Solo: A Stars Story

Rated 2.0

Solo is essentially a 135-minute version of the River Phoenix sequence from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, only it looks like complete garbage and is no fun at all. It’s a nonstop succession of callbacks, wink-wink foreshadowing and Infinity Stone-style worldbuilding meant to explain the origin of everything Han Solo ever did, said or touched over the course of episodes IV through VI. Worse, Solo is shot like an early 1990s primetime drama, all gauzy lighting, shadowy interiors and monochromatic colors. Original Solo directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller were booted from the project well into production and replaced by career hack Ron Howard, who never met a property he couldn’t drain of personality. As ever, Howard’s concept of visual cinema is hopelessly flat and punishingly literal. Call it old school Hollywood craftsmanship if you insist, but I wouldn’t trust the guy to build a stairway to nowhere.