Friday, June 15, 2018

Solo (2018)

Solo (2018): written by Jonathan and Lawrence Kasdan; directed by Ron Howard; starring Alden Ehrenreich (Han Solo), Woody Harrelson (Old Muley), Donald Glover (Lando Calrissian), British Comic Who Sounds Like Tilda Swinton (Sexy Droid), Emilia Clarke (Space Mafia Princess), Paul Bettany (Annoying English Guy), and Thandie Newton (I'm Not Doing six months of reshoots!):

Solo... A Star Wars Story... hmm. Spoilers ahoy!

1) The movie tells but doesn't show Solo as a young street punk on Corellia, making one wonder if an opening montage establishing this was left on the cutting-room floor some time during the process of scrubbing all of Phil Lord and Chris Miller's influence from the movie and reshooting 70% of the movie.

2) Boy, the first 20 minutes on Corellia are clunky and boring.

3) Hyperfuel/Coaxium. After fuel wasn't mentioned in 40 years of Star Wars movies, suddenly it's a major plot point in The Last Jedi. Now, fuel gets mentioned in the opening "scroll" (OK, it wasn't a scroll) and becomes the driving force of the plot. It sort of feels like the creators were backfilling the role of fuel in the Star Wars universe so that some day, when someone watches these things in chronological narrative order, Solo will have set up The Last Jedi. That's retroactive continuity!

4) Ditto for Han Solo's golden dice. As an original viewer of Star Wars, I don't even remember the dice. I mean, I assume they're hanging from the Millennium Falcon's rear-view mirror, but nope... no memory. Now they get more close-ups than Chewbacca. Feels like more narrative backfilling for Last Jedi. Maybe the dice will now get their own spin-off movie.

5) Thandie Newton dies blowing up a railway track that doesn't need to be blown up unless the objective is to piss off the Empire as much as possible. Maybe Newton didn't want to do reshoots and requested that her character be killed off as quickly as possible because she wasn't doing any more Star Wars acting.

6) Coaxium. Sometimes you need a train car, sometimes you need a garbage bin, sometimes you need a suitcase. Was there just one garbage bin worth of coaxium on the train and the rest was, um, packing material? Snow? If they only needed a suitcase of refined coaxium, why did they need to steal an entire train car worth? Why is refined coaxium less volatile than raw coaxium? More importantly, if Crimson Dawn works for/with the Empire, why do they need to steal coaxium? Wouldn't the Empire just, you know, SELL IT TO THEM??????? Thinking of this last was when my brain broke. The entire plot of Solo is... pointless.

7) I guess the revelation is that Dark Helmet turns out to be a girl. And good rather than evil, but primarily a girl. As a revelation, it falls flat because I was sitting there going, "Am I supposed to recognize her? Was she on Star Wars Rebels too? And do these Rebels travel the galaxy on speeder bikes? Because if so, that's definitely some hardcore star travel!

8) Wow, the set-up for the Kessel Run was laborious, wasn't it? On the bright side. Han accidentally kills Cthulhu. Nice work, boys!

9) Jesus, Chewbacca's Wookie pal on the Klingon Penal Asteroid of Rura Penthe looks a lot like Chaka from Land of the Lost. Distractingly so!

10) Is there a Coaxium refinery on Kessel? I don't think so, given that robbing it would make more sense than stealing unrefined coaxium. But if not, getting coaxium to a refinery must be the most dangerous job in the universe given how quickly it turns explodey.

11) Wait, all the Coaxium in the area is located... under the spice mines? Hunh? Kessel: home to spice and Hyperfuel! You'd think they'd fix the place up a bit!

12) This card game doesn't seem that difficult.

Oddly enough, I enjoyed it. Sort of. Lightly recommended.

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