Blade Runner after 30 Years

Any way you dissect Blade Runner (1982), the film’s awesome visuals still overpower a very human story about artificial beings. It’s actually a love story -at least that’s my take on Ridley Scott’s final cut of the film. Back in the day I didn’t know what to think of it. I was expecting Harrison Ford, hot off the press, in a role like Han Solo. I remember I thought it looked cool and I liked the action sequences. Only years later did I recognize the film as a classic (no I don’t think it is the greatest sci-fi film of all-time).

Upon the film’s release, Roger Ebert gave it three stars, but noted that the visuals conflicted with a poor script filled with inhuman characters. Wasn’t that the point of the film? Only later with the advent of “Director’s Cuts” and Scott’s reworking of the film did many people understand the film. I like both versions and think the narration and happy ending were appropriate for audiences in 1982.

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Now you can watch a gorgeous HD 30th Anniversary print of the film on DVD, Blu-ray (on order!) or streaming/download through iTunes. Ironically, the film is set in 2019 (7 years away), and we’re not close to having flying cars, replicant people, but the visuals and advertising with giant luminous television devices are dead on. I only wish Deckard’s fancy digital scanner, which he uses to analyze an old Polaroid image was available! And to think that people will be drinking booze on the rocks in the future is promising.

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The 30th Anniversary home video release looks exceptional and includes over 3 hours of supplemental goodies. I’ll dig into these later on a cold winter evening.

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Here are a few high-rez screen captures.

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Rutger Hauer was perfect as the troubled and very human Roy Batty.

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I hope Scott doesn’t make a sequel.

3 Responses to “Blade Runner after 30 Years”

  1. Well written critique, Barry. Liked Blade Runner when it came out but wouldn’t have imagined it would have gained the classic status it has now. Prefer the Director’s Cut to the International Cut (which Ridley Scott says he hates) although enjoy both versions. A lot of the film’s mood due to Tangerine Dream’s score which is a tremendous contribution (imho) because the music hasn’t dated. Sometimes it takes a while for a movie to find its audience . . . .

  2. Vangelis, you’re correct, Barry! Anyway, the music hasn’t dated.

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