Movie Brew: Lucasfilm Should Focus On ‘Star Wars Story’ Films
Solo: A Star Wars Story is out in theaters now and if the reveal in the final act of the film is any indication, it’s that Disney and Lucasfilm should focus more on ‘Star Wars Story’ films. The first of the standalone films Rogue One was released December 16th, 2016 which is one year and a day after The Force Awakens was released. Rogue One for the most part was well received and considered a ‘breath of fresh air’ when it comes to the overall story of Star Wars. Solo on the other hand has had mixed reactions from fans and critics. This mixed reaction has had an effect on its box office numbers as well. Despite the poor box office numbers, Lucasfilm has confirmed that more stand-alone films are in the pipeline
The main reason why Lucasfilm should focus on these films is that they are smaller and they can tell more intimate stories. One of my favorite things about Solo and Rogue One was the focus on it’s characters and how they are affected by what is going on in the galaxy. In Solo you can feel the pressure from not just the Crimson Dawn crime syndicate but the Empire and it brings a unique perspective to the story. Even though we know Han, Chewie and Lando will make it out of the film, we didn’t know who out of the supporting cast would make it out or who would eventually betray Han. How could you not love the relationship between Han and Chewie? The new characters in the film are great and they deserve to be explored more. Who wouldn’t want to see a film about Tobias Beckett or Dryden Voss or maybe even Q’ira? Also the reveal at the end of the film does set up potential sequels and I would love to play in this sandbox more. It truly is a sandbox because this is a time period where there was a lot of lawlessness and what better way to do that than to show Han and Chewie working for Jabba the Hutt in one sequel. The point is that Han’s journey needs to make sense and needs to be a smooth transition to the Han we meet in A New Hope. I believe that Ron Howard, Lawrence and Jon Kasdan are the perfect people to tell this story and continue these adventures.
In Rogue One, we knew things were pretty bad but we really got to see how bad things were. Seeing how the war has taken it’s toll on both sides, it really puts things into perspective. Yes Rogue One is a Star Wars film but it is also a war film and it stands out in it’s intense action sequences. One that always comes to mind is on the planet Jedha where Saw Guerrra’s rebel forces ambush an Imperial patrol using guerrilla tactics. The sequence is frantic and dark and shows how anyone including kids can get caught in the crossfire. The film also shows the psychological toll that war can take on someone through the character of Captain Cassian Andor. He has been fighting the Empire since he was six years old and it has hardened him and changed him. Andor feels that he cannot be redeemed for his actions but in the end he is redeemed. Jyn Erso shows us what its like to be essentially orphaned at a young age and forced to grow up just fighting to survive. She struggles with the fact that she is being used by the Rebellion to find her father who helped create the Death Star.
The second reason: these films can get more fans into the new cannon and the old EU/Legends line of material. Solo is the perfect film to do that because it has ties to The Clone Wars and Rebels television series. It also borrows a lot from the old EU which I thought was fantastic. Not to mention that there are books and comics being released that tie into the film including Last Shot a novel about Han and Lando. Rogue One also has a few books and comics most notably Catalyst by James Luceno which tells the story of Jyn’s parents and their struggles and it also introduces kyber crystals. Kyber crystals powered lightsabers and were used for the Death Star’s laser.
There are so many stories that Lucasfilm can tell like the Boba Fett film that James Mangold (Logan, 3:10 To Yuma) is doing. We have also heard rumors about a standalone film about Obi-Wan, which you can easily make into a western of the style of Unforgiven. Another great standalone movie to do would be a dark look at the criminal underworld that we started to see in Solo. Lucasfilm could do a series of films just focusing on the different crime syndicates in each one. Yes it is fun that we have gotten stories that are close to the core saga but we do need stories that encompass every corner of the galaxy. It’s ok for some stories not to have links to other films and truly be standalone. At the end of the day I truly feel this is how Lucasfilm should go. Focus on the smaller stories and every couple of years give us a bigger film.
What do you guys think? Should Lucasfilm focus on Star Wars Story films or should they just focus on the bigger epic films? Let us know in the comments below.