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  1. - Top - End - #421
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    Default Like a balloon, my post kept expanding. Also probably filled with warm air.

    I think there's a huge misunderstanding about the Force going on. The Force is not the Jedi. Jedi train to be Jedi. They train how to use the Force, but that's in the sense of "How a Jedi should use the Force." People don't train to use the force like people train for the Olympics. It's not a muscle to be exercised. It's not a skill that's practiced, like playing a piano. It's not something learned from studies like science or memorized as mathematical formulas. I get the impression it's like an extra sense, and like vision or hearing, it takes time to get used to the sensory input, to turn it into information the conscious mind uses instead of filtering it out as nonsense. So learning it would be more like learning a language. The sound is already there, and you can react to it or even repeat it without really understanding it, but once you do understand it, you can put it into context, filter out the background noise, ask for directions to the bathroom, or insult someone's parentage. Jedi training is more about the mindset, how to be a Jedi, and meditation, the ability to shut up and listen to that Force sense, and of course the physical exercise of using a lightsaber. However, you don't get stronger at pushing by pushing every day. Repetition would be for things like reliability (more do's and less do not's) and speed (either activation or effect, the difference between moving rocks and throwing rocks, after all). The meditation part of that is what Maz told Rey about, and it's what Luke's lesson was about too.

    Spoiler: Headcanon tangent
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    I think there's something deeper going on with the Lightsaber being the symbol of the Jedi Knights, for the universe and for this movie, too. I'm sure nothing will come of it, but there's a lot to be said about an order for peace and protection that has a weapon for a symbol. Luke has to have wondered how differently the last night of the New Jedi Order would have gone if he didn't bring a lightsaber, or if he didn't have one anymore. Maybe he did go to Ahch-To looking for wisdom from the ancient Jedi masters, like answers about why the Lightsaber is even important, and how to help a swayed pupil. Those answers could lead to some serious disagreement between Luke's accomplishments, and failure, and the traditional Jedi ways. The Jedi Masters of the old Republic expected the chosen one would destroy the Sith, not redeem them, and that is what Anakin actually did in the end. With that mindset, it's kind of obvious what a Jedi is expected to do with a lightsaber and a Sith (or non-denominational dark force wielder), and that's definitely not what Luke wants to do with Ben Solo (nor is it what Yoda would suggest, I bet.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mechalich View Post
    TFA is missing about five minutes of critical exposition. This was a common remark from pretty much the moment it came out. There was a distinct lack of context to the whole struggle - like who exactly did Hux blast with Starkiller Base? - that got noticed from the get go. It was also commonly noted from the same people that 'well, Episode VIII will need to address these things and it will be a problem if it doesn't.' Plenty of professional critics, not just hardcore fans, said this. Then TLJ came out and none of the critics seemed to have remembered that part.
    It is not TLJ's place to fill in the missing setup to TFA. Those details were already given in supplemental materials, and maybe there'll be a special edition recut that puts them into the movie properly. If you wanted answers to questions like "what's up with the New Republic", "where did the First Order come from", and "how did they recover that lightsaber?" The answers were already out there before TLJ. It would be a poorer movie if it tried to rehash those explanations. TLJ is not the place where the answers to those questions should be found. If you still don't know and want to inform yourself, feel free to hit up a wiki for a quick explanation. It's probably better than my own explanation.

    Now, I will try to repeat what I told my friend at the theater. After the battle over Endor, the empire is leaderless. Many systems form a New Republic, but they still face many battles to clean up remaining forces loyal to the Empire. Eventually, sentiment turns against further war and senators of the New Republic sign a treaty with the remaining imperial forces, setting limits on military expansion and splitting up the galaxy between the New Republic and what remains of the Empire (The battle over Jakku was the last decisive victory for the New Republic and marked the end of the war.) (Not an even split of the galaxy either, I imagine.) Apparently the New Republic greatly reduced their military, keeping one fleet as the official fleet of the New Republic and not keeping a military presence in every system. (Which I was told is dumb. Though I expect individual systems have their own forces to deal with things like piracy.) And though they officially control Coruscant, they apparently rotate the seat of the senate periodically (so that power doesn't consolidate into one system like before, or something. He said that sounds dumb too.) Basically, they're doing everything they can to not be like an empire. (Or if this were a 4x game, they're cheapskates who think they can defend all their borders with one agile fleet.)

    The system Starkiller Base blows up is the current seat of the senate and location of the fleet of the New Republic. So while the First Order wouldn't have military control throughout the galaxy like the Empire did, the New Republic is without leadership and the First Order has the strongest unified military force left. Conspicuous absence of an explanation for the lightsaber, because I didn't think it's important.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mightymosy View Post
    Good example. Where is the story actually being discussed?
    Thats what I meant. Story is being brushed over in superficial sentences that don't go into the crux of matters at all (the part you quoted at least. Didnt have time to read the whole article yet).

    Some reviews do go deeper, but most of the ones I clicked through didnt.
    I think they're just trying to avoid spoilers. The story is good. It all flows logically and makes sense. There's some humor that I guess not everyone gets, there's some pacing issues, and the movie goes on past the audience's endurance at some point, but the story is broadly fine. The cut from the space chase, and wrapping up all the end of that entails, to the base defense is jarring. Some time has passed, but the audience doesn't get that time to recover. It skips from everyone escaping the space battle to everyone arriving at the base on Crait. So there's some fault in the presentation (subjectively), but there's essentially nothing wrong with the story itself. At least, there is no story problem from the perspective of a fan of the movies, nor from any perspective I've been able to gather from a deeper look at the expanded materials.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mightymosy View Post
    On the last post:

    What do you people think the message of Last Jedi is?

    I admit the only consistent one I got was "Burn everything down. Nothing really matters."
    Why does anyone expect this to be 'a very special episode of star wars' (with a very important message)? The movie is teaching Poe how to be a leader, Rey how to be a Jedi, Kylo how to make his own decisions, Finn to care about the wider universe, and Rose why Finn really made his heroic attack/stand on Starkiller Base. It might even be teaching Hux a thing or two, like getting him to stand up for himself against the Supreme Leader. They all have teachers, failures, setbacks, and/or losses to learn these lessons. It's all quite neat, but there's not one tidy little message for everyone. Each character has their own arc. At the end of the day, it's a movie. It's telling a story to entertain an audience. It's not one of Aesop's fables or some religious allegory.

