Star Wars Review: Visions │ A Retrieval of the Essence of What Star Wars Represents

Over these more than 27 years, Star Wars has become much bigger than the series itself purported to be. Between the ups and downs of the films, the symbology of the saga transcended the cinema and resonated directly with fans in order to make it go far beyond what the Skywalkers presented. It was always something much bigger than Luke, Leia and Darth Vader. It was the mythology of the Jedi and the Force that so fervently conquered generations — and Star Wars: Visions is a beautiful love letter to all of this.

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seven different studios — including some quite renowned, like Science SARU, by Keep Your Hand Off Eizouken!, and Production IG, which has classics like

Haikyu!! and Ghost on the Shell

    . However, more than the history of the teams, what stands out the most about Visions is how much it manages to capture and summarize the essence of what it is Star Wars in such short episodes.

    Each story is very different from each other, but they all synthesize that very well. which makes Star Wars this cultural colossus that we know today. It is not about the chronology or the dogmas that the fans themselves have established about how a lightsaber works or how a Jedi relates to the Force. In the end, it is about a fantasy to talk about hope.

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    Heads up! From now on this text may contain spoilers.

      The essence of the Force

      This is a theme that permeates the entire series, to a greater or lesser extent, in stories that could never exist in another format. And not just for the unrestrained action or the style of animation that allows exaggerations, especially in combat, but for exploring ideas and narratives that go far beyond what we would imagine seeing in a Star Wars traditional.

    Star Wars: Visions changes several concepts of how the universe of the saga works, but it remains true to its essence (Image: Disclosure/Disney)

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  • This is very clear in the first short film, named The Duel — one of the best in the entire series. In addition to bringing a very peculiar artistic style, it changes everything we know about the series, whether in its setting, leaving aside the sci-fi fantasy to bring it more into the context of medieval Japan of the samurai, or even in what Jedi and Siths can do.

    The villain with an umbrella of lightsabers is something that would never be accepted by conservative fans of Star Wars — just remember that they spent months complaining about Kylo Ren’s grip in The Awakens of the Force — as well as the fact that this is a story displaced from the chronology. But that’s far from being a problem with Visions, which embraces these deconstructions to create something completely new.

    Like this , the anthology is not just about imagining Star Wars as an anime and closing the loop on Japanese references that originally inspired George Lucas in 624. What the series does is to get rid of the shackles of what can and can not to have new views on this universe and explore very original concepts that take the saga to new places, even if in an experimental tone.

    The lightsaber umbrella is something that would never be accepted in any other format ( Image: Reproduction/Disney)

    Stories like the droid boy who dreams of being a Jedi or the Padawan who is adopted by a rock band can only exist in a project like this and show how the world of Star Wars is rich enough to allow this to work without running away from what really brings the series to life. They are simple stories and do not bring any great epic arc, but they explore the mythology of this very distant galaxy very well, especially with regard to the Force and the hope it represents.

    Not by chance, the lightsaber is a constant in all episodes, appearing as a fundamental part of each of the stories not as the weapon that saves the day, but as the symbol of what it is to be a Jedi. It’s a constant reminder to fans of what Star Wars is really all about.

    Interestingly, the first episode of

    Visions brings precisely this symbol being destroyed as a way of highlighting that its essence is not the colored light or the iconic sound effect, but the kyber crystal that brings it to life — just like the saga it is not just about the Skywalkers or the dogmas created in these more than four decades.

    Episode T0-B1 makes direct references to the classic Astroboy and translates very well what the Force is and its weight for the Star Wars universe (Image: Disclosure/Disney)

    So much so that, from this deconstruction, the episodes will explore how that same essence can be used for evil as well as acting out that hope that always insists on being reborn—like the Force-driven Jedi themselves. Remember the scene of the broom boy at the end of The Last Jedi? Because it’s that same feeling of hope that permeates Star Wars: Visions from beginning to end.

    Like episodes like T0-B1 and The Ninth Jedi express very well what the Force is in this sense of rebirth and deliver excellent stories that not only impress for their excellent artistic style, but for synthesizing for us everything that Star Wars is.

    New looks

    However, there is no way to talk about Star Wars: Visions

    not to mention the technical part of the thing. The idea of ​​reimagining a film saga from a more oriental perspective isn’t necessarily new — Animatrix did it 20 years ago — but it fits perfectly into the universe of George Lucas.

    The first aspect of this is precisely how this mix of settings reminds us how rich and varied this universe is. There are stories that are totally the Star Wars that we know, with all the worn-out technology and droids taken by the dirt of the Tatooine desert, just as we are introduced to extremely clean and clean worlds. traditional ones, reminiscent of rural Japan or a shogun’s home. They are very different proposals and, at the same time, are familiar and cohesive.

    The Duel is one of the best things in the anthology (Image: Disclosure/Disney)

    From this salad, each of the seven studios could give their interpretation of what the saga is without clinging to the details that the fans pay so much attention. So a lightsaber doesn’t just have to be the usual colored tube, but take the form of a samurai katana or even wrap itself around the opponent’s blade. They are mannerisms, changes that are just there to make it cooler, but that at no point change the meaning of those elements. On the contrary: in many episodes, there is a reinforcement of the symbolism of each of these points.

    The same happens with the narrative. The episode The Ballad of Tatooine, for example, completely breaks everything we expect from a Star Wars. There is no big conflict over the fate of the galaxy, but an ex-Padawan who plays in a rock band who tries to save his friend who was captured by Jabba. It’s something so simple that it clashes with the epic tone we expect from the saga — and, for that very reason, it becomes so enthralling.

    Of course, not all stories manage to keep this level of inventiveness. The Villager Bride and The Elder, for example, deliver excellent action scenes, but not far from what we do. expected from Star Wars in terms of plot and situations presented. On the other hand, The Duel, The Twins and Lop and Ocho are so different and bold that you yearn to see more of these particular universes.

    The Gemini explores the typical animation of the anime very well to deliver amazing action scenes (Image: Disclosure/Disney)

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By the way, the detachment from the films is so great that there are practically no references to them and their characters. At most, we see Boba Fett and Jabba, but in a much more innocent context and without the concern to respect the images that have been built around them over time or even what was recently presented in Mandalorian.

And all of this is packed in animation styles that take great advantage of this anime language to create something unique and that could not be replicated in any other quite. All fights gain a dynamism and movement characteristic of Japanese animations and that work in the world of Star Wars, differentiating from everything we’ve seen, but still very faithful to the that we know.

    Star Look Wars: Visions is breathtaking in each episode (Image: Disclosure/Disney)

    That pretty much sums up the whole spirit of what it is Star Wars: Visions

      . It is something unique that could only exist that way. These are very characteristic visions that imagine the entire universe created by George Lucas, but without de-characterizing it for a moment. Even in the craziest ideas, he respects everything that Star Wars is and represents, even if he has to give up the technicalities and details that fans are so attached to.

      Star Wars has always been this great fable about how hope is reborn in times of need — and the show knows how to show it in a way very sensitive, agile and fun. This is the essence of the saga that, like a kyber crystal, sometimes hides inside what is most visible and eye-catching. And sometimes you have to break with the classic so we can remember that.

      Star Wars: Visions debuts on Disney+ catalog this Wednesday, of September.

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