Saturday, January 1, 2011

Blade Runner: Final Cut

I just finished my New Year's film, "Blade Runner." This was the "Final Cut" (number 7 out of 7) and the one that director Ridley Scott really wanted to be released. I found this to be an especially thought-provoking experience. This version has very limited dialog and no narration. It is essentially a series of "experiences" and "scenes" with minimal explanation of why anything is happening. But listen closely to the magnificent score by Vangelis. Since there are few words spoken in the film, it is up to the composer as dramatist to enhance your perceptions of the story.

It is, in fact, a very simple story. It is so simple that it really isn't worth telling until one begins to contemplate the ethics behind the science fiction. If one then adds the marvelous special effects (no computer animations in this film) and the musical score, the viewer is left with the feeling of having experienced more of an unbelievable and fantastical adventure in a dream than anything.

The retirement of the final replicant is, regardless, one of the great cliff-hangers ever filmed and kept me thoroughly involved to the final dénouement. But lest the viewer feel too smug with self-satisfaction and having saved Los Angeles from the replicant terrorists, this Final Cut leaves a thread for us to chew on—a provocative failure to resolve leaves us with a false cadence and the uncomfortable feeling that we have much more to learn.

Tiny, foil origami figures suggest a story yet untold.

Highly recommended for those who find neat endings and White and Black hat dichotomies less than stimulating.