51. Blade Runner (1982)

Too close to the future

Directed by: Ridley Scott
Written by: Hampton Fancher and David Webb Peoples
Starring: Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer and Sean Young

Two years ago, in a messy Harvard College dormitory, I was reprimanded for not having seen Blade Runner. But just when I was about to get educated, we realised that someone had misplaced Breakfast at Tiffany’s in the Blade RunnerDVD case, and that was the end of that. I now find myself wondering why I hadn’t seen it sooner. And if you haven’t seen it (like me 2 hours ago), I suggest you rent it out before two years passes you by.

Indiana Jones in THE FUTURE!

Blade Runner is a film that looks way ahead of its time, and I’m not just saying this because it’s set in 2019 (HOLY SHIT! ONLY EIGHT YEARS FROM NOW!).

Deckard – a “blade runner” – is faced with the job of hunting down four ‘replicants’ –  robots that look like us, who have decided to hijack a spaceship to Earth so they can find their creator.

With a cyberpunk feel to the futuristic world in which the film is set, Blade Runner is incredibly layered in its visual landscape with gestures to Orientalist imagery and East Asian cultures, as well as painterly features that surprisingly find their way into a world driven by technology and gadgets. As every scene offers the viewer a multiplicity of things to visually take in, the level of detail is remarkable in constructing a sense of place, time and atmosphere that explores ideas relevant to any era – memory, mortality, technology, morality and of course, what it means to be human.

It may even be worth watching this film a second time for the sake of reading the film’s visual design with greater attention to detail. Just don’t leave it another two years.


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