Director: Ridley Scott
Run Time: 1h 57m
Yes. You read that correctly. Blade Runner is crap.
In 1982, 2019 was a long way away. The 80’s thought we’d have flying cars, off-Earth colonization and humanoid robots called Replicants — manufactured by the Tyrell Corporation. In fact, these robots would be so ingrained into our culture that we’d already need to start exterminating them. Thus the need for Replicant hunters called Blade Runners, and Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) was the best. That’s why when four Replicants managed to re-enter Earth, Deckard was tasked with the hunt. His problem? He meets — and falls in love with — Dr. Tyrell’s (Joe Turkel) latest experimental Replicant Rachael (Sean Young). Hunting some and loving another, Deckard must navigate the tense dystopian landscape to ensure a Replicant rebellion doesn’t wipe out mankind.
That’s not true. I’m not sure what four robots would accomplish in an overpopulated world, but sure. It’s a dire situation and we need to remedy it now.
Full disclosure: I saw the sequel, Blade Runner 2049, prior to seeing this one. I had lived 28 full years without watching this. I honestly wish I had continued that stance. This movie started out okay. Then it just got worse.
Blade Runner is not your typical 80’s sci-fi. The effects were well advanced for their time. The set design, costume design, and special effects were all outstanding. The visuals of this film are the only reason this film earns 2 stars from yours truly. They are so impeccable that it’s more art than eye candy. Ridley Scott knows his sci-fi, there’s no disputing that. I will argue, however, that he knows how to keep an audience interested.
None of the actors seem happy to be there. It’s like they’re all reciting the lines for the first time without any feedback on their character’s feelings or motivation. No one cares. Every line is delivered with a lackluster nonchalance so it’s hard to get excited about what’s being said. Which in turn, makes it hard to get excited about what’s happening around that dialogue. The only effort anyone gives comes from Ford when he’s pretending to interview a Replicant who is posing as a stripper. But I’m not sure if that was the motivation or the nipples talking. And if you want to try and argue that Replicant Roy (Rutger Hauer) was obviously in the moment: yes. If you count holding one’s eyes wide while sneering at the camera heartfelt acting.
The biggest disappointment was this so-called love story between Deckard and Rachael. Having seen 2049 first I imagined this movie would be more about their undying love. Instead we get Deckard running around shooting into crowds when he wasn’t sitting around talking. There was no love. I was super confused as to why they even liked each other to be honest. It made no sense whatsoever.
All in all, the story was weak, the love was lackluster, but at least we had some killer visuals. Blade Runner was a huge disappointment and if you haven’t seen it I’d like to say you aren’t missing much. You will not gain anything by watching this “classic.” (Cue the nerd screams.)
In an effort to go big or go home, I’ll leave the sci-fi fans with one last blow: When it comes to true sci-fi, Ridley Scott peaked with Alien.