December 19, 2016
Movie Monday: Rogue One
Jyn (Felicity Jones) is the daughter of weapons designer for the Empire. He doesn't believe in the cause, but it's build or die. His brief rebellion did manage to get his daughter out of the control of the Empire, so they couldn't use her as a hostage against him. When he convinces a pilot to defect with news of the Death Star, the Rebel Alliance contacts Jyn because she can help them confirm the tale.
What follows is a story that ranges over several planets as a rag-tag team of fighters attempts to prove that the Death Star exists and can be stopped.
While The Force Awakens assembled a cast of mostly unknown actors, Rogue One goes for more familiar faces like Diego Luna, Forest Whitaker, and Donnie Yen. I like those actors, and don't think their higher profile distracted from their story. They faded into their roles quite well. I did enjoy that Rogue One allowed the actors to keep their accents instead of having everyone use an American or English accent.
Rogue One is darker than most Star Wars movies. It shows the side of the Rebel Alliance that veers into terrorist attacks. And the ending is more hopeful than happy. While my dad and I enjoyed the film together, Rogue One is not the best choice for families with smaller children. I don't think it's inappropriate for kids; just be prepared for potential discussion (or calming down upset kiddos) afterward. I think the ending fit the film, but it definitely takes a new tone for the universe. This one is more Empire than Return of the Jedi.
I've seen mixed reviews online, but both my dad and I enjoyed Rogue One. As always, I believe the best way to make a decision is to see something for yourself.