5 Things you Need to Know About Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

In the early hours of this morning Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was released in UK cinemas.

Hubby was lucky enough to get tickets for the first screening at the Odeon Cinema at the intu Metrocentre and saw it in 3D on the IMAX Screen ...

5 Things you Need to Know About Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

1. Is it a Star Wars film?

Yes (and no)! 

Released in the UK just after midnight last night, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, is the first of three standalone spin-off films. The 2-hour 13-minute sci-fi action film is set between the events of Episode III: Revenge of the Sith and the original Star Wars film, 1977's Episode IV: A New Hope. It is set nearly four decades before The Force Awakens.

5 Things you Need to Know About Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

2. Is it any good?

Film critics have praised the new Star Wars film Rogue One, starring Felicity Jones as Jyn Erso and directed by British filmmaker Gareth Edwards. Hubby went to watch it last night (purely for research purposes obviously!). 

He's been a massive Star Wars fan since he was a young child. In fact here he is wth the boys at Madame Tussauds this summer - My Boys - I am your father! 

5 Things you Need to Know About Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

However, after being a little disappointed with The Force Awakens his love of the Star Wars franchise has returned. He says it has humour, the audience laughed out loud, were shocked, entertained, and yet sometimes confused. There is death, destruction and war (yet little blood or gore spilt) 

It's noticeable that the music is not by John Williams and that's a real shame, but it is the prequel that film numbers I, II and III just weren't and that can only be a good thing. For a full list of whats good and bad about the movie click here (Still NO SPOILERS though!)

3. What is it about?

From Lucasfilm this all-new epic adventure, is set in a time of conflict, a group of unlikely heroes band together on a mission to steal the plans to the Death Star, the Empire’s ultimate weapon of destruction. This key event in the Star Wars timeline brings together ordinary people who choose to do extraordinary things, and in doing so, become part of something greater than themselves.

Rogue One is a tale of good guys and bad guys, just as Star Wars always has been. Unsurprisingly, it is again a tale of rebellion against a totalitarian government, of guerrilla fighters striking a blow against uniform regiments of stormtroopers and the brutal dictator they serve. 

5 Things you Need to Know About Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

4. Is it suitable for young children?

The film has been given a PG-13 from the MPAA in the US and 12A from the BBFC in the UK. 

Officially they say ...

"There are frequent gunfights, use of hand-held weapons, explosions and aerial dogfights between spaceships. Blood and injury detail is limited and brief.
Occasional scenes of mild threat include an interrogation and gun threat."

Plus "some younger children may find the 3D or IMAX format a more intense experience."

However, age ratings are only advisory, and we as parents know our kids best.

My boys are aged 7 and 9. My 7-year-old has already said he wants to watch it on TV - the noise in the cinema is too much for him - but my 9-year-old is very keen. So keen that he has his heart set on a ticket coming from Santa. 

It is a dark film. Definitely no Ewoks or fairy tale princesses. And far more mature than the average Disney film. And despite the Disney Store being full of Rogue One merchandise some reviewers like Variety have claimed its a Star Wars film for grown-ups (at last) and younger viewers may just be bored or confused; Business Insider says it's not a film for younger viewers; but on the other hand The Sun says it suitable for children aged 7+

So Rogue One is very loud, there is lots of fighting, and a couple of parts are quite scary and it is not a straightforward as good guys v bad guys. There is a lot of gunfire, war imagery, and death so may require careful conversations post-viewing if children do watch it.

But it’s Star Wars, it is a great film that appeals to both adults and children and there’s no swearing. so we are going to make our decision after I have watched it next week, so that ticket may still be under the tree on Christmas Day.

It should be popular with girls too. As with The Force Awakens, this movie again features another female lead -Felicity Jones as Jyn Erso.

5 Things you Need to Know About Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

5. Where can I see it?

NOW. It is at cinemas across the UK from 15 December and 16 December in US.