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Breaking Down the First ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Teaser Trailer

Late last week at Star Wars Celebration 2017, Lucasfilm released the very first teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and it looks eerily similar to the first teaser trailer for The Force Awakens.

The trailer opens with a suspenseful soundtrack, similar to the second Force Awakens Trailer. We get this buildup right before an orchestral punch that shows Rey out of breath. As she’s gasping for breath we hear Luke say “breath.” We can assume from this that a big part of this film will be Luke training her in the ways of the Jedi, similar to when Yoda trained Luke in the Empire Strikes Back.

© Lucasfilm

Here’s on thing you may have missed from this opening shot. The cave behind her is the same one that Luke walks out of later in the teaser. That means that she’s still on Oktu where Ep. 7 left us.

If you didn’t know, Oktu is a real island called Skellig Michael on the southwestern coast of Ireland. It’s actually the location of an ancient Christian monastery and is a protected historical site.

After the opening with Rey, we get a sweeping view of the island over the sea and we also hear a new soundtrack which is actually the force theme. Just one of several themes heard in this new trailer.

© Lucasfilm

After some more amazing views of the island and Rey looking out over some crashing waves, we hear Luke say

“Reach out”

with a shot of Rey’s hand reversing gravity on some pebbles. This was apparently part of the footage shown to Disney investors last month. it appears that Rey’s training will follow Luke’s closely. Remember that Yoda made Luke levitate rocks as well in the swamp.

After Luke whispers

“What do you see”

the music shifts to Rey’s theme, composed by John Williams in The Force Awakens. We get a back shot of Leia whose looking at some sort of star map. What you may have missed is that she’s probably standing on the bridge of a battleship (we can assume this because of the window) and Admiral Akbar is standing in the background.

© Lucasfilm

If you listen very closely, Lucasfilm mixed in the audio from Leia in A New Hope. You can hear her say

“Help me Obi-Wan.”

This was Luke’s first sight of his sister back in A New Hope and this subtle voice over is a reminder of his connection with his sister through the force. Leia represents the last remaining light in the force, as Luke has disappeared and his image has grown distant.

As we move on from there, we see the other side of the force; darkness. The camera pans in on what appears to be a crushed helmet of Kylo Ren from The Force Awakens. This could be on Kylo Ren’s ship after he was forced to retreat angrily. It is interesting to point out that this is eerily similar to The Force Awakens trailer when we see Vader’s helmet melted while Kylo Ren looks at it. Ren modeled his helmet to pay tribute to his grandfather so I think this shot is supposed to show some sort of family connection.

© Lucasfilm

During this scene, you can also hear Vader’s iconic breathing and you can barely make out the voice of Obi-Wan Kenobi as he tells Luke about Anakins fall.

“Vader was seduced by the dark side of the force.”

Right before Rey labels this side of the force darkness, we shift into the next musical theme which is John Williams Kylo Ren theme.

Now that Rey has reached into the dark side of the force, and the light side, this third image is something that she calls

“the balance”

It’s a literal image of the balance of light and dark. There’s a beam of light shining in surrounded by darkness. The light is shining on a small bookshelf on what looks like the roots of a tree.

© Lucasfilm

In the expanded universe (EU) novel Shattered Empire, Luke Skywalker tracks down two force-sensative trees that once grew underneath the Jedi Temple in Coruscant. One of these trees eventually gets planted in the home of Poe Dameron which could explain why he’s such a good pilot. Maybe the other force tree could be part of the roots that we’re seeing in this image because Luke planted it on this island.

While it’s unlikely that they would bring in the EU into this movie, it could be a reference.

