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“Solo: A Star Wars Story” Early Reviews Are In — And Very Positive

Alden Ehrenreich makes it work as Han Solo, Donald Glover stylishly nails Lando, and this movie looks like too much fun.

Jonathan Olley/Lucasfilm

What with all the re-shoots, new directors, and rumors of certain actors not embodying their lead role as a certain smuggler in a certain galaxy far, far away, expectations for Solo: A Star Wars Story haven’t been high. Well, the first reactions to early screenings of the film are in and, well, well, well, the film is said to be pretty good. There won’t be full-scale reviews until the embargo lifts on May 15th, but there doesn’t seem to be much for fans to worry about.

Solo tells the story of a young Han before he becomes the surly, supremely talented wise guy we all know and love. The film takes place about a decade before the events of A New Hope  when a young Han is a pilot in the Imperial Army. Events unfold that lead him to be introduced to such companions as Chewbacca and Lando Calrissian and which detail the story of such heralded events as the Kessel Run.

Things didn’t sound good for Solo after directors Chris and Phil Lord were replaced by Ron Howard and murmors of reshoots filled the air. Film and entertainment reporter Simon Thompson wasn’t shy about his initial apprehension, but after viewing the film praised the movie’s ability to appeal to a wide breadth of audiences.

Kevin Polowy of Yahoo Entertainment had a similar stance when he called the film “refreshing,” for not overly recycling classic Star Wars beats.

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In the same vein, Terri Schwartz, the Editorial Manager over at IGN pointed out that the film has the same ageless Star Wars patina. In a follow-up tweet, Schwartz also lauded the film’s reliance on practical effects rather than  “any notable, obtrusive CGI.”

Still, the early reviews of Solo indicate that it is by no means a perfect film. Most of the critics had the same complaint, and it was that the first act drags its feet in the first act. Eric Eisenberg of CinemaBlend said the movie was “slow to find its footing” and Mike Ryan, a Senior Entertainment Writer at Uproxx called the first act “hit and miss clunky.” Still, both of them point out that the film eventually picks up.

Despite the slow start, once the gang’s all together and the plot is thoroughly underway, Kate Erbland, a Film Editor at Indiewire says that Donald Glover and Phoebe Waller-Bridge steal the show as Lando Calrissian and his droid L3-37.

Jenna Busch, an author and Star Wars enthusiast, also thought that Glover’s stole the show as the smooth-talking Calrissian

Beyond Busch and Erbland, Angie Han of Mashable also praised the casting.