Way back in 2015 when the then untitled Han Solo “origin” story was announced, there was a massive amount of push back from fans, and I was no exception. I did not want a Han Solo movie, AT ALL. I thought, why do we need to know the back story of a character that is so beloved unanimously by Star Wars fans? Surely knowing his back story will cheapen who his character is and this film cant possibly live up to who we think Han Solo is. Now here I sit in front of my computer just three short years later, after walking out of a film that I am happy to say is a fantastic addition to the Star Wars universe.
Despite the behind the scenes drama and the rumors of up to 85 percent of the film being re shot, which admittedly put doubt in my mind, this film blew me away. I went into this film thinking I would like it about as much as Rogue One, which honestly is not that much, and I walked out smiling. One of the many things I loved about this film was the levity it brought back to Star Wars. I am a massive fan of The Last Jedi, but I will admit it was great leaving the theater smiling and not feeling a sense of loss or dread for what is to come.
Lets talk about the performance done by Alden Ehrenreich. I can not imagine the amount of pressure put on this kid, to be a relatively unknown actor and fill into the shoes of Harrison Ford as one of the most beloved movie characters of all time. It is certainly not something I would ever do or try to do, so right off the bat kudos to him. His performance of Han is something that most people will like, he has mannerism of Harrison Ford in moments but he definable made the character his own, and I really, really like him as Han. I am sure there are some people who will say he wasn’t “Han” enough, I whole hearty disagree with those sentiments. If it was just someone doing a Harrison Ford impression it would of gotten old fast. I really liked what he did with the character.
Donald Glover is fantastic, (of course) as Lando Calrissian, his performance is more of an impression of Billy Dee Williams than Alden’s was, but none the less he is amazing as Lando. I would love to see him do this character again. Donald Glover is a once in a lifetime talent and IS Lando.
Last thing I want to bring up here on the non spoiler review, the score done by John Powell is really good, I have only see the movie once, but it didn’t stick out and feel out of place like the Rouge One score did. And yes, I am fully aware Michael Giacchino did this soundtrack on VERY short notice, since he was filling in for Alexandre Desplat. Let me also say that the score not sticking out is a very good thing. My first viewing of Rogue One I remember thinking this music doesn’t feel like Star Wars, it sounds like someone trying to do Star Wars. So this is a compliment that it felt like Star Wars, which means you sounded like John Williams and I cant think of anything more flattering to say to a person. John Williams did however return to create a “theme” for Han. I didn’t pick it out specifically but I also wasn’t trying to, but I will be downloading the soundtrack tomorrow and will heart it that way.
All in all I was very pleased with how this movie turned out, and I will be writing a full spoiler heavy review in the next few days after I see the film again. As of right now, and this is fluid and can change anytime, I would give it an 8.5/10. In the grand scheme of all Star Wars films, this is my order of films from most favorite to least before Solo:
1.Return of the Jedi 2.Last Jedi 3.Empire Strikes Back 4. Force Awakens 5. A New Hope 6.Rogue One 7. Revenge of the Sith 8.Phantom Menace 9. Attack of the Clones 10.Clone Wars (animated, yes it got a theatrical release so it counts)
So where would I put Solo? Well as of right now I have it in between four and five, and again after multiple viewings it could go up or down. But now I am curious, how do you rank the entire Star Wars franchise, leave your lists down below. Thank you for reading, and you can check out my podcast where we did predictions, and will be doing a spoiler and non spoiler podcast! Click here for the podcast or get it iTunes and Stitcher and follow me on twitter @someorlandojunk.