  2. - Top - End - #422
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic are both self-selecting in their reviews. The critic reviews hold a bit more weight because the critics tend to review all the movies anyways. The user reviews are for those who have something particularly good or bad to say, for the most part.

    Cinemascore has The Last Jedi as an A and it is a better random sample of people who have actually seen the movie. The fact it's done on opening night though still shows some bias there since it's likely the bigger fans and other people who would likely have more favorable reviews will be the ones going opening night.

  3. - Top - End - #423
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Samurai View Post
    Yeah, I know. Their opinions (and of those that liked it as well by the way) matter more to me than the handful of critics that are not interested in the same things that fans are.
    Majority of critics. And as warty so eloquently mentioned, volunteer samples are hot garbage, so I don't view those "fans" as you call them to be in any way representative.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Samurai View Post
    We're dismissing negative scores. We're dismissing Rotten Tomatoes when they themselves say bots didn't affect the scores. What else can we dismiss to support your narrative?
    Their exact words were that the number of user reviews for TLJ were comparable to TFA. But TFA was getting bombed too, because those durned SJWs had the temerity to put a woman and african-american in the lead roles.

    I'm not saying TLJ didn't have any real detractors with legitimate differences. I'm saying the "50/50" narrative is skewed.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Samurai View Post
    "Nothing matters" is the message that was coming consistently through to me while watching the movie. As I mentioned earlier, when Luke died, I was impressed with how consistently they were driving the point home.
    You're literally talking about people with the ability to dispense wisdom from beyond the grave, you realize that right? How you could watch a scene where Luke saves the entire resistance from halfway across the galaxy using pacifism and come away with "nothing matters" is utterly baffling to me I really do feel you're letting your gut rule your head.
    Last edited by Psyren; 2018-01-11 at 10:11 AM.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
    Quote Originally Posted by gogogome View Post
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  4. - Top - End - #424
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    Majority of critics. And as warty so eloquently mentioned, volunteer samples are hot garbage, so I don't view those "fans" as you call them to be in any way representative.
    A majority of critics that amounts to 322 people that like it.

    I don't care that you're now dismissing all volunteer reviews as hot garbage. You're just being dismissive. I can be dismissive too. Three hundred critics that don't care about the story mean nothing to me, just as much as the regular reviews mean nothing to you.

    It's nonsense to suggest that in hundreds of thousands of volunteer reviews you can't at least match 322 "genuine" reviews.
    Their exact words were that the number of user reviews for TLJ were comparable to TFA. But TFA was getting bombed too, because those durned SJWs had the temerity to put a woman and african-american in the lead roles.
    Your persistence is fascinating. So... how can we know when a negative review is real?
    You're literally talking about people with the ability to dispense wisdom from beyond the grave, you realize that right? How you could watch a scene where Luke saves the entire resistance from halfway across the galaxy using pacifism and come away with "nothing matters" is utterly baffling to me I really do feel you're letting your gut rule your head.
    It's not just me. That is the message in this movie. Nothing matters from the OT. Nothing matters from TFA. Nothing matters even from the movie itself. Most of all, the audience expectations do not matter in the least, or at least in so much as they can be subverted.

    As I said before, this is a woke post modern nihilistic subversion of Star Wars. The point, of course, is that nothing matters.

  5. - Top - End - #425
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Samurai View Post
    I don't care that you're now dismissing all volunteer reviews as hot garbage. You're just being dismissive. I can be dismissive too.
    Well of course you can. I didn't expect this to end with us skipping through a meadow or anything

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Samurai View Post
    Your persistence is fascinating. So... how can we know when a negative review is real?
    When they translate into reduced sales for the next project(s) in the pipeline of course. The same thing that drives change in any commercial endeavor. We saw it with the prequels, and Disney smelled Lucas' blood in the water. We saw it with Star Trek too, before that got rebooted and Discovery greenlit. We also saw it when Disney pounced on Spiderman (ASM2 flopped), Fantastic Four (Fan4stic flopped), and X-Men (Apocalypse was lukewarm at best.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Samurai View Post
    It's not just me. That is the message in this movie. Nothing matters from the OT. Nothing matters from TFA. Nothing matters even from the movie itself. Most of all, the audience expectations do not matter in the least, or at least in so much as they can be subverted.

    As I said before, this is a woke post modern nihilistic subversion of Star Wars. The point, of course, is that nothing matters.
    Nothing I can do to stop you feeling that way. *shrug*
    Last edited by Psyren; 2018-01-11 at 10:32 AM.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
    Quote Originally Posted by gogogome View Post
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  6. - Top - End - #426
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Perhaps I'm lost, but what is even the purpose of this discussion? It's proceeded across two threads and seems to consist entirely of people who refuse to budge from their positions throwing stuff at one another. Is there a goal?

  7. - Top - End - #427
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    I do understand you, I just disagree. I think not copying the deeper similarities was a feature, not a bug. And while you may not have found the new versions interesting, I and many others did.
    This means that you agree with me that they didn't copy the deeper things that made those things work in ANH hope -- the deeper similarities, according to me -- right? Which means that you now should understand what people who criticized it as copying ANH meant, at least if my interpretation is right which you never argued against.

    Thus, the only thing we could be disagreeing about is that the movie replaced those elements with equally deep/meaningful elements ... which you have never actually given significant examples of. You've only tried to show that TFA did things differently, not that those things worked out to add to the story in a significant way, against my discussions of how the superficial elements were never used (the key plays no role in the overall plot and is just a thing to be chased and fought over, the Death Star equivalent is just there and isn't a significant part of the plot either, etc).

    I can go on with things that TFA DID add but that I feel didn't actually add anything to the movie, if you're up for that sort of discussion ...
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  8. - Top - End - #428
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    I was not super-impressed with TLJ. However this is no reason to compromise basic statistical good practices, just so we can feel vindicated.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Samurai View Post
    A majority of critics that amounts to 322 people that like it.

    I don't care that you're now dismissing all volunteer reviews as hot garbage. You're just being dismissive. I can be dismissive too. Three hundred critics that don't care about the story mean nothing to me, just as much as the regular reviews mean nothing to you.

