Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

is at once an entertaining ride, a nice verve into darkness for the franchise, and a perfect example of a maddening trend in modern movies.

Most of the film is a velocity exercise that rarely pauses, so if you're at all into the Star Wars universe, you're likely to have a good time with it.  An added bonus is the way it fills in some gaps in the previous films.  You can definitely just sit back and have a fun time with the basic plot and all the effects in this one.

I don't want to indulge in spoilers, so let me just say that, yes, the story does contain a few very dark elements, and I generally view that as a good thing.  When everyone is always going to be fine, dramatic tension is hard to maintain.

The trend that it embodies and that is driving me crazy is the need to continually add one more obstacle to the conclusion.  Beat one bad boss, and another enters.  Solve one problem, and another appears.  I understand and applaud this as a strategy for increasing dramatic tension, but more and more action films of the last several years have piled on so many barriers to success--as Rogue One does in spades--that I end up weary of them and just begging for the film to end.

Apropos of none of those key elements, I must also note that one ending shot, a CG rendering of a brief moment with a key character, simply creeped me out.  It was right in the uncanny valley for me, and I very much wish I'd not seen it.

Overall, though, I had a good ride with Rogue One and quite enjoyed the film.


Todd Oliver said...

I saw this with my wife two days ago and she said, "I wish they added another villain." I said, "How many horn faces with multiple light sabers can we have in a universe?" I enjoyed the movie because it was a departure from the norm in some respects. I also agree with you on the CGI. It's not quite there yet. I am afraid of what they will do with Carrie Fisher now (although she shot her scenes in the next movie already from what I've heard).

Mark said...

Yeah, the shot of Fisher at the end of this one was what creeped me out.


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