Alden EhrenreichEmilia Clarke...
Action & AdventureScience Fiction
In 1 Cinema
With major fandom, keeping some mystery is always a good idea because fandom creates expectations, and the truth is not always pretty. Like finding out the star of your favourite kids show was in fact a smiling-purple-dinosaur-suit-wearing pervert, or realising that no matter how colourful they are, unicorns don’t exist. Reality just sucks. That’s why sometimes answers can be disappointing. The Star Wars series goes way back, building expectations with each new episode. So when a prequel, giving answers and background to one of the most loved characters in the franchise is released, it is either going to be mind-blowingly great or horribly disappointing.
The film begins with Han (Alden Ehrenreich) and Qi’ra (Emilia Clarke), their miserable life on planet Corellia, and their failed escape attempt. Han manages to escape, joins the army then deserts and joins thieves with the hopes of making enough money to buy a ship and go back for Qi’ra. While at a meeting with the head of the evil organisation Crimson Dawn, Han meets Qi’ra, who is now its first lieutenant. As Han and Qi’ra head for the dangerous heist ahead, love is questioned, loyalty sways and the unexpected is in order.
The film answers a lot of questions that Star Wars fans may have had over the years such as how Han met Chewbacca, how did he come to own his ship the Millennium Falcon and more. And here comes the problem; with a character built up so much, with constant hints at the crazy stories and amazing life he has lived, the reality of the film just doesn’t measure up, and it never could have. Imagination and mystery will almost always beat the reality of what is possible in filmmaking.
Even with his best Harrison Ford impression Alden Ehrenreich was not able to fill the giant’s shoes; his acting skills are there, and his performance was enjoyable but again he is no Harrison Ford. But, nice try kid. Ehrenreich portrayed a more naïve and hopeful Han than the more wise and cynical persona of Han we have all come to know and love. He pulled off the cool maverick character, but did not tie that with how the character developed.
Emilia Clarke did not really show enough emotions and facial expressions to justify her motives in the film. She performed well in action scenes, not standing on the sidelines. But when it came to character depth, this was not a strong point.
Most of the other supporting characters did a great job. From major crook Beckette (Woody Harrelson) to badass pilot Lando Calrisson (Donald Glover), and robots’ right activist robot L3 (Phoebe Waller-Bridge) to the beloved Chewbacca (Joonas Suotamo).
Sequels, prequels, and spin offs are all the more popular these days, but only a few measure up to audiences’ expectations. This one may have been a good enough film on its own, but many Star Wars audiences may be disappointed with the portrayal of their beloved Han Solo.