Guys, I really love Star Wars.
It’s a franchise chock full of endlessly diverse worlds, hundreds of unique characters and storylines, and action that ranges from spaceship dogfighting to hand-to-hand saber duels. It’s a classic tale of good VS evil, a struggle for liberty from an oppressive government, with plenty of sci-fi tech and mystical religious magic thrown in.
And this has been a very Star Wars week for me.
I’m fresh off seeing Rogue One this evening, and yesterday Carrie Fisher departed this world (and I have so many Facebook friends who are just in such agony over this).
Just a day before that, I was sitting in a restaurant debating prequels VS originals and discussing opinions on the newest films with my best friend, whom I’m pleased also really loves these movies.
I was going to write a post about my cynicism over people’s’ meme and clickbait-ridden reactions to celebrity deaths – but given that Ms. Fisher only just passed yesterday, out of respect I’ll keep that one for another day.
So first, let’s talk about that new movie.
I won’t spoil anything here that isn’t, as I understand, already pretty common knowledge. Mostly I just want to say how much I loved this movie.
Despite being a “spin-off,” it nestles into the storyline perfectly as the direct prequel to the original Star Wars film, now called Episode IV: A New Hope.
Did you ever think to yourself, “Gee, that silly Empire sure did make it easy to destroy the Death Star!” I certainly did. But Rogue One did a fantastic job of addressing that plot hole and filling it in with a conflicted, passionate storyline.
We meet the engineers behind the ultimate weapon, as well as the team behind the procurement of the weapon plans for the Rebel Alliance.
The main character, a young woman named Jyn Erso, does not immediately align herself with any particular side. She has suffered loss and pain throughout her life, and wants nothing more than to live and be left alone.
But she quickly finds herself entangled in something much larger than herself – she finds a cause to believe in, a goal to work towards, and her sense of what is right and wrong in the galaxy comes to light right before our eyes.
Jyn is not the only character that undergoes this sort of transformation, and one of the highlights of this movie is a large cast of protagonists that are not conventional “heroes.”
What’s more, Rogue One does not disappoint in its repeated nods to the original films. I see no need to list every cool cameo and easter egg scattered throughout – the true fans can spot those on their own. But I was more than thrilled with the callback to the original Rebel fleet, and particularly with the two major appearances by everyone’s favorite bad guy.
I was deeply satisfied by the end – no stones were left unturned, every major character served his or her purpose, and sweet justice was delivered to those who deserved it.
Rating: 10/10. Big time wow. So good.