Well, they do want to build some hype as we approach the release of the sequel feature film that I’m still not sure any of us asked for after so many years, but let’s do it anyway. So here is Blade Runner Black Out 2022 which is a short anime film that runs about 13 minutes if you cut out credits so not a great amount of time to do anything with. It is meant to be a prologue to the feature film. With that in mind, how is it?
Blade Runner, the original film, was iconic for its aesthetics and even though these days we’ve seen several million knock off futuristic cities with hover cars, and Blade Runner wasn’t unique even when it did it, there’s something unmistakably right about the look of this anime. It pulls you straight back into that universe and even though the original film was definitely not anime and this definitely is, there’s a clear visual connection between the two. Add to that the dramatic shot composition and what you have is a fairly brilliant film from a visual point of view that does exactly what I feel they were intending to do.
What isn’t quite as well handled are the characters. Though they are definitely trying and in 13 minutes manage more characterisation than some series do in 25 episodes, including back story, there just isn’t long enough to really feel the connections. While the choice of visuals and music draw you into their stories, the pace at which their journey is revealed doesn’t really allow any time for you to take it in and respond emotionally to it in a way that would just lift this from being watchable to being truly memorable.
The story is also pretty reflective of the original feature film. There aren’t many surprises in the events if you are familiar with Blade Runner, and the character motivations are pretty much what you should expect. the predictability doesn’t hurt the story here. It has been a long time since Blade Runner and they really want the audience to reconnect so this unsurprising but tightly crafted narrative works in their favour.
My only question would be about the logic of such a high tech world not having shielding for EMP’s. Really?
All and all, I had fun with this but it is kind of like watching a promo or an ad. It is interesting enough, I’ll probably think about it for a day or so and discuss it with others who have watched it, and then I’ll move on and think of other things. Still, if you are looking forward to the new Blade Runner movie then this might be a good starting point.
Thanks for reading.
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