Plenty of things about Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi have been divisive, but few have been as derided as the Canto Bight sequence.
Was it put there as a merchandising tool, a way to sell space pony plushies and several dozen more figurines? Does it fail to advance the story at all? Does it matter?
No, and no, and yes. Canto Bight is neither a fluffy diversion nor a tacked-on way to find something to do with Rose and Finn. It’s absolutely vital to the themes of The Last Jedi, and if you took it out, you’d lose more than just a few lines of dialogue about morality and wealth in the galaxy.
Canto Bight isn’t really about the rich people at all. It’s about the reality of life under a fascist First Order, and about unsung, unflashy work that needs to be done to fix the galaxy.
Spoilers for The Last Jedi follow.