Blu-ray and DVD Reviews

Star Wars Animated Adventures - Ewoks

Reviewed by: Scott Chitwood
Movie Rating:
6 out of 10
Extras Rating:
N/A out of 10
Movie Details:
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Rating: Not Rated

Starring:
Jim Henshaw as Wicket W. Warrick
Cree Summer as Princess Kneesaa
Eric Peterson as Teebo
Alyson Court as Malani
Taborah Johnson as Latara
Melleny Brown as Urgah/Lady Gorneesh
Jackie Burroughs as Morag/Tulgah Witch
George Buza as Chief Chirpa
Don Francks as Umwak, Dulok Shaman
Dan Hennessey as King Gorneesh
Ron James as Mring Mring the Gupin
Hadley Kay as Ubel/Shamn's Nephew

Special Features:
None

Other Info:
Fullscreen
Dolby Stereo Sound
Running Time: 177 Minutes

Synopsis:
These Ewoks episodes originally aired in 1985. The following is the description from the DVD cover:

"Join your favorite Star Wars characters, the Ewoks, with this double-feature collection. Star Wars Animated Adventures: Ewoks includes two animated movies, ensuring hours of fun and entertainment for the whole family. These head-over-paws excursions into the continuing adventures of the Ewoks take us to the forest moon of Endor where we find the lovable fur-balls still living in their tree top villages.

The Haunted Village - In The Haunted Village the feisty Ewoks simply want to live in peace among their planet's natural wonders. There is trouble in paradise, however, when the Ewoks are suddenly plunged into a thrilling struggle to save their world from the Tulgah witch Morag. There is no low too low for Morag in her attempts to wipe out the Ewoks, exact revenge upon the Ewok wizard Logray, and capture the magic Sunstar and Shadowstone.

Tales From The Endor Woods - In Tales From The Endor Woods, the Ewok adventure continue. We join the young woklings as they face-off against the Duloks, their distant cousins who live in the nearby swamp. The Duloks' attempts at undermining the Ewok Village are met head-on, resulting in many humorous and inspiring tales."

This DVD is not rated.

The Movie:
I used to watch this series when it first aired in 1985. As a kid, I enjoyed Ewoks a bit more than Droids. Ewoks was funnier and had a more colorful cast of characters than Droids. Looking back at it almost 20 years later I can still see why it appealed to kids. I set my young son in front of it and he was entranced for the whole show. While it's not as tied to Star Wars as Droids was, it still had a lot going for it.

The shows were pretty well written. Paul Dini of Batman fame was one of the writers and producers on the series. They gave each of the Ewok characters a unique personality that went way beyond their movie incarnations. Logray is expanded on more and Teebo is shown to be his apprentice. Wicket is shown to be a young warrior while Kneesa is his friend and Chief Chirpa's daughter. The Duloks were also an amusing creation and provided a lot of comic relief for the show. Also look for toys like the Ewok Battle Wagon to dominate one of the episodes in the Tales From The Endor Woods collection. While the Ewoks series wasn't plugged into the movies like Droids was, they had plenty to carry their own stories with. All that being said, though, the Ewoks are probably best taken in small doses. Watching them all straight through can be a little much.

The animation is pretty good for 80's Saturday Morning cartoons. Unfortunately, the catchy theme song by blues artist Taj Mahal is not included on the DVD. ("We are the E-E-E-E-E-E-Ewoks!") This DVD doesn't include the entire series, either. It's just a few episodes spliced together into an "animated movie". This was actually issued on VHS in the late 90's and produced by Rick McCallum. Maybe we can hope to get the definitive edition in the future.

The Extras:
Unfortunately there are no bonus features on this DVD. This is the bargain basement version.

The Bottom Line:
The Ewoks cartoons will be great fun for young Star Wars fans. Older Star Wars fans will probably get a kick out of, too. Unfortunately, you can count on Lucasfilm coming back and reissuing them again with other episodes (and bonus features) at a later date.

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