Rogue One Review – What Moms and Dads Need To Know (Spoiler Free)

As always, this Rogue One review is spoiler free!

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Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is one of the year’s most anticipated films, especially among Star Wars fans young and old, but is it appropriate for your kiddos?

The Storyline:

Rogue One is standalone film from the Star Wars saga sandwiched between 2005’s Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (the one where Anakin becomes Vader) and 1977’s Star Wars Episode IV- A New Hope (the one where Han, Luke and Chewie rescue Leia, Alderaan is blown up by the Death Star, and Luke blows up the Death Star using the information gained from the stolen Death Star plans).

Rogue One tells the story of how the Rebel Alliance came to acquire the plans to the Death Star used in Episode IV. No surprises or spoilers there, but how these new characters stories are interwoven and how the plans are acquired may keep you guessing.

It is a darker, more serious movie. While not gory or bloody, Rogue One is most assuredly a war-spy-action movie with Star Wars characters and high-stake plotlines (and it’s awesome!!).

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What parents should consider:

  • Rogue One is rated PG-13 primarily for the sheer volume of fighting, blow-em-up scenes and the high body count.
  • The violence is not a blood or gore type of violence, but more hand to hand combat, explosive type.
  • There is parental death (I’m not saying who here).
  • There is primary character death (some in front of you, some happen off screen and are implied).
  • A plethora of pretty intense battle scenes (no body parts or guts but lots of action, lasers and explosions).
  • Sustained emotional intensity- could be upsetting if you have a kiddo sensitive to grief, loss or suspense. If they survived the death of Han solo, they will be fine).

What parents don’t need to worry about:

  • There are no scenes I would cover my kids eyes for (like in Episode 3 when Anakin killed younglings or where Anakin is on fire)
  • No sexy stuff
  • No profanity
  • No scary monsters like Rathars or Rancor (one super short 15 second or so scene that I would equate to Mowgli in the coils of Kaa in Jungle Book)

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Should your kiddos watch Rogue One?

It REALLY depends on your kiddo, but using older Star Wars Movies as a litmus test: If your child has seen Episode VII – The Force Awakens and Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, they will probably be fine. My biggest apprehension would be if you have kiddo sensitive to death or loss, if your child had a hard time with the death of Han Solo, Obi One or Darth Vader you may want to preview this one yourself first.

My 10 year old is going to loose his mind in the best way on Saturday when I take him to see it this weekend. Even though my 5 year old Darth Vader loving girlie has seen all of the previous movies (we still cover her eyes once or twice in some Star Wars I-VII movies). I’m concerned it may be a little much for her on the big screen and at movie theater volume. We will probably hold off until DVD so she can watch from the comfort of our home, and a much smaller screen.

My thoughts:

The first minutes of Rogue One make it very clear this is not the Star Wars movie you know.

For Star Wars fans, even if you KNOW it is not going to be there, the lack of the iconic opening crawl and soundtrack feels kind of weird and disappointing, but don’t worry, Director Gareth Edwards does not leave you feeling disappointed for long.

While Rogue One stands on its own two feet, as a Star Wars fangirl, I LOVED the subtle and not so subtle references to previous movies.

The characters and casting of Rogue One are perfection, Jyn Erso’s character will have BOTH girls and boys rooting for her. She is tangible, believable and inspiring.

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The scenery is stunningly beautiful.

The musical score was a big concern for me, how could their be a Star Wars movie without John Williams?! I went in not expecting much, but was pleasantly surprised.  I probably won’t be humming Michael Giacchino’s new melodies around the house, but it was effective and had nods to Williams in the right places at the right times.

Even though it is a darker movie, there is plenty of snarky humor to go around, especially surrounding K-2SO (you better buy up those action figures now, he will be on those Christmas lists!)

Mom Approved Tip: Go in knowing as little as possible about the movie and let it take you for the ride! Don’t cheat yourself!

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story..L to R: Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) and K-2SO (Alan Tudyk)..Ph: Jonathan Olley..© 2016 Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story..L to R: Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) and K-2SO (Alan Tudyk)

Now run and grab those tickets and may the force be with you!

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