Here at CinemaBlend, I'm one of the only holdouts who didn't like Star Wars: The Last Jedi. I thought it made silly decisions in parts, didn't further the plot of the series as much as I would have liked, and committed the cardinal sin of being boring. Regardless, other people -- many of my friends, my family, my co-workers -- all loved the chances Rian Johnson took with the project, and I recognize there are myriad opinions about The Last Jedi out there. Which brings us to Solo: A Star Wars Story, the latest outing from Disney and Lucasfilm that has done decently with reviews but has been pummeled in the comments section of blogs like this one. I get it. People like complaining about stuff, but what's surprising about the Solo hate is that so much of it seems to be coming from people who are refusing to see the movie.
It's a shame, because Solo: A Star Wars Story is wonderful. For months, there has been concern that the movie would be a hodgepodge of the improvisation Phil Lord and Chris Miller were into, along with the less comedic viewpoint of Ron Howard. That's not the case. Solo is a Ron Howard movie, a sci fi space romp with nods to what we already knew about Han Solo, but also with a cool heist plot and exciting new characters.
Solo: A Star Wars Story stands on its own. It has cool and engaging performances from Emilia Clarke, Donald Glover and Woody Harrelson. Despite speculation to the contrary, Alden Ehrenreich brings his own independent spin on Han Solo to the table. The energy he brings to the character is undeniable, and the ragtag crew formed by the group of misfits in Han Solo could have worked across multiple films. There's something here, but with underwhelming box office and all the comment section and Twitter hate, the picture being painted is way more negative than it should be.
I'm not saying it's a perfect movie. I can point to the mining scene and the opening sequence of the movie as moments that didn't quite wow me as much as the rest of the film. Another moment that I actually loved but has been getting some flack from the fanbase has to do with how Han Solo got his name. I get it. There are valid criticisms. I'd love to discuss them, but those potential conversations are all being almost completely washed out by people who are angry at this movie for even existing or so convinced it's bad they're refusing to even see it. They can't find a reason to bother.
Well, I'd bother because Solo: A Star Wars Story is a solid movie. I'd bother because it's a movie that has some great action set pieces and should be seen on the big screen. I'd bother because it's a fun movie that people of most ages can handle seeing, and because it is different than other movies in the Star Wars universe. We've been spoiled over the past few years with Star Wars movies, but that doesn't make Solo: A Star Wars Story a movie that should be missed. If you consider yourself a Star Wars fan, it's worth going and deciding for yourself.
Look, do I think it was smart that Disney decided to release this film in May, just a few months after The Last Jedi ended its theatrical run? No, but I get the intent behind doing it. May used to be the month of Star Wars, and I'm not just talking about May the Fourth. In fact, Solo: A Star Wars Story was released on May 25, 2018, a date that marked exactly 41 years since Han Solo was introduced to the big screen in the original Star Wars. When the film was first coming together, it probably seemed like a nice little nod to release the movie in May. Then came all the brouhaha surrounding the firing of Phil Lord and Chris Miller and the hiring of Ron Howard. I'd assume keeping the May 25 date might have also been a way to reassure fans that Howard could get the movie done in a timely fashion.
It's hard to compete with Avengers: Infinity War and Deadpool 2, but Solo: A Star Wars Story is a likable movie. Those who are fighting against Star Wars sequels by not supporting the movie with their wallets are well within their rights to do so, but if you're putting your foot down simply because you're mad about Star Wars: The Last Jedi, you should reconsider. This is an entirely different movie, with a different tone and different expectations. See it on a giant screen with excellent sound, surrounded by other Star Wars fans, and decide for yourself. Please don't judge the movie before you've shown up to see it. I can't guarantee you'll like it, but I can guarantee it's worth giving a real chance.