Bladerunner 2049 – finally..
So, Bladerunner 2049 – saw it when it came out, I think last year and I haven’t rewatched it since – although I would like to.
First up, I mostly liked it a lot and was very surprised at how they didn’t really fuck it up. I know Denis Villeneuve made Arrival which was pretty good – I might write about that too.
I felt that Gosling as ‘K’ was a bit safe a choice, as it turned out he was very good but I wouldn’t have minded an unknown – he didn’t really have a whole lot to do.
The art direction was mostly top notch – the way they upped the scale of Los Angeles was great and the long shots really did it for me – it was a convincingly-updated Blade Runner world that I wanted to explore – even if it was just with my eyes.
The vibe of the movie was great – the score, minimal and rumbling and those blasts like ‘Akira’ crotch-rockets ripping up the background noise, the fact that they kept it on Earth, his updated ‘spinner’ was just sweet.
I think my favourite part of all was his regular debriefing sessions at the Police department – basically a set of questions designed to trigger an emotional response which I’m guessing he had to pass by failing to be triggered – was he still a completely cold and detached killing machine?
Then he’s got some kind of a relationship going on with Joi, a hologram/AI and later he buys an emanator – a projector/computer gadget that allows her to travel with him, which develops that relationship into something more “real”
The story is pretty much that Rachel and Deckard had a child (some kind of bio-replicant miracle) and the K’s ruthless police chief boss and Neander Wallace the ruthless, maniacal head of the corporation that took over the Tyrell corporation both want the child, the former to keep he peace between humans and replicants and the latter because he’s got a God complex.
That’s the basic story and then, of course Harrison returns as the older Deckard and there’s a whole bunch of fighting, action and surreal, abandoned locales of the dystopian future and in the latter part of the movie the question of whether K is Deckard’s son arises as a strong driving factor.
So I mentioned the stuff I liked now I’ll get to the other stuff..
The whole fight sequence between Deckard and K was dumb and pointless, really I can’t see the reason except to prove that Deckard was still a badass?
The inclusions of Frank Sinatra and Elvis were jarring and completely unnecessary and felt like product placement, which is what they were.
The whole sequence of K remembering being chased and hiding his horse sculpture and then finding the place in real life felt compressed and contrived and didn’t find the orphans being kept in bondage in an endless scrapyard particularly convincing.
Ultimately was it worth making just to hang in that Universe again? I’d like to see it again before I’d make a final judgement on that – the first film was pretty perfect really, with the small lapses in consistency adding compelling mystery rather than taking you out of the story.
I sometimes wonder if the “noir” feel of the first film was due more to these gaps and inconsistencies rather than genius contrivance and that’s what made it so good.
Ok, I’m gonna throw this out there – let me know what you think.