This post contains major spoilers for The Last Jedi and previous Star Wars movies.
The wait is finally over: The Last Jedi, the bold new entry in the Star Wars saga, is here. Like The Force Awakens before it, the film is filled to the brim with movement, our heroes (and villains) constantly on the go in moments of action and self-discovery. There was only one major expectation: it had to deliver on, or at the very least motivate, the dangling threads The Force Awakens put in place.
One of those threads was also one of the biggest questions Star Wars canon has ever posited: Who are Rey’s parents?
The Last Jedi spends a lot of time familiarizing us with why, exactly, this is so important to Rey. Her desperate hope to find meaning in her new journey, and to reconcile with her lonely and loveless childhood, are key to her understanding of The Force and how it functions inside of her. But, as Kylo Ren taunts in their Force-fueled fireside chats, it’s time to “let the past die.” Rey’s obsession with finding meaning in her past is what distracts her from becoming who she’s meant to be in the here and now.
That’s exactly what makes the ultimate revelation so powerful: Rey’s parents were nobodies. Junkers on Jakku who sold her to Unkar Plutt for drinking money. It’s an answer that deepens and redefines what we’ve come to expect in a Star Wars story. Our new hero isn’t of a privileged, famous bloodline, or an immaculately conceived prodigy. She’s a normal -- albeit gifted -- person plucked from obscurity and tasked with reforging a legacy she’s only now learning about. She’s someone who grew up on the legendary stories of Luke Skywalker who came to know him as a human, not a hero, and will now succeed him in his efforts to rebuild.
It’s a powerful message to send, one that is really at the core of what The Last Jedi is trying to say. It's also, as we learn by film’s end, a setup for where Episode IX might go and what the entire sequel trilogy is ultimately about.