Solo: A Star Wars Story trailer breakdown


The first full trailer for Solo: A Star Wars Story is finally here, and it’s a long-overdue look at the next Star Wars film. We’ve been a bit worried about this one. The film lost its directing pair midway through shooting, and we’ve been wary of the premise. Do we really need a story about the origins of Han Solo?

This first teaser does give us something to look forward to, and we’re going to take a close look at what we saw.

After a brief show of flipping some switches in the Falcon’s cockpit, we jump right to Alden Ehrenreich’s young Han Solo flying a speeder with Emilia Clarke’s character, Qi’ra.

“I’ve been running scams on the streets since I was 10,” intones Solo in a voiceover.

The timing of this daylight shot versus the darker scene of the pair is a little unclear, but it’s definitely the same speeder. “I was kicked out of the flight academy for having a mind of my own,” Han continues in his voiceover, something that apparently includes being chased by stormtroopers.

One of the little details on the dashboard here: this looks like the same graphic that the X-Wing fighters used on the Death Star run in A New Hope. It’s a neat Easter egg.

We don’t get a great look, but there’s another trooper variant. This one looks a little like a scout trooper, but if you look at the helmet, it certainly looks like he’s wearing a stormtrooper-style helmet.

The Fast and the Furious: Solo Drift.

This is a very Lord of the Rings-style shot, which is not really something I expected from Star Wars, but it’s pretty.

Han finishes his voiceover with a promise: “I’m going to be a pilot; the best in the galaxy.”

One of the big takeaways that I had from the trailer is that we’re looking at a new-looking Falcon, long before it was lambasted as a “piece of junk” by a certain backwater farm boy.

Solo gazing up at the Falcon. I have no evidence to back this up, but it screams “KESSEL” to me.

No word on what beach planet this is, but it shows up a few times in the trailer.

This is our first really good look at Beckett (Woody Harrelson), who tells Han that he’s assembling a crew. “You in?”

The first of said crew: Qi’ra, in a striking red cape that makes her look very different from when we first met her earlier in the trailer.

Donald Glover looks fantastic as Lando Calrissian.

Thandie Newton’s unnamed character (you may recognize her as Maeve from Westworld) makes an appearance, possibly as another member of Beckett’s crew.

It wouldn’t be a new Star Wars movie without some CGI creatures, who presumably round out the team.


I love that Beckett doesn’t understand Wookiee.

“That’s yes.”

Lando and the droid have a hand thing, and it’s awesome.

This is a good reminder: Han isn’t the original owner of the Falcon. Lando was. He’s seated up in the pilot’s seat here, while Han is in back.

There’s some kind of fancy bar here, and whatever it is, it looks way more upscale than Mos Eisley’s cantina where we first met Han.

It’s complete with a performer decked out in a golden getup that would put even Snoke’s gold lamé gown to shame.

Another shot of Qi’ra, who claims that she “might be the only person who knows who you really are.”

This is a very Western-style gunfight, which I think is a nice glimpse into what the movie has to offer. This entire trailer has been screaming “Western / heist film,” and if that’s the tone of the film, it’ll be a nice departure from the rest of the franchise, which is what these Star Wars stories are meant to do.

Here’s a close-up shot of the mysterious masked figure that Han looks prepared to shoot it out with. Look closely, and you can see some Aurebesh writing on their mask (which may give a clue as to their identity).

No idea who this hooded figure is, but they’re definitely handy with a blaster.

I sort of get a K-S20 vibe from this guy, but he hasn’t said anything in this trailer. Whoever the droid is, it seems to be friends with Lando though.

Here’s another new ship. We’ll see it escaping a very large explosion later in the trailer.

“I might be the only person who knows who you really are.”

Whatever Han is flying here, it’s definitely not the Falcon. Based on context in the trailer, it could be that new ship escaping a giant explosion on the snowy planet.

The aforementioned giant explosion.

Here’s the signature Han Solo grin. We can certainly see that Ehrenreich has the smirk down, even if the trailer shows off relatively little of him actually acting as Solo.

If anything, a Star Destroyer coming out of space-fog just looks cool, even if it’s scientifically nonsense.

One of the interesting things here is that, in addition to the new troopers we saw earlier, there’s another variation of the TIE Fighter. This one looks like it has some additional weapons.

The money shot of the big lighting-fog space battle: Han flips the Falcon and checks a TIE Fighter into a wall. If you look a little closer, you can see that the Falcon has a different, blue-and-white paint job than the battered gray we’re used to, and the ship is actually carrying something in the forward cargo mandibles.

Donald Glover’s Lando seems concerned.

Another shot of the Falcon with a clearer look at the new paint job, along with the glimpses of a giant space-squid-thing that the ship hastily avoids to close out the trailer.

Some additional shots from the Super Bowl teaser last night didn’t make it into the longer trailer. This place is giving me a very dock or port sort of vibe, but that’s mostly speculation.

Between this and Rogue One, I think it might be a requirement from Disney that every Star Wars Story-branded spinoff feature a dramatically lit shot of a Star Destroyer.

Space train!

Technically, this is our first glimpse of Lando, who looks pretty bundled up against the cold, although not quite “Hoth” levels of winter protection.

Solo looks like he may have gotten into some trouble with the law, if the bars on the frame are any indication.

Then, there’s a final closing shot of Han and Chewie together on a beach, although who knows if it’s the same one as the earlier shots.

The biggest takeaway from this trailer is how little we know about the film. While the footage has given us some broad strokes as to who the characters are and what the film actually looks like, aside from the fact that Han will be joining Beckett on some kind of job, there’s almost no context for anything in the film.

Compared to other recent Star Wars films — even Rogue One, with its relatively unknown cast of characters — it feels like we’re flying a lot blinder than usual. Given the much-publicized production woes (highlighted by original directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller leaving the film in June 2017, less than a year before release) and the somewhat subdued marketing thus far, it could be a sign that all is not right in the world of Solo.

On the other hand, the trailer looks like a looser, more casual take on a Star Wars movie than the overly dramatic numbered saga films and the grim Rogue One, so maybe Solo can succeed on the strengths of doing something a little different and fun.

We’ll find out in just a few short months: Solo opens in theaters on May 25th.

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