Blade Runner 2049

Blade Runner 2049 ★½

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

"They found you."

A future case-study on style vs substance and proof that Roger Deakins can't save EVERY movie, 'Blade Runner 2049' has none of what I admired about the first one: immersion in creepy future LA with rainy ramen noodles + droves of cultural crowds, some atypical acting (Harrison Ford strip club scene), heartwrenching action (retiring Zora), humanistic characters to latch on to (toymaker), and a grizzled protagonist (Gosling could take a hit while Ford would become battered). Instead, we get a slower + flashy sequel without any semblance of character or thrills. Instead, we get stoic silence and large landscape shots as superficial compensation.

De Armas was the weakest character and should've been axed, Gosling's 1000-yd stare was more frustrating than in 'Only God Forgives', Sean Young CGI is a travesty if more impressive than Leia + Cushing in 'Rogue one', Ford was cashing another 8 figure pay check, and Jared Leto was hamming it up as always.

Despite being the same DP + director team as 'Sicario', there were hardly any tangibly tense sequences. The dialogue was extremely expo-heavy and had that trademark "everything's deep" language. Quit spoon-feeding the themes like Nolan!

The reveal of replicant's being able to have children was ludicrous and totally took me out of the turns, Zimmer's score was a total tonal re-hash of the original (made me dream of Johann Johannsson's potential works), and just because every shot lingers 3-5 seconds too long doesn't make it visually fulfilling or "artsy".

Right when I saw the Sony logo, I lowered my expectations. The one good thing of this release is the fantastic animated short of 'Blackout' by Shinichirō Watanabe, which is much more thrilling than the film.

"Even if you spray gold paint on shit, it's still shit."

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