Nerd Caliber
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TV/Movies & Music

May 15, 2018

Solo Services Star Wars Legacy Well, With Little Innovation

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Written by: Geez Alize
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I can remember entering the first Star Wars movie I ever saw, hair done up like Princess Leia, with sheer excitement that I didn’t understand at such a young age. I recall feeling the same while entering Star Wars: The Force Awakens with a newfound feeling of “they better not screw this up.” So when I entered the press screening of Solo: A Star Wars Story, I expected to feel the same excitement and wonder I always felt before a Star Wars movie, but something was missing. The idea that I had already seen Han Solo act out the rest of his life left me feeling somewhat empty about what surprises this move could bring. Yes, there are other characters, but all being unrecognizable from the rest of the franchise left me sure about their fate, or so I thought.

The obvious worry from a prequel Han Solo movie is that the Han we all know could not be taken back to his twenties, despite the magic of makeup. However, within the first 15 minutes I felt comfortable watching Alden Ehrenreich fall into the iconic Han role. Between the nods to the classic Han attire, dry humor, and harebrained schemes he was able to bring himself and the Han we recognize into the character.  Woody Harrelson (Beckett) and Emilia Clarke (Kira) brought their ever-amazing skill to morph into any character while bringing the star power of Solo up as well.

Donald Glover delivers the good as young Lando.

Donald Glover delivers the goods as young Lando.

There is not enough to be said about Donald Glover (Lando) and Phoebe Waller Bridge (L3). L3 will have you in stitches with her dry wit and solidarity with her empowerment. The only words I can find are to see Solo for yourself and let them take you on the journey. Without these actors, I can’t imagine Solo would deserve half the praise it probably will receive.

What else adds to the iconic nature of a Star Wars film besides music? Of course, as everyone expects, the classic Star Wars theme was strategically placed to swell the audience and pull them into the inside joke that everyone except the main characters were in on. Unfortunately, the composers job comes with such high stakes to meet the original score that composer John Powell fell just centimeters short. While his music took nothing away from the movie, it felt as though it didn’t add anything special either.  It was the perfect backdrop, while not giving anything to write home about.

Solo runs a little over two hours, which for some movie goers can make or break the attention span. With a large company like Disney now overseeing the Star Wars projects, I knew I would make it through the two hours with a highly calculated mix of comedy, action, and drama all pushed just to the line of evoking emotion before it jumps you to a new idea.

In all honesty, it felt much like an Avengers movie with Star Wars characters. The pacing and overall use of elements to keep movie goers on the edge of their seats line up for a perfectly executed Disney movie. While I (almost) want this to be a bad thing, I completely fall into it every time. Finding myself sitting on the edge of my seat, being tricked by what I thought should happen as my eyes well up at the moments that you know play to the future. Solo was no exception to this and while it may not have the been the best Star Wars movie I have seen, it certainly wasn’t the worst. (I’m looking at you Jar Jar.)

Solo: A Star Wars Story (Lucasfilm, PG-13, 2h 15min) 7.5 out of 10.

About the Author

Geez Alize



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