Let’s Talk Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

posted in: Let's Talk | 21

Welcome back, lovers of nerds. As promised, the release of Star Wars: Rogue One on blu ray means that we will be discussing the latest Star Wars movie installment. I’m sure your Star Wars fan has already seen this movie at least once, but there is nothing like a blu ray release to give someone an excuse to watch a Star Wars movie again.

Star Wars: Rogue One takes place before the original Star Wars movie that came out in 1977 and shares the story of the team that stole the original Death Star plans. The main character Jyn Erso is the daughter of scientist Galen Erso who is apprehended by the empire and forced to help them develop their weapon of mass destruction. Galen uses his position to design a fatal flaw into the weapon, and then to get a message out to the rebellion so they would know to come look for it. Jyn is part of the team that then successfully steals the plans for the rebellion, leading to the events that take place in Episode 4: A New Hope.

Moments from the Movie

The movie has several moments that fans have been talking about:

  • Darth Vader makes a cameo. In the first scene, he makes a ridiculously bad pun, showing that although he is more man than machine, he still can deliver crappy dialogue with the best of them. The second scene, though. Oh, my. The second scene is Darth Vader at the height of his badassitude as he completely annihilates a group of rebel soldiers attempting to hold a corridor. It is by far the coolest Darth Vader sequence in any of the films (although in the comics, Vader has some even badassier moments. Note: If your fan hasn’t already, suggest picking up the Vader comics. There are 4 volumes that contain the entire series run. Or you could just pick up the Vader Down crossover, which contains the badassiest Vader sequence).
  • CGI characters. The movie resurrects Grand Admiral Tarkin (or rather Peter Cushing, the actor who originally portrayed Tarkin and who died in 1994) through the use of CGI. While certainly an impressive technological feat, the character looks just off enough to be a little weird. Still though, it’s pretty cool. And later in the movie, we get a brief scene featuring a CGI younger Princess Leia.
  • The Battle of Scarif. The movie climaxes with a battle on and over the planet of Scarif in an epic fight sequence. The action switches from troops on the ground and ships fighting in space and is everything right about Star Wars.

How it changes the Trilogy

The release of Rogue One changes the way the Original Trilogy is viewed now in subtle ways.

      The first and most obvious way it changes the Trilogy is that it turns out the weakness in the Death Star was put there by the design of Galen Erso, and not just as a ridiculous oversight. This plot point explains one of the biggest issues fans of the original have had with the plot for years, and makes jokes like the following now irrelevant
  • The rebellion feels more desperate in A New Hope. The revelation that the rebellion had nearly decided to disband, before eventually risking everything in a desperate fight at Scarif to secure the Death Star plans adds context to the state of the rebellion in Episode 4. Whereas before, it was easy to imagine the rebellion as a well-organized group who had had some measure of success prior to the movie, now we know that the rebellion was literally days away from falling apart and were desperate. It also makes the fact that they were able to take down the Death Star all the more miraculous.
  • The opening scene where Princess Leia lamely tries to pass off her ship as nothing more than an ambassador ship on a diplomatic mission to Alderaan is rendered all the lamer given that Darth Vader had been pursuing her ship since she escaped the Battle of Scarif. Still, kudos to her for shamelessly trying to sell that lie. Vader also seems more menacing now that we know the damage he is capable of.

Tidbits and Tie ins

Here are a few more random things you can bring up when talking about the film.

  • This is the first Star Wars movie without the traditional opening scrawl.
  • This is also the first stand-alone Star Wars movie and the first Star Wars movie not scored by John Williams. Given this movie’s success, there will now be many other stand-alone Star Wars movies. Thank you, Disney.
  • Saw Gerrera, a character who premiered in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars cartoons, and then who later showed up the Star Wars Rebels series, makes an appearance in this movie. He raises Jyn Erso and later is the rebel who receives the warning message from Galen Erso.
  • In the Battle of Scarif, the ship the main characters in Star Wars Rebels use (The Ghost) is present, indicating that at least some of them participated in the battle. The movie also contains many other Easter eggs, including the thugs that appear in the Mos Eisley cantina in Episode 4, and original (and unused footage) from A New Hope used in the Battle of Scarif.

