Darth Vader’s Great Revelation in The Empire Strikes Back makes Obi-Wan Kenobi a liar, but still Star Wars: The Last Jedic has the perfect explanation for his statement of the facts in A new hope. Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker’s father, is one of cinema’s most iconic twists and turns and certainly came as a shock to the young Jedi, but the truth also significantly shaped his actions to turn Vader against the Emperor in Return of the Jedi. Still, the revelation also made Obi-Wan Kenobi’s explanation that Vader killed Luke’s father sound strange, especially considering he would have known the truth. As a result, Obi-Wan’s admission that his explanation was true”from a certain point of view” in Return of the Jedi turned out to be thin, like George Lucas’s A new hope backstory for Darth Vader was different from what eventually showed up in The Empire Strikes Back.
Star Wars: The Last Jedic‘s multiple retellings from different perspectives of what happened at Luke’s Jedi Temple really showed what Obi-Wan meant by “many of the truths we cling to depend heavily on our own point of viewBy showing one flashback of Ben Solo reacting angrily for no apparent apparent reason, Luke tries to get the message across to Rey that the man who became Kylo Ren was already too far gone by that point. The following flashbacks, which linger on various details, paint a contrasting picture, one where a single mistake and a misunderstanding had a terrible outcome. This illustrated in practice how what Obi-Wan told Luke in Return of the Jedi was essentially true.
Why The Last Jedi Used A Rashomon Technique For His Luke & Ben Flashbacks
In the book The Art of Star Wars: The Last Jedidirector Rian Johnson gives a reason for the rashomon-like scenes from Ben and Luke’s memories. He says the scenes had more to do with what motivated Rey to leave Luke and put Kylo Ren by her side than offer other perspectives. The defining moment, however, was Luke’s admission that he had been harboring the thought of killing his cousin when he realized Ben had been marred by darkness. Despite Luke returning right after, Ben’s veracity was established and confirmed to Rey. In the book, Johnson explains that he wanted to show that “a harder line has been crossed” but didn’t want to express that with a lengthy flashback. Therefore, the same but varying scene shown three times based on the person’s point of view better drives the point home.
Why The Last Jedi’s Luke & Ben Flashbacks Are So Awesome
While The Last Jedi tried to do things differently, using a rashomon technique with the short flashback scenes actually gave the best link to the original Star Wars trilogy. It was especially touching to show Luke finally saw for himself how different truths could co-exist. However, The Last Jedi‘s use of a rashomon technique was also brilliant in its own right. Not only do the three flashback scenes advance the plot of the film by forcing Rey to seek help from someone other than Luke, but they also cleverly reveal the ugly truth of an event that was central to both Luke’s journey that led him to led to self-exile. Ahch-To and Ben Solo’s transformation into Kylo Ren.
By centering Ben’s final turn to the dark side on Luke’s moment of weakness, the whole ordeal becomes extremely tragic. After all, the split-second misunderstanding made Ben not only give in to the darkness for good, but it also fueled Luke’s shame for being so instrumental. The three different flashback scenes also aptly prove Kylo Ren’s truthfulness, as he begins to redeem him from the audience and Rey’s eyes and makes his way into the light. In this way, the flashbacks made all these storylines visibly interconnected in the Star Wars sequel trilogy, turns out to be one of the best and smartest gimmicks Star Wars: The Last Jedic came with.
Next: Kylo Ren’s Redemption Works Better If Rey And Ben’s Relationship Was Romantic