‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’ leaves viewers wanting more


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Felicity Jones stars as Jyn Erso in the film.

Vaughn Battista

“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” was a bold leap in a new direction for the Star Wars franchise, one that paid off, but still left me wanting more.

The story begins with Jyn Erso, played by Felicity Jones, on a quest to find her father, who had been captured to build the Death Star. She encounters many different characters along the way some of whom are developed too much, and others not enough. While the story falters near the beginning, some great action sequences and an grittier visual style keeps the film interesting.

Once the group bands together, they learn about the Death Star and work to retrieve the plans that will reveal a strategic weak spot in the weapon. This addresses a plot hole that many found in “A New Hope.” The story also becomes much more interesting when the group looks for the plans, and the pacing improves greatly.

It all leads up to a final standoff on the jungle planet Scarif. This climactic action scene was easily the best part and showed director Gareth Edwards’ skill. The battle took place simultaneously on space and land, and Edwards captured the intensity while maintaining a  good focus on the individual Rebels in the battle.

While I did enjoy “Rogue One,” its biggest flaw was the characters. Jyn Erso and Cassian Andor were very boring protagonists, and their performances were adequate at best. Because of this, scenes when the two argue lose their impact and the conflict is unengaging. Side characters such as the witty droid K-2SO and guardian of the ancient Jedi Temple Chirrut Imwe are fun characters that have good chemistry. But because of their relatively minimal development, there’s not much of an emotional connection with them, so their emotional scenes fail to deliver.

While the characters in “The Force Awakens” excited me, the characters in this installment are forgettable. “Rogue One” is an entertaining, well-made film, but it doesn’t reach the heights of the originals or “The Force Awakens” due to the lackluster cast of characters. The direction, action, visual design and interesting plot still makes it a worthwhile watch.