Now what about the books we see on the shelf? Rey takes one down and looks at it and it has the symbol of the Jedi Order on the front. Luke was probably able to recover these old texts from around the galaxy, maybe in the ruins of that Jedi temple that we see later on. While this shot is happening, you can barely hear the voice of Yoda from The Empire Strikes Back saying

“It surrounds us and binds us”

There’s also the sound of a lightsaber powering up. Now this balance between the light and the dark has been at the heart of the entire Star Wars saga. However, Luke says

“So much bigger”

Suggesting that this film will go much deeper than that. There’s a couple things in the EU that could explain this. One of those being the concept of Grey Jedi knights. That refers to a Jedi who walks the line between the light side and the dark side of the force. They also operate outside of the Jedi code. Although some story execs from Lucasfilm have denied this, it could make sense that Luke could be experiencing this.

It’s just like the color of Luke’s clothes throughout the films. Starting white and slowly turning black as he became closer to his father but then ultimately returning to grey at the end of The Force Awakens. 

I highly doubt that Grey Jedi will literally turn up in this film but it’s something worth pointing out.

As the camera pans around the mountain on the island, we see two interesting rock formations that appear to resemble humans. Although they could very well be just random rocks. But let’s assume for a second that these aren’t just random rocks.

© Lucasfilm

The large rock in front of where Rey is training appears to be a monument that Luke maybe created to one of his old Jedi buddies. Then again, it could just be a big rock. Okay, moving on.

This is where the trailer kicks up the action.

So first we have these shots of what I’m guessing are resistance fighters kicking up the soil into the air on a remote planet called Crait. They appear to be flying towards First Order walkers nicknamed Gorilla Walkers because of the larger front arms on them.

© Lucasfilm

At first I thought they were releasing smoke like skywriters do, but it appears that the smoke they are kicking up from the ground could be for some kind of smoke screen effect to protect them.

The next shot we get of Finn could be taken a million different ways but here’s what I think.

© Lucasfilm

After the battle with Kylo Ren, Finn obviously has some recovering to do. My best guess is that he’s now on some sort of ship or an escape pod sending him back to get help. The only issue with this is that in the trailer you can see flashes of blue light on the upper right side of the screen making it seem like he’s mad the jump to hyperspace. I’m not sure that a single pod could make that jump.

Also, if you translate the letters on the left side of the shell being reflected, the top says “stable” while the rest makes no sense. So I guess Finn is alright.

Since he’s in his own pod, I would imagine that wherever he was recovering was under attack and he had to be shipped off to keep him safe. I’m guessing that’s the next scene that we see with Poe and BB-8 running from a blast in a resistance hangar.

© Lucasfilm

Those two engines on the left side of the screen belong to an A-Wing which we get a quick glimpse of later on in the trailer.

Moving on we see the Millennium Falcon in a dog fight with Tie-Fighters. I’m interested to see who is flying the Falcon considering it won’t be Han Solo. It may be Chewbacca.

We also get some action shots of Rey running with Luke’s lightsaber (not on the island) and Kylo Ren (without his mask) turning his tri-saber which he apparently still has.

Next we get an interesting shot of Luke and R2-D2 watching a building burn down. the building appears to be a Jedi temple. Also, and more importantly, it looks like the same scene that Rey saw in the flashback from The Force Awakens. It was the scene from The Force Awakens Trailer when we see Luke’s hand touch the top of R2-D2.

© Lucasfilm

In the next shot we get our first look at Captain Phasma as she marches in with her soldiers. I feel like she’s probably marching into the hangar where Finn was being kept and where we see that explosion with Poe and BB-8. She’s probably looking for Finn. Proving even more why Finn had to be ejected.

The last part is a shot of Luke exiting a cave saying

“It’s time for the Jedi to end”

© Lucasfilm

This could mean so many different things. Honestly, I have no idea what it means so I’ll leave this one up for interpretation.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi opens in theaters December 15, 2017.

Written by Brandon Hawkins

Brandon has been visiting the parks since he was two years old. He has visited Disneyland, Walt Disney World, and Disneyland Paris multiple times. With a passion for everything Disney, Brandon gives followers up to date news from around the Walt Disney Company adding personal stories along the way. Brandon previously hosted The Happiest Podcast on Earth for three successful seasons.

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