The Star Wars series has been a pop-culture staple for nearly 40 years. I had to pause and take that in for moment as I considered that immense popularity that the franchise has. Even before Disney started raking in the dough on this fatted cash cow, every few years or so, there was a Star Wars revival. Between each release, re-release, prequel, and sequel, the critical eyes of the Star Wars fans were squinted, and with the internet, they were poised and ready to attack. With such a beloved series, there is high-pressure to do it justice. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story did just that.
Rebellion Gone Rogue One: Spoiler-Free!
Our story bridges the gap between Revenge of the Sith and New Hope. The Imperials are gathering up scientists to construct a space station so powerful it will eliminate planets in a matter of minutes. Upon it’s completion, the struggling rebellion gets wind of a rumor that there may be a way to destroy this mass killing machine. The rebel Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) is tasked with locating the Imperial defector carrying the very information could turn the tide of the war.
Bridging The Gap
The film makers had a difficult task ahead of them when they began putting together Rogue One. They had to strike a balance between established Star Wars lore, fan service, and create something that fit perfectly into that universe. (It was almost as hard as making this a spoiler-free review!) Adding too much fan service can take away from the story continuity, while not having enough lore could make the film feel like it’s not part of the original series. There was a thin line to walk, and Rogue One manages to do just that.
While the film has bits and pieces of ‘fan service,’ it doesn’t waste a ton of time on it. For instance, Darth Vader makes an appearance in the film – but though his presence is noted, it’s not forced and it makes sense for the story. There are also a few other throwbacks that fit within the story frame. The nods to the past make sense. Much of what happens in the film also clears up loose ends from the established series.