“Blade Runner 2049” is the 2017 sequel to Ridley Scott’s much-lauded science fiction masterpiece “Blade Runner” (1982), this time starring Ryan Gosling as ‘K’, a replicant android hunter who discovers a long-buried secret within the replicant community of the mid-21st Century.
A “bioengineered human” replicant himself, K’s duties as a titular “blade runner” are to hunt down and eliminate rogue replicants who have gone astray, analogous to the role Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) fulfilled in the original film. K’s stunning discovery threatens to engulf replicants and humans in full-scale war, and his subsequent investigations lead him down a twisted path of cascading confrontations and larger-than-life set pieces, before ultimately putting him on direct course for Deckard himself—who has long since gone into hiding.
After 35 years of debate and anticipation for many fans, it would be Québécois filmmaker Denis Villeneuve (“Sicario”, “Arrival”) who would ultimately bring this sequel to life—and his efforts amount to something altogether extraordinary. Beautiful and evocative, the film benefits greatly from Villeneuve’s masterful direction as well as stunning production design and A+ cinematography courtesy of Roger Deakins. It's also well-anchored by a surprisingly profound screenplay, courtesy of Hampton Fancher and Michael Green, that delivers a strikingly heartfelt, existential treatise on humanity, reproduction and the foundations of sentient existence. A rare example of an exceptional sequel—this one goes the full length in earning it's stripes and delivering something utterly spectacular.
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