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RolandTHTG

SOLO: A Star Wars Story (SPOILERS!)

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Reasons I've come up with:

Word of mouth and the production troubles. 

Was a Han Solo film necessary? 

Lack of interest compared to The Force Awakens, Rogue One and The Last Jedi. 

Avengers: Infinity War and Deadpool 2 competition. Jurassic Park: Fallen Kingdom and the Incredibles II will damage/take screenings from Solo too. 

Moving from May to December. Since Star Wars returned in 2015, all but Solo came out in December. 

Too many Star Wars films. 

The Last Jedi feedback. 

I'm casual to Star Wars and a recent convert so you'll know better than me when it comes to them. 

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I think most of those or a combination of them are possibilities but I believe if they had put out a great film then it'd do well so the blame begins with the production itself. 

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I don't know if I agree with that. The hate/apathy for Solo was pretty strong going in. I think a great film would have helped, but I still think it would have under performed regardless.

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There are a lot of creative/artistic issues at work, but the extensive reshoots are the main problem, if we believed the reports that they roughly doubled the budget, putting it at a bit over 250 million. Cut that in half, and it’s a profitable bomb (at about 148 globally) that could nonetheless act as a lesson that people won’t just see these because of the brand alone.

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I don't pretend to be a Star Wars aficionado or anything and have no idea if the Would That it Were So Simple guy is good, bad or indifferent but would a large part of the issue be that Star Wars fans don't want to see anyone but Harrison Ford as Solo?

 

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Solo wasn't as bad as I thought it might be, but I can see why it isn't packing people in.  It's not really the crowd pleaser you want from a summer blockbuster.  I found it sort of tedious to sit through and didn'' t really care about most of the plot or the characters.  The kid playing Solo was ok, but seems didn't do much to make me think he has a starring career ahead of him.  Emilia Clarke's name in the credits is becoming a warning to stay away.  

Someone said they thought Disney would have been better to present a more roguish version of Han Solo.  I agree.  His backstory as presented seems to be overly managed.  I kinda felt like someone probably wrote a script that presented Solo as a bad guy, and Disney decided to keep the story but rewrite it to cast Han in a better light.

I looked at my watch an awful lot during the film.  No interest in seeing it again even when it hits FX.

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13 hours ago, Fuzzy Dunlop said:

I don't pretend to be a Star Wars aficionado or anything and have no idea if the Would That it Were So Simple guy is good, bad or indifferent but would a large part of the issue be that Star Wars fans don't want to see anyone but Harrison Ford as Solo?

 

I think so combined with the production troubles. It was going to be rough from the start. Also yearly Star Wars movies might be a bad idea. 

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I think they could do yearly Star Wars movies if everything wasn't so damn connected.  There's a whole fucking universe out there and everything is connected to the same 6 people.  Enough.  

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This is the first one that didn't feel important. Ever. So that hurts.

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Speaking as a non-fan/casual fan, I would have been more interested in a Star Wars solo movie if it had been based around someone from the new trilogy or gone the Rogue One way and introduced original characters.  There seems to be a large amount of "expanded universe" material out there.  Use some of that.  "Solo" made the universe seem rather small and interconnected in way that strains credulity.

 

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33 minutes ago, Keep Calm, Akira Hokuto On said:

There seems to be a large amount of "expanded universe" material out there.  Use some of that. 

TBH, the new trilogy starting with The Force Awakens seems to have has cherry picked a bit from Timmy Zahn's Legacy of the Force materiel to get the story underway and then undercut things by killing off Luke in The Last Jedi. 

So we have Kylo Ren kinda subbing for Darth Caedus but Luke dies a bachelor, so the ephemeral link to Zahn's stuff is effectively severed.

Some of the EU stuff is okay while other stuff like Karen Traviss's Mandalorian stuff is so counterintuitive to the metaplot that it should probably be left out entirely.

Disney is obviously going to use the "A Star Wars Story" vehicle to solidify its own mythology (even shit from Disney's animated shows) into one canon under the Disney / Lucasfilm umbrella, so that's the direction we're headed in now.

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46 minutes ago, Keep Calm, Akira Hokuto On said:

There seems to be a large amount of "expanded universe" material out there.  Use some of that.  "Solo" made the universe seem rather small and interconnected in way that strains credulity.

The vast, vast majority of the old EU has been rendered non-canon, though Disney is scavenging some of the more popular bits. Thrawn is around (still/again), for instance, as well as the galaxy-next-door threat that motivates him (though the specifics of that are presently lacking, and they should probably not directly copy the old novels here).

Ironically(?), the new-EU thing they included--Maul being alive--seems to have been received a bit more harshly than I expected. I understand the concern that Disney might make peripheral materials essential in order to drive interest--if you don't buy this novel you'll miss important plot points!--but I'm a bit more lenient when it comes to non-mainline movies. And the robot legs should make it immediately clear that oh, he survived bisection, not that this is some timeline error.

Having said that, I think you're exactly right about the last part. I saw Solo with my dad, and--sample size of one anecdote incoming, sorry--he has always emphasized to me how bravely alien Star Wars felt when it first appeared (especially to a 16-year-old in a 1000 person Western Kansas town), for all that it borrowed very comfortably narrative structures and tropes*. When the old-EU worked, it lived up to the "expanded" part of EU, generally making things bigger, weirder, and new. (Often this did not work, but.) Solo, on the other hand, is very concerned with the depths of its icebergs, where its easy to drown. Some of that is prequel-itis, some owes to current franchise expectations, but it's a problem in any case. (To digress wildly, this is also why I'm not really thrilled about Amazon's "young Aragorn" LOTR plans, but whatever.)

