‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ review: Ewan McGregor’s solid return of a Jedi & More Trending News


Whether you’re keen on George Lucas’ “Star Wars” prequels like a cuddly Ewok, or hate them with the ability of a thousand Death Stars, it’s onerous to disclaim that Ewan McGregor was a smash as younger Obi-Wan Kenobi again in 1999. 

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On Disney+. New episodes out each Friday.

Twenty-three years in the past — lengthy earlier than origin tales have been in vogue — the actor shrewdly conceived how a preternaturally sensible whippersnapper model of Alec Guinness may behave and explored the transition of pupil to hermit. McGregor and Liam Neeson as Qui-Gon Jinn have been, 100%, much better additions to “Star Wars” than any of the tasteless performers in J.J. Abrams’ more moderen wobbly trilogy. 

And so it’s a pleasure to welcome the Scot again in “Obi-Wan Kenobi,” Disney+’s newest collection that’s set a very long time in the past, in a galaxy far, far-off (some 9 extra are coming quickly). The first two episodes of the sci-fi drama that dropped Friday don’t counsel the addictive triumph that the primary season of “The Mandalorian” was, however the Force is usually with it. 

The present takes place 10 years after the occasions of 2005’s “Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith,” which noticed Anakin Skywalker flip into Darth Vader — the OG masks fanatic.

Ewan McGregor plays Obi-Wan Kenobi for the first time since 2005's "Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith."
Ewan McGregor performs Obi-Wan Kenobi for the primary time since 2005’s “Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.”

Although the mathematics is complicated, it truly is smart. McGregor the actor is 17 years older now, true, however the story of the aughts motion pictures occurred over 13 years and the hottie was prematurely despatched into a midlife disaster with a foolish beard. Now, at 51, he’s nearer to his character’s actual age.

A decade on, Obi-Wan calls himself Ben, as he does in 1977’s “A New Hope.” He lives on the two-sunned desert planet of Tatooine, keeping track of 10-year-old Luke from afar and trying to outlive in secret because the final remaining Jedi are violently hunted down by Inquisitors (led by a freaky Rupert Friend).

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This is the place “Obi-Wan” begins to resemble “The Mandalorian,” “Star Trek” and “Stargate SG-1.” Obviously it could be no enjoyable to look at a burlap-hooded man cower in a cave all day, so there are unplanned missions that take him off-world, the place we meet big-personality characters. Kumail Nanjiani, along with his signature dry humor, performs one underground determine we’ll hopefully see extra of.

All the whereas he’s pursued by a dogged Imperial Inquisitor named Reva (Moses Ingram).

Obi-Wan is pursued by the Inquisitors, led by the Grand Inquisitor (Rupert Friend).
Obi-Wan is pursued by the Inquisitors, led by the Grand Inquisitor (Rupert Friend).

Early on, little Leia (Vivien Lyra Blair) performs a main position from her dwelling planet of Alderaan together with her adoptive father Bail Organa (Jimmy Smits, again from the prequels). She’s already strong-willed and precocious as a preteen, and the writing goes too far with the spicy angle. We don’t want Princess Doogie Howser.

What’s lacking from “Obi-Wan” is identical Jedi sais quoi that’s been absent from most of the overstretched “Star Wars” franchise (outdoors of “The Mandalorian”) since Disney purchased Lucasfilm: the sense you’re seeing one thing glowing and new. The manufacturing is pricey with detailed CGI set items and creatures. However, there’s little or no distinction to the filmmaking. Nothing modern or cool. Aesthetically, the collection is a component of an ongoing effort to water down an iconic American blockbuster and make it appear to be simply one other “Star Wars” product.

Joel Edgerton, left, and Moses Ingram in a scene from the series "Obi-Wan Kenobi,"
Joel Edgerton (left) and Moses Ingram in a scene from the collection “Obi-Wan Kenobi.”
Disney+ through AP

Appearances apart, the story up to now is engrossing and McGregor continues Obi-Wan’s story in a richly emotional manner — one thing that Alden Ehrenreich’s terrible Han Solo film couldn’t do.

The most essential factor to notice (this isn’t a lot a spoiler as a sweetener) is that within the first two episodes of “Obi-Wan Kenobi,” Jar Jar Binks doesn’t seem. Everybody can chill out. Reportedly he’s off annoying any person else, far, far-off.

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