The teaser trailer for Lucasfilm’s first stand-alone “Star Wars story” caught our attention with familiar imagery. While The Force Awakens proved more faithful to the aesthetic of the original films than the prequels did, it nonetheless drifted from classic design elements. Rogue One takes us back to those, set in the period just before the original film, and therefore looks exactly like our childhood dreamscape.
The full trailer for the film dropped on Thursday, and does more to establish tone. It seems clear, despite the aesthetic reproduction, this will not be your father’s Star Wars. Director Gareth Edwards has promised a genuine war film with the grit and adversity that characterizes the genre. The trailer indicates as much.
Rebel malcontent Jyn Erso directs a band of allies on a covert mission to secure intelligence surrounding a rumored super-weapon. That’s what we know of the story. This is about boots on the ground, soldiers grinding out their mission from the trenches of warfare. There will be no Jedi to save them. While Darth Vader makes in appearance, his presence will lurk in the background. Given the film’s one off nature, anything could happen to these characters. None of them are safe. That alone will make this Star Wars film different from any which has come before.