Saturday, December 17, 2016

Movie Review -- Rogue One

Today we have another wave of Star Wars mania. It is the prequel Rogue One. Is it any good? Let's find out.

The story begins fifteen years before A New Hope and sees former Imperial scientist Galen Erso (Mads Mikkelsen) taken by Imperial officer Orson Krennic (Ben Mendelsohn) to aid in the construction of a new super weapon. To save his family (or what's left of it), Galen goes with him.

Flash forward to shortly before A New Hope. Galen's daughter/trouble maker Jyn (Felicity Jones) is busted out of Imperial custody (she had been arrested for various crimes) by the Rebellion and taken to meet with them. She doesn't trust them (or apparently anyone for that matter) but agrees to go on a mission for them in exchange for her freedom. The mission is to meet with militant radical Saw Gerrera (Forest Whitaker) and find the location of Galen. Things go reasonably well until Krennic tests out his new weapon--the Death Star--on Saw's location. 

Upon hearing a message her father left for her, Jyn decides they need to steal the Death Star plans from the Imperial planet Scarif. But the planet is heavily defended, and attacking it seems like a suicide mission. Nevertheless, a hastily put together crew of Rebel pilots might just have what it takes. Can they shut down the most powerful weapon the galaxy's ever seen before the Empire becomes unstoppable?

Rogue One is a fun popcorn movie which should satisfy Star Wars fans. It brings in interesting new characters and tells what was, up until now, a murky period of the franchise's history. You know they're going to steal the Death Star plans and you know Luke Skywalker's going to blow up said Death Star, but you don't know the sacrifices that will need to be made for that to happen. I must also commend director Gareth Edwards for pulling this off despite not having much directing experience (he previously did 2014's American Godzilla reboot). 

However, I would also like to point out the fact this movie's not a game-changer in any way. Everything it does has been done before, so don't expect anything revolutionary. If you're OK with that, you'll enjoy Rogue One.

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