Solo: A Star Wars Story Movie Review
I love when a film surpasses expectations, especially when those expectations were low to begin with. When the Han Solo film was announced, I was convinced there was no one who could possibly replace Harrison Ford. I fully expected Solo to fall flat. I was pleasantly surprised at how good the film turned out and I have to give full marks to Alden Ehrenreich for successfully channeling Harrison Ford into his role as young Han Solo. Full marks are also given to Donald Glover for his excellent performance as Lando Calrissian. Donald didn't just channel Billy Dee Williams, but he also changed his voice so that he sounded identical to Billy Dee. If you closed your eyes, you almost wouldn't be able to tell the difference between the two.
The film follows young Han Solo as he and his sweetheart Qi'ra attempt to escape their home planet of Corellia. After being separated, Han joined the Imperial Army in order to train to be a pilot. He was kicked out of the flight academy and put with the ground forces. There, he meets Tobias Beckett, an undercover thug who was preparing to escape the Empire's grasp and rob them blind. Han joins his team and thus begins the legend.
Before going into the film, I had a small list of events mentioned throughout the Star Wars films that I wanted to see explained in this film. How did Han meet Chewbacca? How did Han acquire the Millennium Falcon from Lando? What is the meaning of those gold dice Han always has in the cockpit? And what exactly is the Kessel run? All these things are explained and brought to light in this film. In fact, it pretty much sums up Han's greatest hits so to speak and brings us to the point where we meet him in A New Hope. While there's still a good 10 years of untold story between the end of Solo and the beginning of A New Hope, we at least now know the origins behind the legend.
There's only one negative comment that I have about the film. Lando's companion droid L3 seemed like a real waste of time and space. Yes, there were a few comedic moments from her but L3's presence just felt like a cashout after the popularity of fan favorite K2-SO in Rogue One. There doesn't need to be a smartass droid in every film. Don't try to improve on perfection.
In conclusion, I was pleasantly surprised by the film and I fully acknowledge the brilliance behind it. Director Ron Howard pulled off a fun adventure and the father-son writing duo did a great job incorporating original to new. I give Solo: A Star Wars Story a 3.5 out of 4.
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© 2018 Alec Zander