Film Review – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (Second Take)
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is Disney’s first foray away from the Star Wars’ Episode films. It is coined as a standalone Star Wars film, but the term is misleading. Rogue One is set timeline-wise after Episode III: Revenge of the Sith and before Episode IV: A New Hope. As Rogue One’s story unfolds, it is apparent that it is set right before Episode IV. An audience member who is completely ignorant of the Star Wars films cannot see this film and fully understand what is going on. It fits into the Star Wars universe at a particular time, with known preceding and future events dictating its construct.
Rogue One’s timeline in the Star Wars universe gives itself two immediate advantages. First, actors and their characters from Episode III are still alive to make appearances in Rogue One. Secondly, the actors and their characters introduced in Episode IV make appearances as well. Even those actors not alive anymore are reincarnated digitally or are covered in a disguising costume, making their return a bit easier. Characters from both films are either major secondary characters, minor characters there to remind us of the other films, or just fun cameos.
Touching again on the Disney’s standalone term, it means that a sequel to this particular set of main characters is not going to happen. However, its new characters and secondary storylines are intriguing enough to possibly warrant a focused prequel. They have done this story well enough that I yearn to see more of Chirrut Îmwe (Donnie Yen) and Baze Malbus (Wen Jiang) or even Saw Gerrera (Forest Whittaker) and how he came to be so broken.
The new planets, moons, stations, and ships combined with some recognizable ones makes Rogue One’s settings a refreshing experience. The new characters themselves also breathe new life and lore into the series. While the Rogue One is not perfect, it hits many more marks and is more enjoyable than Episode VII: The Force Awakens. I had no need to see The Force Awakens again on the big screen, but I cannot wait to see Rogue One again.
There are many backstories and unseen characters in the Star Wars universe that any standalone film Disney decides to produce is encouraged and anticipated by myself based on what they did with Rogue One. While we have Episode VIII and the Han Solo prequel to look forward to, I hope there are plans for another film along the same lines as Rogue One.
P.S. There are scenes and lines in the Rogue One teaser that are not in the film. For this trailer-phile, I hate when they do that. I would hope and expect to see many deleted scenes on the DVD release. Also, there is no post-credits scene.