Author Topic: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)  (Read 871 times)

Offline shariqq

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #30 on: October 08, 2017, 12:02:PM »
Also, in my mind, though I had always read the first movie that way, now I'm convinced that Deckard is a replicant.

Some details from this movie that led me to this:
1) K is a replicant. He is a Blade Runner. Both of these are defined right at the start of the movie. It can be taken as a given that Blade Runners are Replicants. Although this isn't entirely essential, it makes emotional sense within the world -- hire Skinjobs to retire Skinjobs.
2) The amount of beating (and falling) that K takes, yet walks. This hints at why Deckard is relatively unharmed for the massive beating he gets from Roy at the end of Blade Runner. Given Roy's strength, no Human should have survived that. Having K go through heavy beat-ups reflects that.
3) We see K actively seeking food and drink. Hence Replicants need nourishment. So Deckard eating/drinking in the original doesn't disqualify him from being a Replicant. While this does not prove Deckard is a Replicant, I think this is the Director's way of adding a subtle layer to the argument that he is.
4) The fact that Deckard has a child with Rachel. Now it is entirely possible the scifi of the movie allows for a Human-Replicant hybrid child. But it is much simpler (as Mathematics tells you) to assume that it was a Replicant-Replicant child. Which also then adds meaning to why Wallace would tell Deckard that Tyrell wanted Deckard to fall in love with Rachel.
5) K makes love to Joi, via the Replicant prostitute. Which means Replicants are capable of physical love.

Of course, the idea behind the original, and all of the clues in this sequel is that they can be read both ways. But I see it as more hint-dropping for confirmation, rather than unnecessary detail.

Deckard is a Replicant.

p.s.: Deckard tells about his Dog being a replicant: "I dunno, ask him". That is a fantastic throwaway line. It means, he doesn't care and doesn't see the difference. Which could apply to himself, and his baby-momma.
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline fizz

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #31 on: October 08, 2017, 09:59:PM »
Also, in my mind, though I had always read the first movie that way, now I'm convinced that Deckard is a replicant.

Some details from this movie that led me to this:
1) K is a replicant.

There is an alternate theory that I read somewhere that goes like this. K isn't a replicant. He is made to believe he is one. The conditioning he goes through (cells, cells, cells, interlinked, interlinked - a true hallucinatory WTF scene from the film that made my head dizzy in a good way while I unsuccessfully tried to follow and keep up) is done after each job/routinely to make him forget he is human. This is why he thinks he has a memory of a childhood - because he did. But somewhere along the way, he was made to think (convinced? brainwashed?) otherwise.

Just a theory, but I found it fascinating. Especially because it makes this film the polar opposite of the quest/mystery of the first. It may also explain why the film immediately starts with letting you know K is a replicant...because, maybe, just maybe, he's not!
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline fizz

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #32 on: October 08, 2017, 10:00:PM »
And that's just the response to your first line.

I have more coming...shortly.
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline shariqq

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #33 on: October 08, 2017, 10:05:PM »
There is an alternate theory that I read somewhere that goes like this. K isn't a replicant. He is made to believe he is one.

I'd contest that, simply because we go with what the movie tells us as fact, rather than assume it is an outright lie. Because then what do we trust if we question the defined facts?
Yes, movies do have deception in their story-telling, but that's when there's a PoV, and you don't trust the person's PoV.
But that aside, the most important thing: if he's human, he's gotta be superhuman, man! Just too many feats that you can't attribute to Humans, especially at will walking through a brick wall at Deckard's home (hotel?).
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline shariqq

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #34 on: October 08, 2017, 10:08:PM »
The conditioning he goes through (cells, cells, cells, interlinked, interlinked - a true hallucinatory WTF scene from the film that made my head dizzy in a good way while I unsuccessfully tried to follow and keep up)

lol, yeah! What a stupefying scene! By that, I mean felt stupid that I couldn't follow it through! Loved it thoroughly. It gave me a Fincherish vibe.
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline fizz

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #35 on: October 08, 2017, 10:10:PM »
The replicant/human debate of BR has been long overdue here and we've never had it so why not.

Frankly, lets start with the basics. If you go by the concept of director (good ones at least) having control over their films then what Scott says is true and the final word. Deckard is a replicant. End of discussion.

