'Rogue One: A Star Wars Story' Spoiler-Free Review: The Prequel That The Original Trilogy Deserves
While Star Wars: The Force Awakens carried the massive pressure of continuing the storied franchise into the next generation, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story could be just as important.
Rogue One is the first anthology film in the Star Wars universe, not set within the original, prequel and current trilogies. Rogue One's success as a standalone movie would set the stage for more of such films in the future; from the looks of it, Disney and Lucasfilm will likely not have any qualms about releasing more Star Wars anthology movies.
'Rogue One' Sets The Stage For 'A New Hope'
Rogue One is set in the grand Star Wars storyline as happening right before Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, which is the very first movie ever released for the franchise.
In A New Hope, the Rebel Alliance, through Luke Skywalker's pilot skills, was able to take down the Empire's Death Star by exploiting a weakness. Rogue One explains how that weakness was there in the first place, and how the rebels were able to acquire information regarding it.
With the mixed reviews for the prequel trilogy of Star Wars, mostly leaning towards the negative side, Rogue One can be described as the prequel that the original trilogy deserved, despite being largely a standalone movie. In fact, it can be said that Rogue One is the prequel that A New Hope needed.
"During the battle, rebel spies managed to steal secret plans to the Empire's ultimate weapon, the Death Star," stated the opening text for A New Hope. From just that line, viewers were left to imagine what happened and how the Empire made such a grave mistake of having such a weakness on the Death Star. There is now no need to imagine with Rogue One released.
No Jedi, But Plenty Of Action
Rogue One is the first movie in the franchise which does not have a Jedi in it, but that does not mean that there is less action in the film. There have been qualms that the "Wars" portion of the franchise's Star Wars name has not been as prominent in past movies due to the focus being on the usage of Force skills and the lightsaber battles between Jedi and Sith.
This is not the case with Rogue One, as the war between the Rebels and the Empire is seen in all its violent glory. Director Garth Edwards actually used real war photos as inspiration for the movie's battle scenes, hinting at how realistic the war scenes in Rogue One are.
The cast of characters for Rogue One more than make up for the lack of Jedi in the film, with Felicity Jones as Jyn Erso leading the charge as the heroine around which the movie revolves. Stealing the spotlight, however, is Donnie Yen, as the blind warrior monk Chirrut Îmwe who extends his faith in the force not just to the other characters in the movie but also to the audience.
'Rogue One': A Must Watch Movie For Everyone
While we may never know all the details regarding the rumored reshoots for Rogue One and what they did to improve or change the movie, the film that is playing right now in the big screen is highly recommended for everyone.
Hardcore fans will love all the easter eggs and mentions of familiar names and scenarios in the Star Wars universe. However, even for moviegoers who only have an inkling of knowledge on the franchise, Rogue One would still prove to be a great one that tells the story of a time of war and the heroine who finds the spirit to stand up and fight for her beliefs.