This movie could have been the greatest Star Wars movie of all time. The premise is simple and excellent - a HEIST MOVIE! SET IN THE STAR WARS UNIVERSE!
Imagine The Italian Job or Ocean's Eleven - IN SPACE! With lasers and blasters and crippled Jedi Masters... but no.
And this, to me, is its greatest sin. What it could have been.
Synopsis first. Jyn Urso's mother was killed by some dude in a white cape, so her father goes to work for him, building a Death Star.
Jyn was rescued by Forest Whitaker and then TIMESKIP! We jump from one planet to the other and it's disconcerting. What the fuck was happening? Who is this dude? Is it the same dude? Different dude? That guy's a different race, right? Am I racist? Wait, who's the pilot now? Is it racist to confuse two dudes and not registering their (probably) different ethnicity at all?
I'm confused about Jyn's emergency boyfriend and the pilot dude.
Anyway, it all doesn't matter because they all meet at Forest Whitaker's pad and the pilot gets mind-raped and loses his marbles, but then he isn't because somebody reminded him he's acting as 'the Imperial pilot'.
Pilot: I'm the pilot! I'm the pilot!
*Pushes buttons and shit*
Jyn Urso would have been so good as the character who hates the Empire peeps because they killed her mother and kidnapped her father, while the Rebel Alliance distrusts her because her father is considered a traitor. At least that's what she SHOULD have been.
Some wonky shit makes her underdeveloped even though having most of the screen time. Rey, despite all you haters, have more depth in one stupid scavenging expedition than Jyn.
MAJOR PROBLEM ALERT!
Jyn's conflict and possible anger towards her father was resolved and we see her getting closure when she listens to her father's hologram message.
MAJOR PROBLEM ALERT ESCALATION! MOON PRISM POWER MAKEUP!
So you're Galen Urso and you're telling the Rebels you are not a traitor/Empire macai because you incorporated a fatal flaw in the Death Star. You should lead with that in a short hologram message and not try to reach your daughter whom you haven't seen or heard from in years.
The message could have been like this:
Galen: Yo Rebel scum! I got a flaw in the Death Star bitch! And to my daughter, if you can somehow hear this message, I was never a traitor. Don't you let anyone tell you otherwise.
But no. The message was mostly, "Jyn, I love you honey. Sorry about growing up without me and shit. You did grow up right? You didn't get killed or end up as Bantha poodoo? Stay away from pod-racing!"
Then, Jyn, after years of being told she is the daughter of a traitor, can say, "fuck yeah, daddy-o!"
Imagine the memory Snape showed Harry Potter. Imagine that scene. Imagine if Jyn wanted to go and kill her father to wipe dishonour from her family, and then finding out her father is actually a good guy.
But no. Okay.
Jyn's reaction meant she had closure over her father's death BEFORE he died. So when he died, I didn't feel anything. And neither did Jyn. What a waste of a great actor.
And then. And then!
There was a Rebel meeting. For some reason, Jyn got to the main table. The big girls' table. I know this is the Rebel Alliance, but what?
Fine. The Rebel council rejected her plans. But some followed her anyway. Why? I don't know because these fuckers around me KEPT ON FUCKING TALKING.
If you talk in the cinema, I curse you, your kids, your grandkids, your great-great grandkids. I kill you so hard, your ancestors will die!
Anyway, Emergency Boyfriend dude gave a lame speech about whatever.
Donnie Yen's character, Chirrut KimYe and his Life Partner are a delight, for the most part. They followed Jyn simply because she's 'the Chosen One' in some respects, and that's fine.
So these rebels who rebelled against the Rebels, went on a suicide heist mission to some planet somewhere.
Now this is what this movie is supposed to be - this fucking heist. Imagine if they did the heist tropes - the scouting, the planning, the plans failing and improvisation saves the day, etc. That would have made this movie perfect.
The heist was as exciting as the infiltration in The Force Awakens, which is the weakest part of that movie. It's still fun, but I had trouble following what the fuck was going on most of the time.
BECAUSE, on top of the heist, was this grand space battle. Now, this is possibly my favourite grand space battle of all time. It had everything in it and for the first time, Y-Wings are important.
Big up to Y-Wing, motherfuckers! Fuck the X-Wing retards. Y-Wing forever!
But where's the A-Wing interceptors? Books no longer canon? Fuck, man. And what the fuck is a U-Wing?
The giant space battle was tactical and great. There's just one problem - its placement in the movie.
We've seen how another movie separated the best spectacle from the climax without diminishing the stakes in the climax at all. I'm talking Captain America: Civil War, bitch!
In Civil War, the airport scene, which is the best fight scene and the biggest spectacle, happened somewhere in the middle. The giant space war should have happened somewhere in the middle and leave the fucking heist alone.
And then the heist was when each of the characters died one by one.
The most pathetic was when Jyn hugged her Emergency Boyfriend as destruction nears. That relationship was as hot as Rey and Finn and a hug was fortunately not a pay-off and nonsensical.
You know, if the two had just scrounged around and found a carbonite thingy and frozen themselves in carbonite and get blown into space so that in Episode 8 or 9, somebody would thaw them and we can have Rey and Jyn back to back as the female Luke and Han Solo, that would have been the greatest thing ever!
But no. They died.
I don't care.
That's a major problem. I cared about Rey. I don't care what others think, but I like Rey. I thought I'd love Jyn, but I don't.
I wanted this movie to be good. And it delivers great fun at times. But when I think of what it could have been, the only thing I can do is quote Donald Trump. Sad.
2/5 - you know you'll throw your money at it anyway, regardless what anyone says. And it is worth it, for the Y-Wings alone!