Blade Runner 2049 (2017)

Director: Denis Villeneuve

Writer: Hampton Fancher, Michael Green (Screenplay) Philip K Dick (Characters)

Starring: Ryan Gosling, Harrison Ford, Jared Leto, Robin Wright, Ana De Armas, Dave Bautista, Barkhad Abdi, Lennie James, Sylvia Hoeks

 

Plot: A young blade runner’s discovery of a long-buried secret leads him to track down former blade runner Rick Deckard, who’s been missing for thirty years.

 

Runtime: 2 Hour 43 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Visually Breath-Taking Movie

 

Story: Blade Runner 2049 starts as we learn how the Nexus models of replicants are no more, Niander Wallace (Leto) has developed the new models to continue the slavery needed for humans but these all obey, Officer K (Gosling) is one of the models a new Blade Runner hunting down the original replicants that have been able to survive past their expire dates.

K’s latest case takes him to Sapper Morton (Bautista) living well off the grid as a quiet gardener, but he tells him about a miracle he will never understand. K starts to investigate the mystery with his Lieutenant Joshi (Wright) supporting the investigation but Niander Wallace has his best agent Luv (Hoeks) also looking for truth which involves searching for Rick Deckard (Ford)

 

Thoughts on Blade Runner 2049

 

Characters – Officer K is a replicant upgrade that tracks down the Nexus models, he is the smart figure that we need to see in an investigation movie but in his free time he has a relationship with his artificial life Joi. K gets drawn into an investigation to find the answers to what could be a miracle in the modern world and his cases takes him all over America. Niander Wallace is the man that has been making the new replicants that obey, his genius has saved the planet but when he learns about the miracle he knows it can take his creations to the next level. Luv is the main employee of Niander’s chasing down K looking to take advantage of the miracle, she is deadly killing anyone who gets in her way. Rick Deckard has the answers to what is behind the miracle but we don’t meet him until late into the movie. Joi the artificial intelligence that keeps K company who constantly is looking for a way to become real.

PerformancesRyan Gosling is fantastic in the leading role of this movie showing he can carry a blockbuster just as well as an indie movie. Harrison Ford returning gives us a chance to see him back at his best which is why him returning to his popular films is working in recent years, here to hope for a good Indiana Jones sequel. Jared Leto is great when we see him but I do wish we had more scenes with his character. Sylvia Hoeks is the true surprise package here and she is fantastic in all her scenes and being an actress, I hadn’t heard of before she proves she could be in many leading roles to come. Ana De Armas is also great in her role stepping away from the normal for what I know her for in horror to be the ones that wants to survive. The cast has plenty of big name actors from different years they are all great through this film.

StoryThe story here is an investigation into what happened after the original movie, yes, it is 30 years later but the moments we learn off from the investigation explain how this moment is the answer to the power struggle being played for by this investigation. We can look past just the investigation though because we have K’s quest to understand one of his memories, Joi’s desire to be real and Niander’s mission to hold the key to making replicants in a more efficient way. The positive if that the story is told in a linear pattern because we could have easily jump around the time line for this film but it is simple to follow as you are left to guess just what will be happening next.

Sci-FiIn a world of replicants, other worlds (though we don’t go or see them) where humans have all but destroyed Earth, this movie couldn’t be anymore sci-fi even if it wanted to, a near perfect use of the sci-fi elements.

SettingsThe world created is visually stunning, be it the tight compact living spaces or the open land destroyed by war, each setting will take you breath away with the visual look of everything.

Special EffectsThe special effects are easily the best any film will use this year, they are truly amazing whether it be the world creating or how Joi blends into each scene she is in. this is a treat on the eyes.


Scene of the Movie –
Deckard’s introduction.

That Moment That Annoyed Me It feels very long.

Final ThoughtsThis is easily the best visual movie of the year, it has wonderful performances from everyone involved, a story that keeps you guessing, the only down side is the run time which you do feel even when you are engrossed into the story.

 

Overall: Stunning visual movie that will take your breath away.

Rating

 

 

Blade Runner (1982)

Director: Ridley Scott

Writer: Hampton Fancher, David Webb Peoples (Screenplay) Philip K Dick (Novel)

Starring: Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, Edward James Olmos, M Emmet Walsh, Daryl Hanna, William Sanderson

 

Plot: A blade runner must pursue and try to terminate four replicants who stole a ship in space and have returned to Earth to find their creator.


