Richard sent us a fantast email, but we weren't able to share the entire email due some spoilers!\r\n\r\n## SO BEWARE - SPOLIERS BELOW! \r\n\r\nYo,\r\n\r\nMy thoughts on Solo:\r\n\r\nAs a long time Star Wars fan, i was a little bit tentative going into the cinema, as knowing that since Disney took over, they made the original Extended Universe stuff non-canon, they could now, in theory, do whatever they liked with Han Solo and his background story. The problem here however, would be that in changing everything, they'd upset a lot of dedicated fans, so the film makers obviously had a challenge, to stay true to the original story - the background that the fans know - but to make it current and interesting, fun, etc. Luckily, they hit the nail pretty much right on the head, in my opinion. They have veered off the path a little, changing some details a bit, but not a huge amount. Enough to make it their own, but enough to stay true to the old, now non-canon story. I did, at a couple of moments towards the start, get very annoyed with a couple of happenings, but then given a couple of minutes, i had forgiven the film and saw the sense in it.\r\n\r\nExample one (spoliers alert, don't mention all these if you don't want to. But i'm going to share my thoughts here anyway, with you) - the dice. Han's sabaac dice. These are seen in A New Hope, hanging in the cockpit. Now, in the EU (now non-canon Extended Universe), Han wins the Falcon from Lando, in a version of Sabaac called "Corellian Spike". Sabaac is a card game, a bit poker-esque, i suppose. But variations of the game exist, and Corellian Spike involves dice, which can result in a potentially winning hand becoming a losing hand, making for a faster, harder to calculate game. So, upon winning the game, and the Falcon, Han keeps the dice as a lucky charm. Later, in one of the books, Chewbacca hangs them in the Falcon's cockpit as a bit of a joke. However, in Solo, Han has these dice from the very start. So, they've changed that a bit, but it's not really a huge or drastic change. Of course, you could however argue, that these are sabaac dice, with sabaac specific symbols on them, and the dice in A New Hope (and the comic books, and the Force Awakens and The Last Jedi), are actually regular numbered dice, so, could they just be different dice, rather than just continuity issues there. It could all tie in later and this is all just added, rather than changed. So no huge deal, in hindsight.\r\n\r\nExample two - Han meets Chewie. So, Han Solo joins the imperial navy, becomes a pilot, because he wants to be the best pilot in the galaxy. In the EU, Chewie is trying to liberate other wookie slaves, when a deal goes wrong, and Lt. Solo, leading a Tie Fighter squadron, disobeys his ranking officer and refuses to kill Chewbacca for his crimes. Chewbacca goes into slavery. Solo later saves Chewie from being whipped to death, and the two escape together. Chewie owes Solo a life debt, and so the two go into smuggling together. In the film, Solo never makes the rank of leuitentant, but instead gets thrown out of the flight academy. So during a skirmish on Kashyyk, he ends up being ordered to death, being fed to "the beast", who turns out to be (an aptly named, perhaps) Chewie, being kept as a slave. So Han convinces Chewbacca not to kill him, they escape together, and Han ends up leaving the Imperial army in doing so. So, again, close enough to the original story to work, but reworked. I can agree with that. The bit that really annoyed me here was when Han starts speaking Shyriiwook, the wookie trade language. Humans can learn to understand Shyriiwook, and Wookies can learn to understand English (know as Galactic Basic), but due to vocal chords and jaw bones, humans would have to dislocate their jaw in order to speak Shyriiwook. So, when Han started speaking it, i was close to walking out, however i didn't, of course, as i did actually want to see the film out. But saying that, when Han spoke Shyriiwook, it was broken and inaccurate, and clearly a desperate attempt to show Chewbacca that Han could understand him, and wasn't neccessarily an enemy, so that Chewbacca would think twice about eating him, and the two could perhaps trust each other. So in that sense, i think it actually worked really well.