Blade Runner 2049 Review – Spoiler Free
Blade Runner 2049 is a film which comes directed by Denis Villeneuve who some may know for his work on Arrival (see review) or Sicario (see review). The film stars Ryan Gosling, Dave Bautista, Robin Wright, Ana de Armas and Jared Leto. The film is a sequel to the original Blade Runner film which was originally directed by Ridley Scott. The original film has much critical acclaim and has also been studied for some time as part of cinema history.
For a long time I’ve been a fan of the original Blade Runner film and have spent a lot time discussing the inner meanings of a lot of the things within it with other people over the years. For this film I knew I would have some type of expectation for what I wanted it to be, but with sci-fi film styles being so different in 2017 compared to what we had from the genre when the original was released, I didn’t think we’d get anything similar. Especially since there was a different director at the head of this project.
But I’m happy to say though that Dennis Villeneuve did a fine job with this film. The world feels almost the same as it was when I first saw the original, although with much better updated visuals and special effects. The story is just as deep and filled with symbolism, metaphors and a whole bunch of inner meanings to explore as the original was. Although I would like to mention that the pacing in Blade Runner 2049 is a little slow, and I think it’s this aspect, more than anything else which might bore some of the modern cinema goers who are used to more fast paced, jump cut, one man army films. I on the other hand think that this was a welcome change. I do miss seeing slower paced, mystery based science fiction, where characters are more cautious to proceed and as the story unfolds, little twists come about not quickly, but at their own pace. I wouldn’t say this is boring, but it’s just a different way to tell a story.
I do have a recommendation for a slower paced film like this. I would advise leaving your phone in the car and watching it without it in your pocket. I didn’t have my phone when I saw this and I noticed when a slower scene came on, I wanted to check it, but actually this takes you out of the film completely. Leave your phone in your car or something and you’ll get into this movie a lot more and this can be used for any similar film you might want to be sure to pay attention to.
One of my favourite things in this film is the set design and special effects. The world of Blade Runner 2049 is so well detailed, things look absolutely beautiful on screen. The world is so run down and manufactured, that all that’s there to bring it to life are a bunch of neon lights and holograms to brighten up the place. The world is full of people there, but everyone is on their own, there’s a strange loneliness to everything in this future, but there’s also a strange sense, like in the original that there’s always someone watching you or anyone in that world at all times.
The actors were all great. If you’re a Ryan Gosling fan, you’ll enjoy this movie more than most as the majority of the film features his character, he does do well with the role and has a lot of great scenes as his character develops. I was very impressed with Ana de Armas who plays Joi, she was great with her role and her character, being some type of hologram/AI was something I’ve not seen before anywhere. For those going for Harrison Ford, he actually isn’t in the film until I guess the second half at the earliest, but he’s great too. There was some great work from both Sylvia Hooks who played the replicant lookalike from the original and also Dave Bautista who is basically the opening act.
Even though it has been a few days since I saw Blade Runner 2049 and I have spent some time thinking about the plot and everything, although I’m not interested at all in spoiling any of it. I feel this is a film that I would love to watch a second or third time. I have always been a fan of films. particularly when it’s in the sci-fi genre, that give me something to talk about with other people or just think about on my own. There’s so many interesting concepts and angles in this film and the narrative is incredibly rich and full of life, I honestly just can’t wait to watch it again.
Overall Blade Runner 2049 is a great followup to the original film and shouldn’t at all disappoint any fans of the original. Denis Villeneuve has made sure that the world’s look and tone was maintained and brought back to life so many years later and the narrative is so filled with content it will give you enough to talk about for years. The actors are all great, but it was both Ryan Gosling and Ana De Armas who were the standouts in this film. There is very little to fault this film on, I loved it so much, I can’t wait to see it again. Blade Runner 2049 was everything I wanted it to be and everything I’ve been waiting for, I can’t wait to watch it again.