*The aforementioned familiar tropes is another reason I think Solo might have been a bit unnecessary: Han is an immediately recognizable archetype in American mythology, familiar to virtually anyone, whether they've been directly raised on Westerns or not.  

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The thing that really pissed me off is the talk at the end of the film about going to work for Jabba, who was putting together a crew for a big steal. After sitting through 2.5 hours of that, you can't tease what would have clearly been a better premise to roll with. 

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I probably should have mentioned that I know there's a lot of Star Wars "Expanded Universe" material out there that is considered at least quasi-canon.  And that is literally everything I know about that.  Never read the books or watched anything fan-made.  I think I've seen all the movies at some point plus some of Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels, I own Knights of the Old Republic I and II for Xbox, and I think I read an Alan Dean Foster novel or two back in the.... 80's.

So, yeah, carry on.  I'm just going to pretend that I know what the couple posts above this one are talking about.

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About time they had a bomb, for all the dull, derivative plots they've been churning out (Rogue One and elements of Force Awakens aside). Speaking personally, my antipathy for this one was rooted wholly in The Last Jedi. which was the first real turn-off experience I've had towards the series. Even the sequels, while largely poor, at least had some intrigue. The Last Jedi was wholly alienating. This just looked like a continuation of that watered down, Disneyfied vision.

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3 hours ago, Keep Calm, Akira Hokuto On said:

and I think I read an Alan Dean Foster novel or two back in the.... 80's.

Splinter In The Mind's Eye would've been canon if Star Wars had made no money.  By the time it came out, SW had made a ton of cash, so Lucas opted for a big budget sequel called The Empire Strikes Back.

So, Splinter of the Mind's Eye is not canon.. kinda...

Lucas cribbed a bit of content from Splinter, so its concepts live on in the sequels to Star Wars.. 

In the book, Vader is able to fire beams of Kiberr energy from his hands and is able to leap great distances through manipulation of The Force.  Yoda teaches Luke how to Force Jump in Empire and Palpatine's Force Lightning ability shows up in Return of the Jedi.

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6 hours ago, Beech27 said:

Ironically(?), the new-EU thing they included--Maul being alive--seems to have been received a bit more harshly than I expected

Maul being alive is not new-EU. Maul's survival was revealed during the Clone Wars cartoon. Lucas was very much a part of that series.

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Yeah, I didn’t phrase that very clearly. I meant that he’s demonstatably still alive in the new EU material before Solo, and that Clone Wars survived the canon purge, when little else did. But he and (to a greater degree) Thrawn are interesting straddlers of that divide. 

On the subject of Lucas (and apart from my being pedantic): Ron Howard has mentioned in several interviews that he was somewhat involved with the initial concept and even active on set at times—though he only directly credits Lucas with suggesting Han drop Lando’s cape when kissing Qi’ra in the closet, when the original script had him hanging it back up. 

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I honestly don't think the behind the scenes problems affected the opening too much.  I think history has proven time and again that the general moviegoing public doesn't really concern itself with the happenings of Film Twitter or the trade publications.  What's more, the production of ROGUE ONE was just as famously troubled as SOLO's, and that didn't seem to deter many people from showing up.

Ultimately, I think it was a simple matter of Star Wars fatigue (the 4th SW movie in less than 4 years!) + a really poorly thought-out release window.  Not only did SOLO face more blockbuster competition than the December releases, but if you look at the past 10 years or so, Memorial Day weekend releases haven't faired as well as they did 20-30 years ago.  These days, the 1st weekend of May is where you position the globe-dominating megahit.  Memorial Day is for the second bananas.  Disney made SOLO the second banana to INFINITY WAR, and that's the results they're getting.

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10 hours ago, Beech27 said:

Yeah, I didn’t phrase that very clearly. I meant that he’s demonstatably still alive in the new EU material before Solo, and that Clone Wars survived the canon purge, when little else did. But he and (to a greater degree) Thrawn are interesting straddlers of that divide. 

To be fair I think Clone Wars survived more because it was still airing when the buyout happened so there were plenty more eyes on it than the books and comics. It was also something Lucas had a decent amount of involvement in unlike the other old EU material. Not really sure about Thrawn's survival, but I'm not complaining.

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3 hours ago, Niners Fan in CT said:

Is Knights of the Old Republic canon? 

Officially it's not, but Rebels has referenced aspects of its lore, and so far as I know most of it hasn't been contradicted in any way. (Maybe none of it has been, but I want to be conservative.) I would guess Disney wants to leave the Old Republic open for development, but is happy enough to bring such a popular entry along when possible.

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36 minutes ago, Beech27 said:

Officially it's not, but Rebels has referenced aspects of its lore, and so far as I know most of it hasn't been contradicted in any way.

The answer is actually yes and no.  Darth Bane has made an appearance in an episode of Star Wars:  The Clone Wars (Ghosts of Mortis) but his appearance is much different than his representation in KOTOR.   

Revan was also in the episode in his Sith incarnation, but he was cut in final production by Lucas himself because Revan died as a Jedi as per the KOTOR timeline.  Revan even paraphrases Kreia's infamous monologue about betrayal in the deleted scene.

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I want to say that another example of "yes and no" would be the fact that Corellian freighters are the preferred set pieces, but I don't remember off the top of my head whether or not the Ebon Hawk was of Corellian design.

I know that the Hawk was registered on Transel, but I am not sure who was the original shipwright.

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