For this new selection, let’s talk about science fiction with the excellent animated anthology Star Wars Visions and the adaptation of Isaac Asimov’s cult novels, Foundation!
Check out our mini-reviews and have a great weekend!
You can still have a longer list of the releases under the “This Friday” section on the homepage.
Isaac Asimov’s cult science-fiction book (released in 1951) is part of the very closed club of adaptations almost impossible to make, just like Frank Herbert’s Dune, which we will talk about next month. We were quite reluctant during the first announcements for this adaptation but the first images and trailers pleased us immediately thanks to the sublime artistic direction, production design and the beautiful first images released! And after having seen the first episodes this aspect is really respected and very impressive whether it is by the costumes, the huge sets or the visual effects. On the other hand, we are way more hesitant about the story because even if it respects the general plot of the book, the series moves away from it very quickly by creating many side plots and other romances without much interest. It is hard to get interested in some characters while other important characters are put aside. On the other hand, the great idea of the series concerns the Emperor and his “versions”. Their various discussions and questionings are really the strong point of this beginning of season, its actors and mainly Lee Pace are really impregnated by their role! Just like the always excellent Jared Harris who interprets Hari Seldon. Despite our reluctance, Foundation is really interesting to watch for its ambition, stunning production design and its questioning about the change of civilization! Just one final advice forget the original book to enjoy more the series!
Based on the award-winning novels by Isaac Asimov, “Foundation” chronicles a band of exiles on their monumental journey to save humanity and rebuild civilization amid the fall of the Galactic Empire.
Star Wars Visions
After a last trilogy of very average or even horrible quality, the Star Wars universe was in a bad state but fortunately The Mandalorian came through to bring back its shine and that becomes even better with this animated anthology! We couldn’t dream of better with these 9 short films made by some of the best Japanese animation studios. Each of these shorts has its own visual style and techniques and I might as well tell you right now, there are more ideas and inventiveness in a single sequence than in the whole recent trilogy! The stories are all different and take place at different timeline in the Star Wars universe. Most of them have one thing in common though, the Jedis! Their affiliation to the samurai culture is very strong especially in the first episode and it really works really well, giving them a noble and iconic aspect. The stories themes are varied and interesting and thanks to the short length (the longest one is 22 minutes) you will surely see some of them several times as it was the case for us. Be sure to see them in Japanese version for an even better immersion. Star Wars fans will be delighted to discover many references and cameos but the neophyte can perfectly appreciate these short films without having a great knowledge of this universe. We can’t wait to discover a new season!
Seven Japanese anime studios bring their unique talent and perspective to Star Wars: Visions, a collection of animated Original Short Films. The anime studios revealed were Kamikaze Douga, Geno Studio (Twin Engine), Studio Colorido (Twin Engine), Trigger, Kinema Citrus, Science Saru, and Production IG. Each studio will use their signature animation and storytelling styles to realize their own visions of the galaxy far, far away.