Wednesday, December 21, 2016
Blade Runner is unquestionably a visual masterpiece. Again like in Alien, Ridley Scott's vision is awe inspiring. As he utilizes the visual effects, the lighting, his camerawork, his production design, his costumes all to craft a spellbinding world, that feels absolutely lived in as well. The appearance of the film is one of the most, if not the most, influential elements of cinema from the 1980's. Now the film has been accused of style over substance by some, which that criticism in itself I don't think is necessarily that damning to a film. The film I feel does provide substance though in a way you don't expect, and is even a trick of sorts. The main story of the policeman Deckard, played by Harrison Ford, hunting down rogue replicants may seem rather cold for the most part even within the romantic element given the closing of the film. This seems an intentional juxtaposition against the far more emotional story of the lead replicant, played brilliantly by Rutger Hauer, who seems the villain but might just be his story after all. The ideas exploring the humanity of the artificial life are fascinating and in the end rather powerful with a death scene that ranks among the very best ever to grace the screen. I will admit the first time I watched the film I was perhaps taken aback by its style and approach, which is far more cerebral in nature. On subsequent re-watches though I've come to appreciate the inner emotional substance within the visuals, which in the end may be as daring as its stunning surface.