Finally. As promised, I will deliver you today the official Spew Movie Review of the new Star Wars film, Rogue One.
Before seeing this film, I have heard so many Star Wars nerds rave about how amazing this movie is. Some even have said this is the best one since Empire; a bold statement from any Star Wars nut because as we all know, the original 3 are holier to them than the Five Pillars of Islam is to a Muslim. So obviously I came in with high hopes, albeit somewhat tempered due to my distaste for episode 7.
I think I needed to temper my expectations more.
I will spare you all the minuscia on why this installment doesn’t quite fit in well with the Star Wars canons. Some of the story line worked, some did not. But I don’t find this is the main issue.
After thinking about this movie for the better part of 2 weeks, I think my main issue is that this new crop of StarWArs movies just do not feel like…well…Star Wars.
When Disney grabbed the reins of the Star Wars franchise from George Lucas, no one really knew what to expect. I mean we know Disney films; they tend to be on the kid-friendly and light-hearted end of the movie spectrum. But this has not carried over to the new Star Wars films.
First of all, I feel Disney is going out of their way to create a new gritty feel to this franchise, making it distinct from the original 6. In turn, I feel the overall aura is more joyless and less fantasiful. These movies are far less for kids, the violence is more real, and the new aliens and weapontry is absent so there are no new toys for the kids.
In turn, I feel these films have a more sci-fi feel instead of a fantasy feel. There is no question in my mind that the original films parallel Lord of the Rings more than they do Star Trek. The force? Magic. Jedis? Wizard knights. Planets? Just simply other cities or towns. However in these new films, there is an explanation of how things work. Death Star power? Mined crystals from a planet. How do people eat? That is explained. Other minute details are explained in the movies as well, which makes it far more of a sci-fi thing than ever before.
But probably the biggest hing is something that seems so minor; the overall look. The 6 originals have a very clean and bright look. Yes, some of it is CG, but to see the clean lines of the vehicles, the dichotomous light/dark display of a lightsaber behind a black background. The sets and look were colorful and fun to look at. It has the feel of a fantasy or a comic book.
These new ones seem like an attempt to make it more grisled and realistic. They are definietly not as much fun and are not consistant with the overall tenor of the franchise. It is sort of like making The Man With No Name franchise into a dialog-ridden action movie. Or turning the Fast and the Furious franchise into a realistic expose at illegal drag racing. Or making the Godfather 4 into a slapstick musical with the Corleone’s played by One Direction. OK, that last one is probably too much.
Simply put, these new Star Wars flicks don’t do it for me. They are not whisking me back into my childhood; they are reminding me that Disney is trying to capture a magic that maybe is lost.
But I really did like that C3PO-esque robot. He was pretty awesome. Too bad he died.