Saturday, May 25, 2019
Movie Reviews

Posted at: May 25, 2018, 6:35 PM; last updated: May 25, 2018, 6:39 PM (IST)MOVIE REVIEW: SOLO - A STAR WARS STORY

A ‘Solo’ run-in with the past


Film: Solo - A Star Wars Story

  • Cast: Alden Ehrenreich, Donald Glover, Emilia Clarke, Woody Harrelson, Thandie Newton, Paul Bettany, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Joonas Suotamo, Warwick Davis, Clint Howard, Ian Kenny, Jon Favreau
  • Director: Ron Howard
A ‘Solo’ run-in with the past
A still from Solo - A Star Wars Story

Johnson Thomas

"Solo" may not be the first film to visualise the past of its main characters. The prequel trilogy gave us (sort-of) origin stories of Anakin Skywalker, Darth Vader, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda, Palpatine and many others. But Han Solo’s young adult shenanigans was always missing in the larger context of the series. Solo’s story, in fact, happens to include visuals and scenarios that most Star Wars fans may have for long been dreaming about.  

Han Solo, introduced way back in 1977 with Harrison Ford, is essayed here by Alden Ehrenriech. Solo shows up in this prequel as a young, daring, pilot and smuggler who's on his way to being prematurely soured by a hard-knock life. Ehrenreich’s Solo isn’t as magnetic or charming as Ford, but he does have the suavity and looks that might eventually turn to gold (that is if fans give him a chance). 

Han (Alden Ehrenreich) has a girlfriend and partner-in-crime, Qi'ra (Emilia Clarke), but their romance is short-lived. Han then meets up with his future smuggling partners, Val (Thandie Newton) and Tobias (Woody Harrelson), and rolls out bits and pieces of his life that were essentially missing from the series so far.

Director Ron Howard breathes life into the war front scenarios, smuggles in a heist set-up with a precipitous mountain monorail at the centre of it all and even adds a distinct old Western flavour to some of the action. 

Though most of it is jaded seen-before stuff, it’s presented with a flamboyance and flair that’s thrilling. Some interesting characters get a shoo-in too. L3-37 and her relationship with Lando is one of the highlights here.

The CGI is top-notch as always, writing is fluid, humour is risible, performances are vigorous and the thrill factor is pretty much on the up and happening. This ‘Solo’ run may not be the best Star Wars engagement yet, but it certainly has enough smarts to keep fuelling up fan interest for some more of such outings. 


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