Blade Runner isn't about the machinations of the Tyrrell Corporation. It's about Deckard's discovery. And there is zero ambiguity about the substance of that discovery.
If you want to refuse to believe this, then we'll have to get into a debate about the nature of fact. And I'm pretty sure no one wants to go there. :)
But, rhinohelix, you keep saying there are "grade A plot holes", "large chunks of the movie that don't make sense", and "considerable material that directly contradicts Deckard being a replicant". Yet I don't see a single example of any of these things in what you've presented. At least StGabe is trying to hang his hat on comments from the guy who did the first draft of the screenplay, and DKDArtagnan is citing Harrison Ford interviews. :) But for those of us discussing the actual, you know, movie that folks can watch, it's dead simple to make a compelling case that Deckard is a replicant. Why do you think that is?
But yeah, the idea that the point of Blade Runner is that Deckard is a replicant is one of the least ambiguously wrong statements in this thread. It's a cheap reveal at best. As others have said, the story remains the same if you out Deckard as a replicant, a zombie or an alien at the end. The important part of his arc is the juxtaposition between him, a human, and the the replicants and how they meet in passing along the continuum of humanity. And if you want to talk directorial intent, there's no indication that Scott wanted Deckard to be a replicant to fulfill a noir trope. In fact, quite the opposite.
Last edited by StGabe; 05-09-2012 at 08:20 PM.
No one is disagreeing about Scott's intent in the DC to have Deckard revealed to be replicant at the very end. Is that what you think we are doing? Point conceded, then. My point is that in the framework of the larger story, that revelation leaves wrinkles that, while not a big deal when the plot point was ambiguous, become plot-holes when it is made definitive. When I cite specific, story-based reasons that Deckard being a replicant doesn't make sense in the context of the movie as presented, you hand-wave them away as unimportant and "subtlety". I would argue that because the movie itself doesn't provide any answers for them. The only reason they aren't bigger issues is due to the basic irrelevancy of Deckard being a replicant to the plot. That is what happens when the director ret-cons in a plot-point twist after the fact. The rest of the story wasn't written that way. Our whole discussion hinges, really, on seconds of footage in 112 to 117 minutes of film.
Look, we all have our own interpretations about art and there is no question that Blade Runner is a work of art. If Blade Runner for you is about Deckard's journey to self-discovery and it works for you in that way, great! It's a different journey for me. Vive la différence.
Last edited by rhinohelix; 05-09-2012 at 08:30 PM.
Maltese Falcon- Where's the real Maltese Falcon? Peter Lorre assumes the Turkish General still has it but there had been so many steps since the stupid thing left Malta there's no particular reason to think that.
Big Sleep - Who killed Sean Regan? The most famous question in noir that confused even the writer of the book.
Rashomon - What actually happen?
Wait...I worked it out once...or did I? Damn, I forget! If I watch it again...no, that will only confuse me even more.Big Sleep - Who killed Sean Regan? The most famous question in noir that confused even the writer of the book.
Depends on who you ask. Kind of like asking if Deckard is a replicant...Rashomon - What actually happen?
Interesting how both sides can be so certain of there being only one certainty ;)
My point is more that we CAN'T be certain what the original vision/intention actually was - and that Scott COULD be retroactively changing the reasons for putting stuff into the movie.
It's so easy to imagine, say, some interview where Scott just took a stance about it, and said "he's a replicant" - and then it's out in public. From there, you'll have to defend that position and rationalise it or look like a fool. The guy obviously has a huge ego - so I find this to be a very plausible scenario - given the blatantly contradictory statements of Ford and others directly involved. It just makes sense to me.
Or... it could be the complete opposite - and Scott is the only guy we can trust.
I just don't get why the director is such a pillar of truth for so many. Maybe you just took him at his word and you could be wrong?
Seems to me this is indeed about scoring "internet points" and trying to make the other side look as ridiculous as possible, because it's a death sentence to be wrong about move trivia, right?
When you've got folks conveniently ignoring the narrative, not to mention definitive statements from the guy who made the movie, yeah, it's about scoring internet points. Or, as I mentioned, being attached to the theatrical release they originally experienced. Which explains the Lucas comparisons. It's amazing what a little Star Wars baggage can do to a person.
I see you're unwilling to entertain the possibility that the "facts" can be interpreted in different ways.
But there's no accounting for taste. Some folks probably prefer the TV cut of Brazil. The difference is they don't try to apply their preference to Terry Gilliam's version.
No one is denying that Scott has developed a personal vision of the film, only that it's not necessarily the vision he, and the other people involved in its creation, had when originally making the movie.