    It's nonsense to suggest that in hundreds of thousands of volunteer reviews you can't at least match 322 "genuine" reviews.
    So here's the thing, a volunteer sample is garbage. A volunteer sample of fans is garbage. A volunteer sample of critics is also garbage. Averaging them tells us nothing more than the average of that particular sample of fans or critics. Because neither comes from any probabilistic sampling design of which I am aware, any inference to the population at large is completely and utterly invalid. This is covered in literally any intro stats class, probably in the first two weeks.
    Your persistence is fascinating. So... how can we know when a negative review is real?
    Oh they're certainly real. They are probably an accurate reflection of that particular person's views. Because it is a volunteer sample however, we don't know how that relates to the population at large.

    Spoiler: Survey Sampling Digression
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    When you draw an actual sample via a rigorously designed survey, every member of the population i has a probability of being included in the sample, say pi. For example if we sample 10% of the pupulation with a simple random sample, each individual has probability .1 of being in the sample.

    Most inference based on surveys use survey weights wi = 1/pi. We can think of the weight as how many individuals in the population each person in the sample is representing. So if pi = .1, wi = 10, and person i represents ten people in the entire population.

    If you know the weights and the survey design, obtaining estimates for basic quantities like means, totals or proportions (and their variances) is usually quite straightforwards. For whether or not people liked a movie, I would estimate the proportion of the population who like the movie as the sum of the weights of sampled people who liked the movie, divided by the total population size. The variance is a bit more involved, and the exact theory requires joint inclusion probabilities, but the basic results are old and well known in the literature.

    In a volunteer sample however you have absolutely no idea what the weights are, and therefore no idea how many people pissed off person X actually represents. Could be ten, could be one, you don't know, and there is no principled way to pick an answer. A volunteer sample may be a quite accurate record of what the volunteers think, but when it comes to any form of inference, it is completely and utterly devoid of value.


    Really, the correct answer here is that both the critical and popular views should not be taken to mean anything beyond 'this is what this particular person or group of people think.' Maybe you find the critics' views more in agreement with your own, or more useful in deciding whether to go to the movie or not, maybe you don't. Whatever.
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by afroakuma View Post
    Perhaps I'm lost, but what is even the purpose of this discussion? It's proceeded across two threads and seems to consist entirely of people who refuse to budge from their positions throwing stuff at one another. Is there a goal?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    What this guy said.

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by afroakuma View Post
    Perhaps I'm lost, but what is even the purpose of this discussion? It's proceeded across two threads and seems to consist entirely of people who refuse to budge from their positions throwing stuff at one another. Is there a goal?
    In case historians need to know what we think about a movie franchise.

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Daimbert View Post
    This means that you agree with me that they didn't copy the deeper things that made those things work in ANH hope -- the deeper similarities, according to me -- right?
    I agree that those elements weren't copied. I disagree that means they didn't work in their own movie (TFA.)

    Quote Originally Posted by afroakuma View Post
    Perhaps I'm lost, but what is even the purpose of this discussion? It's proceeded across two threads and seems to consist entirely of people who refuse to budge from their positions throwing stuff at one another. Is there a goal?
    Quote Originally Posted by rooster707 View Post
    Welcome to the Playground.
    What this guy said.

    Less facetiously - I'm being asked questions and thus answering them, and have been since the last thread. I can't speak for anyone else's motivations.
    Last edited by Psyren; 2018-01-11 at 11:57 AM.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
    Quote Originally Posted by gogogome View Post
    Cheers to Psyren the MVP "naysayer".
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  12. - Top - End - #432
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    And yet there were several groups on social media and imageboards who actively stated they were doing that. They had no reason to lie.
    Other than the typical ones of juvenile tantrum and "see how l33t I am?" (is that still a thing?), anyway.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mechalich View Post
    1. "Trying to be a hero will result in failure." - this one hits Luke, Finn and Rose (twice), and Poe (twice).

    2. "Legends aren't real and you shouldn't look to them." - Luke, also Leia (at the end when she defers to Poe), Kylo (with regard to his Vader fetish), and Snoke.

    3. "Good and evil aren't clear cut." - Everything about Canto Bight and DJ, also pretty much everything Rey does in the film and Holdo's bizarre characterization.

    4. "You don't need any help to be special." - Rey's parents' non-reveal, the little kid at the end, Luke's conversation with Yoda.

    #1 is undercut by Holdo successfully sacrificing herself and Luke doing the same thing. #2 is undercut by having Force Ghost Yoda - hey look a legend showed up with all the answers! and Leia's superman moment. #3 is undercut because sorry, the First Order really is evil Director Johnson, Kylo Ren murdered his dad in cold blood, and if arms dealers were really trying to exploit both sides the Resistance might actually have a fleet. #4 is undercut because Rey is 'chosen by the Force' and so is Kylo.

    I'm being fairly superficial here, but I think the point gets across.
    I think #4 might even be worse...it is "If you are special, you are special through no agency of your own." Strikingly similar to certain hot-button topics of contemporary society wherein we see a number of people expressing great pride in thing they had absolutely nothing to do with (e.g. "I'm special because I'm from Whoville!").

    From a more external viewpoint, there's probably a message of "look at how clever we are to subvert expectations" which clearly has paid off in its own way.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zalabim View Post
    I think there's a huge misunderstanding about the Force going on. The Force is not the Jedi. Jedi train to be Jedi. They train how to use the Force, but that's in the sense of "How a Jedi should use the Force." People don't train to use the force like people train for the Olympics. It's not a muscle to be exercised. It's not a skill that's practiced, like playing a piano. It's not something learned from studies like science or memorized as mathematical formulas. I get the impression it's like an extra sense, and like vision or hearing, it takes time to get used to the sensory input, to turn it into information the conscious mind uses instead of filtering it out as nonsense. So learning it would be more like learning a language. The sound is already there, and you can react to it or even repeat it without really understanding it, but once you do understand it, you can put it into context, filter out the background noise, ask for directions to the bathroom, or insult someone's parentage. Jedi training is more about the mindset, how to be a Jedi, and meditation, the ability to shut up and listen to that Force sense, and of course the physical exercise of using a lightsaber. However, you don't get stronger at pushing by pushing every day. Repetition would be for things like reliability (more do's and less do not's) and speed (either activation or effect, the difference between moving rocks and throwing rocks, after all). The meditation part of that is what Maz told Rey about, and it's what Luke's lesson was about too.[/COLOR]
    I like the point that the Force is not the Jedi. I think that is important. And I kind of understand, I think, where you're going...but to master a language you need teachers (not necessarily in the "school room" sense) and tons of practice and input. To be conversant you need plenty of time, some solid teachers and work improving your mistakes. To be fluent you need a lot of teachers, a lot of exposure and a lot of time speaking in proper environments. To be eloquent requires talent backed by enormous experience and practice.

