It’s been nearly a month since the release of Solo: A Star Wars Story. But after a second viewing of the movie, I’m ready to share my thoughts on what is currently the lowest performing Star Wars movie yet.
The movie is a fun ride from beginning to end that further explores the early years of the famed Han Solo character. And while many would agree that Solo’s early years weren’t a necessary story to be told, director Ron Howard and star Alden Ehrenreich manage to bring a young Han to life as best as anyone could.
When it comes to a Han Solo movie, there are certain aspects expected to be covered. For example, how he met longtime friends Chewbacca and Lando Calrissian, winning the Millennium Falcon from Lando, and the infamous Kessel Run mentioned by Han when we first meet him in A New Hope. Along with that though is plenty of new information about the character which greatly expands on the lore of the character, showing us glimpses of both the man we first meet as well as the man he grows to become by Return of the Jedi. While Han is someone willing to do anything necessary for himself, he truly is someone who wants to do good with his life rather than harm.
One of the things Solo has going for it is the performances of the supporting cast. Chewbacca is given more of a spotlight than he ever had in any Star Wars film. Donald Glover’s take on Lando is so good that I want him to have his own film, as the man oozes charisma and style in every scene he is in. He makes the character his own while also paying homage to Billy Dee Williams’ past performances as Lando. Emilia Clarke does a fine job as Qi’Ra and there is certainly more to explore in her character and her relationship with Han. The character Tobias Beckett, played by Woody Harrelson, was a perfectly cast role for the actor, and served as a major influence in Han’s growth throughout the movie. Then there’s villain/crime boss Dryden Vos, played by Paul Bettany, who is pretty much a generic movie villain.
As much fun as I had with Solo, there were a few negatives I had with the movie overall. First, I was not a fan of how Han ended up getting his famous “Solo” surname at the hands of an imperial officer. The idea of him getting the Solo name based on not having any other family didn’t sit well with me. Also, The L3-37 character did not seem like she was needed at all, but I did end up liking how she was uploaded into the Millennium Falcon. Though she did have her good moments when it came to humor, I felt the character was trying too hard to be the comic relief of the movie, not unlike K2-SO in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. I hope that in future spinoffs, Lucasfilm will stay away from droids serving as only comic relief.
Despite the behind-the-scenes drama and the disappointing box office numbers after a stacked month of movies, Solo is a wild adventure that brings a beloved character much more depth. Ron Howard was able to bring together the vision of three different directors to make a cohesive story set in it’s own pocket within the Star Wars universe. And if they decide to go the route of exploring these characters even further, that would make this Star Wars fan very happy.
Final Score: 8/10