28 December 2016

Rogue One is very good


I finally saw the new Star Wars film Rogue One today. It was a pleasant surprise! My expectations for the film were quite low, but it now ranks as my second favourite Star Wars film of all time, ranked behind only The Empire Strikes Back (and tied for second with A New Hope).

Here are three things that I especially liked about the film:

1. The character of the droid ‘K-2’. I think that this droid may now be my favourite in any Star Wars film. Sorry Chewy! (And I wonder if the name ‘K-2’ was a subtle reference to Inspector Jacques Clouseau’s sidekick from the original “Pink Panther” movies?)

2. The film explains what always struck me as an obvious hole with the original 1977 movie: namely, why the Death Star would include such a fatal flaw in its design, such that a single well-aimed shot from an X-wing fighter could destroy the whole thing. That Death Star design flaw now has a plausible rationale!

3. While the good guys succeed in their mission (this is no spoiler, at least not to anyone who has seen the original Star Wars film), it is not a traditional ‘happy ending.’ Instead, the ending is both tragic and hopeful.

Two minor criticisms:

a. The computer-generated ‘resurrection’ of Peter Cushing (who died in 1994) as ‘Grand Moff Tarkin’ struck me as rather creepy and even distasteful. Frankly, the film didn’t need to use Grand Moff Tarkin at all.

b. Forest Whitaker’s character ‘Saw Gerrara’ was pretty pointless. I was expecting more from him.

Those quibbles aside, though, Rogue One is my most pleasant movie surprise in a long time.

And the final scene with a young Princess Leia brought a tear to my eye. (RIP Carrie Fisher.)

4 comments:

  1. It is amazing how good Rogue One is. Like you, it is my 2nd favorite Star Wars movie (except my 1st place is Star Wars and my 3rd place is Empire Strikes Back).

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  2. His name was Saw?! This whole time I'd thought they'd been saying Sol

    Yeah, that was a really good movie. I liked VII well enough, but Rogue One totally kicked the crap out of it

    I might be the only person who didn't have a problem with Tarkin, which is weird 'cause I'm always bitching about CGI. I was just totally blown away when he first showed up (had no idea he was going to be in it). It really helped sell me on this movie, to be honest

    Also, Vader's back! After all those years of Lucas ruining my favorite character, he's finally a bad-ass again! That whole ending was just perfect

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  3. Regarding: "Also, Vader's back!"
    Yeah, I could watch Vader in action for hours. That final fight scene was pure joy.

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  4. A fantastically pleasant film. It's actually my favourite. I agree with your criticisms, esp. 'b'. I feel Saw Gerrera was used as a mere McGuffin, which isn't very nice for a person :)
    Also I've had the impression that Forest Whitaker was never filmed alongside the other actors!

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I'm a Canadian political philosopher who divides his time between Milwaukee and Toronto.