Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Well it’s about freaking time that the Star Wars Universe started expanding. There is something about this sci-fi/fantasy universe that just captures imagination, and no, it’s not escapism. I’ve got other means for that. You know, like digging a hole and running away.
Anyway…. Getting to the point: this is the review of Star Wars: Rogue One, and this is me answering your questions – well, sort of anyway. And, what are those questions?
- What’s Star One: Rogue One about?
- Just how hot is Felicity Jones?
- Does Mads Mikkelsen aka Hannibal go all maneater on the Emperor?
- And finally, is Rogue One: War One worth your time?
Star Wars: Rogue One is directed by Gareth Edwards and stars Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, and Forest Whitaker.
A New Story
Journey into a Star Wars story that you’ve never heard or seen before. Here’s what it is not:
- Not a story of Jedis
- Not a story about destroying the Death Star for the bazillionth time
- Not a fast-paced, kicking-ass, action packed movie
There are certain expectation we’ve come to have of the Star Wars movies, from the usual tropes like the Death Star, to the lightsaber action, to a swashbuckling hero (Han Solo and Poe Dameron anyone?).
Well, guess what?
None of that is here. Star Wars: Rogue One is entirely new. The story is set before Star Wars: A New Hope and it tells the tale of how Rebel spies attempted to gain information that leads to the eventual destruction of the first Death Star.
Star Wars: Rogue One harkens back to team-based stories like the Guns of Navarone and the Dirty Dozen: a hopeless mission, a desperate rag-tag group.
- Jyne Erso: The star of the movie, her father leads the construction of the Death Star
- Cassian Andor: A Rebel Captain who’s in charge of the mission
- K-2SO: A more than capable droid you don’t want to mess with
- Baze Malbus: Rambo type guy who shoots everything in sight
- Chirrut Îmwe: A monk with a staff aka IP man guy
- Bodhi Rook: Addled brain, former imperial pilot
Apart from Jyne and Cassian, you may not truly connect with the characters, but it is through this team that we discover the pain of living, fighting and dying for the rebellion.
“Viva la revolution!” Or, whatever was the Rebellion’s battlecry. Actually… they didn’t have one.
All About the Rebel Fight
Welcome to the Rebel Alliance. No Jedis. No magical Force.
Star Wars: Rogue One reminds us of the impossible and desperate fight the Rebel army had against the Empire, and how it started to find a little hope. With all the magic and the Force surrounding the Star Wars series, this can be really easy to forget.
Star Wars: Rogue One introduces you to how repressive the Empire is upon the people. You, we, us, me, you discover the humanity and the sacrifice of the people who were part of the rebel alliance. They aren’t just side characters who aided the Jedi, but real people who envision a world without the Empire.
No other Star Wars movie has this much focus on the Rebel alliance.
I have a lot to say about this!
Actually, you know what? Just be excited. Lord Vader. OG voice actor. Lightsaber. Force Choke. Vader.
The Death Star
If there is a single story trope that is overdone, it’s the death star. A single death stare to destroy the planet, a single death star to rule the universe – or something like that.
My biggest worry was… really? Really? The Death Star? Again? For like the 6th freaking time! How are we seeing the Death Star again!
And, I was surprised. The Death Stare, the planet destroyer, is masterfully done in the movie. It does not feel repetitive and it’s not boring. What is seen is that right touch of modernity.
The Death Star has never been more terrifying. You will not be disappointed.
Ack. What is that? Is that a John Williams’ soundtrack? Sounds like an original star wars soundtrack?
Ack. What’s this beat? It’s not a John Williams’ soundtrack.
Arggh.. What. is. This!
Okay. I usually don’t criticise, but Star Wars: Rogue One misses the soundtrack… it’s just not there. It takes inspiration from John Williams instead of standing on it’s two feet! Well, you’ll see. I mean – you’ll hear.
You’ve probably seen Star War Battles like the Battle of Yavin, Battle of Hoth, Battle of Takodana. But I bet you haven’t seen a battle this close to the front lines or a battle from the perspective of Rebel soldiers. Rogue One: War Two delivers one of the most exciting battle pieces in the film series that combines everything that made the old battle great. It takes inspiration from Apocalypse Now, or perhaps it’s good enough that I’m comparing it with one of the great war films. And you know what’s the best part? No wookies/children teddy bears come to their rescue.
And, in case you were wondering, how does Star Wars: Rogue One compare to the other 7 films in the series? Quite well. For one, there are no hands chopped off. Better yet, the film introduces a maximum number of locations by far in the series. So, the Star Wars world has grown 5 times more than it has than any other film. The battle: More than anything watch this movie for the battle scenes, they’re as good as the Battle of Hoth if not more.
The film also has a host of returning characters like Senator Bail Oregano, Princess Leia and Grand Moff Tarkin. And, depending on which angle you look from, you may or may not like the CGI done on Princess Leia and Grand Moff Tarkin.
As part of the wider world, Rogue One is a part of the The Star Wars Anthology Stories and it is off to a great start. We can expect different tales apart from Jedis to finally start to appear on the big screen.
In the end, Star Wars: Rogue One is an immensely satisfying movie and a great addition to the Star Wars series – trust me. Trust the Force.
Or, don’t. I don’t know. You know. Or you don’t. Or, just watch the movie and you’ll know.