Last Friday night we went out to the Chinese Theatre in Los Angeles while on vacation to see Rogue One (2016).
This movie had it all: CGI characters, old footage from 1977, maybe gay characters, everybody dies. Five Stars.
This is definitely going to take a few more viewings to soak up all of the visuals. I didn't feel like I absorbed enough of the visuals of the great final sequence. Maybe I can request a cut of the film that's all slow motion for the storming of the beach scene. Rogue One: The Baywatch Cut.
I don't have a lot of theories quiet yet on this film, although a good one is that the blind guy and the guy with the vacuum cleaner on his back could be a gay couple. In that context their final scenes could be seen just a touch sweeter. Someone at LucasArts, might have been JJ Abrams said there would be gay characters in an upcoming Star Wars but I think the assumption was that that would be Episode Eight. I'm sure that would be all kinds of groundbreaking but the love story of Chirrut Îmwe and Baze Malbus (Thank you cut and paste from wikipedia) is just still very nice as a couple that works together. They are described as "partners" on wikipedia, afterall. Partners in battle, partners in love.
Chirrut Îmwe does inch me closer to another theory that Storm Troopers aren't bad shots, the force just nudges them away from people with the force running through their bodies even if they don't know they're doing it.
It's great to see older ideas that didn't make it into the original movies make it into this installment like Darth Vader's Castle and that the Kyber Crystals are a major aspect of Jedi living. They're mostly mentioned as the key component for laser swords but I think there was old now defunct extended universe that said Kyber Crystals were the source of the force.
I like that they used the Death Star in this movie and that they didn't blow up whole planets but shows the still amazing power they have to destroy large masses of geography.
The final sequence reminded me of something from old Italian movies right after WWII like Rome Open City or the Algerian movie filmed after their revolution using actors that lived through atrocities,The Battle of Algiers. The filmmaker did a lot of homework for this movie and it must have extended into older groundbreaking tragic war films.
It's an incredible finish to the movie that plays on a lot of emotions. It has an amazing communal aspect to it with the plans being passed off despite the menace of Darth Vader. It's tragic to show so much death, but it's also so hopeful to be reminded of the original trilogy by seeing young Leia's face and the ship she is in at the beginning of Episode Four.