We enjoyed Rogue One more than The Force Awakens, there, we said it.
In fact with that being said we currently have Rogue One sitting as our second favourite Star Wars film in the entire franchise, only just edging out A New Hope (Although this may change over time) and obviously being beaten by Empire Strikes Back.
The film as a whole isn’t perfect; the characterisation of some characters is minute to none-existant and there is one CGI character in particular who we felt really took us out of the moment whenever they were on the screen and they could’ve been left out entirely.
However, the story that is portrayed on screen and the way that it is directed by Gareth Edwards is simply outstanding. As the director of the first ever Star Wars standalone movie, Gareth Edwards has set the bar incredibly high for future films.
The climactic battle scene is the best of any movie to date, it has moments of dread, sorrow and even moments that make you want to punch the air in triumph. There are moments involving AT-AT’s where the CGI seamlessly blends in with the real-life actors who are running around underfoot, helping to draw you into this world.
Furthermore for any hardcore fans of the series (Particularly those who watch the TV shows Star Wars Rebels/The Clone Wars, or have read a number of the canon books) this film is a must-see. There are subtle references (And not so subtle – We’re looking at you Chopper) to a number of characters and events from elsewhere in Star Wars canon and it makes the film all the more enjoyable.
Despite the poor characterisation of the sub-members of her team, Jyn Erso (Played by Felicity Jones) managed to stand out as a strong female protagonist, but in a completely different way to Rey was in The Force Awakens. Much like this film, Jyn is a far edgier heroine and isn’t your stereotypical good guy, which makes her even more relatable. And whilst a little stereotypical, Cassian Andor (Played by Diego Luna) was a fitting companion to Jyn. The two were helped by the fact that Disney and Gareth Edwards decided against a love angle between the two and instead settled for a “brothers-in-arms” kind of affection, which works incredibly well for their situation and characteristics.
Despite a strong female protagonist, it is none other than Darth Vader who manages to steal the entire film in one scene (He appears in 2 in total). We finally see the brutish and menacing side of Darth Vader that has only been explored in canon elsewhere than the films prior to the release of Rogue One. A shout-out also has to be given to K2S0 (Voiced by Alan Tudyk) who provides excellent comic relief throughout the film, and Chirrut Imwe (Played by Donnie Yen) who is easily the most enticing character fighting the good fight, outside the three already mentioned.
So don’t go into Rogue One expecting a perfect film, but if you want to see the first ever Star Wars movie that is actually made as a “war” movie then you are in for one hell of an experience.
Rogue One is a fantastic film that allows you to forgive its flaws because of the emotional journey it has sent you on and the fantastic action sequences that it has allowed you to enjoy.
Final score = 8.5/10