One common critique that has persisted for years regarding the Star Wars movies is their perceived lack of originality and overly strict adherence to the franchise’s established canon. This shortcoming often coincides with poor writing, underdeveloped characters, and cringe-worthy dialogue, among other issues. However, there are exceptions to this criticism, such as the absolutely remarkable Andor series on Disney+ and the two-season animated gem called Star Wars: Visions.
Interestingly, Star Wars: Visions is one of two non-Netflix television series currently available for streaming that I find surprising not to be generating more buzz. Both shows have achieved a flawless 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and offer a refreshing and captivating viewing experience that is difficult to resist. The other series I’m referring to is exclusive to a streaming platform that I assume most of you are not subscribed to (MGM+). Titled simply From, this show cleverly combines elements from Wayward Pines and Lost.
Now, let’s delve deeper into these two remarkable titles, starting with Star Wars: Visions.
Star Wars animation masterpiece on Disney+
The second season of the program recently launched on Disney+ on Friday, which was timely given that it fell on Star Wars Day.
Star Wars: Visions has captured my heart for several reasons, and one of them is the format of its bite-sized episodes. Despite each episode lasting only around 15 minutes, you might be skeptical about getting emotionally invested in such a short span of time. However, prepare to be pleasantly surprised.
In Season 1, the series brings together seven esteemed Japanese anime studios to create a collection of animated films that essentially serve as Star Wars short stories. These studios include Kamikaze Douga, Geno Studio, Studio Colorido, TRIGGER, Kinema Citrus, Science Saru, and Production I.G. (Season 2 follows the same formula, collaborating with a variety of top-tier anime studios and granting them the freedom to explore their creative boundaries).
From the very first episode of Season 1, titled “The Duel,” I was spellbound by the visuals and engrossed in the tightly crafted and well-written stories, despite their brief duration. In fact, cinephiles will find immense appreciation for episodes like “The Duel,” produced by Kamikaze Douga, as it combines the essence of a Star Wars film with the spirit of a Kurosawa masterpiece.
Each season of Star Wars: Visions consists of nine episodes, and this series surprised and captivated me in a way that few Star Wars titles have been able to achieve lately, with the exception of Andor.
The slasher program From MGM+
Now, if I were to reveal that the next series I’m about to discuss is situated in a cursed location, where an enigmatic force ensnares visitors, preventing them from escaping and repeatedly trapping them within the confines of the town, you might start to experience strong nostalgic vibes reminiscent of Lost. The resemblance becomes even more striking when you discover that the role of the town’s sheriff is portrayed by none other than Harold Perrineau, known for his portrayal of Walt’s father on Lost.
This captivating series revolves around a town known as “From” and draws inspiration from the intriguing blend of mystery and supernatural elements that made Lost such a compelling watch. Visitors find themselves trapped within the town, facing dire consequences should they attempt to venture out through the surrounding forest.
The inclusion of Harold Perrineau as the sheriff adds an extra layer of intrigue and nostalgia for fans of Lost, evoking memories of the enthralling performances that made the show so memorable.
Stay tuned as we delve deeper into the fascinating world of “From” and explore its mysterious and captivating storyline.
According to the official synopsis of “From,” the show unravels the enigma of a nightmarish town that ensnares anyone who enters its borders. As the unwilling residents search for an escape route, they must navigate the dangers lurking within the surrounding forest, including terrifying creatures that emerge after dark.
While I don’t anticipate “From” reaching the same level of breakout success and massive viewership as a show like Lost, it doesn’t diminish the fact that it is a fantastic series in its own right. The meticulous world-building, the constant stream of mysteries, and the occasional graphic violence come together to create a show that engrosses viewers and keeps them on the edge of their seats (with occasional moments of terror that may lead to hiding one’s eyes). It’s no wonder that “From” has also achieved a perfect 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes. One critic passionately praised the series, highlighting its relentless pacing, high stakes, enigmatic horrors, and immensely talented cast exploring the morally murky areas, all of which contribute to making it one of the most exhilarating horror series that should not be overlooked.
Prepare yourself for a thrilling and immersive journey as we delve further into the world of “From” and uncover its intricate web of suspense and terror.