It’s only three and a half months until the next Star Wars movie, and until the Super Bowl last night we had seen not a single frame of the film. “Solo: A Star Wars Story” is, as you guessed, about Han Solo, and is the second in the so-called “anthology” movies, films apart from the main “saga” films, following on the heels of 2016’s “Rogue One.”
“Solo” has been plagued with problems almost from the start, including a wholesale replacement of the directors last summer, so fans have been clamoring for a taste of the film. Finally we got one last night, and again in a fuller form this morning. Here was last night’s Super Bowl “teaser.”
There’s not much to take away from that except the “look” of the film. Maybe. Clearly Han Solo at one point, for some reason, is talking to the Empire about joining up. In the old Expanded Universe, Han Solo was a pilot in the Imperial Starfleet before being the rogue scoundrel we all know and love, and from what we learn in these previews that seems to be the case in the new Disney canon, too. Nice to see Lucasfilm borrowing more of the good elements of the old EU.
We also get a peek at Woody Harrelson as Tobias Beckett, Han Solo’s mentor, and Donald Glover as the toughest incarnation of a younger Lando Calrissian you could have hoped for in this movie, at least at first glance. I mean, look at that, he’s like a space gangster!
LOOK AT LANDO.
LOOK AT LANDO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DONALD GLOVER!!!!!!!! pic.twitter.com/31wh3gYHIQ
— (浪人 (@LordBalvin) February 4, 2018
When we first meet Lando in “Empire Strikes Back,” Han tells Leia, “He’s a card player, gambler, scoundrel. You’d like him.” That shot of Lando, in the fur, with that facial hair, lights flashing all around him, doesn’t that just scream “gambler”? Now, this excitement could be all for naught. I learned that with Rian Johnson’s “Last Jedi,” but for that moment, that one brief moment of the incredibly talented Glover as Lando, wow.
There’s also what looks like a train robbery, our intro to a brand new, still gleaming white Millennium Falcon, and of course Chewbacca. This morning’s “full trailer” gave us more to digest, which I’m not sure was a good thing.
The more I get of Alden Ehrenreich, the less I believe him as Han Solo. He sounds absolutely nothing like Harrison Ford. I’ll give him a break since I’ve seen 30 seconds’ worth of his performance, but it looks less convincing than Glover’s as Lando, or Joonas Suotamo as Chewbacca. Part of me is wondering if this should have been “Lando: A Star Wars Story.”
So “Solo” definitely looks like a Star Wars movie. They got that right for sure. The ships, the costumes, the settings, all of it screams a galaxy far, far away. We also know it will sound like a Star Wars movie, as they secured John Williams to write the main theme for the film.
The official Disney released synopsis for “Solo” is: “Through a series of daring escapades deep within a dark and dangerous criminal underworld, Han Solo meets his mighty future copilot Chewbacca and encounters the notorious gambler Lando Calrissian, in a journey that will set the course of one of the Star Wars saga’s most unlikely heroes.”
Unofficially, it’s expected to show the famous 12-parsec Kessel Run by the Falcon, how Han met Chewie, and how Lando lost the Falcon to Han in a game of cards. From the preview it looks like we may also get a cliché “only I know who you really are” moment, and at least one opportunity to prove that Han is in fact the best pilot in the galaxy.
We’ll find out more when Ron Howard’s mostly reshot “Solo: A Star Wars Story” hits theaters on May 25.