* * * * A
I really liked “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”, but found it a bit derivative. I had high hopes but low expectations for Rogue One. Wow! It blew my expectations away, and was everything I’d hoped for. The mix of old and new really worked. As a bridge to the classic trilogy, it completely blew “Revenge of the Sith” out of the water.
Main characters Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) and Cassian Andor (Diego Luna) are well written and acted. They are joined by side kick K-2S0 (Alan “Wash” Tudyk) and pilot Bohdi Rook (Riz Ahmed) in the epic adventure to steal the plans of of the empire’s super weapon, the death star. Along the way, they pick up a couple of Jedi temple guards, Chirrut Îmwe (Donnie “Ip Man” Yen) and Baze Malbus (Wen Jiang).
Helped by Jyn’s father Galen (Mads “Hannibal” Mickelson) and her guardian Saw Garrera (Forrest Whitaker), they go up against the empire, personified by Director Krennic (Ben Mendelsohn) and Grand Master of the Fleet Tarkin (Guy Henry). As you would expect, there are great space battles, and storm troopers galore. There are many ties to the original films, and one to the prequels, but I won’t spoil them for you. Many Bothans died to give us this movie.