    Even basic "instinctual" actions in humans like walking takes trial and error...as does reaching out and grasping an object, focusing eyes on objects at different distances, etc. So if "proficiency" with the Force is more akin to instinct than a sense or "learned" skill that would explain why Rey is as good as Kylo Ben...but not why the Jedi ever rose to prominence and why there haven't been hordes more super-powered Force folks. If it was always just instinct, then Yoda's just some short version of James Jones or the Dalai Lama. If it wasn't before, but is now, then maybe that was the Awakening side of things that I think Psyren supports.

    Or maybe we'll just have "Space Wizards" and "Space Sorcerers" now. Assuming most will get the D&D reference and context there...

    Feeling the Force (Force sensitive?) still wouldn't equate to being able to manipulate it to do such a wide variety of tasks. I could buy the idea of the untrained/inexperienced Force sensitive being akin to a Physical Adept (yup, another RPG reference. Sue me.), enhancing speed, strength, reflexes, perception, charisma, etc...because those don't necessarily require a fundamental understanding of how to manipulate the Force. They are the "let it flow through you" kinds of things. Chucking boulders, wiping (or invading) someone's mind, creating a subconscious environmental bubble around yourself and TK-flying to a nearby airlock when in space...those things should take a bit more in terms of understanding and preparation/practice.

    Unless of course the Force is a wholly conscious and self-aware entity that exerts itself through people/animals/things...in which case there is that agency question again.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zalabim View Post
    Why does anyone expect this to be 'a very special episode of star wars' (with a very important message)? The movie is teaching Poe how to be a leader, Rey how to be a Jedi, Kylo how to make his own decisions, Finn to care about the wider universe, and Rose why Finn really made his heroic attack/stand on Starkiller Base. It might even be teaching Hux a thing or two, like getting him to stand up for himself against the Supreme Leader. They all have teachers, failures, setbacks, and/or losses to learn these lessons. It's all quite neat, but there's not one tidy little message for everyone. Each character has their own arc. At the end of the day, it's a movie. It's telling a story to entertain an audience. It's not one of Aesop's fables or some religious allegory.
    Primarily because it *constantly* beats you over the head with all of the messaging it is trying to squeeze into itself. Instead of trying to be a story to entertain an audience it is trying desperately to be 5 or 6 or 7 fables...and doesn't seem to choose a good way to do any of them, much less all of them. For the most part the "teachers" are object lessons in how not to do a thing and the curriculum seems to have been written by two contrarians.

    No one *expected* TLJ to be a pulpit piece. I want to say "no one wanted it to be" but that is unfair projection. So I'll say "I didn't expect it to be a very special after school Star Wars special, and there was little I wanted less."

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    I was not super-impressed with TLJ. However this is no reason to compromise basic statistical good practices, just so we can feel vindicated.


    So here's the thing, a volunteer sample is garbage. A volunteer sample of fans is garbage. A volunteer sample of critics is also garbage. Averaging them tells us nothing more than the average of that particular sample of fans or critics. Because neither comes from any probabilistic sampling design of which I am aware, any inference to the population at large is completely and utterly invalid. This is covered in literally any intro stats class, probably in the first two weeks.

    Oh they're certainly real. They are probably an accurate reflection of that particular person's views. Because it is a volunteer sample however, we don't know how that relates to the population at large.

    Spoiler: Survey Sampling Digression
    Show

    When you draw an actual sample via a rigorously designed survey, every member of the population i has a probability of being included in the sample, say pi. For example if we sample 10% of the pupulation with a simple random sample, each individual has probability .1 of being in the sample.

    Most inference based on surveys use survey weights wi = 1/pi. We can think of the weight as how many individuals in the population each person in the sample is representing. So if pi = .1, wi = 10, and person i represents ten people in the entire population.

    If you know the weights and the survey design, obtaining estimates for basic quantities like means, totals or proportions (and their variances) is usually quite straightforwards. For whether or not people liked a movie, I would estimate the proportion of the population who like the movie as the sum of the weights of sampled people who liked the movie, divided by the total population size. The variance is a bit more involved, and the exact theory requires joint inclusion probabilities, but the basic results are old and well known in the literature.

    In a volunteer sample however you have absolutely no idea what the weights are, and therefore no idea how many people pissed off person X actually represents. Could be ten, could be one, you don't know, and there is no principled way to pick an answer. A volunteer sample may be a quite accurate record of what the volunteers think, but when it comes to any form of inference, it is completely and utterly devoid of value.


    Really, the correct answer here is that both the critical and popular views should not be taken to mean anything beyond 'this is what this particular person or group of people think.' Maybe you find the critics' views more in agreement with your own, or more useful in deciding whether to go to the movie or not, maybe you don't. Whatever.
    You cannot deduct from volunteer percentages the real percentages of a given population, this is certainly true.

    Now, what does statistics tell you if these percentages differ between different samples, i.e. movie 1 and movie 2?
    Both clearly don't represent proper percentages of the given viewer population, but is it now that nothing can be deducted at all?
    Last edited by Mightymosy; 2018-01-11 at 01:41 PM.
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Mordar View Post
    Feeling the Force (Force sensitive?) still wouldn't equate to being able to manipulate it to do such a wide variety of tasks. I could buy the idea of the untrained/inexperienced Force sensitive being akin to a Physical Adept (yup, another RPG reference. Sue me.), enhancing speed, strength, reflexes, perception, charisma, etc...because those don't necessarily require a fundamental understanding of how to manipulate the Force. They are the "let it flow through you" kinds of things. Chucking boulders, wiping (or invading) someone's mind, creating a subconscious environmental bubble around yourself and TK-flying to a nearby airlock when in space...those things should take a bit more in terms of understanding and preparation/practice.
    It's worth remembering the lesson of the X-Wing on Dagobah.

    Through the Force, there is no difference between lifting a tiny pebble and a starfighter, Luke didn't fail to do the latter because he didn't train hard enough at Master Yoda's House of Force Gains, but because he thought there would be a difference.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mightymosy View Post
    You cannot deduct from volunteer percentages the real percentages of a given population, this is certainly true.

