Ever wonder how the Rebel Alliance got the blueprints that revealed that fatal flaw in the Death Star? No? Well, Rogue One will fill you in, anyway. Here's what critics are saying about the Star Wars spinoff, actually a kind of prequel to 1977's A New Hope:
- At times it feels "cobbled together out of spare parts," but "Rogue One proves itself a Star Wars story worth telling" and "has the same … spirit that made us fall in love with the original trilogy," writes Peter Travers at Rolling Stone. Felicity Jones is "smashing" as Jyn Erso and director Gareth Edwards handles the action "like a jedi master," delivering a "combat-heavy last third of the movie" that "is pure pow with a cherry on top," he adds.
- Alison Willmore calls it "a fairly minor addition to the Star Wars 'verse" that "lays out largely unnecessary groundwork for the original trilogy." But that's not to say it's unappreciated. "There's a deliberateness to Jyn and her comrades that feels like it could make a lasting mark on the Star Wars brand," she writes at BuzzFeed. She also commends the "bruisingly good action sequences."
- The first major Star Wars spinoff could have explored "a never-ending frontier … Instead, the film rewinds back to the beginning—the literal beginning—to bore us with the backstory behind the first three sentences of Star Wars' opening crawl," writes Amy Nicholson at MTV News. She wasn't impressed by the acting, and the all-too-familiar story of an "orphaned hero" with a "self-sacrificing mentor" and "comic relief robot" didn't help.
- But Sara Stewart says "Rogue One is definitive proof: Star Wars is back, baby." She applauds everything from its "formidable heroine" to its "judicious special effects" at the New York Post. And while the flick could use better banter, "its last 10 minutes are spectacular and dark, with a final flourish that should give any Star Wars fan goose bumps—and a new hope that the next main installment will be this good."
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