Rogue One: A Star Wars Story hits shops today on Blu-ray and DVD, it's also available on Digital HD… and let's face it, if you're going to see it you probably already have. And just about everyone and their brother has reviewed the film. So, breaking the film down at this point doesn't make much sense. That said, if you are curious about my opinion on the film, I'm split. The Star Wars fan in me, that has been watching these things for almost 40 years, loved it. It bridged the gap between the prequels and the originals and told a story that I've always wondered about. The writer in me had some problems with it, including the fact that it wasn't really a full story that could stand on it's own. Something every movie should be able to do regardless of the franchise it's in.
That aside, I got a copy of the Blu-ray and I will take a look at the most important thing to me when it comes to home releases… the extras. I'm a strong believer that every Blu-ray should have a commentary track, behind-the-scenes footage, a gag reel and featurettes focused on the source material or making the film. If the studios want me to pay to have their film on my shelf, then they should give me more than just what I saw in the theater.
How did Rogue One do? I'm split on that as well. There is no gag reel nor commentary. I would very much like to have seen footage of Alan Tudyk making his fellow actors bust up, and I think hearing more from Gareth Edwards about the making of the film in a commentary track would've been well worth the money for the disk. But no, those aren't there. But what is there area bunch of featurettes that highlight certain aspects of the film, including how it got started from an idea by John Knoll, the senior visual effects supervisor, who for years had the idea to tell the story of the rebel team the secured the plans to the Death Star and finally got the chance to make it happen.
They also look into all of the characters in the film and what made them tick. How the actors added to the story with decision like Tudyk doing a British accent or Donnie Yen playing blind. Neither of these things were in the original idea, but both enhanced the movie. We get insights into Jyn, Cassian, K-2SO, Baze, Chirrut, Bodhi, Saw and even the Empire.
They also focus on the look of Rogue One and making it fit in with the original Star Wars film A New Hope. And they spend some time on the decision and technology behind the digital versions of Princess Leia and Governor Tarkin.
Is there enough here to justify buying the film? If you are a Star Wars fan, absolutely. It's a piece of one of the greatest franchises in film history and a good movie. The extras are entertaining and bring more to the film experience. I of course wanted more, but that can be said of almost every Blu-ray released. If you're not a Star Wars fan… why would you think about buying this in the first place?