In Rogue One – A Star Wars Story – all the new characters are so dull that director Gareth Edwards resorted to using CGI to bring back people who actually knew how to act. He was basically admitting the story of Rogue One was so bad that part of prior Star Wars movies had to be spliced in to make it watchable.
Rogue One consists of 2 absurdly long battle scenes, 1 cameo appearance by Princess Leia, and a couple of cameos by Darth Vader. The rest of the movie is just a sketchy plot filler with one-dimensional characters designed to get us to the battle scenes as fast as possible.
A young Princess Leia makes an appearance, with the CGI face of Carrie Fisher. Carrie Fisher herself did not get any work out of this gig. Norwegian actress Ingvild Deila supplied the svelte body for Princess Leia and computers were used to superimpose the young Carrie Fisher’s face from the original Star Wars film.
A dead actor also make an appearance. Peter Cushing reprises his role as the evil empire’s Grand Moff Tarkin. This is quite a feat, since Peter Cushing died in 1994. Actor Guy Henry played Grand Moff Tarkin and Peter Cushing’s image was superimposed.
At least James Earl Jones does play Darth Vader with his beautiful and powerful voice. Unfortunately, Darth Vader is not in the movie for very long and we don’t learn anything about him we did not know before.
In the original Stars Wars movies, time was taken for the audience to get to know and care about each character. We loved the action scenes since we loved the people who were in them. Who can ever forget the wise cracking Hans Solo or the scene where Darth Vader tells Luke “I am you father.”
Kids do seem to like Rogue One, especially really young kids. Over the years, the Star Wars movies have morphed from Sci-Fi films exploring the meaning of good and evil in the future, into action based kids movies whose main goal is to sell toys. Even before the movie started there were a number of commercials in the theater for a multitude of Star War Toys.
So, if your kids are clamoring to see Rogue One, go ahead and bring them. They will love the action and the noise. However, if you are expecting to see anything at all like the original Star Wars films you remember, you will sadly be disappointed.