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Author Topic: Blade Runner: Final Cut  (Read 3655 times)

Jim_Campbell

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #45 on: 29 September, 2019, 07:28:59 pm »
I can’t think of a film I wanted to like more than Blade Runner 2049… and didn’t. Empty, soulless and dull. There’s a thread of vicious misogyny running through it (which, TBH, doesn’t separate it from the original movie) that I found utterly repellent.
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JayzusB.Christ

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #46 on: 29 September, 2019, 10:59:20 pm »
I wasn't mad on it either.  I liked some of the extra bits of worldbuilding but the storyline wasn't nearly as sharp and thoughtful as the first one. 
Where was the misogyny in it? Not doubting you at all, I just don't remember.  It was fairly plain to see in the first one.
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Jim_Campbell

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #47 on: 29 September, 2019, 11:32:40 pm »
Where was the misogyny in it? Not doubting you at all, I just don't remember.  It was fairly plain to see in the first one.

I thought Wallace giving a speech on how he couldn’t make replicants fast enough and then disembowelling a naked female replicant was pretty unpleasant. The introduction and almost immediate dispatch of the replacement Rachel for having the wrong colour eyes. Just all the way through, women seemed both sexualised and disposable. I didn’t like it at all.
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Funt Solo

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #48 on: 30 September, 2019, 12:45:23 am »
Women being overtly sexualized could (in both movies) be taken as a reflection of society: but there's not a balance in the depiction of women in the second movie.

 - Joi is a holographic companion. Owned by a man. Her purpose is to please him.
 - Luv is a replicant. Owned by a man. Her purpose is to please him.
 - Lieutenant Joshi is a police officer (stabbed with a knife on the orders of a man).
 - Mariette is a replicant prostitute (and secret agent).
 - Ana Stelline is a doctor, effectively imprisoned and enslaved.
 - Freysa is a replicant leader of a resistance group. She is the only woman with agency.
 - Rachael is a replicant who is executed by the man who owns her.
 - [Unnamed] is a female replicant who is executed by being stabbed with a knife by the man who owns her.

I too was disturbed at the inclusion of Niander Wallace's gratuitous murder of a naked female replicant. There's just no need for it - it's not cost effective, clearly, so he's just doing it for fun - which it would only be if you were an utter sociopath. Mind you, he's also a boring villain: pontificating about his motivations in a way that shouts "you're watching a movie". Tyrell didn't need to do that in the first movie. And he didn't need to be young. And he didn't need to do snuff reels in order for us to get that he was lacking morals. If failed breeding stock replicants were recycled or snuffed out mechanically, that would demonstrate clearly Niander's inhumanity: no need for the cold-blooded, bladed, murder.
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JayzusB.Christ

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #49 on: 30 September, 2019, 12:55:52 am »
Where was the misogyny in it? Not doubting you at all, I just don't remember.  It was fairly plain to see in the first one.

I thought Wallace giving a speech on how he couldn’t make replicants fast enough and then disembowelling a naked female replicant was pretty unpleasant. The introduction and almost immediate dispatch of the replacement Rachel for having the wrong colour eyes. Just all the way through, women seemed both sexualised and disposable. I didn’t like it at all.

Fair enough.  I don't really remember the disembowelling part, though I doubt I'll be giving it another watch for a long time.
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karlos

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #50 on: 30 September, 2019, 02:04:52 pm »
I'm ashamed to say, it never occurred to me (although I always hated the "love scene" in BR).

Bloody hell.

TordelBack

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #51 on: 30 September, 2019, 02:34:22 pm »
The misogyny leaps out in BR, making Deckard into a truly unlikeable protagonist if he wasnt already, but i felt the even more brutal examples in BR2049 were at least making an explicit point about commodification, dehumanisation and disposability.

The problem with this and the film as a whole, as I see it, is that Leto's Wallace is a really poorly drawn and implausible character, and a such his actions just seem pointless. Other than that, I thought it was a solid piece of work.

IndigoPrime

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #52 on: 30 September, 2019, 02:54:03 pm »
I remember having conversations about this with my wife. The test, really, is whether a production is sexist or misogynistic, or whether the reality depicted is – and also whether that’s ‘necessary’. To take an extreme example, Handmaid’s tale of course requires its society to be deeply misogynistic. At the other end of the scale, one of the most popular long-tail blog posts I ever wrote looked into Skyfall’s misogyny. My wife was practically shaking with rage as we left that film – and I didn’t feel any better about it myself. The only conclusion I could draw was not the excuse given by many – that Bond was a misogynistic/relic – but that the entire film was from a structural standpoint.

Blade Runner is tougher. Deckard is awful. The scene with Rachel is deeply uncomfortable viewing. My take has been, though, that it works within the prism of the tale/world itself, and that the film isn’t misogynistic, even if that future society clearly has its problems. The sequel doesn’t get the same pass. My wife’s main comment about that film was that it was “really sad”. But we did also talk about the depiction of women, and how basically everyone either had no agency, or was a prop to be used my men and/or male replicants. Although in some ways arguably a line drawn from its predecessor, the newer film doesn’t have the ‘benefit’ of being filmed in a different era, and I felt should have done better in this area. There were – as already discussed here – unnecessary scenes. But then I also suppose people too often forget that we still remain rooted in an era of media where men and the male gaze utterly dominate – and that’s even more true of science fiction and the like.

wedgeski

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #53 on: 30 September, 2019, 03:06:14 pm »
I agree on many levels. The '80's were replete with scenes of women turning away from a man, only to be rudely grabbed, swung back around, and kissed, as if an entire permissive conversation had happened telepathically (not least in Next Generation Trek). The scene with Rachel is awful in the same vein.

