Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Blade Runner Review.

Thoughts: Blade Runner is set in the far off distant future of, 2019? OK, the movie was made in the year 1982 and the common mistake made at the time was the advancement of technology in such a short time span. Blade Runner is often credited with the popularization of the Sci-Fi Noir genre, despite no being a big hit at the time of its released, it later became a cult classic. There are multiple versions of the film, including the original cut, "Director's Cut" and "Final Cut". When Ridley Scott first made the film, the studio forced him to make changes that made it "easier" to follow by adding a voice-over by Ford to tell the audience what is happening and adding changing some scenes. I first watched the original cut, a few months later I watched the "Final Cut". While I did not dislike the narration as much as most compared to the "Final Cut", I did enjoy the film more in the "Final Cut". Plus, there are added scenes that add even more complexity to the film and the ending is vastly different in the Final Cut. I would recommend watching The Final Cut version first however, it is a very complex movie and either cut is fantastic.

The story centers around the character Rick Deckard, who is a former "Blade Runner", Blade Runners are basically police that are there to hunt down and destroy rouge replicants that can become homicidal over time. It plays out like a hard-boiled detective story, similar to other films like Bullitt, with Deckard tracking down the replicants. But the first half is especially slow and does start to drag during some parts.
The best aspect I found in the film is how thought provoking Blade Runner and how much I thought about it after watching. Because that aspect would spoil the film, I will have a spoiler warning below, then it will be spoiler free again.
Is Deckard a replicant? That is what I find most intriguing about Blade Runner and I want to hear your opinion of it. My prefer to think, especially after watching the Final Cut, that Deckard is indeed a replicant. 

Athough Blade Runner is an acquired taste and would not appeal to everyone. One last problem with Blade Runner are a few very weird and odd scenes, which take away from the overall experience of the movie.

Directed by: Ridley Scott
Genre: Sci-Fi, Crime, Noir, Suspense,
Release Date: June 25, 1982
Running Time: 116 minutes
MMPA rating: R

The Good: Thought provoking, Ford's performance is excellent, Challenges your intellect, Fantastic last 25-20 minutes, Original concept, Great setting, Ambiguous,

The Bad: Slow pacing (especially the first half but wasn't an issue upon my second viewing),

Warning: Blade Runner is "R" for langue, violence and other mature content.

Plot: The following plot summary is copied from
In Los Angeles, November 2019, retired police officer Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) is detained by officer Gaff (Edward James Olmos) and brought to meet with his former supervisor, Bryant (M. Emmet Walsh). Deckard, whose job as a "Blade Runner" was to track down bioengineered beings known as replicants and "retire" them ("retire" being the official term for the killing of replicants), is told by Bryant that several have escaped and come to Earth illegally. As Tyrell Corporation Nexus-6 models, they have only a four-year lifespan, and may have come to Earth to try to extend their lives.
Deckard watches a video of another Blade Runner named Holden (Morgan Paull) administering a "Voight-Kampff" test designed to distinguish humans from replicants based on their empathic response to questions. The subject of the test, Leon (Brion James), shoots Holden. Bryant wants Deckard to return to work to retire Leon and three other replicants—Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer), Zhora (Joanna Cassidy) and Pris (Daryl Hannah). Deckard refuses, but after Bryant makes a veiled threat, he reluctantly agrees.
Sent to the Tyrell Corporation to ensure that the test works on Nexus-6 models, Deckard discovers that Tyrell's (Joe Turkel) assistant Rachael (Sean Young) is an experimental replicant who believes herself to be human; Rachael's consciousness has been enhanced with false memories to provide an "emotional cushion". As a result, a more extensive test is required to determine if she is a replicant.
Watch the movie to see what happens next.

Plot: 8.9/10- While the pacing can be somewhat slow during the first half, there is a mystery being revealed. The thematic material works well and kept me thinking long after watching the movie. The mystery (noted above) is the most thought provoking and best aspects of Blade Runner, it takes the movie to a whole other level. There are clues left in the movie but in some ways the answers is ambiguous and is left to interpretation. Only the romance could have been a little better, but that was not a big problem for me. Also there were some very odd scenes, that felt out of place.

Action: 6.9/10- In the first half there is little to no action and what action is there was sporadic  However, the battle near the end was good. While the action was not visually impressive, it was suspenseful.

Acting: 8.4/10- Harrison Ford, who is my favorite actor, gave an excellent performance as usual. Sean Young's performance as Rachael was good and played her role well. Rutger Hauer as Roy Batty's performance was top notch.

Special effects: 8.1/10- Surprisingly most of the effects hold up well today, although the film never tried for anything close to as impressive as The Empire Strikes Back or many other of its contemporaries. But the set design was worked very well at creating a futuristic world.

Soundtrack: 7.4/10- Some of the soundtrack definitely had an 80s jazz theme and other tracks reminded me of classic crime like Bullitt. But my favorite track from the movie was the end credit theme.

Comedy: N/A-

Would I Watch This Again: I have seen both the original and Final Cut but it is worth a re-watch to analyze it further.

Overall: 8.7/10- Overall Blade Runner is a thought provoking and fascinating film, a must see for Harrison Ford or sci-fi fans.

Closing comments: While Blade Runner is not for everyone, and I can understand why others might not like the movie.

Recommended for: Sci-Fi fans, Harrison Ford fans, Crime movie fans, Noir fans,

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  1. This looks like another really good film. And I love science fiction, so I would probably like it :)

  2. Nice review, James.

    This was probably one of Ford's best performances along with The Fugitive.

    One of my favorite Ridley Scott movies as well, right there with Gladiator and Hannibal.

    I think a sequel to this movie is in works.


  3. This looks like movie, thanks for reviewing it! I like Harrison Ford movies. :P


  4. @Shena Tokala: I think you would like it, one of my favorite sci-fi films. :)

    @Buddy2Blogger: Thank you.

    I can not decide which is Ford's best performance because he was the perfect in Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Blade Runner and The Fugitive.

    I agree, it is one of Ridley's best, my favorite is Gladiator but I have not seen Hannibal yet though.

    Yes it is. Not sure if Scott will be involved for sure.

    @Jamie: "This looks like movie" lol But I know what you meant there. :) I have made a ton more mistakes when I commented.


  5. oh my gosh, I'm almost rolling on the floor with laughter... of course, it looks like a movie! LOLOLOL Glad you managed to catch my drift though! :P :P


  6. I think Scott will be involved in the scripting and as producer.

    Ford most probably will not be associated in any way.

    Just my thoughts.


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