Blade Runner 2049, American/Uk/Canadian movie (2017)

The movie industry can sometimes be incredibly strange. In 1982 the original Blade Runner was released. A movie that many consider to be a groundbreaking piece of science fiction filmmaking. Throughout the years the film has become a cult classic, that has been gathering praise long after it’s release. Because when it was released 35 years ago, it did not perform very well, and even some critics did not give the movie very positive reviews. When the news was announced that a sequel was being made for this film, many people including myself, had to raise a few eyebrows. Why do you make sequel to a film that quite frankly doesn’t need one, and were there people really waiting for this at this point? When the first trailer was released for it, I became cautiously optimistic. For it really looked….good. With the release of the film now upon us, critics are giving the movie very high marks. With glowing reviews under it’s belt and cool trailers, one would think this film would become an overnight box office succes right?

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What do you mean this film isn’t doing well at the Box-office? 

Well, that’s where you would be wrong. Just like the original, the movie is currently under performing at the cinemas, so I guess in some cases history does repeat itself. This is going to be a bit of an unusual review for me, as I am not going to tell you much about the plot of the film. To do so, would be to rob of you of a lot of enjoyment as in this case the less you know about it, the more you will be surprised by it. What I can tell you is that this sequel takes place 30 years after the events of the first movie. The mighty Tyrell Corporation has gone bankrupt. Out of it’s ashes a new pioneer for the replicant technology, a man named Niander Wallace, arises. He has created a new type of replicant that is obedient and has been integrated into society to work as servants and slaves. The older types are still being hunted and retired by the cops known as Blade Runners. One of them, the Blade Runner known simply as K has stumbled on a secret that could shake the very foundations of society. Powerful forces will stop at nothing to prevent that secret from coming out…

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This is my response to that! 

It’s very hard to describe to you exactly what I thought of this movie. Perhaps it’s best to give you my state of mind as I left the theatre yesterday afternoon, after having sat there for almost three hours seeing the movie for the first time in IMAX. And that state of mind was very, very sad. Not because I hated the film, but because of the atmosphere that this movie manages to create. One of the things that I love in films is to escape in a make believe world for a few hours. What we have here however is a very bleak and depressing future, that seems to penetrate itself into the very core of your mind. Together with the brilliant music created by Hans Zimmer, and the incredible visual style, I don’t think I have ever seen a more depressing view of the future than what has been created in this film. It’s one of the main reasons why this has become a must see movie, but it’s not only the visuals that make the film so astounding.

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Hello little man. 

We also have a script here, that would not surprise me if it got nominated for an Oscar. There are so many layers in it, that it’s difficult to tell too much about it without heading into spoiler territory. Suffice it to say that one of the main things that I really liked about it, is something you might be surprised at: and that is the universal theme of love. K has a very unusual relationship, which is both beautiful and incredibly sad at the same time. But just like in the original it’s also the age old question of what it exactly means to be human, that makes it’s return. And even more than in the original 1982 classic, that question is even harder to answer in this sequel. Even though some of the trailers for the film would like you to believe this is an action movie, it really isn’t. It’s very slow moving, and while there is some action, the main part of the film is spent with K trying to figure out his place in the uncovering of the secret.

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I can see clearly now the rain is gone. 

Performance wise there is a lot to enjoy. Ryan Gosling plays K, and he manages to create a character that is both very human and at the same time also isn’t. This really is his journey, and for an audience to go along on that journey, you have to be able to create sympathy for your character. And Gosling certainly has excelled at that. The role of Niander Wallace is performed by Jared Leto. Though his character had a chilling aura, it certainly wasn’t a very memorable part. In fact it was his replicant enforcer Luv, played by Dutch actress Sylvia Hoeks that made a much more lasting impression. She played a great villain, and pardon my French: a perfectly evil bitch. And of course there is Harrison Ford who reprises his role as Rick Deckard. Even though time might have catched up with him, he can still pull off the part. It was an absolute joy to seem him make an appearance again, and the movie just would not have been the same without him in it.

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The first person to make a remark about my age is going to get it! 

So, are there any negative points? Yes, there are. The film clocks in at almost three hours, and that was just too long overall. Some scenes felt unnecessary, and could have helped with the pacing of the movie had they been left out. At times the film is just a bit too slow. But then again, this really isn’t much different from it’s original counterpart. Now on to the hard part: do I recommend this film? I can honestly say that this is an incredible movie, with a fantastic script, a believable and utterly beautifully created world and some high caliber performances. At the same time, this movie also won’t be for everyone. If you can’t handle slow paced films, and expect an action spectacle you would be wise not to go this movie. For fans of the original though, this almost feels like coming home. It’s a sequel that pretty much rivals and at some points is even better than the classic. And that is a very hard thing to accomplish. I won’t lie to you though, it’s bleak vision of the future will take you a bit of time to let go of. Also be prepared to have the movie spinning around in your head for a while. But that usually is a good sign.

