Solo: A Star Wars Story ★★★½

To my shock, Solo is pretty good. It's the Star Wars universe as a playground, with real, personable characters running up and down its ladders. And yes, a lot of characters we've seen before, though still ultimately what I've hoped these anthology films would be. Feels authentic, more than anything. I had a whole lot of fun. It's fairly straight forward and there isn't much to analyze, so here's some stuff:

- Alden Ehrenreich is excellent. He becomes Han the second the film starts and he never stops
- Not one bad performance here. Donald Glover is a godsend as Lando (obviously), but even Paul Bettany works as a typical mustache-twirler
- Woodey Harrelson and Thandie Newton as Bonnie and Clyde in space is more than welcome
- I feel like I maybe would've enjoyed seeing Val become Han's mentor more than Beckett?
- Lando calls Han kid even though they're, like, the same age and it's great
- Enfys Nest is immediately iconic
- 3/4 of the new Star Wars films feature questionably-necessary giant tentacle monsters
- This film provides answers to a lot of questions nobody was really asking, but none of them are particularly bad so it's fine
- The kind of film I'll probably end up enjoying more on repeat viewings
- I think I loved that cameo near the end because it's completely unexpected but also totally makes sense. It also sets the stage for a sequel that I actually kind of want to see now (Qira seems like she could be a really interesting character if further elaborated on), but now I don't know what to think of what the Star Wars franchise is turning into, because I would've said "not a chance in hell" if asked before seeing this if I'd want to see a *second* Young Han Solo movie

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