    Now, what does statistics tell you if these percentages differ between different samples, i.e. movie 1 and movie 2.
    Both clearly don't represent proper percentages of the given viewer population, but is it now that nothing can be deducted at all?
    Not really, no. For movie A you have a bunch of responses subject to completely unknown biases. For movie B you have a bunch of reponses subject to completely unknown biases. There's no reason to think that movie A mean - movie B mean magically gets those biases to cancel out.

    Now I suppose there is a not totally compromised analysis you could do, if you could tie reviews to specific people (i.e. person 1 liked A, hated B, person 2 liked A, liked B, etc). Using this you could construct an estimator of P(like A given like B) or similar quantities. However the sample is still hopelessly biased, and I would not generalize it at all.

    (This does not imply that reviews are useless, merely that you cannot base valid statistical inference on them. If you're using them to deduce whether or not you are likely to like movie A, given how both you and the reviewer have felt about past movies, this is utterly reasonable.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    Not really, no. For movie A you have a bunch of responses subject to completely unknown biases. For movie B you have a bunch of reponses subject to completely unknown biases. There's no reason to think that movie A mean - movie B mean magically gets those biases to cancel out.

    Now I suppose there is a not totally compromised analysis you could do, if you could tie reviews to specific people (i.e. person 1 liked A, hated B, person 2 liked A, liked B, etc). Using this you could construct an estimator of P(like A given like B) or similar quantities. However the sample is still hopelessly biased, and I would not generalize it at all.

    (This does not imply that reviews are useless, merely that you cannot base valid statistical inference on them. If you're using them to deduce whether or not you are likely to like movie A, given how both you and the reviewer have felt about past movies, this is utterly reasonable.)
    These are good ideas, but I think you could do more.
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    Default Re: Like a balloon, my post kept expanding. Also probably filled with warm air.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zalabim View Post
    Why does anyone expect this to be 'a very special episode of star wars' (with a very important message)? The movie is teaching Poe how to be a leader, Rey how to be a Jedi, Kylo how to make his own decisions, Finn to care about the wider universe, and Rose why Finn really made his heroic attack/stand on Starkiller Base. It might even be teaching Hux a thing or two, like getting him to stand up for himself against the Supreme Leader. They all have teachers, failures, setbacks, and/or losses to learn these lessons. It's all quite neat, but there's not one tidy little message for everyone. Each character has their own arc. At the end of the day, it's a movie. It's telling a story to entertain an audience. It's not one of Aesop's fables or some religious allegory.
    No one was expecting a special episode of Star Wars. People were expecting Star Wars.

    Instead we got a movie hammering us over the head with all sorts of messages.
    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin
    So here's the thing, a volunteer sample is garbage. A volunteer sample of fans is garbage. A volunteer sample of critics is also garbage.
    I'm fine with this. If you're going to dismiss them, dismiss them all. I just don't know how you come to the conclusion that this movie was "controversial" when negative reviews are suddenly inconsequential.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GloatingSwine View Post
    It's worth remembering the lesson of the X-Wing on Dagobah.

    Through the Force, there is no difference between lifting a tiny pebble and a starfighter, Luke didn't fail to do the latter because he didn't train hard enough at Master Yoda's House of Force Gains, but because he thought there would be a difference.
    Fair...I used chucking boulders simply as it happened in the new movies. It could be pebbles (or brooms) and still mean the same thing. Luke could move things...he just hadn't yet learned the lesson that the size doesn't matter.

    Aside: Curious that Yoda still seemed to have to focus and concentrate to slowly move the X-wing when we have seen others (Vader, Dooku) whip stuff around without any visible effort. Probably just a byproduct of the nature of the scenes (training vs. combat), but still noteworthy.

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Mightymosy View Post
    These are good ideas, but I think you could do more.
    You really, really can't. Volunteer data is terrible, and it's terrible in ways that you, the user, cannot know about and adjust for. If I *knew* upfront that negative reactions were over-represented in the sample by a factor of 2, I could simply give all negative reviews half the weight. But I don't know that, and I don't really have any principled estimate of how overrepresented they are. So sure I could make up a number, and downweight negative reviews by it, but that number's just my own personal bias. I'm not basing it on data because I have no data, I'm just making up a story in my head to justify a number.

    (You may or may not remember in the 2012 election, somebody thought that the polls were biased against Romney because they overrepresented likely Obama voters. So he downweighted data from people who said they were likely to vote for Obama, based entirely on the story he'd told himself and no actual empirical data. To the surprise of exactly nobody, his predictions were absolutely terrible. Which is not to say that poles aren't biased, but you need to calibrate them against something other than your own gut feeling, because your gut feeling is not a reliable or robust measure of reality, and is likely to be strongly influenced by what you *want* to be true.)

    Moral of the story; the solution to bias is applying your own biases. It's better sampling and use of data. In the case of volunteer movie reviews, there isn't any data there in the first place, just a haphazard collection of anecdotes, many from the internet's twitchier denizens. Ignore it all.
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Here's a nice video on how LJ could have been vastly improved:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H2Vhx_z52G4

    (At least in my opinion)

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    You really, really can't. Volunteer data is terrible, and it's terrible in ways that you, the user, cannot know about and adjust for. If I *knew* upfront that negative reactions were over-represented in the sample by a factor of 2, I could simply give all negative reviews half the weight. But I don't know that, and I don't really have any principled estimate of how overrepresented they are. So sure I could make up a number, and downweight negative reviews by it, but that number's just my own personal bias. I'm not basing it on data because I have no data, I'm just making up a story in my head to justify a number.

    (You may or may not remember in the 2012 election, somebody thought that the polls were biased against Romney because they overrepresented likely Obama voters. So he downweighted data from people who said they were likely to vote for Obama, based entirely on the story he'd told himself and no actual empirical data. To the surprise of exactly nobody, his predictions were absolutely terrible. Which is not to say that poles aren't biased, but you need to calibrate them against something other than your own gut feeling, because your gut feeling is not a reliable or robust measure of reality, and is likely to be strongly influenced by what you *want* to be true.)

