This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Ben Perry’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
**The Final Cut** (AKA the best cut)
One of the best thought provoking films ever made, I’m gonna be thinking about this one for a while.
The world building and atmosphere were utterly masterful, the sheer misery of this place can be felt in every crevice, as the lonely Deckard drinks himself to sleep completely alone, in fact, no one on this planet seems happy, as all the happy people are off on another world as advertised throughout the runtime (a constant reminder that this place is not ideal). It’s all to service the hierarchy established, humans have it shit, but replicants are somehow below, and on top of that, they are being hunted. Whenever the replicants die, there’s always a huge sense of sadness about it, not vitriolic like we would assume given the premise, and no where is that more expertly shown with Roy.
Roy is such a phenomenal antagonist, he’s the whole package! Scary, sympathetic, intriguing, bat shit crazy, and packed with nuance. The Jesus imagery in the climax is brilliant, as when he saves Deckard and immediately dies, it’s like he’s dying for his sins (killing replicants) and the most human action of all, is a completely random and nonsensical act of true kindness and forgiveness (like Jesus) when he saves Deckard’s life, which confuses him. Even before that moment too, seeing Roy run around wearing nothing but boxers and acting like a buffoon is very surreal, while giving the impression that this man has absolutely nothing to live for, but then subverts that with one of the best monologues in film history.
Now, do I think Deckard is a replicant? Yes, otherwise they wouldn’t have put all that stuff in it about him being a replicant (like the unicorn or eye effects) but what does this mean for the film? Deckard is essentially a puppet for an organisation that wants to oppress his own people without knowing it… or does he? Deckard doesn’t look shocked or confused when he sees the origami unicorn, almost as if he already suspected his true identity and this was just the confirmation he needed. This makes sense as his connection with Rachael feels underdeveloped, unless he secretly relates to her struggles as a replicant but doesn’t want to admit it because it would mean admitting to himself that he’s a replicant which he can’t because his whole life has been dedicated to retiring them. But at the end when his suspicions are confirmed, he doesn’t mind because his view of replicants have changed. I personally believe Deckard’s memories were taken from the origami guy, and it was all one big test to see if a replicant can be a Blade Runner.
[trigger warning: I will be discussing rape in this next paragraph]
The one thing it would definitely change about this film is the scene where Deckard rapes Rachael. I don’t even know what this is supposed to achieve for the narrative, characters or themes, in fact they would all be better off if this wasn’t in the film. It muddies the interpretation that he genuinely cares for her and makes their actions afterwards disturbing, as they go on to say “I love you” this is so fucked up.
As you can probably tell, the themes about humanity were very well explored, and as long there are groups of people in the world who are targeted and villainised, this film will continue to be relevant. Chris Stuckmann summarised this film perfectly ‘it’s a flawed masterpiece’. There is so much delve into with this, and I didn’t even talk about all the stuff there is to discuss (such as the outstanding visuals, music, performances and filmmaking). It’s a shame really because this has the potential to be a perfect film but that one scene completely prevents that because it’s so bad, there are already like 3 different versions of the film, just release one without the rape scene and I’d give this 5 stars.