All posts by Chewie Darsow

I'm a Filmmaker, Set Decorator and Rat lover. So I like telling stories, making things pretty and small fuzzy animals. My life in a nutshell.

A Hype To Remember: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)

All of us here at After The Hype love Star Wars, because… well… it’s STAR WARS!

In honor of Star Wars Day (May 4th) we will be releasing one “Hype to Remember” a day to cover all 8 of the released Star Wars films! Chewie here with a look at Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.


First thing’s first: I don’t watch Star Wars trailers before I see the films. I will run out of a theater, stick my fingers in my ears and yell incoherently to stop any information from reaching my brain. As far as I’m concerned every image is a spoiler, a lead to an expectation which will influence my first viewing experience. Everything Rogue One related other than casting I avoided.


I did see the one shot with Jyn in Black Trooper armor, backlit on a ship with the narration “This is a rebellion isn’t it? I rebel.” It’s hard to avoid TV spots. The shot though, did give me a little tickle in my chest. I had not seen Felicity Jones in many movies but in that one sec I got excited to see her in a Star Wars film. The line was…kinda lame, like when Han said “Chewie, we’re home” in the teaser for The Force Awakens. Just lame and reeked of Wink Wink from the marketing dept. Boy was I happy that “I rebel” line wasn’t in the finished film.

Continue reading A Hype To Remember: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)

2016 Tournament of Champions

Top tens are not my favorite sort of lists really.  It’s all a matter of bias and I always feel something is being left out.  Even if the writer does a honorable mentions section.  For my best of 2016 I decided to try and show my thought process / bias in this Tournament of Champions.  Give everyone a chance to really get mad at me.


Tournament of Champions


In the process I pitted some films against each other who otherwise should never be.  I have to pause, consider details, and in the end go with the movie that brought me the most joy and or moments of thought.


For example Rogue One beating out The VVitch.  Two movies I thoroughly enjoyed for very different reasons.  The VVitch being such a visceral film I had a long hesitation but Star Wars wins when Star Wars is done right.


That left Hell Or High Water against The Handmaiden.  Two power house films about love, loss, entrapment, desperation, and good old fashioned capers.  It’s weird to think about these films being so similar, in such drastically different settings, culturally and locality.  But there they were, two desperate women fighting with two desperate men.


In the end I had to go with Hell Or High Water because of my own current cultural desperation.  Hell or High Water shows me the world in which Trump became president and it humbles my liberal feminist heart a little.  Just a little.  Not too much.  #dembabyblueeyes


So my cultural bias chooses Hell Or High Water as the best film of 2016.