Rogue One DVD Reviewed By Jon E Clist

The Premise
Jyn Erso, a Rebellion soldier and criminal, is about to experience her biggest challenge yet when Mon Mothma sets her out on a mission to steal the plans for the Death Star. With help from the Rebels, a master swordsman, and non-allied forces, Jyn will be in for something bigger than she thinks.

The Review
With the partnership between Disney and Marvel being so successful and then the first trip that Disney has overseen into the Star Wars universe (The Force Awakens) being out of this world good, you would be forgiven for wondering if this sort of success could continue. So along comes their second Star Wars outing in the form of Rogue One. A tale that is set right dab in the middle of the prequels and the originals. For those who know the previous Star Wars films, you will know that A New Hope is possible because a bunch of people did some amazing stuff and laid it all on the line in order to secure the plans to the death star and thus enabling Luke Skywalker to blow it up. It is that story we find here.

What a wonderful job Gareth Edwards and his team have done in making a stand-alone story that is not really stand-alone at all. This is a brilliant piece of not only Star Wars cinema but sci-fi cinema in general. I really enjoyed the way that stylistically this film fits well within the Star Wars universe and introduces a stack of new characters that have a wonderful depth and diversity to their part in the overall plot.

There are so many wonderful nods back to the original films, from dialogue that has featured in every single Star Wars film, a few regular characters that find their way subtly into the story and then of course there is the use of some crazy good computer generation tech in order to give us back some of the original characters who are either too old or too dead to play themselves again. For example Peter Cushing who originally played Grand Moff Tarkin, finds himself back in this same character and yet he died in 1994. There are plenty of other bits and bobs in the film like that and they are worth watching for.

It is this attention to details that helps the film fit within this epic universe. For example, the Rebel base at Yavin IV features several full-sized card board cut-outs of X-Wings and Y-Wing fighters, using the same technique of filling out the hangar as in the original Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope. Clever aye.

Anyway, I nerded out and really enjoyed it. I reckon you might love it too. I really enjoyed Alan Tudyk playing a droid character named K-2SO, through motion capture technology. He has some of the best lines and is extremely funny in the film. You might recognise his voicing from the film I, Robot, where he played the main character of Sonny. Oh, and he is Pirate Steve from Dodge Ball.

It is great to see Disney not being afraid to have a female play the main protagonist, as they did in The Force Awakens. This has led to a variation in the usual plot directions and therefore a very enjoyable watch.

The Verdict
Something that the star Wars fans will love and plenty of adventure and humour for all the rest of the cinema public.

The Trailer

The Info
DVD Releases: 5th April 2017
Rating: M – Contains violence
Duration: 133 minutes 
Genre:  SciFi
Starring: Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Alan Tudyk
Director: Gareth Edwards (Godzilla, Monsters)

The Extras
This film is set before the events of Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) and five years after Star Wars Rebels (2014).

Rogue One is the first theatrical, live action Star Wars film to not be scored by John Williams.

Costume designer David Crossman stated that some of the original costumes used in Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977), Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980) and Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983) were used in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016).

This is the first installment in the Star Wars: Anthology series.

The original Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) features one shot of the main heroes standing outside the Yavin IV temple. Although the temple itself was a matte painting, the actors in the foreground, including various Rebels and their transports, were filmed at Cardington Sheds in Bedfordshire, England. The Rogue One crew returned to the same location to film not only exteriors, but this time also recreated the interior of the Rebel base there.

Jimmy Smits, who had previously appeared as Bail Organa in Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones (2002) and Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith (2005), was revealed to appear in the film just months before its premiere.

Genevieve O'Reilly reprised her role as Mon Mothma, whom she previously played in Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith (2005). However, all but one of her scenes from the earlier film were deleted.

The idea for this film came from ILM visual effects supervisor John Knoll. He received a story credit and served as an executive producer of the film.

Tatiana Maslany, Rooney Mara and Kate Mara auditioned for the female lead role of Jyn Erso, which went to Felicity Jones.

Alan Tudyk is playing a droid character named K-2SO, through motion capture technology. Tudyk also previously played the robot character Sonny in I, Robot (2004).