This month’s Take Two Tuesday is the movie, Blade Runner, which is based on the 1968 novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by the legendary author Philip K Dick. Dick’s other novel, The Man in The High Castle, has recently been turned into a very successful series on Amazon TV. It cover such tricky subjects as genetic engineering, slavery and immortality.
It’s been so long since Ridley Scott wowed us with this sci-fi thriller in 1982, that the setting of 2019 is no longer futuristic! Set in Los Angeles the hero of the film a character called Deckard, masterfully played by Harrison Ford, hunts down androids called replicants who have escaped from slave jails in outer space. and are trying to blend in, back on Earth. Rutger Hauer plays android Roy Batty, and this iconic role is one of the most appealing, yet dangerous, monsters in film.
The audience’s initially hostile reaction eventually gave way to a cult following and it is now loved by many as a truly cult film. There are seven different versions, reflecting the various power plays between Scott and Warner Bros, but in my humble opinion, the best version to see is the 2007 Blade Runner – The Final Cut. This is the perfectionist Scott’s definitive cut, which is bleaker than the original but is a more wonderfully immersive and emotional version. Some prefer the original’s gritty Chandleresque voiceover narration and the ambiguous happy ending (both supposedly forced on Scott), but the Final Cut is a more disturbing tale of dehumanisation, and I think it is superior. .
IMDb covers the differences between the various cuts in some detail, and there are hundreds of articles written about the message in the film, analysing and dissecting it. Please do read through them if you want to know more about the detail of the film, but I recommend that you simply watch it and draw your own conclusions from an immense screenplay.