    Moral of the story; the solution to bias is applying your own biases. It's better sampling and use of data. In the case of volunteer movie reviews, there isn't any data there in the first place, just a haphazard collection of anecdotes, many from the internet's twitchier denizens. Ignore it all.
    I think one can get something out of that data when thinking a little outisde the box

    The box in question being the sample size you're looking at, and the percentage you are trying to calculate.

    If x% of a voluntary sample population likes a movie, that says little about how many people in the entire population like the movie. Right?
    I think we can agree to that easily.

    But there are other numbers as well, even though they are not as clear cut and easily interpretated as a randomised sample of the whole viewer population would certainly be.

    For example there is n=people who volunteered.
    This total number tells you how many people cared enough about a movie to give a review.
    Then there is nn = total number of people who volunteered to give a negative review.
    Again, this tells you how many people disliked and cared about a movie enough to give a negative review.
    Likewise, there is np = total number of people who volunteered to give a positive review.
    This tells you how many people liked and cared enough about the movie to give a positive review.

    The problem with these numbers is, of course, that these are all totals. Totals you need to put into some perspective.
    You could "normalize" these numbers to the estimated numbers of viewers, for example, to estimate how many percent of the viewers cared enough to comment. Or how many liked or disliked enough to comment.
    You could compare these numbers among different movies.

    The biggest limitation is that all this describes only a population that knows, and is generally willing to comment on the given website (i.e. Rotten Tomatoes).

    And I fully agree that this data is in no way as good as huge numbers of random samples would be.

    But I contest the notion that nothing can be learned from these data.

    Take an obviously unrealistic extreme data set for an example:
    If you knew about 1 000 000 watched a moviev, and you had about 100 000 negative revies on the site, you would then know that about at least 10% of all viewers disliked the movie.

    Bad data needs caution, but it is not no data.
    Generally though, you are doing a good job advising people not to trust statistics so easily. Way too often people trust statistics more than they should.
    Last edited by Mightymosy; 2018-01-11 at 02:38 PM.
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    Default Re: Like a balloon, my post kept expanding. Also probably filled with warm air.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mightymosy View Post
    You cannot deduct from volunteer percentages the real percentages of a given population, this is certainly true.

    Now, what does statistics tell you if these percentages differ between different samples, i.e. movie 1 and movie 2?
    Both clearly don't represent proper percentages of the given viewer population, but is it now that nothing can be deducted at all?
    You can deduce from it that TLJ is more controversial than TFA was, but you never needed a review site to tell you that in the first place; the headlines already made it clear. The trouble is that almost any change at all to Star Wars would cause controversy, and this movie had several (de-emphasizing the Skywalker dynasty, socializing the Force, establishing heretofore unseen combat applications of starship physics etc.) So the conclusion that some of you appear to desire, that the controversy means the changes are harming the franchise, is the muddier one to draw. I am of the opinion that most of the angrier fans will come around, if not for IX then later, and I consider the ones that ultimately don't to be acceptable losses for the sake of the fresher vision.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Samurai View Post
    I'm fine with this. If you're going to dismiss them, dismiss them all. I just don't know how you come to the conclusion that this movie was "controversial" when negative reviews are suddenly inconsequential.
    But the critics aren't "volunteering", at least not to the same degree. It's an aggregator. When I write a review for Forbes, or NPR, or Chicago Tribune I don't make an account on RT, log in and then write up another instance of my review over there - they simply scraped my parent site for it. So the samples are fundamentally different and should be treated as such.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
    Quote Originally Posted by gogogome View Post
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Mechalich View Post
    I won't give you the acting - the performances in TLJ are serviceable but nothing special with the exception of Mark Hamill's - but as to the technical merits, yes TLJ is a capable film. However, I feel that the technical merits really don't count for much in this case. I've seen, and enjoyed, plenty of movies that were all about the presentation wherein the story is little more than an afterthought. I don't favor that particular approach most of the time - I prefer sound and fury that signifies something - but I get it.

    The thing is, The Last Jedi is not a movie that's disregarding story. No, it has points to make. Very substantial, highly subversive points that are designed to make viewers question or even repudiate standard blockbuster storytelling. This movie has a message, or actually several messages. But it fails, and fails massively, to execute its story in a way that presents that message consistently or with any viable persuasion. Additionally the message is presents is in direct conflict with its immediate predecessor The Force Awakens and seven other films that have been thematically consistent over four decades.

    The Force Awakens is the flashy, technical Star Wars achievement that has no real substance but can be enjoyed primarily for the visuals. Not the Last Jedi. The most technically impressive, audio-visually important shot in the whole film is Admiral Holdo ramming the Raddus into the Supremacy via hyperspace. That is also the shot that has the greatest disrespect for the lore, culminates the arc of a terrible character whose actions make no sense, and has a moral meaning that is directly and explicitly undercut later in the film when Rose gives her little speech. it is impossible to separate the technical achievements from the storytelling failures in this movie.
    I didn't say 'disregard story', and acknowledged the likelihood that some critics did so. I said 'appreciate the film's other merits'. It's not a zero-sum game. Certainly the story issues of the prequels didn't keep people from tearing the acting, cinematography, and visuals to shreds.

    And it's hardly just Mark Hamill on the acting front. Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, Oscar Isaac, and (for better or worse) Kelly Marie Tran deliver great performances and nail their roles in a way I frankly think you would notice more if it had been absent.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mightymosy View Post
    Good example. Where is the story actually being discussed?
    Thats what I meant. Story is being brushed over in superficial sentences that don't go into the crux of matters at all (the part you quoted at least. Didnt have time to read the whole article yet).
    What do you expect from the opening paragraph? The whole point of an intro is to show what's discussed in more depth further into the article. The majority of the paragraph I cited is about story and consistency. And there are limits to what it can professionally discuss. "Here's my review of Star Wars, including thoughts on Vice-Admiral Holdo's sacrifice and the implications of hyperspace ramming-" *is immediately fired*

    I'll save my thoughts on messaging for another comment.
    Last edited by Lethologica; 2018-01-11 at 03:20 PM.

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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Mightymosy View Post
    I think one can get something out of that data when thinking a little outisde the box

    The box in question being the sample size you're looking at, and the percentage you are trying to calculate.

    If x% of a voluntary sample population likes a movie, that says little about how many people in the entire population like the movie. Right?
    I think we can agree to that easily.

    But there are other numbers as well, even though they are not as clear cut and easily interpretated as a randomised sample of the whole viewer population would certainly be.

