Blade Runner

Blade Runner ★★★★½

My first time rewatching this movie since reading the source novel by Philip K. Dick—which has some significant differences!

To be honest, I always assumed that the title "Do Android Dream of Electric Sheep?" was just a nifty turn of phrase. But no, in Dick's book, Rick Deckard literally owns an electric sheep, as he and his wife Iran (!) both practice an animal-loving techno-religion called "Mercerism."

It's pretty odd! And I'd say Ridley Scott's adaptation does a pretty good job of sanding off the more unfilmable edges of the novel (awkward dialogue, goofy episodic sequences, difficult concepts, etc.) to create a sleeker, cooler "cyberpunk noir." At the same time, though, he removes some of the book's more interesting and provocative ideas (especially the theological implications of Mercerism), leaving behind a more intellectually shallow work of art.

Still, it feels somewhat miraculous that Dick's sci-fi paperback would get an adaptation that's this gorgeous and earnest. Hard to quibble about the film's flaws when you step back and just appreciate how beautiful it is as a whole.

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