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Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Review

Good day to you ladies and gents, it is review time once again and today I am bringing you my review of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, my last most anticipated film of the year. With 2016 nearly over and most of the films of interest having come out already, I wasn’t expecting to be wowed by any more films. And that’s not to say that I wouldn’t be impressed with Rogue One, but I assumed it’d be good but not mind-blowing… Oh how wrong I was. I’m gonna tell you right now, Rogue One was frigging awesome and you should watch it immediately. But in case you need more convincing read on and check out my thoughts in this spoiler-free review! 😀

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The story can be summed up as the following:

“Jyn Erso, a Rebellion soldier and criminal, sets out on a life-changing journey with her Rebel allies to find her father and obtain the schematics the Galactic Empire’s superweapon, the Death Star.”

I thought that Rogue One‘s story was really good. As a fan of the film series, I knew how this film would end, but that did not make the journey any less exciting. This is a tale hope and bravery in times of darkness and uncertainty, and while the story has enough familiar elements that allows it to coexist with the main series films, it allows presents a lot that we haven’t seen in a Star Wars film. One of the things I admired early on was how different this film was from the other Star Wars films, especially when it came to the direction, atmosphere and tone. Those key elements felt fresh and unique, and at several points this film felt a lot grittier, dirtier, realistic, dark and dramatic, and there to be honest I got a little emotional during certain sequences. This film certainly adheres to the war genre in really impressive ways, and I won’t ruin anything, but I will say that if you’ve watched any war film, then you’ll notice how well this film handles sense of danger and dread, overwhelming odds, tone and casualties. And there’s also some lovely ties to other SW films and the way it tied into A New Hope was just delightful.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story(Felicity Jones)Ph: Film FrameŠLucasfilm LFL

The cast was all so very, very good. What I appreciated about this cast was the fact that they all felt relevant, had moments to shine and were engaging. Firstly there’s Felicity Jones who was just wonderful as Jyn Erso, this lady was strong, courageous, but also relatable and Jones really did well in the role. Diego Luna as Cassian Andor was someone I ended up liking more than I expected, Andor had a fair amount of depth and intelligence to him. Alan Tudyk as K-2SO was awesome, he was a droid who had so many notable/funny moments because of his blunt and unapologetic nature, and Tudyk was just perfect with the timing of his speech. Riz Ahmed as Bodhi Rook, was a really interesting character who had plenty of interesting, fun and important moments with Ahmed really working well. And then you have Donnie Yen and Wen Jiang as Chirrut Îmwe and Baze Malbus, these two worked well both as individuals and together because of their personality traits and combat capabilities, but also because they were so likable and charming, both Yen and Jiang did really well, but Yen really stood out because of his charisma and martial arts abilities. Mads Mikkelsen as Galen Erso was really good and so was Forest Whitaker as Saw Gerrera, and you also have Ben Mendelsohn as Orson Krennic, a man who was strong-willed and cunning, and even though his type of villain has been done before I loved the way Mendelsohn handled the character. There were also some really nice and surprising cameos from certain SW characters and actors which you’ll have to see for yourselves.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story(Donnie Yen)Ph: Film FrameŠLucasfilm LFL

When it comes to the presentation it was fantastic! Visually this film is probably the best in the franchise so far, the art direction and use of colour, along with the cinematography and the blending of practical and digital visual effects was on another level. I especially loved the practical effects for the aliens which were really cool, and cinematography which was used to great effect with the sense of scale, tracking shots, and various angles. I adored the action sequences as they varied from firefights to hand-to-hand combat to aerial/space dogfights, all of these sequences are so intense and well-choreographed, and again so different from what we’ve seen in previous SW films. As for the film score from Michael Giacchino, the man worked magic again. Giacchino’s score for Rogue One was epic, whimsical, heartbreaking and full of wonder, and the music captured the spirit of John Williams’ sound while also creating something new as well.

In conclusion Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was just a good time at the cinema and exceeded my expectations in a lot of ways. I had some very, very minor issues with the use of CGI is some places and some pacing nitpicks in the earlier half of the story, but they pale in comparison to how much I enjoyed this film. This film has the right amount of nostalgia as a prequel to A New Hope, but presents so many new elements to this universe at the same time. Rogue One was beautiful, funny, emotional, action-packed, surprising and downright fun especially for fans. I highly recommend the film and can’t wait to see it again in IMAX.

So have you seen Rogue One: A Star Wars Story or are you going to watch it soon? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to drop them in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the review, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on December 16, 2016 in Film Reviews, Reviews

 

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QUICK REVIEW: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Trailer #1

Howdy ladies and gents, time for another trailer review and today I’m talking about one really exciting trailer because it is the first footage of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. For the longest time I’ve wanted to see some footage from this film since it was announced because of the director at the helm and wanted to see how this film would be different from the main series of the films tonally. And in the week when we got the announcement that there’d be a Doctor Strange trailer next week Tuesday, this new trailer just comes out of nowhere and blows up the internet for the fans. So now I just wanted to share my thoughts.on the new trailer, oh and by the way I’m referring to this film as just Rogue One from now on as I currently hate the title for this film.

So here’s the trailer below:

Well this was certainly unexpected, I mean wow, I really liked this trailer. It had the right balance of nostalgia, freshness, mystery, intrigue and action. I really want to see this film even more than before.

It has been said by director Gareth Edwards that this film would be a war film, which would be a first for the Star Wars films series as there hasn’t been a film that’s had a heavy focus on the war side of things, and this trailer certainly looks like it’ll be looking living up war style of film. The funny thing is there was no sign of the Jedi or Sith (more specifically Darth Vader) and yet I was still hooked, and that is impressive to me considering that the Jedi and Sith are my favourite elements of the Star Wars. Visually the film looked like Star Wars but with a gritty/dirty look, sleeker/cleaner visual effects and an intriguing/diverse cast.

Straight from the beginning the tone for this film is fairly serious with the music, and the brief moments of action and chaos, and that’s what I loved so much, the atmosphere in this film feels very different to The Force Awakens or any of the other previous Star Wars films. Things felt tense, dangerous and bleak and I loved it. That’s not to say that I don’t enjoy the more light-hearted/family friendly adventures, but considering that this film is being described as war film, it feels appropriate. I’m liking Felicity Jones as Jyn Erso, she looks cool and interesting, I also like what I saw/heard from Forest Whitaker and Ben Mendelsohn looks as an Imperial admiral, but it’s the small glimpse of Donnie Yen that got me hyped. Just seeing him with some quick action with a staff got me giddy. 🙂

I also really loved the throwbacks to A New Hope with the use of the AT-AT walkers, construction of the Death Star, old Stormtroopers and many other visual easter eggs/references. What these elements established was that we’re clearly still in the same universe as the other films, but that things would be unfolding in a more mature and serious manner than before which excites me because I believe Star Wars as a franchise has reached a point where it needs to evolve/change and do new and interesting things with the mythology, and I believe Rogue One is a step in the right direction.

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To conclude the first trailer for Rogue One got me excited in all the right ways. It just enough to tease me about the tone of this film and give me some insight into who some of the key players will be. I believe that this film will surprise people and that Gareth Edwards will do the fans justice with this spin-off film.

So have you seen the first trailer for Rogue One and if so what do you think of it? Are you hyped, underwhelmed or confused by what you’ve seen?  Whatever your thoughts are be sure to drop me a comment and I’ll see ya on the next review! 🙂

 
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Posted by on April 8, 2016 in Films, Media, Reviews

 

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