I hope this helps you talk Star Wars with your nerd this week. And because Star Wars is the greatest thing ever, next week Let’s Talk will be going to Star Wars Celebration in Orlando. So, expect a bunch more Star Wars stuff is what I’m saying.


Image courtesy of starwars.com

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21 Responses

  1. robin Rue

    I actually haven’t seen this yet…I know, I know. It’s on my list, but it was out right at the holidays and I never had a chance to get to see it.

  2. My sons school has a movie night and this is the movie. I actually just bought it on Tuesday and I’ve decided I prefer to watch it at home instead of at the school. Robin you aren’t alone my family hasn’t seen it yet either.

  3. I definitely enjoyed the movie and it answered a lot of questions, probably more than the last 3 movies ever did. Although I can’t say that I don’t appreciate all of the Star Wars films since I am a huge fan.

  4. Oh dear…I am not a Star Wars fan and I’m one of those that hasn’t seen any of the films (sorry!). Actually, that’s not strictly true, I did get dragged to see The Phantom Menace but I don’t think that counts as I believe that it’s one of the rubbish ones?! My other half and my son are both big fans though and have seen Rogue One – I reckon I could impress them with my Star Wars knowledge now though after reading this!

  5. I do love Star Wars movies but I have not seen this one yet. Looking forward to checking it out and I really enjoyed your post.

  6. Good stuff. Recognized the lack of the scrolling screen immediately. I was disappointed, but my husband liked it. Some of the other stuff you mentioned got past me.

  7. My husband is desperately wanting to see this. We never went to the theater to see it, so we ordered it. We are waiting for it to arrive. He might have a fit until it gets here.

  8. I was never a star wars fan in the past but my husband has gotten me into it and now I love it! Rogue One is definitely my favorite!

  9. I am not ashamed to admit that I have never seen any star wars movie! My kids are all big fans though and keep threatening to make me watch a marathon of SW.

  10. Is it really bad that I’ve never watched Star Wars? Unless the Family Guy episodes about Star Wars counts.. oops! x

  11. I love a good Star wars film. However I hasn’t seen this yet. I love Felicity Jones, such a great actress. xx

  12. When I first saw the preview for Rogue One I had no interest in seeing it. But after hearing such rave reviews I’m curious to check it out. I’m a huge Star Wars fan so not seeing every movie would be wrong.

  13. I have yet to see this movie. I know I’m missing out big time, too.

  14. I have never watched a star wars movie or anything related to it. Yes, yes! judge away 🙂 But guess what, I kind of know everything about it because, the three men in my house are all about star wars.

  15. My husband would love this article. It looks info-plentiful about the Star Wars movies.
    I know he went with his brothers to see the last two of them and had a blast.

  16. I saw it in the cinema and honestly didn’t like it that much. While yes it tied a lot of the story together, and gave support to the originals visually it was lacking. I really didn’t like the lead actor choices either.

  17. I have not been able to watch this yet! Curse the limited baby sitters and crazy kids! LOL My hubby is the bigger fan so I always need him to come with me to remind me of all the connections to other movies.

  18. I haven’t had a chance to watch this yet, but it’s on my to-do list. Especially since my son wants to see it so bad!

  19. I have friends who are obsessed with star wars and I can’t blame them. The fandom really is incredible and I do like the fantasy/ Sci Fi genre x

  20. I’m not a huge Star Wars fan but my kids are and by default I watched this one. They are young but immediately noticed the absence of the opening crawl and we’re very disappointed. Also, I thought it was geared to an older, more mature, audience than the other movies. Great review!

  21. I’ll admit, I’ve never been a fan of Star Wars. I haven’t even watched more than an hour of one movie! Oops!

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