Originally published April 8, 2015
The British Film Institute re-released Ridley Scott’s “Blade Runner: The Final Cut” on April 3rd. There’s never been a better time to take a look back at a film that has influenced filmmakers for the past 35 years.
“Blade Runner: The Final Cut” is tight. Ridley Scott removed everything that didn’t serve the story and tweaked a few things to make everything flow beautifully.
Compare what George Lucas did to the original “Star Wars” films to what Ridley Scott did to “Blade Runner” to see how a true filmmaker should tinker with his work.
If I had not done some research online, I probably would have missed about eighty percent of the changes. The result was seamless.
I have to wonder what anyone born around the millennium would think about “Blade Runner” today. After all, Hollywood has been swiping stuff from this film for over thirty years.
“Blade Runner” is not made for an audience that needs instant gratification. Once the terrible narration was removed, the movie doesn’t hand you anything; you have to work to get what’s going on. It’s hard to find that sometimes today.
I like the challenge.
I was very young when I first saw “Blade Runner”. It’s a dark movie and looking back, I can see how it warped my brain (I guess you can decide if that was bad or good).
The production design on that film seared itself into my subconscious. “Blade Runner” didn’t just educate and inspire my art. Whether it’s the coal-black airbrushed eyes of Pris, or the square cocktail glasses that Deckard swigs from, or Roy Batty’s black leather jacket, or the fact that it rains throughout the entire film, my personal loves and sense of style are dictated by “Blade Runner”.
The film is just gorgeous in every way. The smoky sensuous interiors, the art deco details, the moody 50’s Hollywood lighting and that haunting Vangelis score create a world that will never be duplicated.
But make no mistake, “Blade Runner” is not just a pretty pony.
Ridley Scott explores how brief and precious life is, what it means to be human and even questions how much we can all trust our own memories.
The film was set in 2019 and most people will laugh at the off-world ads and flying cars, but those themes are exceptionally relevant today with cloning, artificial intelligence and transhumanism on the horizon.
Clearly, I love “Blade Runner” and I’m jealous of my British brothers and sisters that get to see it in the theater.
I’d like to hear what you think about “Blade Runner” below.