Tagline – A chilling, bold, mesmerizing, futuristic detective thriller.

Runtime: 1 Hour 57 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: True Iconic Classic

 

Story: Blade Runner starts in the 21st century where humans have created replicants to work off world in hazardous condition, but when a mutiny makes them free they become illegal on Earth where Blade Runners hunt them down killing them on sight in a process known as retirement not execution.

When four replicants Roy Batty (Hauer), Pris (Hannah), Leon (James) and Zhora (Cassidy) return to Earth Bryant (Walsh) brings Blade Runner Rick Deckard (Ford) into track them down. With newer models being developed like Rachael (Young) tracking down the replicants is becoming harder for Deckard but with him being the best in the business he must use all his experience to stop them causing anymore problems in the world.

 

Thoughts on Blade Runner

 

Characters – Rick Deckard is the Blade Runner, well one of them, the best of them, he keeps to himself for the most part but when a job becomes too serious, Deckard is the man to clean up by hunting down the replicants. He does have a moral compass when it comes to dealing with the upgraded Rachael who doesn’t seem to be a threat but when dealing with the others it will be his hardest test. Roy Batty is the leader of the escaped replicants, he only wants to find a way for his replicants to extended their lives and is filled with philosophical ideas. Racheal is the upgraded replicant that is being kept secret until she goes on the run with on Deckard to protect her from retirement. We also have the other replicants looking for freedom in their own way as well as the people who want Deckard to hunt them down.

PerformancesHarrison Ford gives us a performance that does against everything we were expecting from his Han Solo and Indiana Jones days where he plays the serious character in the bleak look at the future. Rutger Hauer gives us one of the best villainous performance of any film, he is haunting with his lines and deadly with his fights. Sean Young is good in the film too as the learning replicant. There isn’t a single weak performance in this movie which is always good to see.

StoryThe story shows how the androids created known as replicants only want to survive and be treated equal in a world that will not accept them. We watch the one man try to hunt down the escaped replicants before they hurt anymore innocent people. This is a noir thriller that keeps us guessing the in bleak sci-fi world that has a story without many twists which keeps the story flowing in the one direction needed.

Sci-FiWhen this was released sci-fi was all aliens and space travel but this showed us a future, a bleak future reliant on technology for the people, it showed us how the world could look in the future.

SettingsThis is a visual treat for the settings, it takes us into the future where we see the world we could one day be living in.

Special EffectsThe effects still stand the test of time because of the visual look at the world we are finding out characters in with the technology designed for the film.


Scene of the Movie –
I always like the final showdown.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Deciding which cut to watch.

Chances of Sequel: We have one now.

Budget: $28 Million

Final ThoughtsThis is a sci-fi film that inspired a generation of film makers, it broke boundaries and became one of the all-time classics in cinema.

 

Overall: Classic we can never get bored off.

Rating

 

 

Screamers (1995)

Director: Christian Duguay

Writer: Dan O’Bannon, Migel Tejada-Flores (Screenplay) Philip K Dick (Short Story)

Starring: Peter Weller, Roy Dupuis, Jennifer Rubin, Andrew Lauer, Charles Edwin Powell, Ron White, Michael Caloz

 

Plot: On a distant mining planet ravaged by a decade of war, scientists have created the perfect weapon: a blade-wielding, self-replicating race of killing devices known as Screamers designed for one purpose only — to hunt down and destroy all enemy life forms But man’s greatest weapon has continued to evolve without any human guidance, and now it has devised a new mission: to obliterate all life.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Nice Sci-Fi Idea

 

Story: Screamers starts after an inter planet war for control of a mining source when peace looks like it could be an option. Col Joe Hendricksson (Weller) is in charge off an outpost which is defended by creatures known a Screamers who receives a message about the peace talks.

Learning these potential talks are not true and his own alliance is planning a large-scale invasion on the mining planet Col Joe takes young soldier Ace (Lauer) along on a mission to discover the truth. On the journey the pair meet Becker (Dupuis) and Jessica (Rubin) who offer the truth about the increasing intelligence the Screamers are showing as they have become the true enemy on this planet.

 

Thoughts on Screamers

 

Characters/PerformanceCol Joe Hendricksson is stationed on the planet waiting for the end of the war, he controls the people well and leads the mission for what could be his freedom as well as the people he is in charge off. Becker is the old-school soldier that believes he knows it all. Jessica is lone woman hoping to one day to return to Earth who joins the mission. Ace if the rookie who believes his training is more than what it seems.

