The Dallas Movie Screening Group

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Friday, May 25, 2018

Solo: A Star Wars Story

I think both fan boys and novices alike will enjoy a complete story and background of everyone’s favorite pirate and smuggler a legitimate backdrop for the ultimate anti-hero with Alden Ehrenreich’s turn as Han Solo in the Ron Howard-directed “Solo: A “Star Wars” Story.”

If he looks familiar, Ehrenreich was in a couple of big budgeted disappointments from a couple of years back, the first being the Coen Bros. musical “Hail Caesar!” (2016) and Warren Beatty’s belly flop that was “Rules Don’t apply” that same year. He makes for a likable character and persona as the title role of a young man in love who just wants out of his lower-class upbringings and make a life for himself elsewhere in the big galaxy of “a long time ago in a galaxy far far away.”

Joining him in his adventure are a space pirate in Woody Harrelson’s Beckett, a smuggler of sorts who is paired with girlfriend and confidant in Thandie Newton’s Val. Also included is an alien creature named Rio Durant (Jon Faverau) and a wookie (foreign species) named Chewbacca (Jonas Suotamo). At the start, Han’s love interest is Emilia Clarke’s Qi’ra, a fellow refugee living day-to-day life on the streets of their foreign planet.

So readers know, this movie is just another a stand alone tale in the “Star Wars” universe. Like the disappointment that covered “Rogue One: A “Star Wars” Story” in 2016, which I think I graded a B+ on the A-F scale of grading movies.

So people know, director Howard took over this project from original directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller who were originally fired from the project due to creative differences. The pair, however did receive executive producer credit on this particular movie since I think it was probably written in their contracts.

“Solo: A “Star Wars” Story” contains an abundance of inside jokes only the most familiar will get the references to past. For example, the helmet Beckett wears in an exact replica of the same one Lando (Billy Dee Williams) wore in “Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi.” It was in the early part of that film where the action was contained to “Jabba’s palace and the floating barge in the desert.

Also amusing to watch is Chewbacca’s age, because when Han finds out, he states only 190…he says “You look great for your age.”

I had a fun time with the single shot “Solo: A “Star Wars” Story.” To me it did what it was supposed to do in cover only a portion of the earlier tales in the amazing and enjoyable ride that gives exactly what movie viewers are clamoring for in just a fun time at the movies.

Grade: B
(Review by Ricky Miller)

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