In this article, we will come to the defense of the much-maligned Han Solo stand-alone movie. We’ll say it now, Solo: A Star Wars Story is a cool Star Wars movie, not great but a good one. We’ll take about it further later, but first here’s our scene by scene take of the movie.
Solo: A Star Wars Story
(Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. Director: Ron Howard. Cast: Alden Ehrenreich, Woody Harrelson, Emilia Clarke, Donald Glover)
Geek god rate: mortal worthy (3 out of 5 stars)
We open to the birthplace of Han, Corellia, a planet located in the galaxy’s Core Worlds and is known for its ace pilots and large starships. Of course, Han would come from there. Also quick trivia, it is home to some of the Jedi younglings featured in Clone Wars. There’s nothing special with this scene where it verges to an old Hollywood story of lovers who escaped from poverty blah blah. But the Jabba-like criminal gang leader was cool and how Han escaped from that planet is passable writing.
The absence of the story of Han’s years in the Imperial Flight Academy is annoying and disappointing as three years later we zoomed into Mimban planet where he met the criminal Tobias Beckett. This should have been boring if not for the fact that Chewbacca was there, and there’s a wonderful and sickly satisfying fight between him and Solo.
The scene where they attempted to steal the shipment of coaxium on the planet Vandor was cool, thanks to Imax, but not great. The Crimson Dawn syndicate story was a bit of an old move, the story quite tiring, but the scenes leading up to the planet Kessel scene, conjures the styles of the Star Wars sequels very well, so it’s great. Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian was superb as usual, and we immensely enjoy the gambling scenes, finding out how Han procured the Millenium Falcon.
Seeing the Falcon in its brand new form was amazing, as was meeting its original co-pilot L3-37. But why do we really need to feature a droid every single movie? The planet Kessel scene will wake you up from your drunken stupor as is the escape from it.
There’s nothing special on the scene on planet Savareen where they process the coaxium and also were not impressed with the Enfys. The scenes following that were quite normal but the Solo trick was inspiring.
In the end, we found out why Han was on Tatooine during the events of the A New Hope, thanks to the writers for that tidbit.
The story was a great addition to the Star Wars canon, like watching an episode of Clone Wars. We get why most people seemed to be upset with this one. We also understand why some of the most fervent fans, including us, come to its defense. From an outsider, it’s hard to appreciate a story they little knowledge of, minus Solo, it lacks the glamor and bangs they seemed to expect from the franchise, with the Jedis and major space battles and big-name stars.
Having said that, Solo, in all honesty, is not at par with the other Star Wars movies, even The Force Awakens. It might be good as an episode of a TV series, but not good enough to be a finale. Some of the critics have a point, like not having pursued the story of a young Solo (we saw him as already a thug hero that he was) or the story of how he trained as an imperial pilot.
Anyway, why do we like it? Of course because of the many tidbits that we saw, like the Mandalorian uniform on the background of Dryden Vos, or watching the part where Solo rescued Chewy just like what we read. In short, it caters to hardcore fans, no offense. Also, Alden Ehrenreich is perfect as Solo, end of discussion. So while a majority of the audience throws stones at it, or cries for some atrocities it supposedly commits, we, on the other hand, were fine with it. It’s doesn’t get enough money back which is a bummer but it is what it is. At the end of the day, you know our verdict: the Force is strong with this one.