“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” – Our Reviews for Parents, Kids & Teens!

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ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY
ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story L to R: Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones), and Baze Malbus (Jiang Wen) Ph: Giles Keyte © 2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
L to R: Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones), and Baze Malbus (Jiang Wen)
Ph: Giles Keyte
© 2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” is the first-ever Star Wars standalone film, and it hits theaters this Friday, December 16th!

We attended an early screening of the movie this week, and we think all ages will enjoy this film. We call it “Star Wars 3.5” for two reasons – because not only do we give it 3.5 out of 4 stars, but additionally, in the sequence of Star Wars movies, it fits in right between episodes 3 and 4.

Kids and Teens!

Hey, kids and teens, this movie has a ton of action and excitement like the other Star Wars movies you love. It’s a little more serious than most of the others (like last year’s quirkier “The Force Awakens”), but has plenty of scenes that will wow you and make you laugh.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Chirrut (Donnie Yen) Photo credit: Lucasfilm/ILM ©2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Chirrut (Donnie Yen)
Photo credit: Lucasfilm/ILM
©2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Don’t expect to know most of the characters – they’re mostly new but there are some really cool ones, like Chirrut Imwe, a blind monk warrior who does fantastic martial arts, and his best friend, Baze Malbus, who sure knows how to use his heavy repeater cannon!

Girls, if you liked Rey from “The Force Awakens,” you’ll like Jyn Erso in “Rogue One.” She’s defiant, independent and an impressive fighter who doesn’t give up. And yes, there’s a funny droid, K-2S0, who used to be a security droid for the bad guys – but was reprogrammed by the good guys (the Alliance) and can easily fool the bad guys into thinking he’s still one of theirs (don’t you wish you had a droid like that?).

ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY
ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY

In the movie, these and other unique characters join together to steal the secret plans to the Death Star. It takes a while (the movie is 2 hours and 13 minutes) and there’s a bit more talk in the first half, but we think you’ll like the movie more and more as it goes along. There are massive explosions and lots of other “whoa”-worthy special effects, plenty of weird-looking aliens, and some hold-on-to-your-seat Darth Vader + light saber action.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Darth Vader Photo credit: Lucasfilm/ILM ©2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Darth Vader
Photo credit: Lucasfilm/ILM
©2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Wondering what Star Wars movie you should be sure to see before going to this? See the original Star Wars movie – “A New Hope,” with Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia. “Rogue One” explains how Princess Leia got the Death Star plans.

For parents and other grown-ups

“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” is a satisfying, visual spectacle. As stated above, it’s the first standalone film in the Star Wars franchise – which you’ll notice from the very beginning, with its absence of the classic triumphant theme and opening crawl. Instead the movie throws you right into the Star Wars world, at a point in time right before the original 1977 film, “A New Hope.” In fact, the story of “Rogue One” can be found at the beginning of “A New Hope” –

“It is a period of civil war. Rebel spaceships, striking from a hidden base, have won their first victory against the evil Galactic Empire.

During the battle, Rebel spies managed to steal secret plans to the Empire’s ultimate weapon, the DEATH STAR, an armored space station with enough power to destroy an entire planet.”

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Death Star Photo credit: Lucasfilm/ILM ©2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Death Star
Photo credit: Lucasfilm/ILM
©2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Rogue One is about those rebel spies and their mission, and at the heart of that story is a family bond, particularly between a father and daughter.

Felicity Jones stars as the defiant Jyn Erso, whose father Galen (played by Mads Mikkelsen) has a key connection to the inner workings of the DEATH STAR. To steal the plans, Jyn joins together with an impressive, diverse crew of characters and talents including Captain Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), blind monk Chirrut Imwe (Donnie Yen) and a snarky droid, K-2SO.

There isn’t as much character development as you might expect, probably because there are so many of them, and their roles are pretty much limited to this movie. But Jyn’s background story is touching, and they all have their shining moments. The first half of the movie is a bit heavy on the talk, but the excitement builds and builds and is worth going to just for the action-packed final third.

Also Read : Star Wars: The Force Awakens Review

Like with every Star Wars movie, you won’t want to miss a moment…so, parents, you may want to go once with the kids, and once just yourselves. Regarding bringing the younger kids, it’s PG-13 for “extended sequences of sci-fi violence and action.” Basically, it’s the usual Star Wars intensity, with minimal blood and injury shown. The story is too much for young kids to understand, especially with all the dialogue, and there is one scene of a woman being shot and killed that can be distressing to some kids.

Overall, “Rogue One” is definitely a must-see, especially for fans and anyone craving some amazing special effects.

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ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY arrives in theaters everywhere this Friday, December 16th in 3D, Real D 3D and IMAX 3D!

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