“Star Wars: Visions is a fantastic series of shorts. It’s a fresh new take on the galaxy far far away, very different from what we have seen before but each short still feels very much like Star Wars.”
Star Wars: Visions is a series of 9 anime shorts made by 7 different Japanese studios. Star Wars has influenced anime but it was also inspired by Japanese mythology especially with the Jedi. So having a Star Wars anime series makes perfect sense. And as a big anime fan, it’s something I wanted to see! The runtime of each short varies between 13 minutes and 22 minutes.
If you want to experience the series at its fullest please watch it in the original language which is Japanese. And don’t worry if you don’t speak Japanese, there are English subtitles on Disney Plus.
THE DUEL (Kamikaze Douga)
‘The Duel’ is a short in black and white. There is small grain on the picture to simulate an old movie vibe as if it was shot on film. It’s a nice tribute to Akira Kurosawa. It reminded me of Seven Samurai and Yojimbo. The latter especially for the costumes and the scenery. It may be a simple story but it’s beautifully executed.
As seen in the trailer, we get to see a protocol droid using a Z-6 rotary blaster cannon. And I have to say, it’s absolutely badass! Plus, we see the first lightsaber umbrella. It’s so weird but it works!
TATOOINE RHAPSODY (Studio Colorido)
‘Tatooine Rhapsody’ is a one-of-a-kind short. It focuses on a music band. We see guitars, a drum kit, and pop-rock songs! We had never seen that in Star Wars before. So, it’s a lot of fun. Visually, it’s not my favorite style of anime. Though, for this type of silly and fun story, I think it did fit well.
THE TWINS (Trigger)
‘The Twins’ can be considered as a re-imagining of Luke and Leia’s story with one of the twins choosing the dark side. It’s an interesting story. Trigger was inspired by their previous work Promare. It’s the same visual style with bright colors.
THE VILLAGE BRIDE (Kinema Citrus)
‘The Village Bride’ is one of my favorite shorts. Indeed, it’s absolutely brilliant. In addition, the story takes place in the Prequel era, I couldn’t ask for more. It features a Z-95 Headhunter and battle droids! The story feels like a Samurai story and I very much love this. It focuses a lot on the beauty of the world surrounding its character. So, as you can expect it’s a visual wonder. It also deals with people standing up against oppression. It’s quite compelling!
THE NINTH JEDI (Production IG)
‘The Ninth Jedi’ is my absolute favorite short. It’s a captivating story about the rebirth of the Jedi. I have rewatched twice in a row. This should tell you how much I loved it! I do hope Visions gets a second season with new shorts, new studios, and also the continuation of this story, I want to see more of these characters. This short is only 22-minute long and yet, I felt connected with the characters. It’s the brilliance of this storytelling.
Visually, it’s also the best short. I was in awe the whole time! Everything was beautifully designed. This Temple built in an asteroid was such a great idea.
T0-B1 (Science SARU)
‘T0-B1’ is my least favorite short. It’s the story of a droid who wants to be a Jedi. Unfortunately, I can’t say I was very much invested in it. However, the marvelous score and the beautiful visuals make up for the story. I still liked it.
THE ELDER (Trigger)
‘The Elder’ is my third favorite short. It’s a story about two Jedi facing a dark side opponent. It may be a simple story but it’s a powerful one. You can feel the tension building up until the confrontation. And during the whole fight, I was on the edge of my seat. Even though ‘The Twins’ was good visually, Trigger did a much better job with the animation style on this one! Plus, the fight choreography was impressive too!
LOP & OCHO (Geno Studio)
‘Lop & Ocho’ is an amazing short! It’s about a family being divided by the Empire. Family drama is a classic Star Wars theme and something you also find very often in anime. So, it’s the perfect mix. The story is compelling.
Visually, this short is marvelous. I love the contrast between the Japanese design of the city while on the ocean, there’s the industrial Imperial base. And this episode has a rabbit character, it’s so sweet! For me, she’s one of the best characters in this series.
AKAKIRI (Science SARU)
‘Akakiri’ is a short about sacrifice and love. It’s a beautiful but tragic story. I didn’t expect it to be like that. So, it surprised me in the best way. I appreciate that Science SARU, just like Trigger used a different animation style for their second short. And I liked their second short a lot more as well. This time with the Saru short, both the story and the visuals are great. The scenery is magnificent. Several wide shots feel very cinematic.
Star Wars: Visions is a fantastic series of shorts. It’s a fresh new take on the galaxy far far away, very different from what we have seen before but each short still feels very much like Star Wars.
Star Wars: Visions Is streaming exclusively on Disney Plus starting September 22!
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Collectables Editor at Future Of The Force.
Star Wars and Marvel specialist, anime expert