Warning: Spoilers Ahead
So, seen Rogue One: A Star Wars Story yet? Personally, I’ve seen it twice already, and if you haven’t, go to the theater now and watch.
It’s a fantastic film, possibly the most intense of all the Star Wars films. I loved Episode VII, but I think this film takes it. Both in the quantity and quality of action scenes, and simply for the fact that they managed to make an excellent prequel: Introducing new characters and places while throwing in references to the ones we already know without overloading the film.
I chose a different path to the usual review. Instead, I listed my five favorite characters in the film. It wasn’t an easy choice, but I’m happy with the list, although I’m kinda sad we won’t see any of them again in future films (except for one, sort of), unless we get more prequels, which I doubt, at least when it comes to these characters.
5. Orson Krennic
I like “pencil-pushing” bad guys. They might not be incredible when it comes to wielding lightsabers, but they’re smart, ambitious, and quite malicious, most of the time. Krennic is smart, but not a genius. He can shoot, but he isn’t a great warrior. His ambition to succeed and move up the Empire’s ladder drives him, but he had a blind spot for Galen Erso, which enabled the latter to send a message out to the rebellion. Krennic is human and fallable, which is the most important thing, even in an epic movie such as this.
K-2SO isn’t the first droid in a Star Wars film that can kick ass, but the Alan Tudyk-voided character, a reprogrammed imperial droid which serves an important part in the rebellion, combined being the comic relief of a very serious film while playing a huge, violent part in Jyn and Cassian’s heist of the Death Star plans. We’re used to seeing a small droid that talks in beeps, or C-3PO that mostly moans. K-2SO is a refreshing take on a Star Wars “light side” droid.
3. Cassian Andor
There was something a bit dull about Jyn Erso – too predictable and formulaic to my taste. But her partner in crime, Cassian Andor, who is kind of a black-ops Rebellion officer, brings something a bit different to the table, at least early on. He shoots an informant in the back, and paints himself as someone who has done some nasty things in the name of the rebellion. Of course, in the end he does the heroic deeds he was made for along with Jyn and everyone who attacked Scarif, but not getting a happy ending helps make him, and everyone else even more appealing.
2. Chirrut Îmwe
There are no Jedi knights in Rogue One, at least not current ones. There’s very little of the light-side of the force going on, except for people talking about it. But Chirrut Îmwe is different. An unemployed Kyber crystal guardian, he is the closest thing the “good” guys have to someone wielding a lightsaber. “The Force is with me and I am one with the Force” was an awesome tagline IMO, especially when Îmwe used it to get the comm link up. That, and the way he kicked ass for most of the movie. While being blind, and blindly believing in the force, while everyone is losing faith.
1. Darth Vader
An obvious choice? Maybe. But after the disappointing Anakin Skywalker in the prequel trilogy, it was fun having old Vader back. The force-chokes, the fury, the James Earl Jones, the music, and even his liquid chamber, where he actually spends his time outside the suit. He didn’t have a lot of time on screen, but almost every second of it was epic.