As faithful readers would know, I effectively boycotted this seemingly pointless movie when it was released in cinemas, due to The Last Jedi‘s desecration of the Star Wars legacy. But to be fair, I decided to see for myself – so to speak – as the movie has just been released digitally. So be prepared for honest critique of Solo : A Star Wars Story.
S P O I L E R S
Fact of the matter, Solo is actually worse than my already low expectations.
First, the positives – yes, there are some. The locations look fabulous – very epic landscapes. No quibbling about the overall art direction – all quite believable within the context of a Star Wars movie.
But that’s about it.
What did I hate? Well, for starters, what was with the colour grading? It was hazy, grimy and ugly and most of the time – especially in the first half of the movie – it was tough to tell what was going on because one simply could not see through the murkiness.
The characterisation was very superficial and the acting was also lightweight. Alden Ehrenreich is no Harrison Ford – then again, who is? – and it might as well have been Tye Sheridan (!) in the role. Ehrenreich just came across as a bumbling fool most of the time.
The rest of the cast were quite recognisable and well-known but there was not enough in the characterisations to make them remotely interesting.
And of course, the plot holes. Oh dear.
Han being given the surname “Solo” by an army recruiter – why would he adopt this moniker once he deserted?
Han speaking Wookie and thereby connecting with Chewbacca in the pit – but then never again speaking Wookie to Chewie again!
Qi’ra’s re-appearance as the assistant of crime boss Dryden Vos (Paul Bettany), after Han clearly states his goal to be re-united with her. Too convenient for me!
Naturally, Solo also suffered from prequel syndrome i.e. the insistent need to provide fan service connections to familiar characters, objects and tropes.
Thus, every single previous reference made by Han Solo in the original trilogy was trotted out. From his winning of the Millennium Falcoln from Lando Carlrissian in a card game to the infamous Cassel run, every last detail had to be presented.
And… don’t even get me started with that superfluous Darth Maul cameo. Why was he brandishing his light sabre while he was talking to Qi’ra? Seriously dumb.
Without any stakes or tension, Solo is a meaningless and pointless cash grab, and it is quite re-assuring to note that the Star Wars fanbase ensured that it bombed big time at the box office and made its feelings perfectly clear to Disney.
Hopefully, this will discourage Disney from making any standalone movies with Luke Skywalker, Han Solo or Leia Organa, ever again.
Now streaming on Disney+.
… still there’s more …