Not sure if it has been already mentioned, but we saw the planetary shield of Alderaan for one or two frames in ANH when the Death Star's weapon particle stream first hit the planet. I also acknowledge that the exit of hyperspace puts you very close to the planet. In the ANH novelization Solo said that Alderaan should be filling most of their field of view and we saw that correctly visualized in TFA with another planet. According to this information the distance between the exit point of the ship to the planet is apparently a few thousand kilometers off. Whether you can reduce this safety margain to only a couple of dozens kilometers seems highly improbable but not necessarily impossible. IMHO, you made a very good point. Previously you needed "horizontal boosters" (part of Solo's hyperdrive performance checklist in ESB) to propel you into hyperspace. This is also visible in the scene where the Star Destroyer Avenger jumps into hyperspace, making use of its four horizontal boosters that are otherwise and usually switched off. I still don't get it why they didn't leave the freighter as in the lesser (?) known film Enemy Mine. Here the pilot simply fired at the hangar doors from the inside to force them open. That would have been an unorthodox solution but worthy of a character like Han Solo. Too bad, that sometimes would haves and could haves don't count.