The first Star Wars spinoff movie is com­bat ready

SFX - - 2016 Preview Essential Films -

All eyes are fixed on The Force Awak­ens but the most cru­cial Star Wars movie of them all ar­rives a year from now. For the first time we’ll be taken be­yond the Sky­walker clan, be­yond the gen­er­a­tional saga that’s come to de­fine the fran­chise since 1977. As Ben Kenobi would put it, we’re about to take our first step into a larger world…

Not that Rogue One: A Star Wars Story cuts too many ties to the galaxy Ge­orge Lu­cas cre­ated. It goes right back to the ori­gin myth, in fact, tak­ing its premise from those death­less words in the open­ing crawl of A New Hope: “Dur­ing the bat­tle, rebel spies man­aged to steal se­cret plans to the Em­pire’s ul­ti­mate weapon, the DEATH STAR.”

We’re promised “a dar­ing mis­sion” and a gritty, “ground-war per­spec­tive”, more Guns Of Navarone than Lord Of The Rings, ex­plor­ing the fight against ga­lac­tic tyranny from the Rebel mil­i­tary view­point. Pitched as “a pe­riod piece” that slots into the time­frame that led to Episode IV, it’s a strictly mys­ti­cism-free zone, down­play­ing lightsabers in favour of lock and load.

Di­rected by Godzilla’s Gareth Ed­wards and wield­ing a strong, di­verse ensem­ble cast led by Os­car-nom­i­nated Felic­ity Jones, Rogue One looks to put the war into Star Wars… Nick Setchfield

We pre­dict no Day-Glo t-shirts in this movie.

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