Blade Runner 2049–a Review

I so looked forward to this movie. I am so disappointed. Great visuals and special effects. That’s just not enough when it comes to a movie that is supposed to build on the classic movie from 1982. Acting, it seems, is simply not important. Plot and storyline  are, well, not as important as the visuals to directors who make movies for millennials and those in their forties–or maybe even in their early fifties. In other words, for those who may not even have seen the original. Sorry if I’m being ageist.

Not being among those in the age group noted, I did see the original. A movie that richly portrayed the moral challenges of  a society envisioned by Philip K. Dick in his short story “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep.” A movie that richly portrayed the Cartesian challenges of created beings, replicants, with self-awareness. A society which treated them at least as badly, if not worse, than the slaves of American history.

If I were a psychologist watching Ryan Gosling in Blade Runner 2049, I’d have to conclude the character he portrayed had a disorder. No doubt it’s the director that had him act as though he had a flat affect. I have seen many robots and androids portrayed in one movie or another with more emotion, with more personality. Why?

Few, if any, expressions of pain, pleasure, surprise, by Gosling’s character. Everyone else–replicants or human, all acted normally, with no flat affect. Maybe it’s not the director–maybe it’s Gosling. A shame that Ridley Scott couldn’t have directed this one, like he did the original, rather than being an executive producer. Money talks, I guess–eh Ridley?

In a better director’s hands with a better actor than Gosling and a better script, this could have been the movie I anticipated. I’m sorry we spent the money to buy the Blu-ray, never having seen the movie. Maybe there’ll be some saving grace in viewing some of the special features. I’m not holding my breath. No flat affects for the replicants of the original. Consider Rutger Hauer’s soliloquy on the rooftop. You won’t find much of anything like that in the 2049 movie. But you will see visuals–which are almost as good as those that the crew of the original were able to create with technology available in 1982!

I’m leaving out other defects, like scenes that suggested unexplored plot lines. Non sequiters. Flaws galore from start to finish. No spoilers here, in case you haven’t seen the movie and relying on critics reviews or friends advice, still want to see it. Speaking of critics, note that they liked it better than those ordinary folks did.

If YOU liked the movie, please tell me why.


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3 thoughts on “Blade Runner 2049–a Review”

  1. Why don’t you tell us how you really feel? LOL. I love your candor. I would trust your review any day! This movie is not in my genre so I can’t really comment as I had no interest in the first one either. Was it Harrison Ford? 🙂

    1. Indeed it was Harrison Ford in the original. I am fine with hi-tech special effects, but you still need acting. Ford is very good; Gosling, not so much–at least in this movie.

      1. Gosling does nothing for me either. Talent isn’t what it used to be in Hollywood. And with so many reality shows taking over the screen, only adds more lack of acting skills. 🙁

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