The current trilogy of Star Wars films have so far been pretty good. J.J. Abrams and Rian Johnson have done a good job on their movies, and the first anthology film, “Rogue One,” was good too. And now we have the second anthology film, “Solo,” the origin story of Han Solo. The idea of the film was risky in itself, since characters in the film have already been portrayed by actors in the original trilogy, with Han Solo having been played by Harrison Ford and Lando Calrissian having been played by Billy Dee Williams. So now with Alden Ehrenreich and Donald Glover playing Han and Lando respectively, Star Wars, for the first time since the prequels, has been a let down. As a film, it’s decent, but as a Star Wars movie, it disappoints.
For starters, the cast was good. I honestly couldn’t think of anyone better to play the young versions of the roles. However, I still could not see Alden Ehrenreich and Donald Glover as Han and Lando. Ehrenreich just doesn’t have the voice or charisma to him that Harrison Ford did. And Donald Glover just doesn’t have the same kind of swagger, for lack of a better word, that , Williams had. Emilia Clarke did a good job with her role as Qi’ra (pronounced Kira), however it felt like her character was only there to distract Han and to be the love interest. It’s kinda hard to mess up Chewbacca so that was fine. Although, Phoebe Waller-Bridge voiced the sassy L3-37 amazingly, Paul Bettany’s role as Dryden Vos was a good antagonist, and Woody Harrelson plays Beckett who plays the role model for Han. Also the Warwick Davis cameo was great.
The main plot of the story is about how Han makes his way into the criminal underworld and about the Kessel Run. You know, the one he did in 12 parsecs. He escapes his home world and is unable to take Qi’ra with him and vows to come back for her. Skip 2 years later and he finds himself with some smugglers lead by Beckett doing a job for crime lord Dryden Vos, which they ultimately end up failing. They have to confront Vos about it, where Han finds out Qi’ra works for Vos. She accompanies them to Kessel on Lando’s ship, the Millennium Falcon, and the story continues from there. I won’t continue so as not to spoil too much.
The main problem I had with the movie was that it didn’t feel like Star Wars. Star Wars is one of those franchises that can bring out that childhood sense of wonder and awe that is hard to find. “Solo” falls just short of that. It jumps around a lot and it has some points that don’t make much sense. It felt more like a space western than it does a Star Wars film. It does a good job at being a space western though. It has the right amount of backstabbing and just pure fun to make it worth seeing.
While I wouldn’t say that Solo is a great movie, I’d say it’s good. It is fun to watch and fills some gaps left in the Star Wars lore that would otherwise go unfilled. They didn’t need to be filled but they are now. Solo keeps the action going and is a fun experience with some fan service that I’ve been looking for. But it still doesn’t keep it from being a disappointment. In the end, “Solo” gets a C+ from me.