wall street journal
The prequel to the prequel, “Endor” brings a gritty tone and looks to the “Star Wars” universe as much as the washed-out landscape of “Blade Runner” as George Lucas’ distant galaxy. Yet much of what it promises is mostly lost in the flabby storytelling, essentially what happens in the first three episodes into a 10-minute film prologue.
Disney+ has wisely decided to launch a 12-episode prequel to “Rogue One,” starring Diego Luna as Detective Cassian Andor, with those three episodes, compared to the first installment of the series. Provides some better understanding of the framework. However, it takes until the fourth one to focus on the plot of this original story, and by then, “Endor” has already gotten a bit snarky.
Created by veteran screenwriter Tony Gilroy, who received screenplay credit for “Rogue One” and played a role in its rehab, “Endor” proudly wears the fact that it’s not another “Star Wars” series on its sleeve. which aims to woo fans with cameos (though some of them will be) or sell plush toys. Gilroy is more interested in telling a little detective yarn with a mischief component—think “The Guns of Navaron,” with only spaceships, droids, and the occasional alien.
Following the shortest path, however, is not an excuse to move at the pace of a wounded Banta, who is beset by flashbacks to the protagonist’s childhood. Nor are these early episodes enough to isolate the shifting cast of supporting characters, a group that excites nothing more than nostalgia.
Endor’s ultimate fate is already known, so the emphasis of the show consists in how he made the leap from hating the Empire, to joining the fight against its ego.
Stellan Skarsgrd plays a central role in that regard, at least in the early stages, and Genevieve O’Reilly makes an appearance as mon Mothma, reprising the role she played in “Rogue One”, although she is expected to be seen immediately. hope not .
As for the Empire, the organization is less about the Sith than the frontline soldiers in this incarnation, a group characterized by bureaucratic infighting and more than a little moderate-managerial incompetence. While this carries an underlying message about totalitarian states, like the good ones, some of the bad guys wield too much influence.
The vastness of the “Star Wars” galaxy and the varied timelines it occupies create a canvas that can accommodate all kinds of stories, perhaps more readily at Marvel than its Disney brethren given the interconnected nature of its universe. . It’s clearly not “The Mandalorian” or “Obi-Wan Kenobi,” with all those moments designed to shock hardcore fans, and in theory, that’s fine.
The problem is, to initially create too much excitement about “Endor”, which is mostly about how and where Lucasfilm can push those parameters and bend the mold—in this case, an anti-“star”. Seems like a tricky test by what quantity to produce. Wars’ “Star Wars” series. Unlike the exhilarating action in “Rogue One,” the series doesn’t deliver the level of thrill needed to sustain such an extended affair as it systematically sets up the story.
Charitably, the experiment represents an act of creative freedom that deserves praise just for trying. Less benevolently, “Endor” feels like a series plagued by touches of its own royal ego.
“Endor” premieres on Disney+ on September 21, along with its first three episodes.