Yeah, same with Phasma, I don't understand what were people expecting from her, we all agreed she was the new Bobba Fett and all Bobba ever achieved was standing around and look cool.
Boba Fett, while not really doing much, still had an interesting dynamic with Darth Vader in addition to looking cool. And, as I understand it, he was barely present in the original release of RotJ and was mostly just there to die. However, he became such a popular character that George Lucas added minor scenes of him looking cool in Jabba's Palace and even shoehorned him retroactively into the special edition of A New Hope. Phasma, on the other hand, is played by a well known and currently popular actress and is heavily featured in promotional material due to her design and said actress.
! The Leia Force complaints baffle me. In a universe where magic space wizards can jump super high and feel things from across the galaxy and lift entire space ships with their minds, the idea that she could slowly pull herself back into a ship being somehow "Silly" or "Unrealistic" is itself ridiculous to me.
I mean, maybe if they had her just get right back up afterwards, dust herself off, and then go "Right, back to the battle!" then MAYBE, but… c'mon....
! I don't think I've seen anyone complain as if Leia using the force is the actual problem. Actual complaints I've seen include:
! * Our only prior knowledge of her using the force would be her sensing Luke on Bespin, sensing Han dying, etc. Suddenly she has the single greatest force feat in canon. I argue it is more impressive than Luke's force avatar projection (which also kills him).
- If such an ability was possible, it may have proven useful to past jedi in canon. Plo Koon in RotS comes to mind.
- The scene's understanding of how space works is very noticeably bad, even by Star Wars standards, namely that Leia seems to float in space for a significant amount of time without dying and that when she re-enters the ship she opens the door without everyone else being sucked back into space as well. Had this happened in the upper atmosphere on a planet with breathable air, I imagine there would have been far fewer complaints.
- The scene looks ridiculous in general.
- No one mentions this scene for the rest of the movie.
- The scene could have been a beautiful send off for Princess Leia.
! Honestly, the backlash over this scene could have prevented by having Leia force grab onto something to prevent getting sucked out of the bridge and holding on until the emergency shielding, plating, whatever resealed the bridge.
But to be honest, some of the mysteries are things the fans built up on their own. There's an argument to be made that the film makers knew the fans would do this and should have countered it during the setup, but as-is, the movie didn't do much to highlight the biggest "mysteries"
! TFA itself doesn't really dwell on either who Rey's parents are, or Snoke's backstory.
! The emotional crux for Rey and therefore what the first movie focuses on with regards to her parents can be boiled down into 3 points:
! 1: They Left her on Jakku.
2: She thinks they are going to come back for her someday and she is waiting as a result.
3: Maz helps her realize they aren't actually coming back.
! The movie never does anything to telegraph that they are someone special to anyone but Rey. there are no hints that she has a Jedi parent, or a Sith Parent, or really anything about her parent's identity that a new movie "needs" to follow up on. The focus is, as it should be, on how her relationship with her parents (IE: Leaving her on Jakku and her never knowing them) affects Rey as a character. On that end, the reveal that they're nobodies fits perfectly because it furthers Rey's arc. First movie she thought she had a place in the universe, and that place was on Jakku waiting for Family ex Machina to show up and whisk her away and make everything better. Part of her arc in that movie was learning that: No, that's not going to happen. You have to go out and do things for yourself. Nobody is going to show up and give you all the answers and the purpose you want. The Last Jedi masterfully picks this up and goes to the next logical direction with it. Ok, now that she knows she can forge her own destiny… what exactly is that destiny going to be? What is her place in all of this? Continuing the theme then of her needing to make her own path and find her own destiny. The movie subverts things by fully embracing the idea that she gets to make her own destiny and is not beholden to any prophecy or family expectation or lineage. She has to accept that she is her own person who needs to forge her own path forward.
! I agree that fans got kind of ridiculous regarding Rey's parents. I can name at least six different theories off the top of my head. However, the context that they were mentioned in TFA is very significant. Part of the problem is that the flashback of Rey's parents leaving her on Jakku is juxtaposed with a hallway in Bespin during the TESB lightsaber duel, Luke reacting to his destroyed school, Kylo and the knights of Ren killing Luke's school, a flash forward to the lightsaber duel at the end of TFA, and voice overs by Yoda and Obi-Wan. This scene is juxtaposed with some of the most important scenes and characters in the entire series. Maz then tells her that her parents are not coming back, which does not give context as to whether they abandoned her for the sake of abandoning her, to keep her safe until she can meet her destiny, etc. And, as you said, the identity of her parents is significant to Rey herself. The film leaves her parents completely open, but there is also the implication that her parents are significant in some way in the series known for having big parental reveals. The identity of her parents was also used by many fans as a counterpoint to internet Mary Sue arguments, which built up the need among fans for her background to be important.
! Now, I have seen plenty of people who like that Rey's parents are no one. I have no problem with it. However, since they are no one they could have simply not been mentioned at all. Instead, they were a major part of Rey's character and were drawn across two films and two years. They could have achieved the same effect by having this reveal at the end of TFA, without the two year wait where fan expectations were guaranteed to run wild.
! As for her choosing her destiny…Well...Snoke says she was apparently the one chosen to be the light side counter to Kylo Ren. Since Kylo Ren chose to be a bad guy, she seems to be destined to be the good guy...
! Also, Snoke is never treated like a mystery in the first movie. Not really. He's treated almost exactly like the emperor was in Episode V. Big bad, Force user, etc.
! I mean, honestly, JJ Abrams created Rey and Snoke. He wrote the basic story for Force Awakens along with Lawrence Kasdan. Those are his characters basically. Not only was he a producer on TLJ, but he's also 100% in charge of writing and directing IX. There is wiggle room for him to undo everything Rian Johnson did here if he wants to.
! Kylo Ren was Lying, and Snoke's body was giving out on him, so he did this on purpose so he could try to pull a Darth Bane and try to take over Kylo Ren's body. Done.
! Or, if he doesn't want to bring Snoke BACK but still wants to at least give us Snoke backstory, well Kylo Ren is now our de facto Big Bad going into IX and HIS backstory is inescapably tied to Snoke turning him. You can easily pull a "to properly tell you about Kylo Ren I must first tell you about Snoke" kinda deal and work both characters' backstories into the plot seamlessly.
! If anything, Snoke in TFA is more like the Palpatine in The Phantom Menace than TESB. In Empire, we see Darth Vader bow to the Emperor, but Darth Vader is still the major threat of the film. We know the Emperor is there, but he is not the focus yet. In TFA, Snoke is portrayed as the bigger threat, with Hux being the incompetent "Yes Man" Trade Federation and Kylo Ren being Darth Maul (the guy to have a lightsaber fight with), although Kylo has more to his character. Snoke's presence undermines both of them.
! Now, Snoke is dead without context or backstory. Sure, JJ can retcon a backstory back in through Kylo, but it will undermined by the fact that Snoke is dead. There is no point in getting retroactively invested in a dead villain.
! I mean, the entire argument of "well, he just dropped everything JJ was doing and that's bad" just doesn't work really when you realize that JJ now has the power to undo all those things if he wants to.
This is absolutely not the way to write a trilogy.