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Star Wars: The Last Jedi and the Boy (Girl) Scouts of America

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I can't help but draw a parallel to the recent backlash from many longtime Star Wars fans against the newest Star Wars movie just released, The Last Jed,i to some of the BSA's more recent decisions regarding its membership and leadership policies.

 In the case of both Star Wars and the Boy Scouts of America, for multiple decades, there has been a long standing franchise/organization which each had a deep rooted core audience which each embraced the fundamental philosophies, principles, legacy and history of the franchise/organization.

Jump to 2017 though and in the case of both the Star Wars franchise and the Boy Scouts of America, the management regimes which oversee each made sweeping changes - which can certainly be called controversial - and ultimately created great divide among their respective consituencies; i.e. Star Wars fans and scouting supporters.

To summarize the Star Wars issue, for those unfamiliar, there's been an extreme backlash from a large number of fans and movie goers who are nothing short of disgusted with the movie's story, direction, tone and political and social innuendos made in the movie; i.e. women are great at everything, men are less capable and need female leadership, capitalism is bad, white men and wealthy people are evil. 

Some who have seen the movie though, claim to love it and say it's the greatest Star Wars movie ever. 

This is just my quick account of the Star Wars backlash though. Please do your own research to make your own determinations...

Regardless, of the backlash by a lot of fans, the movie has made a ton of money; albeit some say the initial box office numbers were based solely on hype and that now that word has gotten out, that box office numbers will soon take a nose dive.

One final note, Kathleen Kennedy, the new head of Lucasfilms (now owned by Disney) which controls everything related to Star Wars (movies, TV shows, books, comics, etc.) has made numerous public statements highlighting her advocacy of having this new generation of Star Wars stories revolve around female characters. Again, this is just my quick account. Please do your own research to make your own determinations. 

Like Mike Surbaugh, Kathleen Kennedy is also facing extreme criticism.

Whether you love or hate the Last Jedi and Kathleen Kennedy's new direction for the franchise and whether you love or hate the BSA's recent decisions on membership and leadership, and Mike Surbaugh's glowing insistence on its necessity, it goes without saying that the changes made to each, have not been well received by a large number of Star Wars fans and BSA supporters.

I just thought this was an interesting parallel.

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Not to get too off topic --- I have not seen the latest Star Wars film, but in Dr.Who, the newest regeneration of The Doctor is female.  My oldest son is unhappy with it, but we will continue to watch the show as a family.   In the last season, one of the characters was a lesbian.  

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Saw the film last night. I'm not finding much to be up in arms about. The plot was boiler-plate. I expect the PLO acquaintances I made years ago would relate to these new heroes. I'm constantly reminding my youth that any parallels between "rebel scum" and the US's current sworn enemies is tenuous at best.

However, I can imagine that a defeated galactic insurgency would have no choice but to fall back on slow-reacting humanoid troops not really fit for battles in deep space. That's my take on the admiral-dressed-as-ambassador riff.

Slick production. The 3D was well used and not overused IMHO.

P.S. - I was amused at the use of "dread naught" for a piece of military hardware built for comically absurd offensive abilities but numerous defensive vulnerabilities.

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Lots of questions for me. Don't like the plot holes. Loved the cameo by my favorite Jedi Master. Was surprised they kept hat a secret. And I love how they went old school and used a puppet instead of CGI.

As for the gender politics, I go to the movies to escape that kind of stuff. Get enough of it at work. Yes I know, it's a lost cause.

Personally, I am more of a fan of the Expanded Universe, what the Rat calls Legends now. Some stories were AWESOME. Some OK, some ridiculous. Glad Disney got Timothy Zahn and his Grand Admiral Thrawn back into  the SWU. But that's probably to make more $ since Thrawn is awesome

I'm just glad the Star Wars Christmas Special, Ewoks cartoon, Droids cartoon, and the Battle for Endor made for TV movie are still canon according to the Rat.

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11 hours ago, SSF said:

To summarize the Star Wars issue, for those unfamiliar, there's been an extreme backlash from a large number of fans and movie goers who are nothing short of disgusted with the movie's story, direction, tone and political and social innuendos made in the movie; i.e. women are great at everything, men are less capable and need female leadership, capitalism is bad, white men and wealthy people are ev

I saw the movie last week with the grandkids. I wouldn't have gone to see it except for my wanting to spend some time with the kids. I didn't like it at all.

All the things you say about the tone of the film is true. One thing you didn't mention is the film's anti-religion sub-theme. The film implies that religion is the cause of all strife, and that the only solution is to abandon the old religious writings and customs. 

