Star Wars: Rogue One
Few film franchises grab me. I'm not interested in the DC or Marvel universes, or JK Rowling's Wizarding World. As standalone movies, perhaps, but as a storyworld I'm just not that interested. And despite having seen all of the Star Wars films, I was completely indifferent to seeing Rogue One.
As it turned out, Rogue One was a fine film that was just about able to hold my interest, and breathed a new and very slightly more edgy wind into the franchise. It is a little big film, and it is this paradox, in part, that makes it intensely watchable. The other (surprising) turn about Rogue One was its ability to make me appreciate and root for the freedom fighters in a way that went beyond, 'The universe is in peril. We're all doomed.' Perhaps a combination of real-world uncertainties and creeping sentimentality was to blame, but all of a sudden, fighting for what you believe in really did seem like an honourable and righteous thing to do.
Entertaining and affecting, Rogue One was enjoyable, and always just about the right side of a dreary cliche. Of course, there will be much, much more to come from the Star Wars canon; you don't spend a shade over $4 billion to purchase rights to the franchise, as the Walt Disney Company have done, unless you've got steady stream of parables and plot twists being cooked up somewhere, somehow. I doubt I'll be on board for the whole ride.