Hubby and I had a mommy/daddy weekend over the New Year holiday, and besides actually spending the night out for the big ball drop, we also decided to see the new Star Wars movie. We are definitely Star Wars fans, but since Disney has taken over LucasFilms and has decided to release movies on or around our daughter’s birthday every year, we will consistently be late to the viewing of these movies.
Hear that Disney! Make the release dates later!
The basics of the movie are: In a time of conflict, a group of unlikely heroes band together on a mission to steal the plans to the Death Star, the Empire’s ultimate weapon of destruction. This key event in the Star Wars timeline brings together ordinary people who choose to do extraordinary things, and in doing so, become part of something greater than themselves.
***SPOILERS***You have been warned***
To put it in perspective of the Star Wars timeline saga, Rogue One falls in between Episode 3 and 4. Anakin has already made the full transition to Darth Vader. Leia is an adult and part of the Senate. The Death Star is being tested for operability. Rogue One literally ends where Episode 4 begins.
Our heroin is Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones). As a young child, Jyn witnesses the death of her mother at the hand of an Imperial Director of Weapons and Arms, Orson Krennic, and loses her father to the same man because the Director needs him to finish the construction of the Death Star. Saw Gerrera, an extremist rebel, raises Jyn, but dumps her when she turns 16 to keep her safe from those in the rebellion that would use her against the Empire which enslaves her father.
Galen Erso, Jyn’s father, throws himself into his work after being captured in order to create the Death Star’s sole weakness. We all know what that is (Episode 4). He then convinces a cargo pilot for the Empire to defect and send a message to Saw Gerrera and Jyn to tell them where to find the plans of the Death Star in order to locate the weak point which would destroy the Death Star.
This all leads up to the testing of the Death Star on singular cities. Our heroine and her crew of misfits are able to escape the first test of the Death Star on Jedha, but as their journey takes them to Scarif to find the plans for the weapon and broadcast them to the Rebellion, they don’t make it out so easy again.
OK, review time. This movie at first felt like it was all for nothing because every single person that was part of Rogue One dies. No one makes it out alive! What the heck is the point then! Why introduce us to these characters if they are all never to be heard from again! And what the heck was up with that intro? No scrolling text? Are you kidding me?
Ah, ha, my friend. This is exactly why. Just like Princess Leia says at the very end of the movie, “They (Rogue One) have given us hope.” It was the sacrifice of this group that gave the Rebellion a chance at beating the Empire. It really hit me in the feels. Not sure if that was because I really liked the message, or if because Carrie Fisher was the one to say it via CG dub.
With the passing of Carrie Fisher, I think seeing her as a Princess Leia again was perfect for a fellow Star Wars nerd. She has been forever immortalized, and the fact that they were able to make her look so real as if she were still a young actress, I absolutely loved it. There was another character that had been dubbed in as well who has previously passed, Grand Moff Tarkin aka Peter Cushing. I told my husband at the end of the movie that I couldn’t even tell that he had been CG’ed in it looked that good.
Overall, the movie didn’t disappoint, but I think my standards for Star Wars are way too high. It was entertaining and enjoyable, but with the passing of Carrie Fisher, I’m not sure any subsequent movies will ever meet the caliber of those containing a youthful Princess Leia, the true heroine.
Rest in Peace – Carrie Fisher