When Ridley Scott‘s ‘Blade Runner’ arrived in 1982… well for one thing, it flopped. But of course in the ensuing years (decades), it has taken its rightful place as a science fiction masterpiece and is considered one of the most significant genre films of that era. In it, Harrison Ford, fresh off playing dashing rogues Han Solo and Indiana Jones, took on a more complex and conflicted role as Rick Deckard, a private eye tasked with tracking down and murdering replicants, essentially androids that think they’re real humans and fighting for survival. Dackard’s mission is complicated by a tryst with one of the replicants in question, Rachel played by Sean Young. The conclusion of the film left things ambiguous as viewers were left to wonder if Deckard himself was a replicant.
That debate has become the central point of discussion about ‘Blade Runner’ over the years, muddled by the fact that there are at least seven different versions of the film that have been cut and recut. (I’m not even sure which version I have seen!) But it’s that subtle ambiguity that serves as the film’s signature.
Harrison Ford affirms that Deckard is human, whereas director Scott spilled “Yes, he’s a replicant. He was always a replicant.” Whose word do you take?
While most probably could have easily lived without a second ‘Blade Runner’, it looks like one is coming regardless with Ford already expected to return as Deckard and with Ryan Gossling rumored to be joining him. Some may be wondering if the film will finally give a definitive answer to the burning question as to Deckard’s true nature. Others are surely dreading it.
Director Denis Villenueve had this to say about the query at the Toronto International Film Festival, where his latest movie ‘Sicario’ premiered:
“Now that I am on the other side of the fence I cannot answer. The thing I must say is that I love mystery. I love shadows. I love doubts. I would just want to say to the fans that we will take care of that mystery. I will take care of it.”
Speaking of ambiguity, his quote could actually be interpreted two ways. By “take care of” does he mean he will resolve the mystery and bluntly answer whether or not Deckard is a replicant? If so, how will that sit with Ford, who asserts the opposing view?
Or does his statement mean that he will honor the subtle doubts that viewers have wondered about and debated over the years? The fact that he says he loves “shadows” and “doubts” may mean that he plans to avoid answering the question and continue to let fans decide things on their own.
But considering that this is something that looms so large over ‘Blade Runner’, there’s no way that Villeneuve can simply sidestep the controversy. But perhaps he can pepper the sequel with clues that point in both directions and once more allow fans to make up their own minds.
What do you think? Do you hope the matter is settled once and for all or would you rather the mystery continue to linger?
There is no release date for ‘Blade Runner 2’ yet, but more information as it emerges.
Source: Cinema Blend