    For example there is n=people who volunteered.
    This total number tells you how many people cared enough about a movie to give a review.
    Then there is nn = total number of people who volunteered to give a negative review.
    Again, this tells you how many people disliked and cared about a movie enough to give a negative review.
    Likewise, there is np = total number of people who volunteered to give a positive review.
    This tells you how many people liked and cared enough about the movie to give a positive review.

    The problem with these numbers is, of course, that these are all totals. Totals you need to put into some perspective.
    You could "normalize" these numbers to the estimated numbers of viewers, for example, to estimate how many percent of the viewers cared enough to comment. Or how many liked or disliked enough to comment.
    You could compare these numbers among different movies.
    These are all descriptive statistics; which are fine, but also inferentially meaningless. They don't really tell me anything about the population at large, so what's the point of calculating them? I don't think a lot of people are deeply interested in a crude estimate of the percentage of people who saw a movie and cared enough to comment on RT. This leaves us with weasel statements like 'while not rigorous, this is certainly suggestive...' and other efforts to dress up not inferentially valid statistics as having some sort of validity.

    The biggest limitation is that all this describes only a population that knows, and is generally willing to comment on the given website (i.e. Rotten Tomatoes).

    And I fully agree that this data is in no way as good as huge numbers of random samples would be.

    But I contest the notion that nothing can be learned from these data.

    Take an obviously unrealistic extreme data set for an example:
    If you knew about 1 000 000 watched a moviev, and you had about 100 000 negative revies on the site, you would then know that about at least 10% of all viewers disliked the movie.
    I know 100,000 people left a negative review. This is not the same thing, as countless cases of review-bombing have demonstrated over the years.

    I'm not even demanding huge sample sizes. I would take a good sample of 100 movie-goers opinions over every volunteer sample out there hands down. By 500, the differential in quality isn't even funny. The strong law of large numbers is a potent ally.

    Bad data needs caution, but it is not no data.
    Generally though, you are doing a good job advising people not to trust statistics so easily. Way too often people trust statistics more than they should.
    For inferential purposes, this stuff is utterly useless, for reasons covered in thousands of stat 101 classrooms across the country every semester. I mean sure if you enjoy it, go nuts and calculate a bunch of descriptive statistics from it, but this does not actually make it any more valid.

    (And in this case, we don't even have the usual defense of big, non-rigorously sourced data, namely that it's freaking big. This is a tiny amount of data. And even in the cases of really stupidly huge convenience samples, they're still often outperformed by good sampling. Google flu trends is generally worse than CDC estimates based on surveys, and that's with the crazy amount of data Google has.)
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    Default Re: Like a balloon, my post kept expanding. Also probably filled with warm air.

    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    You can deduce from it that TLJ is more controversial than TFA was, but you never needed a review site to tell you that in the first place; the headlines already made it clear. The trouble is that almost any change at all to Star Wars would cause controversy, and this movie had several (de-emphasizing the Skywalker dynasty, socializing the Force, establishing heretofore unseen combat applications of starship physics etc.) So the conclusion that some of you appear to desire, that the controversy means the changes are harming the franchise, is the muddier one to draw. I am of the opinion that most of the angrier fans will come around, if not for IX then later, and I consider the ones that ultimately don't to be acceptable losses for the sake of the fresher vision.



    But the critics aren't "volunteering", at least not to the same degree. It's an aggregator. When I write a review for Forbes, or NPR, or Chicago Tribune I don't make an account on RT, log in and then write up another instance of my review over there - they simply scraped my parent site for it. So the samples are fundamentally different and should be treated as such.
    Or.....the you don't need the headlines telling you when you first read the review site

    I totally agree on your statement that you can't draw definite conclusions on whether something will harm the franchise, and as I wrote above, the kind of statistics are way more shaky, and way more difficult to draw conclusions from than better statistics, based on random samplings.

    My piece was mainly to contest that nothing can be read from these numbers, which I find not to be true.
    My point is not that you can tell the whole story - or even a big part of the story - from these numbers alone.

    While we're at it, the numbers itself I don't find to be the key point when I read these sites. They are an indicator, but what really matters to me is when things make sense to me. Reviews that miss the point in my eyes can rate any way they want, I don't care for them.

    So ideally, if I were to use i.e. for future decisions which movie I wanted to see, the best idea would probably be to get a stock index of a number of reviewers I mostly agree with on a good sample of movies, and then take a combined score of only these reviewers into account next time a movie comes out.


    By the way, I still don't get the part of socializing the force - have you read my previous response to that topic? Any comments?
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    Default Re: Like a balloon, my post kept expanding. Also probably filled with warm air.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mightymosy View Post
    So ideally, if I were to use i.e. for future decisions which movie I wanted to see, the best idea would probably be to get a stock index of a number of reviewers I mostly agree with on a good sample of movies, and then take a combined score of only these reviewers into account next time a movie comes out.
    That's just it, I do this exact practice too. And by that measure also, TLJ was a resounding success.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mightymosy View Post
    By the way, I still don't get the part of socializing the force - have you read my previous response to that topic? Any comments?
    Could you link or quote it?
    Last edited by Psyren; 2018-01-11 at 06:15 PM.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
    Quote Originally Posted by gogogome View Post
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    Default Re: The Last Jedi 2: The Next Last Jedi

    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    Majority of critics. And as warty so eloquently mentioned, volunteer samples are hot garbage, so I don't view those "fans" as you call them to be in any way representative.

    Their exact words were that the number of user reviews for TLJ were comparable to TFA. But TFA was getting bombed too, because those durned SJWs had the temerity to put a woman and african-american in the lead roles.

    I'm not saying TLJ didn't have any real detractors with legitimate differences. I'm saying the "50/50" narrative is skewed.

    You're literally talking about people with the ability to dispense wisdom from beyond the grave, you realize that right? How you could watch a scene where Luke saves the entire resistance from halfway across the galaxy using pacifism and come away with "nothing matters" is utterly baffling to me I really do feel you're letting your gut rule your head.
    Sidenote: John Boyega is not African-American and has requested not to be referred to as such. He is English.