Also, we're trying to demonstrate how Scott isn't necessarily the "owner" of the final truth about Blade Runner in its entirety.
Just like I don't consider Lucas the owner of the truth about SW. That's because I tend to think of movies as art (regardless of their qualities) - and I tend to think of art as unownable, and often in a state of constant change - based on the perception of both the creators and the audience.
For the record, I've seen the European theatrical release (on opening night!), the US theatrical release, whatever was released in Europe on VHS in the eighties and Director's Cut (1992?). My preferred version is Director's Cut (1992?). The only version I haven't seen yet is Final Cut. And neither of the four Blade Runners I've seen were making the point you think they were. I sincerely doubt that Final Cut will be different.
I couldn't care less who has the ownership of the truth of a movie. There's really no need to go there anyway. That whole tangent is from corsair and StGabe taking issue with my comment about how Blade Runner was "shot". And Musashi pretty much shut down that conversation. Anyone arguing the point after what Musashi cited might as well argue that the sky isn't blue.
Instead, it's all there on the screen. The director's cut of Blade Runner makes a clear self-contained point, and it's a classic example of people confusing subtlety for ambiguity. Quite simply, you guys have to do some extreme interpretive gymnastics to explain away the obvious implications of one man knowing another man's unicorn dream.
I've seen all versions, AFAIK, and to me - if there's a "point" to the movie as a whole - it's that "true" life is potentially separate from nature.
Whether Deckard is a Replicant or not, I've always considered it vitally important that we don't know - because not knowing is the most efficient demonstration of the point of the movie. Again, remembering that the movie is suggesting - not deciding.
I think my interpretation is better than that of Ridley Scott, but then again, I've never cared much for his ability to handle deeper or more complex issues. He's a visual genius who probably knows more about the craftsmanship of making movies than most directors - but he's not a deep thinker. He seems to think he is, though.
Why are you constantly ignoring that we've all agreed what Scott's final vision is? The question is if that was always the plan, and if he was certain of it originally. He could have included those things because he WANTED doubts - and because he wasn't decided. It's obvious that the source material could be skewed both ways, and he might have just been covering all potential angles.Instead, it's all there on the screen. The director's cut of Blade Runner makes a clear self-contained point, and it's a classic example of people confusing subtlety for ambiguity. Quite simply, you guys have to do some extreme interpretive gymnastics to explain away the obvious implications of one man knowing another man's unicorn dream.
Seems to fit well with Ford's statement.
Last edited by DKDArtagnan; 05-10-2012 at 04:57 AM.
And, yeah, for a guy who made a couple of brilliant iconic movies, Ridley Scott sure did turn out to be, well, a bit of a joke. I think Hollywood does that to people.
My denial is basically about the movie as an entity (including all versions) being non-ambiguous. I think the movie IS ambiguous - and if Ridley doesn't agree with his later versions - then he's not being the best artist he can be.
So, the "suggestion" I mentioned is about true life POTENTIALLY being separate from nature - not that Deckard is a replicant. I consider the latter a secondary thing - the value of which is higher if it's unknown.
Well, that's kinda harsh. But I do think he's been irrelevant for a while.And, yeah, for a guy who made a couple of brilliant iconic movies, Ridley Scott sure did turn out to be, well, a bit of a joke. I think Hollywood does that to people.
I'm hoping Prometheus can be a (at least partial) return to form. The potential is certainly there.
Just to clarify, I say "true life" - which means life on an equal level to that of a human being. As in, a meaningful life that's worth preserving and caring for. The classic consideration of machines as a race and whether it should be used as slavery and so on. Not new stuff today, certainly, but I find the hypnotic nature of Blade Runner combined with the time of release to be pretty impressive.
Definitely the most thought-provoking thing by Scott.
If Deckard is a replicant with certainty - then the question is much nearer an answer, and I don't think giving an answer to that question is the most artistic handling of it. Maybe that's not a good way of putting it, though. It's not the most interesting way of handling it.
But that's just me.
If I'm not mistaken, the original P.K. Dick novel also chose to remain ambiguous on that same point, but I suppose you went over that already?
If you think the source material has no bearing on a film, then we're living in different worlds.
Clearly, the primary concepts of the novel made it into the film - and if you selectively want to pretend the original author's desire for ambiguity can't matter - then that's on you.
What we can agree on, is that Blade Runner isn't the novel - and as such, we can't take elements from the novel as proof of anything. But we also can't entirely dismiss the source material.
But the reason I brought it up, is to demonstrate that the original author apparently agreed about what's best for the OVERALL concept of the story - and I think it's reasonable to assume he would think the same of the movie version of the story.
For what it's worth Deckard's eyes glowing is what convinced me. Replicant it is.