Solo: A Star Wars Story
I’m one of those people who hated The Last Jedi. I came out of it feeling frustrated and disappointed. After the film of two distinct halves that was Rogue One (first half awful, second half not so awful), The Last Jedi to me was just further proof that they’d managed to break Star Wars. And then, in among all of that, they go and announce another prequel to the original trilogy we all love. A story featuring the early life of our favourite rogue/smuggler, Han Solo. Played by some guy who didn’t even look, or seemingly act, like the Han that Harrison Ford had introduced us to. A pretty mediocre teaser trailer, followed by drastic changes to the directing team so late in the day, seemed to seal it’s fate. It looked like Star Wars was going to stay broken…
But surprisingly, and thankfully, in the past few weeks the tide appears to have turned. A fun, exciting new trailer, the seemingly perfect casting of Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian, followed by a lot of positive early reactions… could we finally be in for a real Star Wars treat? Could Star Wars ever be fixed?
We join young Solo (Alden Ehrenreich) on his home planet of Correllia, getting by as a thief in the dark streets and tunnels and already making enemies. He has dreams of something better than this though – making enough money to buy him and his true love Qi’ra (Emilia Clarke) a big spaceship so that they can escape Correllia and find a better life together.
It’s a simple enough plot, and we know that along the way he needs to meet Chewie, cross paths with Lando Calrissian, and bag himself the coolest ship in the shape of the Millennium Falcon. We just need to have some of the finer details filled in for us…
Luckily for us, filling in the blanks is one hell of a blast! From evading a crime boss on Correllia, hooking up with the empire before joining forces with a gang of bandits led by Beckett (Woody Harrelson), we find ourselves being treated to a pretty steady stream of thrills and action. Solo and the bandits end up on a mission to steal a big consignment of fuel called coaxium, hired by another crime boss called Dryden Vos (Paul Bettany). Along the way they hook up with Lando, captain of the Millennium Falcon, who offers to take them on their mission. In exchange for 25% of the money they’re going to make on the coaxium deal of course…
I initially had my doubts over Ehrenreich and his ability to step into the shoes of one of cinemas most iconic characters but he actually does a very good job of it. In fact, it’s a pretty impressive cast all round, with everyone managing to get their own memorable moments. There’s a likeable chemistry between them all which carries the movie extremely well, even throughout its less frantic moments.
I thoroughly enjoyed this, so much more than I thought I would. And all those tickbox moments are handled perfectly – meeting and befriending Chewie, meeting Lando, finding out just how Solo managed to pull off that 12 parsec Kessel run, finally getting his hands on the Falcon! loved it all. Yes, they managed to fix Star Wars!
My watch-list of movies and TV shows continues to grow, while my available spare time continues to shrink. Occasionally I’ll manage to tick one off the list, and then I’ll try and ramble on a little bit about it on here.