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Archive for December 19th, 2017

 © 2017 by James Clark

      You have to be careful about tricking out one’s film with factors from other artists. The recent Blade Runner 2049 (2017), offers us a cornucopia of blue-chip endeavors, all of which putting Villeneuve’s spectacular and shallow film to shame.

First of all, there is the first Blade Runner (1982), overseen by an expert, Ridley Scott, regarding the monstrous problematics of interpersonal integrity. Like the current film, Scott’s Blade Runner has been seen as a science fiction entertainment, which is to say, a saga saturated with a baseline of classical scientific possibility. As to this very specific binary business of widespread 21st century navigating, one aspect especially should not be missed, namely, that the protagonist of the Scott film, namely, Deckard, first comes to view to us as quite happily retired from the LAPD where he was regarded as the foremost hunter of wayward slave robots. As we first see him enjoying the Oriental fare of a seriously decrepit Los Angeles sidewalk comfort bar, and being much food for thought as a rather vivacious player within a world of squalor and dazzle we’ve never encountered (this being 2019, not 1982), we know immediately that he’s having no trouble being stimulated by the world, and is steadfastly not being fixated upon “the good old days.” Only the threat of a trumped-up arrest from his former superior restores him to displaying the (now seen more than ever to be time-wasting) expertise in bloodily “retiring” bio-engineered maverick quasi-humans, known as “replicants,” designed for dangerous and super-human work. Thereby, we have a speculative back-story of a free-spirit coming to grips (however boozily) with matters transcending police work, including office politics and moonlighting. In marked (and careless) contrast to Deckard, the born skeptic, we have in the current film a docile, if lethal, replicant/ LAPD detective putting down (30 years after Deckard’s controversial going AWOL) remnants of a long-surpassed replicant issue with traces of that rebelliousness unwelcome to a rather dizzy police state. That the latter protagonist, namely, K [an abbreviation of his serial number], comes to a level of skepticism himself in the course of his employment would be a very different instrumentality from that overseen by Scott. (more…)

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