sprizzle’s review published on Letterboxd:
So I've been on a staunch offensive against this since I first saw it probably 10-11 years ago. It's slow...Watching it in SD, the visuals didn't seem to hold up...I generally tend to think Harrison Ford is overrated (sorry not sorry).
There seemed to be a million easy reasons to hate this movie. And with 2001 sitting there right beside it (watching these both at around the same time) the winner was clear. I knew Scott as the director behind Alien, which I loved. But I also knew him as the man behind Gladiator, which is a snooze fest. Blade Runner was a movie trying to be high art and a deep thinker and it fell short and it ended up being boring.
I've revisited this movie several times, trying to understand what makes it great. And here, on my fourth watch. It clicked.
The movie looks great. Finally got to watch a proper HD version and not only does this hold up well, it captures so much of what people are trying to grab in the late 20-teens. That 80s, synth-y, nostalgia. I don't think LA is going to make it here by 2019, but it's a cool vision.
Something else that finally made sense to me this time around. The replicants from Nexus 6. They're essentially the good guys. Slaves who have escaped their masters, trying to bring down the people who created them for the purpose of working, dying, and nothing more. Rutger Hauer makes a hell of a great bad guy, which is probably why 10 years ago I took this at face value. I feel dumb. Now watching this, I feel a sense of conflict I hadn't before. I see a moral test that makes this movie infinitely more interesting. Who am I supposed to be rooting for here?!
More proof that sometimes, you just need to see a film twice (or four times in this case). You bring all your life experience into a viewing and that can require checking back in on things as you grow older.
Am I going to re-watch Gladiator to see if I can find some redeeming qualities? Probably not just yet. Am I going to finally re-watch The Phantom Menace to see if it's really the piece of shit everyone says it is as opposed to the masterpiece the 10 year old version of me remembers? Hell no. But I'm glad I gave Blade Runner another shot. Really excited for Denis' interpretation this weekend.