Film Corner: Solo

promotional poster for the film 'Solo: A Star Wars Story' featuring many of the primary cast members

Did anyone else see Solo this weekend? Iain and I saw it with friends yesterday, and I really enjoyed it! I don't know why it's getting so much bad or lackluster press, aside from the fact that this just seems to be one of those films that lots of people decided to dislike before they even see it, for reasons having to do with feelings about the franchise more broadly.

I thought the story was good fun; it was predictable but rollicking. There were some great homages (which I won't spoil on the main page) to the original Star Wars trilogy, and even to a classic Indiana Jones scene. I loved Han's and Chewie's first meeting, as well as their introduction to Lando. L3 was everything!

To be honest, the only thing I didn't really like was the casting of Han. I didn't find Alden Ehrenreich to have any of the charisma or gruff cheekiness that defines Harrison Ford's Han. And he doesn't look enough like him to warrant the casting without any of that je ne sais quoi.

But that's ultimately a positive commentary on how good the film actually is, that I didn't particularly care for Han and still enjoyed the movie!

One of the things I liked most about it was that it fills a very particular gap in the Star Wars narrative universe: If the primary films are all about biological family — having one or not having one; how your DNA shapes or doesn't shape you — then Solo is all about our families of choice.

That theme, which was very resonant for me, was perfectly encapsulated in the scene where Han and Chewie are sitting around the fire with their newfound thieving compatriots Beckett (Woody Harrelson) and Val (Thandie Newton): Han is translating Wookie and says he isn't sure whether the word Chewie used translates to "family" or "tribe."

"Is there a difference?" Beckett asks.

Only in the sense that not all of us can have a family, but all of us can have a tribe.

Shakesville is run as a safe space. First-time commenters: Please read Shakesville's Commenting Policy and Feminism 101 Section before commenting. We also do lots of in-thread moderation, so we ask that everyone read the entirety of any thread before commenting, to ensure compliance with any in-thread moderation. Thank you.

blog comments powered by Disqus