Blade Runner 2049: Return of the Pleasure Model Replicant?
Three decades later, Harrison Ford reprises his role from the classic Sci-Fi film.
The Blade Runner sequel is coming in 2017! Directed this time by Denis Villeneuve, with Ridley Scott as Executive Producer, Blade Runner 2049 stars Ryan Gosling with Harrison Ford returning as Rick Deckard.
While details are scant, here is the official plot description from Alcon Entertainment:
Thirty years after the events of the first film, a new blade runner, LAPD Officer K (Ryan Gosling), unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what’s left of society into chaos. K’s discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former LAPD blade runner who has been missing for 30 years.
In addition to Gosling and Ford, the film features an impressive array of stars, such as Ana Celia de Armas Caso, Dave Bautista, Sylvia Hoeks, and Jared Leto.
The excitement many fans have had about this sequel is the recently released teaser trailer, showing an even further wet and decayed world, and a dry and orange one was well, and what looks to be an even more burnt out Deckard.
We’ll have to see if Blade Runner 2049 will capture the same lightning-in-a-bottle as the first did, especially where it came to exploring purpose, existence, the role of synthetic beings in society—and even, to a small degree, android sexuality.
But in the meantime, check out the teaser trailer and let us know what you think—and if you’re as excited about Blade Runner 2049 as we are.
“Replicants are like any other machine. They’re either a benefit or a hazard. If they’re a benefit, it’s not my problem.”-Deckard
For many, the first Blade Runner is a film that redefined cinematic science fiction. Instead of a gleaming tomorrow packed with noble and stalwart heroes, Ridley Scott’s 1982 film was the 21st century as seen out of a dingy, 20th-century apartment window: a decaying and corrupt future Los Angeles permanently shrouded in rain, smoke, and fog.
Based on the novel, Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep? by the acclaimed Philip K. Dick, Blade Runner foretold of a future with human-like replicants: androids so realistic that they could only be detected by a sophisticated piece of apparatus—“Voight-Kampff” for short.
“Have you ever retired a human by mistake?”-Rachael
Set in this wet and dark Los Angeles of 2019, in the first film replicants were only supposed to be used off-world. But if they should happen to make it to Earth, they’d fall under the jurisdiction of a special branch of the LAPD, the titular blade runners, who would shoot them on sight—or, better yet, single them out with Voight-Kampff detection.
As the opening text to the film explained, “This was not called execution. It was called retirement.”
Rick Deckard is the LAPD’s best blade runner, though he’s as burnt out as the city around him. Nevertheless, he’s pushed back into the game when a group replicants manage to smuggle themselves into Los Angeles.
“It’s not an easy thing to meet your maker.”-Roy Batty
In the course of the film we’re introduced to the renegade replicants: Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer), Leon Kowalski (Brion James), Pris Stratton (Daryl Hannah), and Zhora Salome (Joanna Cassidy)—and Rachel (M. Sean Young), the “good” replicant and eventual love interest for Deckard.
Beyond its future noir aesthetic, the film played quite effectively with purpose and existence. Many times the replicants, who had been created with a five-year limited lifespan by their creator Eldon Tyrell (Joe Turkel), seem much more alive than the humans around them, especially Deckard.
It was also a future where replicants were designed and built solely for human pleasure. While we don’t get to see much of this on Earth, where replicants are banned, Pris (Daryl Hannah) is described as a “basic pleasure model.” Though the combat replicant Zhora (Joanna Cassidy) also tries to hide in plain sight as an exotic dancer.
Can we expect more pleasure models and sexy replicants with the upcoming reboot? We can’t say for sure, though we sure hope so!
Image sources: Warno Bros. Pictures