Last weekend I went to watch Blade Runner 2049.
One of my favs for this year (so far) *drum roll please* because I’ve seen a lot of movies in cinema but only very few that have captured my heart. Anyway, I have two separate views on this movie. One purely if it’s a stand-alone movie, second is for the sequel-thingy. But let me combine both in a single review as a whole.
To begin, first of all, I’m not a fan of Ryan Gosling so it’s safe to say I’m not bias on this. Not a fan of anyone in the movie, not even Harrison Ford. I know, I’m weird but to each his own, I suppose.
As usual, please don’t read any further if you don’t want me to ruin your whole experience of watching the movie itself. And if you’re planning to catch it soon, make sure you watch the theatrical cut of Blade Runner 1982, The Director’s Cut, The Final Cut & The Blackout 2022 (it’s an anime) – I know so many right? Regardless you’ll be fine (mostly) without watching any of these but to be able to relate more, it’s better if you watch them first. Watching the theatrical cut alone would suffice.
Anyway, while watching this, my first thought after some time has passed was that the whole thing was way too predictable, not what I have anticipated. It’s like it’s too soon for them to reveal Deckard’s child. And of course I’m mostly anxious waiting for Deckard to appear – It was only later towards the ending. But I’m glad they got us all fooled (not entirely). A twist (although I’m a wee bit disappointed) that surprised us all – one that heightened my like for this movie!
So let me start with what I read from Denis Villeneuve
“I’m not a big CG fan,” he confessed. “I think it’s a powerful tool, but it can’t just be that. We did the best we could to always try to be live with models and real vehicles and to shoot real landscapes and to have life in front of the camera. Roger Deakins and the production designers really put their mastery into recreating my dream, which is so that if you’re in an apartment, what you will see outside wasn’t done with green screen, they were building the other streets, lighting rigs, the rain was falling for real. It was like you were indoors in 2049.”
While I’m a fan of Denis Villeneuve’s Arrival, nothing can go wrong in Roger Deakins’ hands – the cinematographer. In fact, this movie was done so beautifully leaving me in awe of its stunning visuals – the landscapes, the hologram, the futuristic settings even Wallace’s office. It pleased me aesthetically.
This was one of them. I love this! (This image is from Google, credit to Warner Bros)
I like that they’re adding something new making it more refined of a future than its previous setting (Mind you, it’s three decades after) – the snow falling, the avant-garde LA streets and the AI programmable holograms, Joi. *Joi is the blue hair girl in the above image* She’s capable of showing her feelings – empathy, love and whatnot which goes hand in hand with the ‘freedom’ concept that this movie carried.
One that goes with “Does one able to change oneself, to develop own free will
even though one is created/programmed?” How K eventually realized he needs to kill his own kind in order to preserve his own kind – a called for a rebellion away from what have been instructed for him is a classic example.
And if it’s anything that didn’t do anything for me, it’s Wallace (Jared Leto) – the villain. He probably dropped all those biblical references while trying to remain important and mysterious but nah, I felt nothing. But I still like all those subtle references.
When the movie ended, it raised some questions for me knowing K heartily felt the childhood memory as if it was his own even though it was implanted by Dr Ana, the awesome & genuine memory fabricator.
Did she accidentally implant it? Or she did it consciously as a way for her to start a revolution?
And did she put it in every replicant’s memory or was it only inside K’s memory or was it K who felt it the most?
Judging from what has been showed, I don’t think Dr. Ana is aware of her being Deckard’s & Rachael’s child and I’d like to know what happens in the laboratory when Deckard came? I know I’m longing for another sequel despite having mixed feelings of this sequel. Don’t get me wrong, this movie is outstanding but I sort of thought it shouldn’t be made. I know, tons of unanswered questions in the original Blade Runner but it didn’t really get answered the way I wanted anyway. Nevertheless, this movie is still splendidly good. Oh not to forget, Hans Zimmer also contributed the music score for this one. So yeah, go enjoy the movie.
On a different note, I also went to watch Mother! with my dear Mom. I know, it’s crazy! Never a fan of Aronofsky’s work but we watched it by accident because I didn’t know beforehand it was Aronofsky’s and it’s a psychological thriller some more. I mean I don’t mind such genre but my mom? She had to sit through such abominable hours. Ugh. Poor her. The movie was so intense and trust me, I have never hated crowds so much in my entire life than the one in this movie. It suffocated both me and my mom. There’s this urge to scream while watching it. Writing about this is already detestable. Ugh.
Anyway, about the theme of the movie, it’s all those biblical references of Jesus, humans, earth and all that but I think it’s done excessively up to a point it became pointless, pretentious and just not right. In other words, I’m not intelligent enough to appreciate this art. I am always a fan of metaphors in a movie, heck I live for that, but I only appreciate it when it’s done subtly. I think Aronofsky’s Black Swan is better than this. Me and my mother left the cinema feeling exhausted because it drained us so much. Mental exhaustion from a movie is a good thing only if it challenges me intelectually and this movie lacks of such. But then again, I’m not intelligent enough for this, I suppose.
I also watched this Malay movie called “Bisik Pada Langit”. Actually this was the movie we’re supposed to watch prior to watching Mother!. Dear mom wanted to watch this one so I brought her to Nu Sentral. Didn’t know they don’t play Malay movies there. I got “Kat sini tak tayang cerita Melayu” when I asked about this at the counter. Hence we chose to watch Mother! since we’re already there anyway. Might as well watch a movie.
Anyhow, I don’t watch Malay movies if it’s not for my mother unless they’re really good. I’m sorry but I always think Malay movies, dramas are too shallow and vacuous except very few of them. But since this movie is from Khabir Bhatia, why not right? Last Malay movie I watched with my mother was “Langit Cinta”. I think it was quite good even though it’s Osman Ali’s cos I hate “Ombak Rindu”. Don’t even get me started on that.
Back to this movie, it was okay but I felt the plot was too simple and it could have been better. While it did touch my emotions especially because it’s relatable – I’m the only daughter among 4 brothers and I went abroad to study too but it was only for a short while or on the very tip of it. Because some things are missing – the audience’s connection, the continuity of the plot even the characters’ chemistry among themselves are off. And one thing bugs me the most, what’s up with the Irwan guy wearing the same outfit? Oh and the unnecessary focuses shot for dramatic effect. Haha. Nevertheless, I still think the overt message of “family is important” is cool. It served as a reminder to all of us especially to parents – knowing children are ‘amanah’ from Allah. It’s true that pain from losing parents can never surpasses pain from losing a child. I mean, we often hear that. I can’t tell for sure because I’m not married nor do I have any child but my Mom always reminded me of that. Or was it something along this line – pain from losing a husband can never surpasses pain from losing a child. Whatever. You get my point.