In most Ridley Scott films ambiguity is an element essential to the formation of the plot with the finale often than not leaving obscure questions rather than answers which resonate way after the film is over. These elements are the reason many fans go to see these psychological thrillers and science fiction classics, in order to bend the mind and make us think hard, holding on to the events in these films yearning us to relive them over again years later.
1982 he adapted Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?, the novel explores morality and life when a police officer (Rick Deckard) in a dystopian future is tasked with killing or “retiring” 4 illegally immigrated “Replicant” androids from an off word colony seeking freedom and peace for the remainder of their short life span instead of a life of slavery and servitude.
There are vast differences in the book than in the movie (since Ridley Scott himself stated he didn’t read the book), the film has overshadowed this wonderful book but kept the spirit and essential message alive. Dick himself marveled over the re-imagining of his future Los Angeles saying it was exactly how he pictured it in his head, and fans who have read the book and seen the film could come to a close consensus they are very similar in appeal and over all feeling.
I will not go into the different variations of films released over the years ranging form the Theatrical Cut, to the Television Cut, to Director’s Cut and then the Final Cut. The ending leaves many questions causing debates and endless theories over the years spanning various Youtube Channels, Wikipedia Pages and fan sights all focusing on the subject if Deckard was a Repicant or if he was a human. If he was a human or Replicant is not my focus and I leave that to the fans and future fans to decide for themselves.
What I am arguing for is the ability to choose and that exactly is why this film is cherished and considered one of the greatest science fiction films ever made along with 2001: A Space Odyssey (which also has a very debatable ending).
Now we are almost 34 years later: the era of 2010 has had a resurgence and utter overwhelming display of remakes and revivals. Some have been successful and offer their originals due credit with homage to the source and not criminally ripping off the genesis of where it came. Some on the other hand have been a flop and should be embarrassed to share the common elements of which is derived, as movie fans we are capable of our own feelings (sometimes not as adults as we should) and each of us has our own preferences (look at the Marvel v. DC debate).
Disney’s purchase of LucasArts has brought back new life to the Star Wars franchise and Episode VII like it or not is undoubtedly a financial success with the company earning A Billion Dollars, so of course Harrison Ford who played Deckard in Blade Runner has had a new popularity resurgence and the studios are trying to rush together scripts for sequels to some of his classics such as Indiana Jones ( Enter South Park Joke Here) and of course Blade Runner.
Now in defense of this terrible idea in 1995, 1996 and 2000 there were 3 authorized novelized sequels that could be considered continuations of the book and the film in order to reconcile differences between both. Those are separate entities that could be enjoyed by the fans on their own accord, is it necessary though to capitalize on a classic film (which was a box office failure when first released due to poor marketing) 33 years later?
By bringing Harrison Ford back to reprise his role you are ultimately answering the questions that has been left open ended decades ago, if Deckard was a Replicant than he would not have lived past the 4 year life span of the androids and would could not live to be the older man Harrison Ford is today.
Despite this variable for the ending of the movie, what seriously could be added for originality that would leave the integrity of the true sense of the film intact?
I could just see it now: bringing in Jason Statham or (god-forbid Mark Wahlberg ) to recreate essentially an exact mimic of Roy Batty type replicant and totally botch the famous “tear drops in the rain” monologue which was so beautifully done by Rutger Hauer.
If Hollywood is out of ideas and needs to make money on popularity and marketability of actors way beyond their prime then do it on the backs of schlock fests that do not have cult followings and held sacred by their fans. Blade Runner is not a movie that needs a sequel or a even a reboot, it is a film that should be studied upon decade after decade for it’s significance and impact on culture. There is a reason in 1993 it was selected for preservation by the United State National Film Registry and included in the Library of Congress, that in it’s own right should mean it is untouchable and beyond reproach for desecration by the increasingly greedy Hollywood money machine.