Obi-Wan Kenobi: The Midpoint

  • Based on ‘Star Wars’ created by George Lucas
  • Directed by Deborah Chow
  • Disney+

Cast

  • Obi-Wan Kenobi-Ewan McGregor
  • Anakin Skywalker / Darth Vader-Hayden Christensen
  • Grand Inquisitor-Rupert Friend
  • Fifth Brother-Sung Kang
  • Reva Sevander / Third Sister-Moses Ingram
  • Fourth Sister-Rya Kihlstedt
  • Nari-Benny Safdie
  • Owen Lars-Joel Edgerton
  • Beru Whitesun Lars-Bonnie Piesse
  • Young Luke Skywalker-Grant Feely
  • Bail Organa-Jimmy Smits
  • Queen of Alderaan Breha Organa-Simone Kessell
  • Princess Leia Organa-Vivien Lyra Blair
  • Vect Nokru-Flea
  • Haja Estree-Kumail Nanjiani
  • Nyche Horn-Marisé Álvarez
  • Imperial Officer Tala Durith-Indira Varma
  • Jedi Master Minas Velti-Ming Qiu
  • C-3PO-Anthony Daniels
  • Homeless Veteran Clone Trooper-Temuera Morrison
  • Tetha Grig-Esther-Rose McGregor
  • Freck-Zach Braff
  • Roken-O’Shea Jackson Jr.
  • Sully-Maya Erskine

Obi-Wan, in hiding, must now save Leia from the clutches of the Empire and the Inquisitors.

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Part III

  • Written by Joby Harold, Hannah Friedman, Hossein Amini, and Stuart Beattie
  • June 1, 2022

So far so good on the series. I’ve heard some people in playing that it’s The Leia Show but personally I am in seeing that. Leia (Vivien Lyra Blair) is certainly a supporting character in the series, but she is not a main character here. Leia is there to help the character of Obi-Wan (Ewan McGregor) go on an adventure. It was her or Luke and going with Luke was rather predictable.

The focus though is Obi Wan. Ewan McGregor is portraying him as a broken man. His whole world has been destroyed and he is reeling from the aftermath of it. Worse he has had time to become entrench in those feelings. Obi-Wan comes off as afraid and broken though he does not come off as stupid which makes his slipup while on the transport rather inexplicable. That there was lazy writing.

I liked the appearance of Freck (Zack Braff). The norm is to portray the Imperial populace as afraid and hateful of the Empire. I admit I worship at the altar of Star Wars but even I have been bothered by the lack of Imperial loyalists on screen. Freck is very happy with the Empire and satisfied with their handling of things. He is a nice guy and the disturbing part he is supportive of this murderous and oppressive government.

There has been some debate/complaining about that laser gate scene and how Obi-Wan and Leia could just hop it at the gap at the hill. The gate was meant for vehicles and not people. The stormtrooper garrison was there for gate hoppers. In a world of space wizards this might just be nitpicking.

I am bothered by Obi-Wan leaving the moment he gets to the coordinates because nobody is there. His assumption is that it was a setup. If that were the case, then they would not have been able to leave. How impatient must you be to leave the moment you get there? The writers could not come up with any filler?

Leia once again sports some serious insight into individuals. A very clear indication she has Force powers. They keep pushing it but if they do this too much and too hard it’s going to start make people question why she didn’t show more during Empire or Jedi or even A New Hope. Currently it is not a plot hole, but it could become one.

I’m pretty sure everybody’s been waiting for an appearance of Darth Vader, and we finally get it here. Darth Vader never really had to do much to be cool and that’s pretty much what we get here but when he does spring in taction oh boy! They do seem to be pushing Darth Vader being patient in this episode. It looks like they are attempting to contrast it with Anakin as he was portrayed as flying off the handle at a moment’s notice with Vader as we first saw him.

Do they want Reva (Moses Ingram) to be a new big bad? The moment Vader shows up she’s pushed into the background. Not because of a lack of screen presence but because she’s the weakest character in the show. They do nothing to move her character beyond being angry. What is she angry about? What’s driving her anger? If she’s gonna be front and center at some point they need to explain that, and this series is only six episodes long and we’re three episodes in. She just screams at/about Kenobi.