Performance wise, Peter Weller is a good lead for the film as you would expect in the world of sci-fi. I do think the other main leads also all do a good job in their performance too.

StoryLooking into the story, we get a well built world where humans are now mining other planets for resources which has caused a war, but now that is over the weapons used to win the war are one of the greatest enemies to man. The twists come often through this story with the basics of it all coming off the simple, where are we going on the lets get to this place to solve the problem only to learn the bigger problem and need to return style of the film. everything works for the ideas being explained and can be enjoyed with the sci-fi fans.

Sci-Fi/ThrillerThe sci-fi world created is all good and could easily be built into something much bigger.

SettingsThe film is set on what is meant to be mining planet that has been at war, everything looks correct without being anything special.

Special EffectsThe special effects are all good for the time even if certain moments can look like they might have aged in places.

Final ThoughtsI did enjoy this film, I liked how the story could build to something bigger and could easily be rebooted in the future to make for a much bigger idea for the sci-fi audience.

 

Overall: One for the sci-fi fans out there.

Rating

 

 

A Scanner Darkly (2006)

logoDirector: Richard Linklater

Writer: Richard Linklater (Screenplay) Philip K. Dick (Novel)

Starring: Rory Cochrane, Robert Downey Jr, Keanu Reeves, Winona Ryder, Woody Harrelson

 

Plot: An undercover cop in a not-too-distant future becomes involved with a dangerous new drug and begins to lose his own identity as a result.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Strong Start, Slow Finish

 

Story: A Scanner Darkly starts by introducing us to Charles Freck (Cochrane) a man being pestered by bugs while on a new drug. Calling a friend James Barris (Downey Jr) for advice they plan to meet to look at the bugs. Skip to the Police who are trying to crack down on narcotics with a new undercover suit worn b Officer Fred (Reeves) as he goes undercover to fight the war on narcotics. Substance D is the new drug on the streets that they are most trying to stop taking a hold on the users.

Officer Fred is undercover with dealer Donna (Ryder) using his alias Bob Arctor who is a suspect he is meant to be after, he also knows Charles and James along with follower stoner Ernie Luckman (Harrelson). We watch as Officer Fred starts to lose his mind as he struggles to deal with the different realities the drug world is leaving him in. Fred has to work out who to trust and why the police are after him as well as why Barris is trying to sell him out.

A Scanner Darkly is one of those films that really pulls you in to start with but in the end fizzles out, it is a shame because the idea was a good concept but it doesn’t give us enough potential surprises like who Hank is, it is clear who early on. The subject looks at how the drugs can affect the people who are just undercover rather than the ones who are who are the stoners. I think more focus on who and what is really going on should have been had because the end feels empty rather than concluded. (6/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Robert Downey Jr: James Barris one of the stoners who believes he is smarter than the rest of them. He wants to out one of his group not knowing he is the guy undercover. Robert does a good job in what was one of his recovery roles. (7/10)

robert

Keanu Reeves: Bob Arctor/Officer Fred the undercover cop whose identity is a secret to the force while he gets close to the dealers. Keanu does a good job in a role you wouldn’t imagine him in. (7/10)

 keanu

Winona Ryder: Donna Hawthorne main dealer and girlfriend of Bob, she keeps the guys hooked up. Winona does a good job but doesn’t get enough screen time. (6/10)

 winoan

Woody Harrelson: Ernie Luckman one of the stoners who gets all philosophical whenever high. Woody makes for a solid supporting character but needed more screen time. (5/10)

 

Rory Cochrane: Charles Freck the man who gets most affected by the substance D who starts seeing things before anybody else and is always the fear of what the group could become. Rory does a good job and as for that opening scene that really pulls you in and you want to see more of his character. (8/10)

 rory

Support Cast: A Scanner Darkly only has supporting characters working in the police be it officers or doctors checking on Fred. They all help try to show his better side rather than his drug side.

 

Director Review: Richard Linklater – Richard has become one of the biggest names in Hollywood this year and this showed that he is a visionary director. (8/10)

 

Animation: A Scanner Darkly is very original with its style of animation which makes the story be able to go in direction that wouldn’t be possible if it was just one or the other. (9/10)

Mystery: A Scanner Darkly tries to keep you guessing but sadly doesn’t keep it up enough of the way through the film. (6/10)

Thriller: A Scanner Darkly keeps you wondering but never pushes you to the edge like it could. (6/10)

Settings: A Scanner Darkly settings are created well throughout the film. (7/10)
Special Effects
: A Scanner Darkly uses both brilliant special effects and animation to create a unique look for the film. (8/10)

Suggestion: A Scanner Darkly is one to try it isn’t the most perfect film but the visual could be rewarding. (Try It)

 

Best Part: Visuals.

