I made a conscious decision to steer clear of any super hero blockbusters on this website as I feel they are the poisonous stake someone stuck in the root of the tree of modern cinema . This snub extends itself mostly to gigantic scale blockbusters as well, where applicable, but I couldn’t resist giving Star Wars a place. The Force Awakens (2015) being the first movie to come after the franchise’s sale to Disney could have marked the franchise’s demise into the modern cinematic formula of hiring talentless directors to reproduce integrity-less crap for the sake of making money – but it was brilliant as it didn’t. It obviously used the updated filmmaking technology that wasn’t available when George Lucas shot the first instalment back in 1977, but has kept true to the original look and feel of the movies.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is the first of the franchise to branch out into stories around the main narrative. Admittedly, I don’t know enough about Star Wars to say either way, but this seems to me like a way around some sort of contractual agreement with the sale of the franchise. Nevertheless, it should make me angry as it does fall under the blanket of super hero / comic book franchises that I feel are eating away at the soul of modern cinema, but to me it looks like the crème de la crème when it comes to popcorn flicks.
The trailer starts and that nostalgic music begins to swell and its awesome. The Rebellion in new film is fronted by Felicity Jones as she is aided by Diego Luna in enlisting a crew to steal the plans for the Death Star. The dark side is fronted this time by Ben Mendelssohn (pictured above) which is a very exciting prospect for me – he is brilliant, especially at the more villainous characters and if he can’t do it I don’t know who can. Let’s just hope they make full use of his talents. The very end of the trailer offers a glimpse of the back of a shiny black helmet and an all too familiar heavy breathing – letting us know that Darth Vader is back.
Rogue One is directed by Gareth Edwards, who most recently did the Godzilla (2014) remake with Bryan Cranston and Aaron Taylor-Johnson. It does seem that following the way the public positively embraced the inclusion of John Boyega and Daisy Ridley’s portrayal of a strong female lead character – the powers at the top have extended this notion to diversify the cast even further this time. The cast also includes Mads Mikkelsen, Riz Ahmed, Jimmy Smits (from Episode III – Revenge of the Sith), Forest Whitaker, Donnie Yen and Alan Tudyk (the guy who got naked on the roof in Death at a Funeral) voicing the robot K-2SO. Sadly, no Carrie Fisher (I don’t entirely know where Princess Leia fits into the story) but she will be with Daisy Ridley and the rest of the gang in Star Wars – Episode VIII which is in post-production and is set to be released in December of 2017. So by the looks of things, we will be able to go to the cinema to see Star Wars until it no longer seems so futuristic.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story will be released worldwide in December of this year. You can watch the trailer below, and if you are that way inclined I’m sure you can already pre-book yourself some tickets in a cinema near you.
Felicity Jones in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Diego Luna with K-S20 in Rogue One A Star Wars Story