It is quite fitting that the next movie on my list is Blade Runner since I am currently reading I, Robot. Both works deal with robots. In Blade Runner the robots are referred to as replicants and they look like humans. They are used in the off-world colonies for dangerous or tedious work and they have a four-year lifespan. They are not allowed on Earth. If they do return to Earth, they are hunted down by Blade Runners who “retire” them by killing them.
In the movie a group of defiant and dangerous escaped replicants arrive in Los Angeles in the year 2019. This movie was released in 1982. Harrison Ford portrays Rick Deckard, a hard and disillusioned blade runner who is forced to hunt down the replicants and retire them. In the process, Deckard visits the manufacturer of the replicants and meets a woman, played by Sean Young, who works at the Tyrell Corporation. She does not know that she is not human but a replicant. Deckard and the woman become involved. This relationship obviously gets complicated since she finds out that she is a replicant and runs away.
When I saw this movie on the list I confused it with a different movie. I’m not sure of the title of the movie, but when I popped this dvd in I was surprised to see Harrison Ford. I wish I could say pleasantly surprised (Not that I don’t like Ford. How can one hate Indiana Jones?) but the opening scenes really didn’t grab my interest.
I found the story interesting. Robots developing emotions and fighting against their pre-programmed destruction date. Also, last year I worked my way through all five seasons of Battlestar Galactica and I was fascinated by the notion of robots having human emotions. The same theme occurs in I, Robot.
The actual telling of the story is toned down. I didn’t feel myself sucked into the robots’ dilemma and hope for everyone’s survival. And the ending really didn’t end. Was Ford’s character a robot as well? Did Young’s character survive? Did they ride off into a human-made sunset? Who knows…and I didn’t really care.
The amazing part about the film for me was the set design. This film was set in 2019 in a devastated Los Angeles that had not aged well. They made it look bleak, hopeless, and depressing. And considering that this film was released in 1982 the set design is fantastic. They didn’t have the benefits and enhancements that filmmakers have today.
Overall, I would give this film a B-.