Huge action scenes and reminders of all the great people and creatures in the older Star Wars movies meant that I enjoyed this much more than I expected to.
Felicity Jones is superb as the heroine in a hurry to save many worlds. Diego Luna is also great.
Somehow, the plot manages to pander to the tastes of those who only really liked “Star Wars” and the two sequels as well as to those who liked the clone wars stuff.
Director Gareth Edwards aims this squarely at the fans. You could literally hear people saying ooh and ahh as each character, robot or situation reminded us of other movies in the franchise, just before we were zoomed off to another scene on another planet.
I found it helpful that I knew nothing of the plot as the film started. Afterwards, I read everything I could to identify references that others cheered, but I had forgotten about.
Riz Ahmed, Forest Whitaker and Jimmy Smits are the standouts in a terrific ensemble.
The two hours and 13 minutes running time felt a bit stretched out, in the middle, but the last sequence was just wonderful and left me longing for more.
Truly, the Force is strong, in this film.