However, this would be believable if the original film was made this way. The theatrical cut is a mess. Honestly, its tone is off and the ending is weird. It left me cold when I first saw it. Of course, because there are so many versions of it and it had such a troubled production, later, when the film garnered late acclaim, cult following and a rapid fascination of what the true nature of its protagonist was, I think Scott just used it to fuel more fan flame. I don't think he really knew what the fuck Deckard was but cut the later releases to play into the speculative nature of the film that grew over time and through interpretation. Scott is a showman. He says weird stuff, like when Prometheus came out. So he will say anything it takes to get his film the credit he thinks it deserves.

Its inconceivable to me that Ford as the actor never knew what the director thought his character really was and that they had arguments over it later. I think neither knew because it didn't matter then. It does now and both have a perspective, but yes Scott is right.

Denis is one step better. He knows leaving this unresolved is part of the films charm. I think all the arguments you used can be re-written to support the opposite argument as well. Deckard was on the run because he was married to a replicant. He was human because you needed human sperms to impregnate an egg carrying replicant. They had to hide the child because it was a daughter of a mixed breed lovechild Human-replicant that had no reason to exist etc.

Yes, ask the dog. Because animals didn't really exist in 2019. They certainly don't in 2049. But real bees do and that's how K found Deckard on the camera (life form) so what life form was it? Bees, Dog or Deckard (great name for an indie band!). Maybe the dog was the only real thing.
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline shariqq

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #36 on: October 08, 2017, 10:16:PM »
Yeah, I agree with the original about Scott playing to the galleys. Ford is proud enough to not want to be a non-Human, or be kept in the dark.

Eventually, it is the message of the movie that has twistedly become it's biggest debate points (how ironic): What is it to be Human? And all these years later, we are still arguing if Deckard was Human or not.
To use the previous post about K being Human (maybe?), he does the most Human thing among the two movies combined. So... even if he is a Replicant, isn't he a Human? What a fucking awesome conundrum.
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline fizz

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #37 on: October 08, 2017, 10:21:PM »
To use the previous post about K being Human (maybe?), he does the most Human thing among the two movies combined. So... even if he is a Replicant, isn't he a Human? What a fucking awesome conundrum.

Yess.....to be human is to die for something along those lines.

But here is another thing the film does well. I've always felt that Roy wasn't really a bad guy. More like an anti-hero. He didn't have everyone's best intentions (don't blame him, he's an android after all) but never did anyone wrong. Even at the end, when it was "time to die" he first helped Deckard.

Deckard could have died, if not for Roy so Roy sort of used his last moment to perform an act of selfless good. This has always really, really fascinated me. These earlier Nexus 6 weren't programmed like the later models for servitude, yet still had the ability to do what was right.

At the end of BR2049, K's eventual/implied death reminded me of Roy. Tears in the Rain starts playing. It's so obvious. He is the alternate protagonist, just like Roy was.
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline fizz

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #38 on: October 08, 2017, 10:25:PM »
It can be taken as a given that Blade Runners are Replicants. Although this isn't entirely essential, it makes emotional sense within the world -- hire Skinjobs to retire Skinjobs.

Great point. Which would explain why/how Gaff knew about the Unicorn dream. Because Gaff was a replicant too and had the same dream!

FAAAAKKKKKKK!
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline shariqq

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #39 on: October 08, 2017, 10:28:PM »
It can be taken as a given that Blade Runners are Replicants. Although this isn't entirely essential, it makes emotional sense within the world -- hire Skinjobs to retire Skinjobs.

Great point. Which would explain why/how Gaff knew about the Unicorn dream. Because Gaff was a replicant too and had the same dream!

FAAAAKKKKKKK!

WTF!!! Mind = blown!
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline shariqq

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #40 on: October 08, 2017, 10:33:PM »
But here is another thing the film does well. I've always felt that Roy wasn't really a bad guy. More like an anti-hero. He didn't have everyone's best intentions (don't blame him, he's an android after all) but never did anyone wrong. Even at the end, when it was "time to die" he first helped Deckard.

True. He isn't evil -- the only people he kills are the 3 who made him, unlike Leon, who was killing others so he isn't found out (the first Blade Runner we see, then attempt at Deckard).
Roy, seemingly, was more enlightened. Even artisitic in his diction. So killing his creators (Gods) is a way for Roy to get a release from his servitude, sort of. Rather than killing out of villainy.
I saw Leon as a bad guy, but Roy more like an Antagonist, except not evil.
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline shariqq

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #41 on: October 08, 2017, 10:41:PM »
Its inconceivable to me that Ford as the actor never knew what the director thought his character really was and that they had arguments over it later. I think neither knew because it didn't matter then. It does now and both have a perspective, but yes Scott is right.

