‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ Disappoints in Box Office

By Lizzie Deal, Managing Editor

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The newest addition to the Star Wars franchise, Solo: A Star Wars Story, follows a young and ambitious Han Solo as he embarks on the journey that shapes him into the smuggling scoundrel seen in Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope. Despite its poor reception in the box office, Solo: A Star Wars Story proved itself to be a legitimate addition to the Star Wars universe.

Solo is set in a lawless time between Episodes III and IV of the original series. The Empire has yet to rise to its full potential, and crime syndicates have grown in power. When Han Solo becomes indebted to the Crimson Dawn syndicate leader Dryden Vos, Solo, practiced thief Tobias Beckett, and Solo’s childhood friend Qi’ra must flawlessly deliver Vos’ demands or risk death at his hand.

The plot of Solo: A Star Wars Story has the makings of an adventurous heist movie complete with some of our favorite Star Wars characters. While I don’t want to give too much of the plot away, the film only delivers partially. The two hour and 15 minute movie seemed to drag on despite there always being something interesting on screen. Though the entire movie is engaging, setting the scene for a young Han Solo required a lot of screen time due to unfamiliarity of that period of the Star Wars universe. Because of this, the film included a lot of backstory leading up to the climax and consequently took a while to get to the main events of the film, which stretched the run time and made it feel long.

The most quintessential part of adding new movies, storylines, and characters to a franchise as large and beloved as Star Wars is having a mix of the old content people love while infusing it with newer ideas. Solo: A Star Wars Story executed that perfectly. The film followed the well known characters of Han Solo, Chewbacca, and Lando Calrissian and augmented them with interesting and original characters such as Qi’ra, Beckett, L3-37 (Calrissian’s robotic co-pilot with a strong belief in equality), and Dryden Vos. Solo: A Star Wars Story really owns the younger versions of Han, Lando, and Chewbacca and even explains the backstory of the three characters as hinted at in the original trilogy.

The actors featured in Solo: A Star Wars Story also played a major part in making the film what it was. While I was initially skeptical of anyone other than Harrison Ford portraying Han Solo, I can gladly say that Alden Ehrenreich did a spectacular job embodying the character. Donald Glover played an incredibly convincing Lando Calrissian, and well-seasoned actress Emilia Clarke brought Qi’ra to life. The film also starred Paul Bettany (Dryden Voss), Woody Harrelson (Beckett), and Joonas Suotamo (Chewbacca).

Apart from creating an ingenious plot that not only delves into the origins of characters like Han Solo and Chewbacca, the movie’s ending also leaves room for what could be an incredibly interesting sequel, though nothing has been confirmed. Nevertheless, the film sets sail the beginning of Solo’s time as a smuggler and serves as a great prequel to the original Star Wars trilogy. While it may not be a favorite, it is still an enjoyable movie for any Star Wars fan.