I give Blade Runner 2049 a 9 out of 10 score.

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52 thoughts on “Blade Runner 2049, American/Uk/Canadian movie (2017)”

    1. True enough. I also think it has to do with the fact that the original movie, while widely known amongst science fiction fans, is not as well known by the regular audiences. Shame though, as you say, it was an absolutely great film 😀

      Liked by 3 people

  1. I could of easily of sat there for another 3 hours, weirdly I found the bleak, doom and dystopia so overwhelmingly achingly beautiful. Taking in every minute nostalgic detail. Absolutely adored it. So much so I just have to see it again this week. Great review btw Raistlin 🙂 All the best… Mike The Wolf

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks a lot for the kind words: really appreciate it 😀 You are so right. The bleakness of it all was one of the movies greatest strength (though leaving the theatre it definitely affected my mood as well). This is one of those movies that you will rewatch again and again, and probably will see new things in every time you do a rewatch 😊 I’m definitely going to see it a second time myself as well 😀 Thanks again for your comment 😊

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Yeah it’s one of those things that I guess really can’t be explained as much as one would want to. It’s always a shame when a movie that you really like doesn’t perform better. Thanks for the kind words: always appreciate it 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah that is definitely a factor as well. It’s a real shame. I wished the movie would have performed better. It would have been nice if a sequel would be made for this one..I really would not have mind to spent a few more hours in this world 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I guess we have a problem now and it’s called Jared Leto. He penetrates into movies and makes them worse. He had 2 dammit opportunities to play very important characters – The Joker and a big role in Blade Runner 2049. Both performances felt so…unnecessary? Not sure if it’s the right word.

    Jokes apart, I think it wasn’t only his fault this time, but rather of the script.

    I totally agree with everything you say, Raistlin! Except maybe the score which was good, but at times felt like typical Hans Zimmer. And the fact that the film has a very open ending, probably following the original….

    Great review as always.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Erm….well it looks that problem is going to get even worse than. I just read that Tron 3 is apparently rumored to be going back into development, and guess who is involved in that? Yep…Jared Leto.
      In all fairness though, he is a very good actor. His performance in Dallas Buyer’s Club was truly amazing and heartbreaking. But you are right, the two roles you are pointing out did seem pretty unnecessary. Especially for an actor of his caliber.
      Thanks for the kind words on the review. The score by Hans Zimmer was at times truly breathtaking, but there also so e moments that I did not like as much. As for the open ending…who knows, maybe in 35 years we will get another sequel 😉

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Yep, you’re right, with a box office like that it may take quite a while…

        Leto can be a good actor, it’s true (I loved Dallas BC too), but he is good at overacting as well or not feeling the character. Joker was way too “Jokery”, and Wallace was just so freaking serious with all that angel stuff…

        Tron with Leto? Wow! Well, that’s better anyway than Garrett Hedlund.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. I haven’t seen the original yet, but I think it was you who mentioned it was also a very bleak and depressing movie hahaha So, all in all, this sequel managed to accomplish just that as well.
    I’m glad the performances were good and the atmosphere, music, etc. so on point. Too bad about being so long… Maybe a better editor next time to cut off the unnecessary scenes?
    Either way, excellent review as always! Very happy that you enjoyed this and had it spinning around in your head afterwards hahaha

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Haha, thank you as always. I think it was me who pointed that out lol 😂 But in all fairness this really was an amazing film. Even though it was a tad not too long, there were so many positive notes to it, that they far outweighed the negative ones. And yes lol, it’s still spinning around in my head 😂😂

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Beautiful review. I wish I could like this post twice.

    I’m so relieved to hear this is not an overt action film, but a rather a slower study of character and humanity. I can handle Slow. I usually like slow movies.

    But I’m glad you mentioned its bleak portrayal of the future, and that it made you very sad. I will try to prepare myself for this when I go see it (Can’t believe I haven’t yet).

