Sunday, 8 October 2017

Blade Runner 2049 Film Review

I watched Blade Runner last week as a prelude to seeing Blade Runner 2049 on Friday, and I would recommend doing this. Although not essential, as the new film directed by Denis Villeneuve can stand alone, but it was nice to have a review of the Ridley Scott original. And it gives you the history to the new storyline.


Our new Blade Runner Officer K, played by Ryan Gosling, follows the age-old path of Blade Runners before him; retiring replicants. However, the replicant he retires, played by Guardians of the Galaxy's Dave Bautista, and now a peaceful farmer, cryptically tells him that K has never seen a miracle and so doesn't understand. Over the course of 164 minutes K will understand. Beginning with the excavation of a long buried box on the protein farm. Villeneuve paces the film letting you absorb all the breathtaking visuals and it continuously entertained.



The designs are incredible, LA is just as dark and grimy and the rain just as wet, plus it now also snows. The 40's noir of the street interspersed happily with the incredibly advanced technology. K has his own AI called Joi, played by the lovely Ana de Armas, who he gives life to with an animator, two puppets together you could say. But there appears to be real love between them, however artificial the lovers.

Robin Wright is K's superior, and when the box is opened and the contents analysed, K is told to destroy all the evidence. Not obeying, a big step in his programming, K decides to explore for himself what the contents mean. The famous words are 'Do androids dream of electric sheep?', well here we wonder are the sheep real memories, or implants that were put there. If so who put them there. And is K a real boy.

For answers he goes to the original Blade Runner's Tyrell Corporation replacement Wallace, who made the Joi product, and is owned by billionaire eccentric Niander Wallace. Played by Jared Leto he creates replicants, but cannot create enough to take over the Off Worlds. The gorgeous sandstone and wood designs of his headquarters are completely at odds with the outside world. As if Frank Lloyd Wright himself had just finished the designs. Because we know Deckard lived in the great architect's Ennis House in the original.

Shown old Tyrell Corporation corrupted files by kick-ass Sylvia Hoeks's Luv, K discovers the story of Harrison Ford's Deckard and Sean Young's Rachael. And is eventually led along the breadcrumb path to a dusty Las Vegas still showing nightly gigs of Elvis. Here we meet Deckard who explains the past. And why he did what he had to do.

The future is less certain in this beautifully told story and I hope that you enjoy it as much as I did.

I even thought watching how prosaic was Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel in his S/S 2018 collection this month, after the plastic macs made an appearance on screen. And Roger Deakins must surely capture that long eluded Oscar for Cinematography come awards season.


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