Rogue One (2016) Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Alan Tudyk, Donnie Yen, Wen Jiang Movie Review

Rogue One (2016)   4/54/54/54/54/5

Felicity Jones in Rogue One (2016)

Episode 3.75

As a child Jyn Erso had to flee when Orson Krennic took her former scientist father away to become the Empire's chief engineer on their most evil plan, a weapon known as the Death star. Years later Jyn finds herself working with Cassian Andor and a mismatch bunch of resistance fighters as they try to infiltrate a base to steal the weapon plans for the Rebel Alliance before it is too late.

So for those who are just casual movie fans who have enjoyed the sci-fi adventure of the other movies in the "Star Wars" franchise let me give you a couple of important bits of information. Firstly you know the opening crawl from "Episode IV: A NEW HOPE" which starts with "It is a period of civil war...", well "Rogue One" basically tells the part which goes "During the battle, Rebel spies managed to steal secret plans to the Empire's ultimate weapon, the DEATH STAR, an armoured space station with enough power to destroy an entire planet". So yes that makes "Rogue One" kind of like episode 3.75 or at least that is where it fits in the timeline of the bigger story.

Diego Luna in Rogue One (2016)

The second bit of information is that "Rogue One" isn't like the other "Star Wars" movies with some obvious differences from no use of the name "Skywalker" to a lack of side swipes and a difference in music. But there is also another more noticeable difference as "Rogue One" isn't the humour filled adventure movie of the previous episodes, this is a drama which tells just a slice of the story. Yes there is humour in it, mainly thanks to Alan Tudyk as K-2SO, and the whole thing builds to an action finale as the revels attack a base to steal the plans but this feels almost grown up and more serious than the other movies.

Of course with this fitting in just prior to "Episode IV: A NEW HOPE" we don't have the familiar faces such as Luke and Han Solo although a few familiar characters do crop up at various points including the return of Governor Tarkin thanks to Guy Henry and computer technology. But what that means is we have new characters such as Jyn Erso and Cassian Andor and they are well played by Felicity Jones and Diego Luna. Unfortunately some of the characters didn't work for me and Forest Whitaker's thespian taken on Saw Gerrera felt out of place, like he should be in some Shakespearean play rather than a Star Wars movie.

What this all boils down to is that in truth I have mixed feelings about "Rogue One" and initially found the differences to the other movies too much. But this is a movie which grows on you and by the time it ends you feel like you need to watch it again.