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks again for these very kind words: I always appreciate them, so thank you. Well no worries about not having seen it yet. There is still plenty of time left 😊 It’s definitely good to be prepared for it, I think you will be struck by the emotional bleakness of the film that is both beautiful and sad at the same time. If you do get to see it, I look forward to hearing your thoughts on it 😀

      Liked by 2 people

  5. You are totally right. This isn’t a film for everyone. It’s slow and surprisingly quiet. But it’s such a beautiful portrait of a very bleak future that I couldn’t take my eyes off it, and I hope everyone does see it, because it is so spectacular! And as you mentioned, there is more to recommend than the visuals alone. It’s a worthy sequel to a sci-fi classic.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Absolutely agree. In fact this is one if those films that I definitely want to check it out fir a second time in the theatres. It’s really so awesome, despite the sadness it made me feel in the end. This film will probably go doen the same path as the original did, with more people seeing to show appreciation for it later on 😊

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Glad you loved it! Yes, the view of the future is unsettling and well done. The emotion/atmosphere/quotable dialogue of the original was what I connected to most and is linked to Vangelis’ soundtrack. There was lots of fan service in the sequel, yet I didn’t get that special emotional feeling. Still, I quite liked it and rate BR2049 a 7/10. Maybe I need to see it again to appreciate Villeneuve’s vision! Or perhaps I’ll wait for the inevitable director’s cut 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I agree with the fan service, but I also do have to say that it never got really offensive in any part. In fact it was all done very tastefully, except for that one scene with Jared Leto, which I felt was both unsettling and a bit unnecessary as well. I do think this is a film that will only grow more, the more times you watch it. I plan on seeing it a second time in the theatres for sure. Lol, and yes it would not surprise me at all if we get a director’s cut for this one 😊

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I agree BR2049 is mostly non-offensive. What I meant with unsettling is how locations point to pollution and climate change, with the orange-colored area, wave barriers, and garbage dumps. Of course the 1982 film had its own thing with constant rain a sign of something not right!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ah okay 😊Sorry I misunderstood. But yeah, that certainly was really unsettling, the garbage dump scene was one of the most impressive ones for me. The total desolation, and people and even children actually living there. A really frightening and terrifying prospect. The rainscenes in Ridley Scott’s classic, were only adding to the desolation for that movie, which honestly also had it’s own sadness and unsettling feeling 😊

        Liked by 2 people

  7. Oh glob, 3 hours sounds a bit on the long side. It does sound really good though. 🙂 Is the original as long as this one?
    It seems like the kind of sci-fi, I could enjoy 😀 Which is saying something, because sci-fi is a weird genre for me (I somehow love and hate it, at the same time). 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The original is a little under two hours and also still very good. I reviewed that one a couple of weeks bsck. Even though that one has been made a long time ago, it has withstood the test of time amazingly well. It’s an absolute classic and also well worth the watch 😀 I highly recommend you watch the first one, and then start on the new one. There are some subtle references to the old movie in this new film 😊 It’s great stuff though 😀

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Sounds like a thought provoking movie. Good to hear that it turned out well, as usually when Hollywood does a sequel to a classic the fan base is resistant to it.

    I’ll have to watch 2049, after I get round to watching the original. Need to work out which cut I should check out.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yeah I hear you. There are so many cuts now that it’s difficult to decide which one to go for. I would say the director’s cut might be the best one to check out. As for this sequel…even though it’s length might just have been a tiny bit too long, in some places it was even better than the original movie. Hope you will enjoy both films. Will be interested in hearing your thoughts on them 😀

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks a lot for the kind feedback, appreciate it 😀 For me so far, this has also been the film of the year. Due to unforseen circumstances I unfortunately only been able to see this movie only once in the cinema. But I absolutely loved. I don’t think any film is going to beat it this year, with maybe the exception being The Last Jedi. But we will have to wait and see I guess 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve been a Star Wars fan since 1978 when the first film showed here in the UK, and I’m still a fan, yes, but the series seems to be getting like a machine now. I’m sure The Last Jedi will be good, but strangely I’m not crazily hyped for it. I know small-budget dramas are not what Star Wars is about, but with all these anthology films being prepped, wouldn’t it be nice to see a few budgeted at around $50 million each without huge space battles etc? There’s only so many times you can do these big space battles without them becoming boring, or light-sabre duels too. Star Wars needs to evolve or risk becoming a parody of itself.

        At the very least, BR2049 tried to be a little different, expand its ‘franchise’ somewhat, open it up. But what do I know? BR2049 flopped and The Last Jedi will easily bust a billion dollars.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yeah, I have exactly the same fear that you have for the future of the franchise. I fear that it really is becoming a money making machine now, especially with the new movie trilogy that has been announced as well as the live action series. I definitely hope I am wrong as I am a big Star Wars fan myself. But I guess we just have to wait and see how this is all going to turn out. It really is quite a shame that BR2049 flopped 😢 I would not have minded to spent some more time in this world with a sequel, but I don’t think that is going to happen anymore 😢

        Liked by 1 person

  9. You never know, if BR2049 builds an audience over the next few years (these Blade Runner films have a long shelf-life) someone might give it a go in a decade or two. Possibly a mini-series spinoff on HBO might happen; I’d write nothing off- a sequel to Blade Runner seemed impossible until a few years ago. You just never know.

    I only hope that the quality is maintained whatever happens.

    Liked by 1 person

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