I love the opening crawl except for one word: defected. Galen escaped, he didn’t defect to another cause, so “deserter” or “escaped scientist” would be accurate and fit better I think.
Interesting interpretation. Yes, I would agree with you if the crawl were presented as if through the view of the Empire. This crawl approaches a grey space in this regard. It’s not necessarily pro Empire or Rebellion.
Based on flashbacks where Erso was part of the Empire, I’d have to stick with the use of defected. Deserting would imply that he ran away or abandoned his post (pro Empire view), but we see that he’s connected and stays connected with Saw who is an antagonist to the Empire. That makes me think that he isn’t just disserting, he’s defecting (pro Rebellion view). This interpretation fits the definition below. I also like that it is synonymous to Rebel, which is the core idea of this movie. It also serves as a narrative strength for Jyn. Her father defected and now she rebels.
abandon one’s country or cause in favor of an opposing one.
"he defected to the Soviet Union after the war"
synonyms: desert, change sides, turn traitor, rebel, renege;
To quote Obi-Wan, “many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.”
I appreciate the feedback and think it is totally valid, based on the view of Erso’s character you have.