Blade Runner: 2049 Review

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Blade Runner: 2049 Review

Owen Vodopivec, Editor-in-Chief

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In an age of endless remakes, reboots, and unnecessary sequels, the thought of making a sequel to Blade Runner elicited groans and sighs from fans of the 1982 classic, including myself. As it turns out Blade Runner: 2049 was an insane idea. 2049 is able to stand on it’s own with its many strengths, but it is also able to stay true to it’s roots and at times maybe even transcend its former.

Ryan Gosling stars as LAPD Blade Runner Officer K, whose objective remains the same as previous Blade Runners: Kill, or “retire” as it’s professionally called, any rogue humanoid androids AKA Replicants. K’s case leads him to seek out retired Blade Runner Rick Deckard played again by Harrison Ford.

Director Denis Villenueve does a masterful job at telling K’s story. He is able to build tension with every scene and every line. With a nearly three hour runtime the scenes are long and plodding, but they’re dripping with detail and you’ll find yourself hanging onto every word.

The film is also shot beautifully. Cinematographer Roger Deakins makes sure every shot is soaked in color whether it be the flashing neon streets of LA or the bright clean cut halls of the LAPD. The cinematography paired with the lighting is able to set the mood of a scene wonderfully.

The sound design and soundtrack by Hans Zimmer, known for composing The Dark Knight Trilogy, and Benjamin Wallfisch is also excellent. The sound of the flying cars paired with a bass and synth fueled soundtrack while zooming through the towering skyscrapers of 2049 Los Angeles gives a feeling like no other. The soundtrack sounds as if the soundtrack from Nicolas Wendig’s 2011 film Drive was thrust thirty years into the future

The performances are strong as well. Ryan Gosling continues to show off his incredible acting skills as he is able to be the cold emotionless Blade Runner that we were so familiar with in the original with Ford’s Deckard. Harrison Ford also kills it with his reprised role of Rick Deckard. He is able to make the character feel like he has been to hell and back, which is how Deckard should feel.

Blade Runner: 2049 is a sequel that should’ve never happened, but it has defied all odds and has become one of the best sequels ever. It even surpasses the original in some ways. Fans of the original will love this film and even newcomers to the series can find the film enjoyable. Blade Runner: 2049 earns a 10/10 score from the HIlltop Echo writers and staff.  


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