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Director: Shinichirō Watanabe
Release date:
September 27, 2017

Just before ‘Blade Runner 2049’ came out, three short films were released to tell of some of the events that happened between the original ‘Blade Runner’ (1982) and the new feature.

The third of these prequel shorts is an anime directed by Shinichirō Watanabe, of Cowboy Bebop fame. The short telles about the great blackout of 2022, which is mentioned in the new feature film. This is by far the weakest of the trio: Watanabe’s way of directing is hilariously heavy-handed, the dialogue frustratingly boring, and the anime designs are ugly, akin to appalling American comic art. What’s worse, we don’t care a bit about the two main replicant protagonists, due to confusing editing, which moves forward and backward in time, and due to the lack of background stories on the characters.

What Luke Scott, director of the other two (live action) shorts, did well: setting a scene in a few seconds and sticking to it, is lost on Watanabe: his tale is overtly complex and meandering within its fifteen minutes. Even the music by Flying Lotus doesn’t amount to anything and is quickly forgotten.

Watch ‘Blade Runner Black Out 2022’ yourself and tell me what you think:

‘Blade Runner Black Out 2022’ is available on the DVD and Blu-Ray of ‘Blade Runner 2049’

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