Few films have enjoyed a crescendo quite like Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. And, for those holding their breath to see if the build up has been worth it, then the critics have replied with a resounding YES! A stand alone feature of sorts that is part sequel to Force Awakens and part spinoff entirely to the whole Episodes timeline that began in the 70s, the studio's initial emotions right now will be a mixture of delight and relief. All while we watch audiences buy into what they are selling.
The franchise has a unique set of qualities that sets it apart from its counterparts in the fantasy action/adventure genre. And those that have seen the movie and written about their experiences argue that Rogue One only takes this asset onto another level. As modern blockbusters continue to fail to land that knockout punch for critics who are used to a diet of popcorn fodder, this appears to be a much needed dose of two thumbs up on all accounts.
Old Meets New As Classic Tale Gets Modern Rendition
While there are still enough cameos and call-backs for devotees to taste on, The Telegraph's Robbie Collin believes the flick strikes a perfect balance for those new to the series and the hardcore faithful who know the characters and storyline inside out.
"Director Gareth Edwards and his cast and crew strike an agile balance throughout," starts Collin. "Despite its darker tone, Rogue One feels cozily at home in the Star Wars universe, and is crowded with the kind of imagination-tickling details the franchise thrives on. The film’s world is entirely physical, full of boxy things that hiss and clunk. X-Wings skitter across a planetary defense shield like curling stones on ice, while top secret data sits on hard disks the size of cheese toasties."
Explaining that there is a "dazzle and grace" to the extravaganza, Collin thinks that it has kept a certain level of charm that you would come to expect from a Star Wars installment.
"In its best moments," says Collin, "there’s a yarn-spinning intimacy to it too – an old war story told around a spectacular campfire."
The Rogue One Story Compares To The Greats: Rolling Stone
With actress Felicity Jones singled out for particular praise for her performance as Jyn Erso, Rolling Stone's own Peter Travers is of the opinion that the latest in the series stacks up as well as anything that has come before it.
"As always, a Star Wars movie lives or dies depending on how much we give a damn or don't about the characters," argues Travers. "Luckily, there are no cutesy Ewoks to soften Jyn's journey into the heart of Imperial darkness. It's no lie that some of the interactions get lost under the weight of front-loaded exposition. But with the smashing Jones giving us a female warrior to rank with the great ones and a cast that knows how to keep it real even in a sci-fi fantasy, Rogue One proves itself a Star Wars story worth telling."
If you still need a reason to go out and see it after this, you are beyond convincing.