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andor

★★★★★

starring: diego luna, adira arjona, kyle soller, and Stellan Skarsgard

 

REVIEWER: lyall carter

Prequel series to Star Wars' 'Rogue One'.

Andor, a spy thriller from Lucasfilm filmed over two 12-episode seasons, takes place five years before the events of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The era featured in Andor is filled with danger, deception and intrigue where Cassian will embark on the path that is destined to turn him into a rebel hero. Andor presents Star Wars from a different perspective, focusing on everyday people whose lives are affected by the Empire. The decisions they make have real consequences, and the stakes for them—and the galaxy—couldn’t be higher. And that’s all the synopsis that you’ll get. No spoilers to be found here. 

 

Star Wars has a bit of a problem. When it attempted to go in a new direction in The Last Jedi, there was, expectedly, a battle between those who loved the innovative and daring storytelling while others felt it was a betrayal of what had gone before. As a result the concluding episode The Rise of Skywalker returned to familiar fan service over great storytelling, leading to a muddled narrative. 

 

But Disney Plus Star Wars projects offer the perfect opportunity for content that has more of a connection to past Star Wars tales and other stories take new, exciting steps into a galaxy far, far away. Andor is not your Dad’s Star Wars. Andor is bold, fresh and gritty, leaving you with the sense that you’ve entered a very real world. The best Star Wars tale since the original trilogy. 

 

Andor feels like it exists in the murky world somewhere between the dark side and the light. The Empire doesn’t seem like a cartoonish evil, but very real and very dangerous. As a result the stakes are very high. Andor feels as if it's a bit Blade Runner, for the almost dystopian, sci-fi feel that emanates throughout it and a tad Casablanca as spies and saboteurs hide in the shadows. 

 

The investment into characters that have an almost cameo appearance not only in the depths of their development but the caliber of actor playing them is in stark contrast with most of the other supporting characters in other Star Wars projects. Andor has Bourne writer (and director of the fourth film) Tony Gilroy’s fingers all over this bringing a grounded sense to everything about it. 

 

Andor is bold, fresh and gritty, leaving you with the sense that you’ve entered a very real world. The best Star Wars tale since the original trilogy.

★★★★★