Sci-Fi | In English | 117 minutes | 1982 & 1992
Why Screen This Film?
- Rotten Tomatoes Score (Critics Consensus) 90% 90%
- Metacritic Score 89% 89%
Los Angeles Film Critics Association–Best Cinematography (Jordan Cronenweth)
British Academy Film Awards–Best Production Design (Lawrence G. Paull)
In 1993, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry. In 2007, it was named the second-most visually influential film of all time by the “Visual Effects Society.”
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The fact is, this movie is great in any version. It will knock your socks off. The overall effect is beautifully wrought.
The reconstructed BLADE RUNNER may be the best ‘new’ American movie released this year. The mood and melancholy have been heightened, and the film builds to its different, properly ironic climax. The androids are finally sympathetic; their pursuers odious. And all around them is a world startling in its contrasts: vital yet decaying, nightmarish yet bewitching, sophisticated but brutal.
Welcome to Ridley Scott’s nightmare. Resembling a Felliniesque journey into Dante’s inferno, with Mickey Spillane in tow, BLADE RUNNER is a cold, bold, bizarre and mesmerizing futuristic detective thriller. The film possesses a size that is awesome, sound and visual accompaniments that blast the senses and a pessimistic attitude that would do justice to the hellish worlds Josef von Sternberg investigated in his Germanic and Paramount projects in the early 1930s. Like von Sternberg, Ridley Scott packs the screen at every turn with images that penetrate. Overall, the concept is likewise chilling.
The secret of BLADE RUNNER is that Scott’s fantastically baroque, future-shock imagery, all dark decay and techno-clutter, effectively becomes the story. As the layers of mood and detail settle in, the very process by which we watch the film—scanning those shimmering, claustrophobic frames for signs of life—turns into a running metaphor for what this film is about: a world in which humanity has been snuffed by ‘progress.’ This is perhaps the only science-fiction film that can be called transcendental.
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