Yes, I do see a parallel with BSA.

Edited by David CO

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I consider myself a Stars Wars fan, but I almost fell asleep during this movie. I realized as I was walking back to my car that the story has run it's course. It needs to fad away like Luke.

I would like to get excited about the next Indiana Jones movie, but the last movie with aliens did me in. Harrison is too old and todays writers spend too much time developing the characters with dialog instead of action.

Barry

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Shall we also draw parallels to the end of the Roman  Empire (corrupt leaders,  pagans at the borders, perceived enemies vs real enemies, coliseums/entertainment rather than bread for the masses, dissatisfaction with real life vs fiction,  religion vs politics  ...  )

Creation of "ideal world"  (Star Wars,  The Island,  Childhood's End,,,)  vs "less than ideal"  (1984,  Brave New World,  Enders Game,  The Giver)  

 

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9 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

I consider myself a Stars Wars fan, but I almost fell asleep during this movie. I realized as I was walking back to my car that the story has run it's course. It needs to fad away like Luke.

 

One reason why I liked the Expanded Universe books, it didn't put you to sleep. Spent many a night up till 3AM or later reading them.  There was one article that critiqued the movie, wish I had it. But the last sentence said it best, and I will paraphrase

Just as Disney removed the Expanded Universe from canon, many fans will be removing the sequels from canon.

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6 minutes ago, David CO said:

I saw the movie last week with the grandkids. I wouldn't have gone to see it except for my wanting to spend some time with the kids.

All the things you say about the tone of the film is true. One thing you didn't mention is the films anti-religion sub-theme. The film implies that religion is the cause of all strife, and that the only solution is to abandon the old religious writings and customs. 

Yes, I do see a parallel with BSA.

I'll rephrase my statement to say that I don't find anything new to be upset about. This film series's religious despondency is nothing new. The SWU has always been devoid of characters who interact with deities on any personal level. Primitives might have gods to placate, or sacrifices to offer. Elites might have a secret element to tap so that they may project their personal power. Nobody in this story has a diety that calls them to account. No angels appear, only ghosts. No Joan of Arc. If there's an anti-religious sentiment, it's against the witchcraft and sorcery that the galaxy of this story seems beholden to.

It reminds me of the opening book of Pliny the Elder's Natural History. He critiques how primitive man fashions idols upon which society builds its edifices, then dives on in to presenting Roman knowledge of nature and humanity, ultimately codifying some of the myths articulated by primitives - along with much of the science that in later centuries would be forgotten in the West - but clearly through his personal filters. Thus, his writing becomes a blur of tech, anthropology, and myth not unlike the SWU. 

It would take his son, Pliny the Younger to actually start dissecting the actual beliefs of the citizens of the empire. But, except for the ravages of Vesuvious, not much of his work is blockbuster material.

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10 hours ago, Chadamus said:

So what did YOU think of the film?

I actually haven't seen the movie.

For a lot of reasons, I was disappointed with The Force Awakens and from what I was hearing about the The Last Jedi (i.e. the amped up feminism, the social justice themes and aspects of the story that seem to be aimed at destroying the original Star Wars legacy) I just couldn't support the movie, which is very sad to me as this was Carrie Fisher's final film and it also represented Mark Hamill's real return to the screen as Luke Skywalker; both of which I definitely would have ideally wanted to support fully. 

****SPOILER**** From what I have heard though, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill, and their characters, were badly disrespected by the filmmakers of this movie.

If either of my sons ask me to go see it, then I'll take them to see it...but I'm really hoping they won't ask

Edited by SSF
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@SSF, don't buy the "insider hype." Maybe they didn't like the turns their characters took, maybe they did. Regardless, Fisher and Hamill were more in their character than themselves. (It's called acting, after all.)  I think you'll be pleased with their performances if your sons invite you along. The story line may disappoint, but I don't think the acting or the cinematography will.

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I saw the movie earlier this week. I find the recent Star Wars changes less odious than that repugnant Jar Jar Binks, but I’ll confess a secret joy in watching Laura Dern get blown up. The BSA membership changes are far more offensive, mainly because I care much more about Scouting than Luke Skywalker.

The best response to unwelcome changes is to vote with your dollars and with your feet. My financial support for Friends of Scouting has ceased, and 2018 will be my final year as a registered Scouter. That’s the beauty and power of a free market system. However, I will probably still pay 12 bucks to see the next Star Wars feminist fable (in the hope they’ll somehow concoct a plot twist to resurrect Laura Dern just to blow her up yet again).

Edited by gblotter
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