Blade Runner 2049: A No Spoiler Review
While entering the press screening of Blade Runner 2049, on the silver screen there is a note by the director, that reads:
Hello my friends,
I am excited for you to see my film. I have a favor to ask of all of you. I do not know what you will think of my movie, however, whatever you write, I would ask that you preserve the experience for the audience of seeing the film the way you will see it…without knowing any details about the plot of the movie. I know this is a big request but I hope that you will honor it.
Indeed to truly absorb this extraordinary sequel, one must not be influenced by spoilers. The atmosphere is engaging, like a harrowing and seductive hallucination, that profoundly digs into the quality, state and condition of having a soul. The neo-noir science fiction, written by Hampton Fancher and Michael Green, is an intense immersion in the dystopia that was depicted in the 1982 film. The story, at the time, was set in Los Angeles in the year 2019, where bioengineered androids known as replicants worked on off-world colonies. Fast-forward to 2049, we are still in the City of Angeles, but now there is a new Blade Runner, LAPD Officer K (Ryan Gosling), who discovers a dark secret that could bring humanity to an end.
Besides the masterful Ryan Reynolds, the film stars a fantastic cast: Ana de Armas, Sylvia Hoeks, Robin Wright, Mackenzie Davis, Carla Juri, Lennie James, Dave Bautista, Jared Leto and Harrison Ford, who reprises his role as Rick Deckard. Each one is an important component for this existential narrative, characterized by a slow-pensive pace and majestic visuals. Roger Deakins’ cinematography renders enchantment to Denis Villeneuve’s shots. A grey world, tinged with ochre, comes to life through effects that are utterly flabbergasting, for the futuristic technology they outline. The apocalyptic message regarding humanity’s degradation is ominously intensified by Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch’s music; there is also a sentimental tribute to Vangelis with an insert of the original music.
This hypnotic experience will make viewers ponder upon soulhood, the power of love, the alienating consequences of mechanization, and the veridicality of memory (since its reconstructive process is susceptible to distortion). Blade Runner 2049 is a humongous spectacle that honors its predecessor and boldly expands it, in terms of using science fiction as a plot device to make profound philosophical inquiries about what it means to be human.