Solo: A Star Wars Story doesn't reach the heights of daring of The Last Jedi, but it's a movie created to be safe, familiar, and smile-inducing, all while watching characters we grew up with be young and brash. It checked off numerous boxes I wanted from one of these spinoff movies.
It's of course hard to say how this film will age, but it's clear that numerous "A ha" moments will forever shape what came before, making explicit things that were perhaps perfectly fine left implicit. Eventually their association with Vos leads Solo to discover an oppressed desert community, Howard's film picking up the thread of belabored wokeness that marked The Last Jedi's most frantic fumbles in the name of political urgency. He also noted that director Howard "gets plenty of entertaining mileage out of Han Solo and company's formative years, even though he never quite manages to launch the Millennium Falcon into hyperdrive", and that Ehrenreich "captures enough of Ford's genial swagger to earn Solo bragging rights - even if the performance could have withstood a few smirks and winks".
All this is to dance around the fact that, at its core, "Solo" always felt like it was going to be a bit redundant, addressing quandaries that didn't really beg for explanation and resurrecting elements that were perfectly fine staying dormant.
Slate's Sam Adams said "Solo" wasn't the worst "Star Wars" movie, "just the one with the least compelling reason to exist". Directed by Ron Howard, Solo is the second Star Wars spin-off following Rogue One.
Alden Ehrenreich plays the character made famous by Harrison Ford in the original Star Wars trilogy and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Read to find out what everyone else is saying about the Han Solo movie, but be warned, while there's no spoilers here, if you want to go into the movie completely blind, you might want to skip this article.
We know where destiny will take them.
Ehrenreich, who plays the young Solo, isn't the problem with the film, say critics in the film's first reviews released after the embargo broke this morning. He's the only person who could sell a stand-alone Han Solo movie. This is best represented by L3 (Phoebe Waller-Bridge), Lando's impassioned droid who has ideas far above that of a normal robot. "It would be fun to tell the story of Han and Chewie".
The father-son writing team of Lawrence and Jonathan Kasdan harness some of the spirit that defines the Star wars universe to give this film a zingy ring that holds up pretty well after a rather slow start.