Disclosure: I saw an advanced screening of this movie to facilitate my review. No compensation of any kind was received.
Rogue One is a thrilling adventure, set between Star Wars episodes III and IV.
Revenge of the Sith left off with Anakin transforming into Darth Vader and overseeing the construction of the Death Star, as Vader’s children (Luke and Leia) are hidden from him. Rogue One is set almost 20 years after Episode III, following the Rebel Alliance in its early days and telling the story of its efforts to steal the weapon’s plans. It is the heroic backstory of the chain of events that led to the destruction of the Death Star (a direct lead-in to Episode IV: A New Hope).
True to the Star Wars formula, Rogue One features strong characters with heart and conviction.
Jyn Urso is the daughter of a scientist who was instrumental in the creation of the Death Star. She was hidden away as a child and doesn’t know if her father is dead or alive, until she’s recruited by the Rebel Alliance to help find him.
Cassian Andor, the cynical Rebel Alliance captain who doesn’t initially trust Jyn, but knows he needs her in order to complete his mission.
Bodhi Rook, an Imperial pilot that defects to the Rebel Alliance carrying with him a very valuable secret.
K-2S0 is a reprogrammed Imperial droid who works with the Rebels, blending in perfectly while helping them infiltrate Imperial outposts. He is to Rogue One what C-3P0 is to the other Star Wars movies – his blunt quips (and comedic timing) make him a favourite character from the get-go.
Chirrut Imwe is a blind monk who, while not a Jedi, believes strongly in the Force and has trained his whole life to be a great warrior.
Baze Malbus is Chirrut’s devoted friend and protector, and is an accomplished marksman who is ready to fight for the Rebel cause.
These main characters, along with some allies, form a Rebel team who goes rogue, defying orders to do what they know is right, to do the impossible… which may be the only way to save the galaxy.
Rogue One could have been just a “filler” story – an interesting sidebar to the main Star Wars franchise – but it comes across as much more than that. While the scenery and effects are captivating, it’s the story (and the actors that brought it to life) that shines through. It highlights how life is rarely black and white, and explores the complexities found in the shades of grey. Rogue One gives gravity and meaning to (what used to be) a bullet point in the story of how the Death Star was defeated.
It’s a tale of loyalty, conviction, trust, perseverance, sacrifice and, above all, hope.
I loved this movie and can’t wait to take my kids to see it!!
Information for Parents
While Rogue One is rated PG (in Canada) for intense scenes or violence (skirmishes, battles, blaster fire, etc), there isn’t much bloodshed portrayed in the movie. If your child has watched previous Star Wars movies, this one should be fine too. As always, you know your child best.