Blade Runner 2049 Review
Officer K (Ryan Gosling), a new blade runner for the Los Angeles Police Department, unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what’s left of society into chaos. His discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former blade runner who’s been missing for 30 years.Director: Denis VilleneuveCinematography: Roger DeakinsMusic director: Jóhann Jóhannsson, Hans Zimmer, Benjamin WallfischScreenplay: Hampton Fancher, Michael Green
‘ “More human than human” is our motto ‘ -Tyrell
Blade Runner a neo-noir cyberpunk Sci-Fi was released 34 Years ago, although it was released to mixed to negative reviews from critics, the movie is now a cult classic and is often regarded as one of the best Sci-Fi movie ever made. When Blade Runner 2049 was announced people had a mixed reaction to the news, some claimed the original was perfect and should remained untouched, while others had hope of getting a great movie when Dennis Villeneuve (Dir. Arrival) was announced to be the director. I watched the sequel yesterday just after re-watching the Original and decided to review it. I could not get my thoughts aligned so decided to sleep on it. After hours and hours of thinking about it, i can safely say Blade Runner 2049 has surpassed all expectations , it has surpassed many sci-fi movies. The exceptional script, the stunning cinematography, the magnificent direction and sublime performances has made this movie one of my all time favourites and without a doubt one of the greatest Science-Fiction movie ever made.
Understanding the Blade Runner 2049 might be a little difficult, It is an experience in itself and can mean different things to different People. That is the special quality Blade Runner 2049 possess, the story itself is multi layered and works at many places at the same. While the Original Blade Runner could be thought of, as a Detective (Noir) Movie with a cat and mouse game between Deckeard and replicant, while others might find Neitzshian and Descartean Philosophy weaved together in a visually Stunning Sci-Fi. Blade Runner 2049 never holds back into the heavy themes. It takes itself seriously and serves us with philosophical questions like What is Life? and What do you mean by being Human? While dialing down the action we are shown an emotional story which connects itself to the Original wonderfully.
Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn’t go away.
~Philip K. Dick
The script written by Michael Green (who has impressed me second time this year after Logan) and Hampton Fancher (who wrote the script of 1982 original) is one of the most thought provoking scripts i have seen of recent time. While it is impossible to do justice to Philip K Dick’s sci-fi masterpiece: “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” Dennis Villeneuve’s movie reflects upon the question by removing the ‘sheep’ and daring to ask: “Do Androids Dream?” The profoundity of this question is astounding, but then Blade Runner 2049 steps it up further by asking us what exactly are we? What is reality? What is love? . Once it reaches it’s spiritual core, it’s hard to step out from the doom the story is leading to.
Dennis Villeneuve’s touch is visible in his handling of themes in the movie. While keeping the core of Original intact he embarks on a unique journey of existential dread and emotional trauma. The movie is not perfect though, the movie itself feels like two movies cramped into one and feels rushed about the end. After the Entry of Harrison Ford’s character there is a observable change in the movie and the shift do not feel right. Also the character of Jared Leto (Wallace) is not utilised as much as it should have. Sadly this is happening too much recently after his many scenes as the joker were cut from Suicide Squad. Sylvia Hoakes’s character (Luv) is portrayed with enough maturity to be taken seriously, but her antagonist failed to impress me as foreboding and dangerous. But that’s not a problem, as the real antagonist in Blade Runner is the themes and philosophy.
Roger Deakins! Oh Boy, just give him his Oscar already. The movie is just a dream that sucks you inside it . The lighting in the movie is exceptionally used, the colors and styling elements Deakins use reminds of his great work in Skyfall. Like the use of fog. The design of the movie invites you into the world of Blade Runner. The nostalgia of original adds up to the futuristic world od sequel. It feels as if we are in the same world. While the futuristic flying sequences are eye candy, the real beauty lies in more grounded scenes. Like Wallace’s headquarter illuminated by water reflection, or my favourite, the scene inside the theater. With Elvis booming on the stage, the stage lights are used so breathtakingly that it felt hypnotic to be there.
The Original movie’s soundtrack is an iconic score that could never be topped in my opinion. But Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch has created a unique creative score that helps you in sucking yourself into the drama. While at some moments the score derives from the original score by Vangelis, but Zimmer and Wallfisch have enough tricks in their hand to make it their own.
Harrison Ford has done many movies, but he has never been this good in a supporting role ever. A few moments are owned by his acting in the movie. Ryan Gosling has done an exceptional Job as Detective K (aka Joe), a few moments in the movie, he impressed everyone with his skills.
Warning: Blade Runner 2049 is an intense and serious-minded journey of self discovery for grown ups, one without the easy pleasures of a light hearted action and comedy such as Star Wars: The Force Awakens or comic book action movies prevalent today. Do Not watch this movie hoping you will witness an action packed thriller. And Watch the original before watching the sequel. Otherwise the plot points would be hard to follow.
If you enter the world of Blade Runner 2049, you would never want to step out of it, but at the same time you would wish to take a deep breath and remove yourself from it’s clutches of Existentialism. Some may watch it as a pure Science Fiction movie while others might realise the genius hiding in the shadows of Futuristic L.A. Rest assured, there is something so marvelous, so breathtaking and remarkable about this movie that it is a sience-fiction masterpiece!