2016.98: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (Cinema)
Frak me, this film was terrible. Awful.
Nah. I’m kidding.
Now, this is how to make a Star Wars movie. It isn’t perfect, there’s a few missteps that mean it’s some way short of greatness, but its a hell of a Star Wars movie. Infact, I haven’t seen one as good as this since 1980- it’s the Star Wars film we’ve been waiting for since The Empire Strikes Back. Its the film that Return of the Jedi deliberately wasn’t, that the prequels weren’t, and The Force Awakens failed to be. What I’m trying to get at is that, well, Rogue One feels authentic. Genuinely ‘Star Wars’ in a way that only the 1977 and 1980 films really were.
Instantly all my gripes about The Force Awakens being a contrived and nervous attempt at rebooting a franchise that doesn’t need rebooting rather than simply continuing, are simply forgotten with this beauty. I came out of the screening buzzing like a twelve year old back in 1978. I knew it wasn’t perfect but man, I’ll forgive every misstep because what a great Star Wars film it is. Genuine Star Wars. Surely there’s no better praise than that. It even possibly revitalises watching Star Wars: A New Hope in future- a hell of an achievement. What a great two-parter/double-bill these two films will make on Blu-ray someday.The writers even managed to put to rest the old joke about how lousy the Empire’s engineers were for building a space station with a dodgy exhaust port. After near-forty years that old joke is finally done.
As usual, I’ll leave spoilers out of this so will keep details vague. I’ll turn to spoilerific details in a few weeks maybe, as it’s best that people see this film knowing as little as possible. I must point out that I deliberately avoided the last few trailers as each successive trailer was clearly revealing too much- what is it with the marketing boys these days, can’t they just tease anymore? As I have already pointed out, the film isn’t perfect, but it nails the look and sound of Star Wars, has so many nods and treats for Star Wars fans, particularly of the original trilogy, that it feels like the perfect Christmas present for someone like me. Fan service isn’t always a bad thing. I didn’t even really mind the rather contentious (apparently) issue of bringing back a Star Wars character (or two) using cgi. It just felt right, and even if it isn’t quite a resounding success (the tech clearly isn’t quite there yet) the kid inside me just reveled at the sheer audacity of it. In a narrative sense it works and its dynamic is one of those things that likely will add to rewatching A New Hope.
Rogue One is a great Star Wars film- the Star Wars film I had given up on ever seeing (especially after The Force Awakens). Wow- Disney, you turned me around. Keep the anthology films as good as this and the Star Wars franchise will run and run and that $4 billion will seem like small change.
Yep. I really liked it.