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Rogue One: A Star Wars Triumph

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Christmas came early this year because Disney just gave us the best gift anyone could’ve asked for – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. It’s the prequel to the Original Trilogy that we’ve all been waiting for, but more importantly, it’s one of the best movies from the entire series – yes that’s right, it’s up there with Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. The force is strong with this one.

NO SPOILERS

The Prequels had original ideas but they were just poorly executed. I mean, it’s a tragic story about Anakin Skywalker turning to the dark side and destroying everything the Republic and the Jedi Council have fought so dearly to protect. What could go wrong? Overuse of CGI, horrible dialogue, and terrible acting just to name a few. Episode VII: The Force Awakens was a movie with an unoriginal story but was flawlessly executed with precision. It was entertaining and fun, but very predictable and just too…safe.

The Force Awakens

It’s like a committee of business people made this movie instead a director creating art

Rogue One on the other hand, had an original and exciting story about a group of rebels who have to steal the blueprints to the Deathstar in order to stop the Empire from using this weapon of mass destruction, making this story a direct prequel to Episode IV: A New Hope. While we’ve seen the Deathstar in action in other movies, this was the first time you really get to see and more importantly, feel just how terrifying and horrific it is when entire planets are destroyed. This movie really enriches and adds deep layers to the Star Wars mythology. It ties up loose ends from Episode IV and we learn that the Force isn’t just for a Jedi or Sith Lord and surprisingly, the Rebels aren’t just squeaky clean good guys. Yes, the rebels have noble intentions but they do some shady stuff in this movie and that’s the sad thing about war; hands get dirty. And I think that’s the best way to describe Rogue One – it’s a war movie set in the Star Wars universe and that’s what makes it so different and special.

War

Things are about to get ugly

Rogue One introduces very memorable characters to the Star Wars franchise. I honestly thought this wasn’t possible considering how many exceptional characters we’ve already seen from all the other movies, but how can you not love Donnie Yen as Chirrut Imwe or Alan Tudyk as the best droid ever, K-2SO! R2-D2 and BB-8 are cute and C3PO is pretty annoying the majority of the time, but K-2SO is such a dry-humored jerk and you’ll have a huge grin on your face every time he’s in a scene.

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I need these Hot Toys!

Before I wrap up this review, let’s talk about easter eggs, cameos, and Star Wars references. There are a lot! But the majority of them are very subtle and only hardcore Star Wars fans will catch them all.  And since this story takes place literally right before the opening events in Episode IV, you’re going to see characters from that movie! How is that possible considering A New Hope came out in 1977? Movie magic and technology – what a time we live in.

Finally, there’s Darth Vader. We’ve had an entire trilogy about Darth Vader so we really didn’t need another movie about him so thank goodness he only shows up in a few scenes. But the scenes he’s in are phenomenal and trust me, you’ve never seen him like this before. It was like something out of a horror film and I was completely blown away by what I was seeing, while still having the biggest smile on my face.

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Luke….I….am the best part of this movie

Rogue One: A Star Wars movie is my favourite movie of 2016 (alongside Deadpool). Being a big Star Wars fan, my expectations were incredibly high but somehow, the movie exceeded them. This movie reminded me of why I love Star Wars so much and I can’t wait to see Episode VIII and the Han Solo movie. Until next time, may the force be with you.

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