Solo: A Star Wars Story (PG) ****

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By Shirl Hollenberg

Lost in Space!

SoloGood news travels fast. And it comes early. Nerds everywhere will be pleased to get their geek on as the space lords at Disney combine with state of the art animators from good old Vancouver to deliver us the latest space soap opera: Solo. By the way chances are very good that the world will fall fast a chars for the new youthful lead of this ode to the beginnings of Han Solo. See this spectacular film unfold at Cineplex Cinemas around B.C.

Rumours of major difficulties in its British set can finally be laid to rest. Master director Ron Howard has pulled off an engaging and entertaining flick that shows the seeds of development for Harrison Ford’s beloved prime character before he left space for the jungles and a little bit of raiding of some unknown ark a la Spielberg. All young upstart Alden Ehrenreich has to do, apart from channeling a little Harrison Ford, is elude some nasty captors in an authoritarian society, arm wrestle a gambling addicted freeloader for a run-down space ship, lock horns with a devious Woody Harrelson out to feather his own nest, raid a heavily fortified stronghold for some precious fuel and then elude countless enemy soldiers. Oh, and let’s not forget try to rescue a damsel in distress.

Done tongue in cheek style Solo has an abundance of danger with Alden displaying just the right degree if charm and cockiness to win the most die-hard Star Wars fans over. Look for him to be a wow with the ladies. And for the boys sultry Emilia Clarke is no slouch and can go toe to toe in the fisticuffs/laser firing arena with any man (or woman).

Thanks to a well conceived by the dynamic Kasdan men of print and vision Solo turns out to be a rip-roaring adventure solidly anchored with great characters, spicy humour and scintillating special effects. Master of all universes George Lucas should be mightily proud.