Late this past week the first trailer for Rouge One: a Star Wars story dropped, and to say that I enjoyed it would be an immense understatement. The footage released hit every beat perfectly, and matched what I expected to see from the film. After viewing the trailer half a dozen times, I began to dissect each and every part of what I had just seen. Questions about who’s who and why everything is happening have plagued my head in the days following. What I’ve come to realize is that this movie, which is a direct spin-off of a franchise that is very close to my heart, excites me more than the newest Star Wars film ever did.
What attracted me most to Rouge One was the original idea of the film being more of a war film. It’s clear that director Gareth Edwards wants to tell a darker, more realistic Star Wars story; one filled with less destiny and Force powers and more military tactics and the cold reality of combat and fighting against unwinnable odds. Several highlights of the trailer were: the appearance of the rarely seen Rebellion leader Mon Mothma, a showcase of Felicity Jones character, Jyn Erso, the Death Star, AT-AT’s, and a mysterious new leader within the Empire who’s name we don’t know yet.
Growing up on Star Wars, I’ve become accustomed to watching grand space operas involving daring heroes, memorable villains, mystical powers, and exotic locales. However, I have always had in interest in the actual war that’s being waged between the Rebel Alliance and the Empire which isn’t touched on much in the original trilogy with the exceptions being the three biggest battles of the war. Rouge One looks to satisfy my desires as it tells the story of the rag-tag group of Rebels tasked with stealing the plans for the Death Star. The cast of characters is filled with smugglers, bounty hunters, weapons specialists, and other individuals that prefer to stay on the fringes of society. This won’t be a story about heroes or what’s right, but more of a tale about the greater good and future of the Rebel Alliance. The overall tone of desperation and dread are well felt throughout the minute and a half run time of the trailer. What’s more, the new cast of characters means that I will go into the movie not knowing exactly what to expect from the actors.
The biggest difference between how I feel about this movie and Episode VII is what each story represents. With The Force Awakens, I knew that I was getting another Star Wars. I was already prepared to see Luke, Han, and Leia, as well as all the other aspects of the original trilogy that make Star Wars, Star Wars. However, I’ve never really known what to expect with Rogue One. What’s being done with this new movie is unlike anything we have seen in the Star Wars cinematic universe. It’s also telling a story that we as the audience have only heard of in passing. The events of Rouge One, and their consequences, will pave the way for what happened in episodes VI-VI. The dramatic irony of the story is what makes the idea of this movie so interesting. We know how the story will end, but we don’t know who will live, who will die, or how the actions of the characters in this movie will have an impact on later installments in the main story line.
Rouge One: a Star Wars story looks to be one of the biggest hits of this year, and I can say with all honesty that it holds my interest far more than The Force Awakens ever did. I’m fully prepared for whatever Edwards and company have to throw at me, and I expect nothing less than a fantastic cinematic experience. For all your video game, comic book, and movie news, check back here at From Dice to Controllers. Thanks and have a good one.