At First Glance: “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”

Spinoff films have been a staple for some time, whether they’re truly warranted or not. Some do nothing to truly further the original series, but as long as it’s well constructed and succeeds at being more than just “good”, it won’t matter at all. Then there are those that only have one true obstacle. If that hurdle can’t be cleared, then all the hype will have been for nothing.

The upcoming Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures film “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”, looks intense and action packed, plus the right film to begin this new anthology series of films.

The action film stars Felicity Jones (upcoming films “A Monster Calls”, “Inferno”), Diego Luna (“Casanova”, “I Stay with You”), Riz Ahmed (upcoming “Jason Bourne”, “Nightcrawler”), Ben Mendelsohn (upcoming season “Bloodline”, “Guns for Hire”), Donnie Yen (“Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny”, “Ip Man 3”), Jiang Wen (“Gone with the Bullets”, “The Last Bladesman”), Forest Whitaker (upcoming films “Roots (2016)”, “Story of Your Life”), Mads Mikkelsen (upcoming films “Men & Chicken”, “Doctor Strange”), and Alan Tudyk (upcoming “Moana”, “Zootopia”).

The film is directed by Gareth Edwards (“Godzilla (2014)”, “Monsters”) and written by Chris Weitz (“Cinderella (2015)”, “The Golden Compass”) and Gary Whitta (“After Earth”, “The Book of Eli”).

The film is expected to hit theaters on Dec. 16, 2016.
  
It’s strange really. Up until this afternoon I wasn’t at all excited about this latest entry in the “Star Wars” universe. It’s not because I was expecting terrible things from this film’s first trailer, or thought that it truly was a stupid idea, although I’m still certain it’s an unnecessary film. No, I just didn’t care that much about it’s upcoming release. I don’t think I even registered on the “Do I Care” chart I have. Now, unsurprisingly when you think about it, I’m all kinds of excited and I care a lot! I can’t wait to see this film!

This film seems like it’ll have a lot of familiarity coming along for the ride. Included is a new and old look and feel, plus, in some ways, mystery, even though we know (I believe) how this will more or less end. There’s so much! I can’t believe I never gave this film much thought until now. Even when I knew Jones had been cast I wasn’t over the moon. I guess I merely just thought she was an excellent choice. Anyway, for a teaser that offered up very little, save for quick glimpses at some new characters and a somewhat vague idea of what the overall plot is, it definitely succeeded! I’m excited about this film and can’t wait for the next trailer to drop.

Oh, and no, I don’t believe that this will feed into who Rey’s parents are. This film, according to the plot summary, takes place before the original film in this long running franchise. That’d be highly impossible, and the franchise would be acting increidbly desperat, especially as the sequel trilogy takes place 30 years after “Episode VI”. God, why can’t some people get it? Are they that desperate or just that stupid? It’s something, that I can assure you of. And I’m sorry that this paragraph came out of nowhere. It originally was to be introduced differently, but that’s not how the post turned out. Sorry. Things happen.

Moving on.

Jones! And everyone else! She’s going to be an incredible character! Regardless of who else was considered for her part, she’ll certainly do a wonderful job. Now, as for everyone else, I hadn’t realized how many big named stars there were appearing in this film. Sure we don’t know too much about them, but just knowing these actors are in it is enough. Whitaker, Mendelsohn, Tudyk, and Ahmed, for me are the standouts. They’ve done enough terrific work I have faith. I’m sure the others won’t disappoint.

ACTION!! Lots of explosive action! It all looks incredible. Everything you’d want from a film and story that is set in this particular universe. The action actually surprised me. It came off as a bit more intense and seemed to really throw you in it all. That sounds exciting! Hopefully the next trailer gives us so much more, and that the film delivers some fresh and exciting sequences.

However, I must ask, purely after seeing the teaser three times, even though I’ve since read what this film is about. What is this film about? Again, just the view from the teaser. It sort of tells you, a rebellion, plans from the enemy, and a lot of action. After I saw it, and then again, I still felt like I didn’t know what the hell this film was about. Granted, it’s called a teaser for a reason, but even from a teaser I should still feel like I have a clear idea. I’m certainly intrigued enough too want to see the next trailer, but that won’t come until after the summer’s over, at the latest.

Considering that 12 hours ago I wasn’t all that excited for this film, I find it remarkable how quickly a two minute clip can change that. Maybe it’s that this franchise seems to be in solid hands, or better yet, that the people taking part are incredibly talented and can simply deliver. Whatever it may be, I’m fully on board! I’ll be semi-counting down the days until this film comes out, which is really when someone points out how many days there are left. That amount of excitement will be enough to sustain me. Then, like everyone else, I’ll be ready to see Jones in a role that will truly put her on the map, more so than she already is. Plus, it’ll just give me a chance to see how far her talent does in fact reach.

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