Blade Runner 2049 (2017)

blade runner 2049 poster 2017 movie
9.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Acting: 9/10
Visuals: 9/10

Strong sequel in line with the original film

If you didn't like the style of the original, you won't like the sequel

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Blade Runner 2049

Studio:  Alcon Entertainment

Genre(s):  Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Release Date(s):  October 3, 2017 (Premiere)/October 6, 2017 (US)

MPAA Rating:  R

blade runner 2049 ryan gosling hologram

I choose you Pikachu!!!

K (Ryan Gosling) is a blade runner.  He is an replicant manufactured to hunt other escaped replicants who have over the years manages to go unnoticed in society.  When he finds evidence that a baby was born to a replicant, K is assigned by his commanding officer Lt. Joshi (Robin Wright) to find and eliminate all evidence of the child.  The child is also wanted by Niander Wallace (Jared Leto) who sees the baby as the next step of evolution.  As K dives into the investigation, he begins to question his own reality and the memories implanted in him.

Directed by Denis Villeneuve, Blade Runner 2049 is a sequel to the 1982 Ridley Scott film Blade Runner.  The sci-fi film is based on the ideas from Philip K. Dick’s 1968 novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? and preceded by three shorts “Blade Runner Black Out 2022”, “2036:  Nexus Dawn”, and 2048:  Nowhere to Run”.  The film received positive reviews but like its predecessor under-performed at the box office.  It won Academy Awards for Best Cinematography and Best Visual Effects with nominations for Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, and Best Production Design.

Blade Runner was a tricky film.  Overall the story, concepts, and ideas are amazing and presented in a great style with incredible visuals that still hold up, but Blade Runner is intentionally and methodically slow-paced to tie in with the noire thriller tech blend of the world.  Blade Runner 2049 and Blade Runner fit together seamlessly with the positives and negatives.

blade runner 2049 ryan gosling rain scene

I know I’m your holographic slave, but I just don’t feel that way about you….I’m in love with the toaster

The story is true sci-fi.  The concepts and ideas of what is real and what is reality continue to flow in the sequel.  Be it K’s questions about his life and “past” or his relationship with his Suri like helper Joi (Ana de Armas), the concepts are pushed to the limit, but it takes time to get there.  The movie crawls, but it needs to crawl to get the viewers into the life of the characters.  I do wish portions of Jared Leto’s company were explored a bit more because it feels a little underdeveloped, but K’s story is the real story here (also, it wraps up a little too nice and neat regarding Harrison Ford’s storyline).

The cast is exceptional.  Combined with the tight visuals and storytelling, the characters are emoting a lot without saying it.  Ryan Gosling’s K is totally torn up inside but is also programmed to keep working.  Harrison Ford is beaten and haggard as Rick Deckard who has gone into hiding in the remains of Las Vegas.  I like Ana de Armas’s Joi but Sylvia’s Hoeks’ Lov tries a bit too hard to match Daryl Hannah’s crazed Pris.  Robin Wright, Mackenzie Davis, Dave Bautista, Jared Leto, and Barkhad Abdi also are strong in their supporting roles (big & small).  It was a nice surprise to have a return of Edward James Olmos as Gaff as well.

blade runner 2049 harrison ford decker

No…I’m not going to tell you if I’m a Replicant or human!!!

Visually, the movie (like the previous film) excels.  If you didn’t like the dark and grimy world of Blade Runner, it is worse…much worse.  The depressing wet, cloudy, dark, broody world got amplified more for this sequel and despite the changes in technology, the special effects look very similar.  The movie has a lot of booming audio that received mixed reaction from audience members (but I liked).

Blade Runner 2049 was a fun movie that lived up to the original.  Since the movie is more about concepts and ideas, I didn’t have much preconceived ideas going into it.  I was pleasantly surprised and was reminded how good real sci-fi can be if it is given time to develop and breathe in a script.  Is Blade Runner 2049 perfect?  No…but it is close.

Related Links:

Blade Runner (1982)

The 90th Academy Award Nominations

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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