Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

"Extraordinary"

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Review


With the tagline "A Star Wars Story", this first spin-off from the saga isn't actually a stand-alone movie. It requires some understanding of the context as it chronicles events that lead directly into 1977's Episode IV: A New Hope. It's also a seriously rousing action film with a riveting cast of characters and a surprising willingness to embrace even the darkest elements of storytelling. In other words, it might be the first Star Wars movie made specifically for grown-ups.

It opens as the Empire is systematically crushing the rebellion, leaving them wondering if there's any point to continuing the fight. Rumours are swirling that the Empire is building a massive Death Star, and rebel Jyn (Felicity Jones) discovers that it was designed by her long-lost father Galen (Mads Mikkelsen), who sends her a message saying that he left a flaw in the system specifically for the rebels to exploit. So she joins a team to contact him, led by Cassian (Diego Luna), who doubts that Galen is on their side. They're accompanied by pilot Bodhi (Riz Ahmed) and the sarcastic robot K-2SO (Alan Tudyk), plus the blind wannabe Jedi Chirrut (Donnie Yen) and his battling sidekick Baze (Jiang Wen). And as their mission goes rogue, they come up against the slimy Imperial Director Orson (Ben Mendelson) and the vicious Darth Vader (again voiced by James Earl Jones).

Director Gareth Edwards (Monster) packs the movie with visual references to A New Hope, cleverly matching the design work by avoiding fakey digital effects in lieu of more practical, battle-scared models and lively settings on a series of new planets and a familiar one. This gives the film an electric atmosphere that's edgy and unpredictable even though we all know exactly how this mission has to end. At the beginning, the plot feels a bit splintered, but the strands come together with power, building a gnawing sense of momentum and some real gravitas along the way.

All of this is anchored by Jones in a remarkably steely performance. Jyn's emotional journey is properly epic, avoiding pitfalls of most action movie heroines. There's only a vague whiff of romance with Luna's brooding Cassian, who has his own story going on, as do all of the colourful side characters. And it definitely helps that Edwards has gone gritty here, grounding everything that happens even with the range of requisite set-pieces. The effects only rarely look like effects at all (only two digital characters are distracting, but they still elicit goosebumps). And as the final act plays out on an astonishingly expansive scale, this film remains true to the franchise while also revealing itself to be as bold and daring as its characters.

Watch the trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story:



Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Facts and Figures

Genre: Sci fi/Fantasy

Run time: 133 mins

In Theaters: Friday 16th December 2016

Budget: $200M

Production compaines: Lucasfilm, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Allison Shearmur Productions, Black Hangar Studios

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4.5 / 5

IMDB: 7.7 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: , Simon Emanuel, Allison Shearmur

Starring: as Jyn Erso, as Captain Cassian Andor, as Director Orson Krennic, as Chirrut Imwe, as Galen Erso, as K-2SO, as Baze Malbus, as Saw Gerrera, as Anakin Skywalker / Darth Vader (voice), as Bodhi Rook, as Senator Jebel, Genevieve O'Reilly as Mon Mothma, as Bistan, as Bail Organa, Valene Kane as Lyra Erso, Jorge Leon Martinez as X-Wing Pilot, Russell Balogh as X-Wing Pilot, Ned Dennehy as Prisoner, Steen Young as Vault Officer, Tyrone Love as Rebel Marine Commander, Attila G. Kerekes as Rebel Marine on Yavin, Andrew Zographos as X-Wing Pilot, Angus Cook as Mechanic, Sam Hanover as Imperial Officer, Mac Pietowski as Commi Tech / Marine Soldier, as General Draven, Emeson Nwolie as Personnel

Contactmusic

Advertisement

New Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.