I don't think Scott was totally unaware of the ambiguity though he played it aloud later for publicity. The Red-Eye focus, the Unicorn Origami, the physical resilience he shows.... but also in the writing: Rachel actually asks Deckard: Have you ever taken the test yourself? Now this could mean that even Humans can fail the test (unlikely), or it could mean that if the test is not administered, then a well-designed replicant can pass off as a Human without anyone knowing better. But Deckard *not* answering that question is deliberately leaving it ambiguous. I don't think the director would do all these things not knowing. I think he also deliberately kept it to be interpreted both ways.
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)

Offline fizz

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #42 on: October 08, 2017, 10:50:PM »
Its inconceivable to me that Ford as the actor never knew what the director thought his character really was and that they had arguments over it later. I think neither knew because it didn't matter then. It does now and both have a perspective, but yes Scott is right.

I don't think Scott was totally unaware of the ambiguity though he played it aloud later for publicity. The Red-Eye focus, the Unicorn Origami, the physical resilience he shows.... but also in the writing: Rachel actually asks Deckard: Have you ever taken the test yourself? Now this could mean that even Humans can fail the test (unlikely), or it could mean that if the test is not administered, then a well-designed replicant can pass off as a Human without anyone knowing better. But Deckard *not* answering that question is deliberately leaving it ambiguous. I don't think the director would do all these things not knowing. I think he also deliberately kept it to be interpreted both ways.

Fair point. Scott may have had some inkling but not been swayed so rigidly in one direction then as he did in later years. Still, its all part of the fascination.

One thing you mentioned - the Voight Kampff test. A Replicant who doesn't know he is one but knows how the test works could easily take it and prove that you can't detect someone who knows how to play the game.

I really missed the absence of the Voight Kampff in 2049 but I guess the ocular detection technique made it obsolete. And that fucking trippy sequence of K undergoing his test.

Cell, Cell, Cell, Interlinked, Interlinked, Interlinked. I can't wait for to hear the directors commentary for this scene.
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline fizz

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #43 on: October 08, 2017, 10:53:PM »
Ok, more crazy stuff.

I mean crazy weird.

I googled this.

From the rediff site.

You have been warned. Cue Vangelis music (Fuck you Zimmer).

Quote
You probably already know that the "baseline" lines are from Nabokov's Pale Fire:

Cells interlinked within cells interlinked
Within one stem. And dreadfully distinct
Against the dark, a tall white fountain played.
Here's what's interesting:

Pale Fire is hard to describe if you haven't read it, but it consists of a long poem, ostensibly written by (fictitious) famous poet John Shade, followed by "notes" by an editor who proves to be more and more of an unreliable narrator.

The baseline lines are part of Shade's description of what he saw when he had a near-death experience. Some time later, he reads in a newspaper an account from a woman who also had a near-death experience, and, in the poem, the paper quotes her as saying "Beyond that orchard through a kind of smoke / I glimpsed a tall white fountain--and awoke."

Shade sees this as too coincidental -- maybe this is some ur-memory, or proof of an afterlife! So he contacts the newspaper and gets in touch with the woman... who seems to have no memory of this. He checks back with the newspaper, and is told

"It's accurate. I have not changed her style.
There's one misprint--not that it matters much:
Mountain, not fountain. The majestic touch."

So the "tall white fountain" was an identity-shaking, shared connection between two people... except it turned out not to be true after all. Kinda like K's memory about the horse and the furnace.

Here's the poem part of Pale Fire. The baseline part is 705-707; the woman's quote is 757-758; the misprint quote is 800-802.
A follow-up point: To make it even more postmodern-delicious, note lines 781-783. The woman is eager to meet Shade because of her affinity for his poem about Mont Blanc (a tall white mountain). So who influenced whom?

Go pick up a copy of Pale Fire! It's the best.
Narrative is the poison of cinema...There's nothing more beautiful than elusiveness in cinema.

Offline shariqq

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Re: Blade Runner 2049 (Dennis Villeneuve, 2017)
« Reply #44 on: October 08, 2017, 11:23:PM »
This tells us how much in-tune with the classical arts Villeneuve is! Whether it is poetry, art, or even classical music (Like he mentions in the commentary of the scene where K hears Deckard's Piano notes).
I'm now pretty sure there's some history to the giant statues in Vegas too. Oh, so much to uncover. So much to be educated about. Such a rich movie.
Do you know what the scariest thing is? To not know your place in this world, to not know why you're here. That's - that's just an awful feeling. -- Elijah Price,  Unbreakable (2000)