\r\n\r\nExample 3 - the Kessel Run. Famously, Han made the Kessel run (a well-used smuggling route), at some point, in 11.5 Parsecs. A parsec is a measurement of distance, not time, and the Kessel Run should usually take 18 parsecs, so he found a shortcut somewhere. In the EU, he did this by flying close to a black hole in The Maw, and due to the unrivalled speed of the Falcon, he could do this, and get away without being sucked into it. However, in Solo, he does exactly this! Amazing! Very well researched, thought through, and well delivered. The flaws here are, this was originally on a different job, and later when bragging about it, Chewie makes a noise to which Han replies something along the lines of, "it works if you round down", implying this was actually more than 12 parsecs, not less. But, this could be a gateway to Han doing the Kessel Run shorter, later, by following a similar method, so, in my books, it works fine. Also, credit for including The Maw (the big dusty, cloudy, asteroidy field of space in which the kessel run passes through), and making it everything that the comics and novels suggest it should be, pretty much. During this whole scene too, we see how Lando's shiny, clean Falcon, becomes the piece of junk we all know and love. \r\n\r\nSo, all of these changes, could just be additions, and not be a blatent change to the old EU, which works perfectly. If they are changes, we can be stubborn and still accept all of it anyway. They had a huge challenge to make this film, and i think they got it exactly right.\r\n\r\nAs for the film itself, it is a solid film. Not the best, most groundbreaking or pivotal ever, but far, far from the worst. It's very well paced, interesting and exciting throughout, fun, very well done. Humour isn't over the top or annoying (like it has been in The Last Jedi - think of that opera singing alien on Canto Bight, or Hux being used as a slapstick prop, or Poe Dameron's opening scene, winding up Hux), and doesn't distract. There are a few light nods to other films/characters/events in the franchise, but nothing overly important, so big fans can be all, "Oh! That's a thing!", and newcomers can let it pass right over their heads, and that's fine, because these little things don't actually matter or impact anything largely. There is, of course, a very significant cameo later on, which is a bit different, and i (and i know others) got hugely excited about. Unexpected, a bit of a twist, but works perfectly in the larger universe. Ties in well with the Rebels TV series, and the inevitable upcoming comic books. But it's a film that doesn't need to exist. Overall, the film just doesn't matter. It doesn't seem to really make a huge difference, it's not too significant, though it is a great, well made, well thought out film, and it's nice to see a part of the Star Wars universe that we haven't experienced too much. The criminal underworld, the rising rebellious groups, the "other" wars within the crime sindicates, and not just the "good vs bad", rebels vs imperials stuff. Along with The Last Jedi's DJ character's experiences and views of "good and bad" being on a spectrum rather than just "black and white", it gives the whole universe a further dimension, very reminiscent of the Dark Horse comics from the 90s, with the Skywalker storyline being just one small part of an entire universe, as it should be. It brings things into perspective a little, and allows for more oppurtunity to branch out into other stories and themes, whilst simultaneously tying into the core film story base. \r\n\r\nAnother worthy mention is the casting. I think Alden Ehrenreich makes a great Han Solo. And Woody Harrelson's role of Tobias Beckett is also a good move, and an important one, i feel, for implying how "Solo" Han becomes "A New Hope" Han. Also, Donald Glover is a perfect Lando. Nail, meet head. Difficult boots to fill for both Han and Lando, but they would have struggled to do better. Both believeable and logical. And watching Emilia Clarke as Qi'ra, i never thought, "oh look, it's Daenarys Targaryan". She was Qi'ra. End of. Fantastic effort and delivery by all involved. \r\n\r\nIn conclusion, if you're a big Star Wars fan, and you don't watch Solo, you won't really miss out on too much. But, if you're a big Star Wars fan, you're going to see it anyway. Probably numerous times. If you're a casual fan, or not really a fan, it's well worth seeing. It's not important or neccessary, but it's a very good film, and it respects Star Wars well. When i first saw Solo, i thought, "yeah, it's alright, not bad". The more i think about the film afterwards, the more i respect and enjoy it, and want to see it again. \r\n\r\nSolo: A Star Wars Story, was perhaps a bit of a gamble. Han Solo himself may say he doesn't want to know the odds, but there's more than just luck on his side for this story.