Solo: A Star Wars Story

When sney bought Lucas film, they annexed the deep Star Wars expanded universe in favour of making their own canon. A lot of fans were peeved by that decision and so, to their credit, the executives seem to realise the mistake and now, in addition to new episodes in the on-going saga, their giving us stories that fill in important gaps in Star Wars lore. Rogue One detailed how the rebellion got the Death Star plans and now we learn the origins of everybody’s favourite 

nerf herder.

On the planet Corellia, a young Han (Alden Ehrenreich) plans to escape his debt to local crime syndicates along with his sweetheart Qi’ra (Emilia Clarke). The lovers depart in a boosted speeder, but they are separated at an Imperial checkpoint, Qi’ra is captured and she urges Han to go on without her.  To avoid being captured himself, Han enlists at an Imperial recruitment centre, vowing to one day return and save Qi’ra.

Three years later and Han meets up with a crew of smugglers, he pleads for them to take him with them, along with freed Wookie prisoner Chewbacca. The leader of the smugglers, Tobias Beckett (Woody Harrison), decides to bring Han and Chewie along with them to pull off a heist. They hit an Imperial transport delivering Coaxium, the fuel for hyper-drive engines. Unfortunately a rival band of marauders arrives to seize the cargo; only Han, Chewie and Tobias survive but fail to acquire the Coaxium.

With nothing to lose but their lives, the trio go to crime syndicate boss Dryden Vos (Paul Bettany) to try clear their debts to him by compensating the lost Coaxium. Qi’ra, who works with Dryden, is re-united with Han and is sent with the trio to assure the complete the job. The only planet to find Coaxium is Kessell, mined in its natural form where it quickly degrades and explodes, so a fast ship is required. Qi’ra brings them to the man with the fastest ship in the galaxy, Lando Calrissan (Donald Glover).

Solo is certainly a worthy origin of the galaxy’s greatest smuggler. It’s a heist film set against the galactic space opera that invokes Wild West vibes. Plenty of talented casting, Glover in particular channels the spirit of Billy Dee Williams. The crème-de-la-crème is the famed Kessell run that we’ve heard so much about and now we’re finally see, and it’s more epic than a simple getaway. And a surprise cameo we certainly didn’t see coming. I’ve got a really good feeling about this one.

Turns out that parsecs are a legit unit of measurement, 1 parsec= 3.26 light years. Suddenly it makes sense.

Tobias Beckett has the honorable distinction for having the most pedestrian name in the Star Wars galaxy.