Worst Part: Fizzles out near the end.

 

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $7.6 Million

Budget: $8.5 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 40 Minutes

Tagline: Everything Is Not Going To Be OK

 

Overall: Brave Idea

Rating 72

Minority Report (2002)

logoDirector: Steven Spielberg

Writer: Scott Frank, Jon Cohen (Screenplay) Philip K. Dick (Short Story)

Starring: Tom Cruise, Max Von Sydow, Steve Harris, Neal McDonough, Colin Farrell, Samantha Morton, Peter Stormare

 

Plot: In the year 2054 crime is virtually eliminated from Washington D.C. thanks to an elite law enforcement squad ‘Precrime’. They use three gifted humans known as Pre-Cogs with special powers to see into the future and predict crimes beforehand. John Anderton (Cruise) heads precrime and believes the system’s flawlessness steadfastly. However one day the Pre-cogs predict that Anderton will commit a murder himself in the next 35 hours. Worse, Anderton doesn’t even know the victim. He decides to get to the mystery’s core by finding out the ‘Minority Report’ which means the predictions of the female Pre-Cog Agatha that might tell a different story and prove Anderton’s innocent.

 

Verdict: Good Sci-fi Action Thriller

 

Story: A world with no murder, seems like a peaceful place right? This story plays on the idea of this going national and is under supervision to make sure it works without error. We get the idea that one crime could be faked and another is to be committed but involving people who don’t know each other. We have the one man crusade to prove he couldn’t commit a murder to someone he doesn’t know. Mix it all together you get a thriller that shows what seems like a perfect system has flaws in it. Think ‘The Fugitive’ in the future with technology to make running harder. (8/10)

 

Actor Reviews

 

Tom Cruise: John Anderton the chief of the Pre-Crime division who is haunted by the loss of his son before it was created and works every day to make sure no one else suffers the same loss he did. Once his name comes up as the murderer he goes on the run to prove he couldn’t commit the crime but what he discovers can change everything he has worked for. Good lead performance from Tom, just want you expect from him. (9/10)

 cruise

Max Von Sydow: Director Lamar Burgess the creator of the pre-crime division who seems John like a son, he is trying to turn it into a national idea. Good support performance showing a typical business man. (8/10)

max

Colin Farrell: Danny Witwer is sent to make sure everything is running smoothly with the division, but what he finds could bring the system down and once John’s name comes up he sets out in pursuit of the man. Good performance from Farrell showing he can play a between the lines character. (8/10)

 colin

Neal McDonough: Fletcher John’s second in commander who is trying to bring him in, but his personal connection is making it harder to achieve. Good supporting performance showing he can play good after a string of villainous roles. (7/10)

 

Samantha Morton: Agatha one of the pre-cogs and the smartest one at that she has the most visions and the most detail in them. Good support performance.(7/10)

 

Director Review: Steven Spielberg – You know what you are going to get when you see the name Spielberg and you won’t be disappointed here. (9/10)

 

Action: Great sci-fi action throughout. (9/10)

Mystery: Just watching to solve the mystery and keeping the guessing going until the end really works for this film. (9/10)

Sci-Fi: Good look into the future using technologies that are starting to be used now like touch screen and eye detections. (10/10)

Thriller: Keeps you guessing from start to finish. (9/10)

Settings: Stunning settings created to make the world of the future still have a human touch. (9/10)
Special Effects
: Brilliant special effects used throughout, with the world creation and the technologies. (10/10)

Suggestion: If you like the genre you will enjoy, but I feel if you don’t like the ideas you may struggle to get into the film. (Sci-Fi Action Fans Watch)

 

Best Part: The escape in the car factory.

Worst Part: The moral questions behind the story.

Action Scene Of The Film: The ally way escape.

Believability: With some of the technologies coming into our world gives us a feel of realism but the rest seems too much to date. (4/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Similar Too: The Fugitive

 

Oscar Chances: Nominated for One Oscar

Box Office: $358,372,926

Budget: $102 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 24 Minutes

Tagline: You Can’t Hide

 

Overall: Great Sci-Fi Action Thriller That Makes You Think

Rating 86