A blockbuster that misses the mark.
I cannot tell you the excitement and anticipation that I felt leading up to Rogue. Being a massive, lifelong Star Wars fan, I was beyond ecstatic to not only see the 8th film in the universe, but the very first standalone film.
And I have to say, I’m mildly disappointed.
Shoddy pacing and a thinly written story/characters in the first two acts drag the film into mediocrity.
From the get-go, Rogue One looks beautiful, but is awkwardly paced and lazily written. The opening scene is stunning to look at, but incredibly boring. The movie cuts itself off from below the knees right out of the gate, and it continues to get worse.
The entire cast of characters in the film are more archetypal than fully fleshed out people, and it makes it incredibly hard to be committed to the story. The dialogue is cheap, the humor misses the mark, and the action is disappointingly mellow. Characters and events are shown to be vital, but the film doesn’t follow through. We are left befuddled and frustrated with a lack of commitment to the things that make good films good.
Rogue seems intent on getting to the (much better) third act as fast as physically possible, without any regard to coherence.
The climactic battle sequence ends the film on a higher note.
Once the film stumbled into the third act, I had lost virtually all hope. But alas, the third act gave me a new hope. Pun intended.
This in itself is an achievement. The third act feels like a different film. The stakes feel raised, the action is incredible to behold, and the pacing is brilliant. The film gets on track, and we finally feel like we know where we are going.
Rogue attempts to end on an epic note. If the first 2 acts were better, it probably would have. But the first two acts prevent the film from being a good one. Instead, it is just ok.
Spending full ticket price isn’t quite worth it. Wait for renting to become available to catch Rogue One.