Thursday, October 12, 2017

Blade Runner 2049 (2017)

Blade Runner is my favorite movie. I have hard time finding any flaws from it after the first scene. I didn't have high hopes for sequel. Best sequels to great movies can do is not to make fans of original to hate it. You can only lose touching great movies.

I didn't hate Blade Runner 2049 but it didn't need to be Blade Runner. Being Blade Runner didn't make it a better movie. Changing replicants to synthetic humans and dropping Deckard wouldn't have changed much about the movie. It might have made it better.

Blade Runner 2049 don't try to make Blade Runner again. It doesn't have film noir style of the original. Story is so far from original movie I expect it wasn't written to be Blade Runner sequel. Maybe it was changed to be Blade Runner for marketing purposes. If it wasn't named Blade Runner I wouldn't have compared to Blade Runner.

But it is called Blade Runner so here we go. Worst thing sequels or prequels can do is to make original lose something which made it good. Blade Runner 2049 explains what happened after the original. But because we saw replicants aging we can still have our was Deckard replicant discussions.

New movie doesn't have any characters as interesting as original. No one is close to Roy Batty or even JF Sebastian. Even smaller roles had memorable characters in original. Luv could have been memorable. She has moments when she show what could have been. By the end she regresses into one dimensional character. K's virtual girlfriend Joi ends up being most interesting character.

Not having clear villain made original movie so good. You can say replicants and Roy Batty were villains. But they had understandable motives. Outside one case they only killed for self defense. No such luck this time. We have villains doing villain things.

All this may sound I didn't like the movie. It is good science fiction movie. But nothing more. Movies like Ex Machina and Moon are better movies with similar themes. When you name your movie Blade Runner you make us compare it against the very best. It is not on that level. It could be best we could get from Blade Runner sequel. It has so much original story and style it could have been original movie and not sequel.

Running time of over two and half hours may sound lot. Movie didn't feel that long. Scenes were slow and took time. It never felt too long or slow. There is one really clever twist. That itself would be worth the ticket. But there is more. You shouldn't expect to see film noir scifi or anything like original movie. As its own thing movie works. It doesn't try too much to be Blade Runner sequel. Which saves it.

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