Solo: A Star Wars Story is a bit like an all-you-can-eat buffet. There’s always that one person whose plate is piled high with enough food for the whole week, including some non-descript dishes thrown on for the sake of expanding their palate. It’s an absolute gorge fest, based on the premise that if you like food, well surely having even more food will be fantastic.
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I’m sorry to say though buffet makers, that is just not the case. More often than not you leave feely bloated, foggy, and vowing never to each food ever, ever again. Such is the dilemma with the 10th film in the Star Wars franchise.
Introducing us to a young Han Solo (Alden Ehrenreich), we’re taken into the origin story of one of the original inter-galactic swashbucklers, who falls in with a crew of smugglers to make enough cash to reunite with his teenage crush. Along the way, we find out how he meets the Wookie Chewbacca (kicking off one of Hollywood’s most iconic bromance’s) and cuts his teeth as the world’s best pilot to acquire the Millennium Falcon.
It’s nice to get to know the guy I guess, but I couldn’t help but see Solo: A Star Wars Story as a launch pad for the subsequent video game and theme park ride. From the moment Han takes his crush Qi’ra (Emilia Clark) for a spin in his quick-twisting retro hovercraft, I could hear the click of safety belts and feel my neck crick around whiplash wielding bends.
“Solo: A Star Wars Story is about who we trust and who we serve, and how a combination of the two determine what guides our lives.”
If I set aside my momentary cynicism though, there was nugget or two in Solo: A Star Wars Story about who we trust and who we serve, and how a combination of the two determine what guides our lives. Motivated by a need to survive and rebel against the system, Solo has to decide what team he wants to be on, and whose cause his capacity as an outlaw is going to back. He may be a man whose upbringing has forced into an ‘anti-tribe’ mentality, but his need for community and reason can’t be avoided.
Pleasantly, Solo: A Star Wars Story doesn’t feel as self-important as The Force Awakens or Rogue One as they attempt to extend the life of the franchise and broaden out the original storylines for fans. However, judging by Solo: A Star Wars Story opening weekend box office results, it can’t get away from the fact moviegoers are weary of milking the Star Wars universe, and are struggling to care about anything beyond Luke and Leia.
Solo: A Star Wars Story is out now.