‘Solo’ soars despite low expectations

Josh Ferrer, Staff writer

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Probably one of the most unexpected films of the year, “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” surpasses all of the solo Star Wars movie before it.

The latest of the Star Wars franchise brings back the iconic character Han Solo from the original saga, as well as other from later films, while adding characters who will suprise viewers of all kinds.

The story follows the solo adventure of Han Solo (Alden Ehrenreich) as he travels to the most criminal parts of space and encounters future characters such as his sidekick Chewbacca and Lando Clarissian (Donald Glover), both of whom play pivotal characters in the later trilogy.  

Star Wars comic and books readers are in luck as the plot follow the original story line and characteristics of Han Solo. Although “Solo’s” opening weekend did not do so well at the box office ($103 million in the U.S., $173 million globally) critics are raving about this movie as it came to the surprise for viewers for its amazing actors who played their roles outstandingly and it’s heartwarming but unpredictable plot line.

This film also puts excitement to all characters of the galaxy as it has little to no light saber fighting time into the movie. Viewers are also introduced to Han’s love interest with Kira (Emilia Clarke) before he met Princess Leia Organa. Warning, spoilers are ahead.

The movie’s main pleasure is its solid cast. Ehrenreich comes across as a younger Harrison Ford — the indelible Han Solo of the first three Star Wars movies. This is a considerable achievement. Ehrenreich looks nothing like Ford, but he does manage to project a bit of the man’s engaging sarcasm and gift for smooth talk, and he contributes his own style of cool.

Glover gives a standout performance as the shady gambler Lando Calrissian, taking over the role as if Billy Dee Williams had never played it. “Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke is charismatically seductive as Han’s love interest Qi-ra, a mystery woman whose secrets will obviously play an important part in later movies.

The script by Star Wars veteran Lawrence Kasdan (who wrote The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi) and his son Jonathan, checks off a number of required boxes: Where is Han from? (The gloomy planet of Corellia.) Where did he get his iconic spaceship, the Millennium Falcon? (He won it from Lando in a Sabacc card game we now get to witness.)  

The combination of the old storylines and new characters complimented the plot which extended it’s likeness for all viewers who were not familiar with the old characters.

The movie brings nostalgia to old time viewers of the original trilogy with it’s return of original characters and the accompanying back stories. It had an easy to follow to story but was unpredictable, which kept ideas fresh throughout the whole movie and plot twists that made viewers drop jaws.

The film also kept it’s serious side but was accompanied with it’s old time humor from the original saga.  It got much better reviews than the previous Star Wars stand alone film,  “Rogue One.”

“Solo: A Star Wars Story” hit viewers from nowhere and left long time fans in awe of what the Walt Disney company will continue to do with the Star Wars franchise. I give it four of five Grizzly Paws.