gander through Twitter, these changes are not sitting well with many fans. How many of these angry Twitter users also called The Force Awakens “A New Hope retread” back in 2015?
There were certainly plenty of positive voices as well among the frustrated hashtag users, but the apparent backlash is worth investigating. If the status quo of a galaxy far, far away is changing, will fans be willing to change with it? Still, whether you’re hoping The Last Jedi pushes the franchise in a new direction or if it will be rife with the particular kind of nostalgia that fans have come to expect in Star Wars, it’s safe to say that you’ll be buying a ticket at some point this weekend.