What to watch this week
Sci-fi adventure. With Alden Ehrenreich, Woody Harrelson and Emilia Clarke. Director: Ron Howard. 10-12PG V.
Many years before the Rebellion an impoverished young Han Solo (Ehrenreich) is swindling for survival on the planet of Corellia. His only dream is to leave with his girlfriend, Qi’ra (Clarke), and become the best pilot in the galaxy. But complications arise during their escape.
Three years later Han is serving as an infantryman on planet Mimban when he meets a gang led by Beckett (Harrelson) posing as Imperial soldiers. It’s during a prison stint courtesy of Beckett that he encounters a Wookie called Chewbacca ( Joonas Suotamo). With no other way off the planet, the pair are compelled to join forces with the criminal syndicate – the start of many swashbuckling adventures.
Though peppered with the tongue-incheek humour abundant in many modern sci-fi movies, I found the film wanting in other areas. Viewers new to the franchise will probably enjoy this standalone movie as, apart from the setting, references and a few characters, Solo feels a bit removed from the Star Wars universe.
The performances are laudable – the witty dialogue is so well delivered it could work as a radio series – but the plot disappoints somewhat. Yes, the aim was to flesh out Han, but this particular adventure is limited in purpose and punch. Still, a worthwhile watch. – BUHLE-BETHU QATYANA
Alden Ehrenreich (left) and Joonas Suotamo are a young Han and Chewie in the Star Wars prequel Solo.