Rian Johnson defends the use of humour in Star Wars: The Last Jedi

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Rian Johnson is once more arguing why his 2017 film The Last Jedi perfectly fits into the Star Wars canon.

Some five years since its launch, Rian Johnson has revisited 2017’s The Last Jedi to talk about why the film’s divisive use of ‘goofy’ humour works within the rules of the Star Wars universe.

Johnson’s Star Wars film proved to be an audience-splitting film, boldly taking the series in some new directions that some fans loved, whilst others remain unconvinced. In one of their excellent career-spanning close-ups, GQ feature Johnson discussing why he thinks that the film’s ‘goofy’ humour is unassailably Star Wars.

Say Johnson, “for me, everything in the movie is Star Wars, and everything in the movie, I can trace back to deeply, in a deep way, what Star Wars is for me and I know that everyone has a different take. I know there are Star Wars fans who somehow think that Star Wars was a serious thing, like the Batman movies or something.”

The filmmaker explains that he was probably too young to have seen The Empire Strikes Back, with the film leaving an impression on him as he felt that “I was just young enough to not experience it as watching a Star Wars movie, but to have it feel too real.”

However, he states that he was the perfect age to experience Return Of The Jedi in a cinema and that film’s lighter tone would stay with him too, with Johnson keen to embrace both elements in his swing at a Star Wars film.

As he puts it, “anyone who thinks that slightly goofy humour does not have a place in the Star Wars universe, I don’t know if they’ve seen Return Of The Jedi. There’s literally a scene where Han Solo is like a cartoon, trussed up to a pole and a torch goes by him to light the fire, to cook him,”  referencing the goofy way the character puffs out his cheeks to try to put out the flame.

Humour has always been a key staple of Johnson’s films, not least with his Knives Out films, the latest of which is launching on Netflix today. Whilst the merits of The Last Jedi will probably continue to be debated for the next five years, Johnson seems content with his contribution to the Star Wars mythos and it’s hard to argue with his points.

You can catch Johnson discussing his entire filmography (and it’s well worth a look) right here.

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