Director: Ron Howard
Checking the reviews and box office receipts, and considering that I thought The Last Jedi was PANTS, I’m supposed to hate this. But with the benefit of lowered expectations and a quarter-full cinema, I actually had a blast. True, there was a huge amount of box-ticking at work. Has there ever been a film whose remit is to explain a single, throwaway line in another film, made over forty years ago? Probably not. And there’s a shitload of ‘this is how X happened!’ — from the Falcon’s distinctive shape to the way that Lando pronounces ‘Han’ — which is no doubt intended to be ‘fan pleasing’, but is in fact a little bit icky, oh, and it’s way, way too long.
But actually, if you can ignore all that — and you can, dead easily — then what you have here is a fairly cookie-cutter action movie, but one that’s done done really, really well.
Good points? A train heist set-piece that’s worthy of anything in the Mission: Impossible franchise; a really good performance by whatsisname in the title role, properly ‘doing’ Harrison; a funny turn from Fleabag lady; a fantastic Paul Bettany, being badder than he was in Gangster Number One; Donald Glover; more great action scenes, some brillig switcheroos in the final act, a nice dark atmos, similar to Rogue One, nothing — fucking *nothing* about — Jedis or the Force or any of that boring stuff that began as window-dressing but has now taken over the franchise.
Thumbs-up from me. Second-equal with Rogue One in the reboot league.
Might appeal to people who enjoyed:
The Offence, starring Sean Connery and Ian Bannen.