I have to admit that we were not expecting great things. The changing of director, flying in acting coaches for the new Han Solo (who had previously been in that awful movie Beautiful Creatures) and all the other woes of this film that have been in the press had us less than excited. But as good Star Wars fan boys and girls we still saw it, even with pretty low expectations. And from the word go we were floored. This movie is great.
Theres no denying that this movie wasn’t needed, and that it doesn’t add an awful lot to the universe, but Solo: A Star Wars Story was awesome. It had thrilling action sequences with car chases, fun/cheeky characters, amazing production design and fantastic acting, especially from Alden Ehrenreich who embodied the charm of Harrison ford and his well known charisma. It’s the most casual Star Wars movie you’ll ever see. Its not a war film like Rogue One and isn’t as religious as the other Star Wars movies with no mention of Jedi’s or bringing balance to the force. That’s probably a huge reason as to why it was so refreshing and enjoyable.
Woody Harrison is great as always, I’m convinced he cant give a bad performance. Donald Glover was…good. I’m a fan of Childish Gambino, or in this film Childish Gamblerino, and regrettably I expected more from him. Emilia Clarke was amazing, conveying many layers to her character Qi’ra that I didn’t expect and she pulled them off brilliantly. Bradford Young created beautiful visuals for this film, with an unusual choice of a dark colour palette throughout the film which totally worked and some stunning, shadowy camera work. I loved the ending scene (image above) where Qi’ra is looking down from out of the ship window. There was a mix of style in production design which gave the whole film a more diverse feel. There were locations like the random and argued to be pointless Casino Planet in ‘The Last Jedi’ which presented boldly dressed characters and brand new looking droids. Then you have the rural planets where people are using older looking droids that would fit more into ‘A New Hope’.
Since all the main characters in the story must survive, you may be thinking there wont be any tension in action scenes. Thats exactly what we thought. But what we didn’t consider is that this will mean most of the side characters are mostly disposable. But the best thing about the film is that its not all about anticipating who will die, it focuses on details such as the Falcon flight, which Star Wars fans will truly appreciate as it shows how Solo ended up with the Millennium Falcon and we get to see it at its best, when it was brand new and Han Solo hadn’t yet got his hands on it. We also took great pleasure in witnessing how Han and Chewie first met, while it was slightly strange it’s enough to put a huge smile on any Star Wars fan’s face.
Conceptually, this movie works. Like really works. The fact that this a story in the star wars universe thats not based on saving the galaxy but just about just a good space heist is a breathe of fresh air for the franchise, Billy especially loves a heist film so for him this was great. The film copied Rogue One in trying to address and fill plot holes from the originals by adding certain scenes such as the Kessel Run. Something that has been debated countless times has now been confirmed in this film, and ultimately makes Solo a more solid character and gives the universe more credibility.
It’s not a hidden masterpiece or the best new Star Wars, but Solo is a really fun heist movie. It’s well crafted and casted perfectly, it’s beautifully shot and an appropriately witty Star Wars movie, and we definitely recommend watching it.