    The "nothing matters" feeling comes from literally everything our heroes trying to do ending in flames, sometimes literally! At the end of the film, you've got just a few people left which doesn't really engender much belief that anything is likely to change in the near future. Also, I'm not sure that I'd call Luke's action one of pacifism. Sure, he's not personally fighting anyone in the direct sense, but I doubt he's all that against blowing up the First Order. It's not like he told everyone to stop fighting, after all.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sholos View Post
    Sidenote: John Boyega is not African-American and has requested not to be referred to as such. He is English.
    Good point.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sholos View Post
    The "nothing matters" feeling comes from literally everything our heroes trying to do ending in flames, sometimes literally! At the end of the film, you've got just a few people left which doesn't really engender much belief that anything is likely to change in the near future.
    Not by a longshot. The Resistance leadership escaped. Snoke is dead and his flagship crippled. Their backup is still around - a bit demoralized perhaps, but that will likely change in a hurry once word of the first two get out. The FO is in disarray. And Finn and Rose have all but guaranteed the next generation of rebel scum if the ending scene is any indication. There is a lot to be hopeful for.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sholos View Post
    Also, I'm not sure that I'd call Luke's action one of pacifism. Sure, he's not personally fighting anyone in the direct sense, but I doubt he's all that against blowing up the First Order. It's not like he told everyone to stop fighting, after all.
    Blowing up the FO, maybe not, but he seemed to have no desire to kill Kylo specifically. Not only was that a vidication of his philosophy towards the Force, it was also his way of seeking penance for the inciting incident that began Kylo's slide in the first place. And no doubt Kylo himself will be even more conflicted as a result, presenting more opportunities for his hesitation and defeat later.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    Not by a longshot. The Resistance leadership escaped. Snoke is dead and his flagship crippled. Their backup is still around - a bit demoralized perhaps, but that will likely change in a hurry once word of the first two get out. The FO is in disarray. And Finn and Rose have all but guaranteed the next generation of rebel scum if the ending scene is any indication. There is a lot to be hopeful for.
    In terms of how the movie is likely to spin it, sure they'll be fine. Otherwise they can't keep fighting the FO until these things stop making money. But practically speaking, is there?

    TLJ puts a hard upper bound on the value of literally every single person in the Resistance: less than a fleet action against the FO. If they were worth that, somebody would have shown up. Leia's call only went out after the flagship got blown up, and 'flagship just blown up' seems like the ideal time to strike.

    OK sure, they've got some additional PR value now, so if I'm camped out in the Outer Rim and feel like starting some crap with the FO, it's probably worth scooping them up for that. But that's a long way from giving them any sort of substantive military asset. I mean let's face it, they suck as a conventional military force, and frankly their intel network doesn't seem that great either. Is there any move the FO makes in either movie that they actually anticipate? They don't know about Starkiller Base, they don't know about hyperspace tracking, they don't even seem to know about that silly battering ram cannon at the end; yet somehow Finn knew substantive engineering details of them due to his high status as guy with mop. What I'm getting at here is that the FO should really leak like a sieve, and the Resistance knows bubkis about them.

    But I guess they have a stableboy with a broom. So yeah, that's a great asset they totally know how to utilize. I mean to be clear, getting the stableboys on your side is really powerful, but that requires a commitment to playing dirty that the Resistance totally lacks. I don't see them strapping bombs to C-3PO anytime soon, or poisoning any of those arms dealers, or blowing up their kids' schools.

    At this point the Resistance is nonexistent as a military force, isn't good at irregular warfare, and lacks the savagery to pull it off anyway.
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    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    OK sure, they've got some additional PR value now, so if I'm camped out in the Outer Rim and feel like starting some crap with the FO, it's probably worth scooping them up for that. But that's a long way from giving them any sort of substantive military asset. I mean let's face it, they suck as a conventional military force, and frankly their intel network doesn't seem that great either. Is there any move the FO makes in either movie that they actually anticipate? They don't know about Starkiller Base, they don't know about hyperspace tracking, they don't even seem to know about that silly battering ram cannon at the end; yet somehow Finn knew substantive engineering details of them due to his high status as guy with mop. What I'm getting at here is that the FO should really leak like a sieve, and the Resistance knows bubkis about them.
    They wouldn't be underdogs if they had all the advantage from the start. But Snoke is out of the picture, and the FO immediately degenerated to in-fighting as a result. Kylo force-choked his way to the top, sure, but he's not likely to stay there long (at least not uncontested), especially after the fiasco with holo-Luke. Even if Snoke being gone is temporary and his wraith shows up, it's still a shot in the arm.

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    But I guess they have a stableboy with a broom. So yeah, that's a great asset they totally know how to utilize. I mean to be clear, getting the stableboys on your side is really powerful, but that requires a commitment to playing dirty that the Resistance totally lacks. I don't see them strapping bombs to C-3PO anytime soon, or poisoning any of those arms dealers, or blowing up their kids' schools.
    Is "they have a stableboy with a broom" honestly all you took away from that scene? Deeper analysis is not difficult.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    They wouldn't be underdogs if they had all the advantage from the start. But Snoke is out of the picture, and the FO immediately degenerated to in-fighting as a result. Kylo force-choked his way to the top, sure, but he's not likely to stay there long (at least not uncontested), especially after the fiasco with holo-Luke. Even if Snoke being gone is temporary and his wraith shows up, it's still a shot in the arm.
    Snoke's death halted the First Order for maybe five minutes. Kylo got himself acknowledged as Supreme Leader by the simple expedient of force-choking one guy, and not even for that long. Despite the fleet taking massive damage, the First Order did not retreat, but continued to conduct offensive operations against the Resistance. There is no indication that any ships in the fleet broke off or otherwise refused to follow orders following Snoke's death.

    You would be correct that the Resistance would be able to take something from Snoke's death if the movie had shown Snoke's death as something meaningful even from the perspective of the First Order, but it doesn't. The movie shows precisely that Snoke does not matter as a leader of the First Order and that unlike the Empire - which was bound up in Palpatine specifically (and the EU elaborated that Palpatine had fully intended this) - the First Order is well positioned to survive changing one tyrant for another. Especially since Snoke has no backstory and thus no unique traits at all to be lost upon his death.

    TLJ could have been structured such that the death of Snoke made a big difference and provided a rally point for the Resistance, but it wasn't. It was the opposite. The movie in fact presents solid evidence for the First Order surviving any additional decapitation strikes. Based on what is shown in TLJ the deaths of Kylo and Hux would not suffice to stop the First Order from doing...whatever it is they want to do.
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