Rogue One is an excellent addition to Star Wars. For Star Wars fanatics, you will recognize some of the past characters including those from the original bar scene in Star Wars 4, “A New Hope.” And, additionally, past villains from the Empire. This Star Wars is the prequel to New Hope, giving the viewers the sacrifice and risk taken with gaining the actual plans to the Death Star.
The plot begins with the heroine, whose father is a disillusioned scientist working for the empire. He hides her from the Empire with the aid of Saw Gerrera, a veteran of the Clone Wars to keep the Empire from being able to hold her hostage. Felicity Jones hits the right tone as the maverick who has had her share of disappointment including with the rebellion. She is rescued from a labor camp by the alliance because she is the daughter of Galen Erso, the brilliant scientist, who built the Death Star under the watchful eye of Orson Krennic who is the Empire’s director of Weapons development.
While Jyn Erso is told their job is to extract her dad, Rebel Intelligence officer Cassian Andor is told to kill the scientist by command. This sets up potential conflict. Jyn Erso figures out that her father is to be killed. Andor does have the perfect opportunity to eliminate Galen Erso but will he? Felicity Jones is great as Jyn Erso just as Daisy Ridley was great as Rae in Star Wars 7. Diego Luna does a great job as the intelligence officer who has done his share of bad things for the alliance. He justifies his past because of the cause. But, there are times that you get the feeling that he doesn’t truly believe that.
Droid K-250 was perfect as the sarcastic droid. It brings humor to the movie. Donnie Yen as Chirrut Imwe and Jiang Wen as Baze Malbus, steal any of the scenes they are in. Chirrut Imwe plays the blind stick wielding ninja and Baze Malbus counters with his super blasters.
The final battle scene begins when the alliance comes to grip with the reality that the Death Star changes the balance of power. The debate centers on do we surrender or fight on? Jyn Erso states the rebellion must fight. She, along with Cassian Andor, decide to go it alone with many of Andor’s comrades. Their goal is to find the Death Star’s plans for Jyn Erso knows from a transmission given to her by Saw Gerrera that her dad has put a flaw into the Death Star which could lead to its demise.
Cassian Andor joins Jyn Erso, for to surrender is to make all he has done for the alliance including many of the dirty things worthless. So the small band goes into battle. Once the alliance sees they are engaged in the battle, they are forced to join it. This is one of the most awesome Star Wars battles ever filmed. It leaves you on the end of your seat.
This is old fashioned rebel versus Empire. Darth Vader makes an appearance in all of his evilness including a battle scene as he plows through Rebels soldiers protecting the plans in their possession. The Death Star is awesome. In particular, as it appears in the final battle. Plus, all of those rebel forces coming out of hyperspace is always cool. Episodes 4, 6, and 7 had great concluding battle scenes. But, Rogue One may even better as far as a battle scenes.
The ending is perfect. One could go home and see Star Wars New Hope as if it is one movie. What makes this Star Wars film special is that we see the grunts and heroes invisible in other Star Wars films. Especially, as they fight for each other to save the Galaxy from the Empire. Rogue One brings home that the price the rebels paid for the rebellion.
So far, Disney taking over the Star Wars franchise has been good. Both Star Wars 7 and Rogue One have been excellent. Both movies match the excitement and adventure of Star Wars 4, 5, and 6. Unlike other Star Wars fanatics who pretend episodes 1, 2, 3 do not exist, I never believed they were as bad as others. But, they don’t match any of the Star Wars staring with 4. However, there is one theme that permeates all the Star War movies. The Empire, along with the First Order, is needed to provide security and peace. But, it is a peace of submission, not freedom.