A lot of modern movies and shows seem to think evil is just being mean or upset. You need a villain to be more than that to make them threatening or worthy of facing off against the hero. Vader may have been Tarkin’s bitch in A New Hope, but his actions and dialogue helped to make him more than a flunky.

The story here isn’t bad but the pacing is a little slow. Obi-Wan and Leia are supposed to be fleeing to get back to Alderaan but what it feels like instead is a long trip rather than an escape. Or at least close to that. The tension needed to be upped and I think some of the stuff could’ve been shortened or eliminated such as the portion where they hitch the ride to the Imperial checkpoint. Ultimately that scene was padding.

Still though not a bad episode but the weakest point is Reva and her motivations/general character. That definitely needs to be fixed. I am excited to see what comes next.

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Part IV

  • Written by Joby Harold and Hannah Friedman
  • June 8, 2022

Obi-Wan mounts a rescue mission to the Inquisitor base to rescue Leia.

It’s clear at this point when it comes to powers that the Obi-Wan (as if I need to let you know it is Ewan McGregor) we’re getting here is much closer to the one in A New Hope than the one we saw in any of the prequel films. Then again the lightsaber fights and the powers in general have continued to grow after A New Hope. A retcon to fix a minor issue?

From The Last Jedi we learned that a Jedi could cut themselves off from the Force and that is the implication here but that it doesn’t appear to have ever been out and out stated. The casual fan might not think this. Good narratives should be self-contained. They can reference other material but if you need to be versed in other material you are not doing a good job as a creator.

I draw issue with Obi-Wan using a blaster much more than a lightsaber. It made sense that Luke used a blaster because that’s essentially what his character started out with, but Obi-Wan is a Jedi from the first moments we see him. That was what he was most comfortable with. He even commented when he shot Grievous in Revenge of the Sith that a blaster was so uncivilized yet he is acting all Han Solo like now.

Leia’s (Vivien Lyra Blair) presence is significant but she is not the focus. She is just the excuse to get Obi-Wan into action and she stands as a good character on her own. I think we’re getting a good showcase of a younger version of the adult character we got starting in A New Hope.

Reva. We are four episodes in and still nothing has been done to make Reva (Moses Ingram) a better villain. Once again her motivation is she’s evil and she’s angry. Moses Ingram is doing okay with her material but there is very little to work with. There are two episodes left to make her a better character but at this point they would probably need to dedicate nearly an entire episode to her.

What in Reva’s background makes her so hot to get Obi-Wan. She wants a promotion but so does every other Inquisitor. What makes her character so special? Why should we care about the plotting of this particular character? There is a rumor going around that she will be revealed as a youngling that survived Order 66 but so far there is nothing really to hint at that. If this proves accurate it will just be dumped on the viewer given how little time is left in the show.

And Reva yells a great deal at times that it seems inappropriate. Is that the creator’s way to make her scary or intimidating? Shouting can be effective but used repeatedly it loses its punch and they use it to death here.

A great deal was made of bringing Hayden Christensen back but what exactly has he done in the show? What have we seen him do? I am glad that he returned to the Star Wars universe and appears to have been warmly welcomed back by fans but so far it has been all foam and no beer.

I must bring up the end of the episode where Obi-Wan and Tala sneak Leia out of the fortress under a trench coat. Up until then the whole plot had played out very Star Wars-esque and rather logical. That was up until the trench coat. It was about as plausible is three dogs in a, well, trench coat. I don’t know why they could not come up with a better way. It was saved though by the actual escape.

I have to defend production values on this show. Some say that it looks cheap. Really? It is definitely a well-produced television show. It may not have per episode the production budget of a feature film, but it is far better than many televised/streamed continuations of movies. It looks fantastic for what it is. 

It’s a good narrative and plenty of Star Wars action that moves Obi-Wan Kenobi along. I really hope they fix the Reva issue but it’s two episodes left and I highly doubt they’ll do anything for her that will be well crafted. Other than that this has been great and I highly anticipate the remaining two episodes.

Published by warrenwatchedamovie

Just a movie lover trying spread the love.

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