han solo star wars prequels

This article contains major spoilers for Solo: A Star Wars Story. If you haven’t seen the movie, turn right around and walk way. Trust us. This will be waiting for you later.

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Solo Black Mirror

Solo: A Star Wars Story is in theaters now, and it’s largely a fun (if still mostly unnecessary) jaunt through the early days of one of the franchise’s most scruffy-looking nerf herders. But while a good portion of the movie is in line with what you’d expect from Lucasfilm’s Disney overlords, there’s one moment so bleak that it demands further conversation…even as the characters on screen barely dwell on it.

Read on if you want to talk about this moment, and see if you think it qualifies as one of the darkest elements of the entire franchise. Major spoilers ahead. Read More »

Paul Schrader Interview

Paul Schrader began his career in the movies as a film critic, but it wasn’t long before his Calvinist upbringing and his love of contemplative films from the likes of Yasujirô Ozu, Robert Bresson, and Carl Theodor Dreyer brought him to begin working as a screenwriter, mostly telling stories, mostly about lonely men in spiritual or emotional crisis. He became one of the most important writers of the 1970s and 1980s, with such works as Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, and The Last Temptation of Christ; Brian DePalma’s Obsession, and Peter Weir’s The Mosquito Coast, as well as a string of films he directed himself, including Blue Collar, Hardcore, American Gigolo, Cat People, Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters, and Light of Day.

His string of compelling work as writer and/or director continues until today, with such works as Affliction, Auto Focus, Light Sleeper, and Bringing Out the Dead (again, directed by Scorsese). His latest film, First Reformed, is something of a return to form and subject matter for the writer/director, as he centers his story on Toller, a former military chaplain turned priest (Ethan Hawke, in one of the finest performances of his career), who is wracked by grief and guilt over many events in his past, to the point where it has taken on a physical ailment. At his most desperate moment, he meets a parishioner (Amanda Seyfried) whose husband, a radical environmentalist, commits suicide, setting in motion a series of events in Toller’s life that lead him to radicalism as well. In a fair and just world (and maybe if the film were being released later in the year), First Reformed would undoubtedly be part of awards discussions.

/Film spoke with Schrader recently when he accompanied the film to the Chicago Critics Film Festival. The onstage Q&A he did after the screening (co-moderated by this writer) can be viewed here; this interview took place the following day. First Reformed is now playing in New York and Los Angeles, and expands today.

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Han Solo is the best human character in the Star Wars cinematic franchise, as played by someone who didn’t seem to care much about the vagaries of the series.

This is the inherent paradox of the character brought to life by Harrison Ford, in a genuinely star-making performance. Before Star Wars, Ford had appeared in a few films, including The Conversation and American Graffiti. However, Han Solo was his breakout role and was at his best in the first film, even if Ford couldn’t have cared less about the science-fiction trappings of the world he was occupying.

This week heralds not only the 35th anniversary of the last original-trilogy film in the series, Return of the Jedi, but the return of Han Solo to the big screen in Solo: A Star Wars Story; each of these films, in their own way, proved that lightning could never strike twice.

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The Making of Star Wars Documentary

The phrase “The Making of Star Wars” could refer to three things. First, and most obviously, there’s the actual process of making George Lucas’ 1977 film. Second, the comprehensive and excellent nonfiction tome by J.W. Rinzler, published in 2007. But to me, the most significant is The Making of Star Wars, a 1977 made-for-TV documentary special that, if anything, says more in hindsight than it did upon its original airing.

It’s also the first Star Wars thing I ever saw, and as such kickstarted my personal Star Wars fandom in a most peculiar fashion.

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

Solo A Star Wars Story reviews

A couple weeks ago, I sat down with screenwriters Lawrence Kasdan and Jonathan Kasdan to talk about Solo: A Star Wars Story. I learned how this movie started as a germ of an idea from George Lucas and we talked about how some of the deeper cut references and easter eggs were developed, their approach to these characters, and how they came to design the infamous Kessel Run.

The interview is mostly spoiler-free, so feel free to dig in.

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sequence break clip

From the nightmares of Genius Bar gurus and arcade repairmen alike slithers Graham Skipper’s Sequence Break – equal parts David Cronenberg body horror and Under The Skin darkness (literal, physical darkness). Streaming horror service Shudder was quick to nab the title’s exclusive distribution rights after a noisy festival run, right after they wiped away a thick coating of creamy nonsense from…well…everything. This movie is gross, inquisitive and nostalgic by way of generational homage. Skipper’s love of decades-old practicality and effects work is a mucky blast from the past, primed to earn a slot on my year-end “WTF Movie Moments” round-up.

You might remember Sequence Break appearing in an earlier feature I used to hype y’all with exciting genre titles set to land in 2018, but no upload date was announced at that point. That, as you might assume, has changed! Like, to this month! You can see the film right now as it was just released on Shudder as of last night. I’d say “What are you waiting for?”, but first, the good people behind this lurid digital gusher have a clip they’ve asked us to debut.

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Solo Review 2

There will always be something transporting about the music that John Williams has composed for the Star Wars universe. As soon as the old themes and styles of orchestrations (lavish strings, sharp brass) kick in during Ron Howard’s Solo: A Star Wars Story, it’s difficult not to feel a little jolt of excitement — or hope.

The key to the film — to my eye, at least — is that feeling. When Solo works, it soars, but it’s more to do with making what’s being retread feel fresh (not just in terms of familiar property but in terms of its coming-of-age — or perhaps more accurately, coming-of-scruffy-looking-nerfherder — plot) than dazzling audiences with any new material. What purer joy is there, after all, than a romp through space, species, and systems?

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boba fett

Big Star Wars news has been unleashed upon this world, so we have gathered in our bunker for an Emergency Episode of /Film Daily. /Film editor-in-chief Peter Sciretta is joined by /Film senior writer Ben Pearson and Germain Lussier from io9 to talk about the big story of the hour: James Mangold is writing and directing a Boba Fett spin-off movie.

You can subscribe to /Film Daily on iTunes, Google Play, Overcast, Spotify and all the popular podcast apps (here is the RSS URL if you need it).

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Gillian Jacobs, Vanessa Bayer and Phoebe Robinson headline the new Netflix original movie Ibiza. Will Ferrell and Adam McKay’s Gary Sanchez Productions made the film from newcomer director Alex Richenbach. Well, newcomer by name. You’ve probably seen a lot of his work on Funny or Die and other web shorts.

Harper (Jacobs) gets sent on a business trip to Spain. Her friends (Bayer and Robinson) tag along and Harper falls for the DJ Leo (Richard Madden) at a rave. The trio get into trouble following Leo to his next gigs. Richenbach spoke with /Film by phone about directing Ibiza, which premieres on Netflix on Friday, May 25, 2018.

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