(*** Attention: If this contains anything being a spoiler to you, you do live in a galaxy, far, far away…)
It’s finally coming to a galaxy near you: Rogue One, the prequel of prequels. The latest addition to the most profitable franchise in film history. Much has been said, written and put under embargo since they don’t want us to tell you a bunch of things you already know about our courageous Rebels on the run to save the galaxy, a voyage depicting the days, the hours leading to Star Wars: A New Hope (1977). And these rebels still don’t have any good Internet connection…
A lot of entertainment value was apparently added by savior for hire Tony Gilroy, over Gareth Edward’s first take on the material, during production. And there is a lot of action in Rogue One, it plays on the fans nostalgia with efficiency, you’ll see… As a stand alone it is pretty fair. It is not the masterpiece our Twitter friends said it is, but it’s fine on its own terms. And it probably goes with that added material and everyone will cheer at the action of the later part, but it is the first part that is the strongest because it is surprising in its ways of showing many aspect in a natural and believable atmosphere. But Hollywood (and especially Mickey) doesn’t want it that way. When the director screams action he means just that: action. On the business level, it seems it was wise to re-shoot, but it makes us wonder, what if it was an even better standout in the first place? We’ll never know.
Much has also been said, written and put under embargo about added characters development, comparison to Empire Strikes Back and blah, blah, blah… Let me get one or two things straight: As a stand alone it is pretty fair. But, screenwriters Chris Weitz and Tony Gilroy are no Leigh Brackett. In Empire, that fine lady fixed the characters development. We thought it was done, but the guys spent two decades ruining it. Also, DOP Greig Fraser is good but he is no Peter Suschitzky. Period. And Michael Giacchino provides an effective score, but the Force is with YOU, Jedi Williams. So guys, how come you compare both Rogue and Empire? Since you get so emotional on everything and then step to the dark side and write foolish things, close these twitter account now!
Speaking of the Dark side, there was alleged offensive twit by artisans of Rogue One against new president Donald. Oddly, one strong aspect open for debate about the film is the unusual number of leading actors, surrounding (Felicity Jones) the female lead, being the direct result of immigration. Riz Ahmed is from the UK (with Pakistani descent), Mads Mikkelsen is Danish, Diego Luna is Mexican, Donnie Yen (Mr IP Man himself) and Wen Jiang are Chinese (This is 2016 you have to be appealing to the Chinese market). All this bunch is running around streets recalling the recreation of the Casbah in Julien Duvivier’s classic Pepe le Moko (1937) with Jean Gabin. We’re in for an intriguing metaphor.
Beware Donald, the force is strong with these ones…