Let me preface this by saying I actually enjoyed The Last Jedi. I think you could put it side-by-side with Episodes 4, 5, or 6 and not see a shift in tone. It feels like it belongs. However, no one can say it hasn't been divisive.
I don't want to rag on Rian Johnson but obviously there were parts I would've gone in a different direction with and it'd be too easy for me (or anyone) to nitpick what he worked on and created from essentially nothing.
I respect him for taking chances and faithfully creating a story that fits in the Star Wars universe but just humour me here and read what I would've done if I was at the mantle.
I think it's been out long enough that I can share my thoughts on how to make it better so SPOILER ALERT. Read at your own peril;
Okay, so keep everything as is except the explosion on the bridge/Leia becoming comatose. It was great to see her use the Force but it never comes up again and Admiral Ackbar deserves a more justified end! The mission to find the master codebreaker plays out the same too but the guy at the table is none other than Lando Calrissian, fallen back on his old ways. A little fan service, sure, but it's a quick cameo and I don't really give a fuck about Justin Theroux.
Back on Ahch-To, Luke trains Rey after Yoda visits and instructs him to do so, though Luke cannot see why. He is cold and keeps her at arm's length although they do have a few moments together. He shuts himself off completely when he discovers Rey went to the cavern beneath the island. Kylo attempts to seduce Rey through their shared vision by telling her his account of the story of Luke trying to kill him and warns her that Luke would do the same to her. Clearly uneasy, Rey abandons her training completely and leaves Ahch-To. After some soul searching, Luke opens himself to the Force again and briefly convenes with Leia.
The confrontation with Snoke stays roughly the same except he's a bit more heavy-handed about his past (the guy is totally Palpatine, c'mon) and then Kylo kills him. That boss scene takes place 'cause that kicked ass but then when Kylo tries to tempt Rey, she weighs it up, having been discouraged by her confrontation with Luke. Kylo offers to complete her training and she reluctantly agrees.
Fast forward to the crippled rebel fleet, where Leia, along with Admiral Ackbar and a few others, has agreed to stay on the Raddus instead of Holdo to allow the others to escape down to Crait. Rose and Finn's mission carries out in the same way as it does in the movie and once the First Order discovers the Resistance plan, they fire on the fleeing transport ships. Leia turns to Admiral Ackbar and without saying a word, he knows what she wants to do. In order to allow the Resistance to survive, they sacrifice themselves by jumping to light speed through Snoke's flagship.
Kylo, Rey, and Luke all sense this.
Down on Crait, Holdo leads the remaining forces to bunker down in the abandoned Rebel base. The assault on the rebel stronghold pans out in the same way with the ski speeders, the battering ram cannon, etc, but who swoops in with the Falcon to save the day? Luke motherfucking Skywalker in his trusty X-Wing. They take out some TIE fighters before Chewie leads them away, allowing Luke to land and confront Kylo. Finn and Rose are taken hostage by Phasma, who not only survived the fall on the Supremacy, but also Boba Fett syndrome.
Kylo orders the AT-M6's to bombard Luke into the ground only for him to walk out of the dust totally unscathed (and it's more badass 'cause, remember, he's actually there in this version) showing Kylo he's still the apprentice. We saw Kylo freeze a blaster bolt in midair in The Force Awakens so it feels right to up the ante here.
They duke it out while Rey watches from Kylo's shuttle, deeply conflicted. Luke bests him but shows mercy in an attempt to win back Kylo and Rey; however, Kylo shuts him down. He rises up to strike Luke but Luke force pushes him back into the leg of an AT-M6, knocking him spark out. The Falcon comes back just in time to cover Luke's retreat and he regroups with the others as they escape.
Aboard the Falcon, Luke reflects on Leia's sacrifice and Rey's apparent turn to the dark side as each character accepts the situation the Resistance is in but look on with hope for there is so much to fight for. That little scene with the stable boy takes place ('cause that was nice and all) before the credits roll.
So yeah, that's my version. Do with it what you will. Obviously, my biggest gripe with the movie was with Luke's ending. While the nature of his passing and becoming one with the Force seemed right, it might've had a much bigger impact in Episode IX whereas here it just feels forced.
You know that character you like? BOOM! Dead. Reason? 'Cause.
Han Solo's death at least served a purpose to the story and I remember leaving the cinema feeling like I had just lost a family member. I couldn't believe Luke was gone either but not for the same reason.
Anyway, it doesn't matter cos that's not the version we got. Like I said, I enjoyed it. The parts I loved far outweighed the parts I didn't like. Better than Empire? I don't think so. Can it stand up on its own as a Star Wars movie? Most definitely.