Despite some strong moments, an overall disappointing film. There are many similarities to this movie and “The Empire Strikes Back,” (and also a few major moments in “The Return of the Jedi.”) However, they take what you might be expecting and go a totally different direction. Sometimes this works beautifully, but more often it doesn’t. There were also a lot of things fans expected to payoff here coming out of “The Force Awakens,” but it seems as if the filmmakers decided to jettison much of what had been setup and start their own mythology. The returning cast is great once again, but the new additions don’t add much. The main plot is surprisingly weak, cutting back and forth between four different storylines, and at least one of them adds nothing to the film and seems totally out of place. There are some great action sequences, including a nail-biter to start the film. Sadly, the lightsaber duels are underwhelming. Also, the finale is anticlimactic, and doesn’t do much to excite you for the final part of this new trilogy.
** out of *****