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #54 on: 30 September, 2019, 03:23:04 pm »
But we did also talk about the depiction of women, and how basically everyone either had no agency, or was a prop to be used my men and/or male replicants. Although in some ways arguably a line drawn from its predecessor, the newer film doesn’t have the ‘benefit’ of being filmed in a different era, and I felt should have done better in this area. There were – as already discussed here – unnecessary scenes. But then I also suppose people too often forget that we still remain rooted in an era of media where men and the male gaze utterly dominate – and that’s even more true of science fiction and the like.

I had a similar conversation with my wife too, because I was curious how she felt about that particular Leto scene (I hadn't had a problem with it but could see why someone might). She was totally fine with it and thought it fit the world of the film, and that the treatment of women in general reflected the attitudes and problems that women have to deal with in present day, but extrapolated into the future and made even more harsh by the society that it's set in I guess. Leto's callousness didn't bother her, because if women are seen by a lot of men even now as worthless for anything other than having and raising children, then surely in that world manufactured women made for that purpose would be seen as entirely disposable if they couldn't do it.

I still totally get why it would be problematic (it does shock me every time I watch the film) but we thought its inclusion was justified.

TordelBack

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #55 on: 30 September, 2019, 03:51:17 pm »
She was totally fine with it and thought it fit the world of the film, and that the treatment of women in general reflected the attitudes and problems that women have to deal with in present day, but extrapolated into the future and made even more harsh by the society that it's set in I guess.

...

I still totally get why it would be problematic (it does shock me every time I watch the film) but we thought its inclusion was justified.

Definitely this for me too.  I don't dispute that it (and much else in there) is readily viewable as just more of the same, but I think it just came in the right side of the line for me.  Just thoughtful enough to be justifiable.

Joi, for one example, while obviously a deeply sexualised character, within the story literally commodified, controlled and discarded by her 'lover' and on a wider level by society, but equally deliberately presented by the filmmakers as titillation for a male audience, was for me one of the most memorable and believable characters in recent SF, asking very pointed questions about commercialised sexuality, power imbalance in relationships and the nature of post-human humanity.

I think if Wallace had had the plausibility of Tyrell, instead of being some kind of incomprehensibly inhuman psychopath (which really is more of the same), my position would be easier to argue.

Quote from: Indigo Prime
At the other end of the scale, one of the most popular long-tail blog posts I ever wrote looked into Skyfall’s misogyny. My wife was practically shaking with rage as we left that film – and I didn’t feel any better about it myself. The only conclusion I could draw was not the excuse given by many – that Bond was a misogynistic/relic – but that the entire film was from a structural standpoint.

On this we are in total agreement. I can barely describe how much I dislike that film. It's atrocious.
« Last Edit: 30 September, 2019, 03:54:27 pm by TordelBack »

Colin YNWA

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #56 on: 30 September, 2019, 07:53:59 pm »
Can't comment on the new stuff but the Blade Runner scene with Decker and Rachel is very uncomfortable, but I think for good reason.

He's dealing with feeling towards someone inhuman and in doing so acts inhuman himself. I read it as his struggle to deal with his feelings for Rachel and I assume therefore starting to question his own humanity. So in fear he is brutal towards Rachel, ironically becoming what we as viewers see as inhuman (alas as we learn increasingly these days, all too human) so makes sense from a character point of view and a storytelling perspective.

Its hard viewing but needs to be.

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Re: Blade Runner: Final Cut
« Reply #57 on: 01 October, 2019, 04:35:39 pm »
She was totally fine with it and thought it fit the world of the film, and that the treatment of women in general reflected the attitudes and problems that women have to deal with in present day, but extrapolated into the future and made even more harsh by the society that it's set in I guess.

...

I still totally get why it would be problematic (it does shock me every time I watch the film) but we thought its inclusion was justified.

Definitely this for me too.  I don't dispute that it (and much else in there) is readily viewable as just more of the same, but I think it just came in the right side of the line for me.  Just thoughtful enough to be justifiable.

Joi, for one example, while obviously a deeply sexualised character, within the story literally commodified, controlled and discarded by her 'lover' and on a wider level by society, but equally deliberately presented by the filmmakers as titillation for a male audience, was for me one of the most memorable and believable characters in recent SF, asking very pointed questions about commercialised sexuality, power imbalance in relationships and the nature of post-human humanity.

I think if Wallace had had the plausibility of Tyrell, instead of being some kind of incomprehensibly inhuman psychopath (which really is more of the same), my position would be easier to argue.

Quote from: Indigo Prime
At the other end of the scale, one of the most popular long-tail blog posts I ever wrote looked into Skyfall’s misogyny. My wife was practically shaking with rage as we left that film – and I didn’t feel any better about it myself. The only conclusion I could draw was not the excuse given by many – that Bond was a misogynistic/relic – but that the entire film was from a structural standpoint.

On this we are in total agreement. I can barely describe how much I dislike that film. It's atrocious.


This^^^ from me too, Ridley Scott's politics have always grated with me, and his objectification of wimmin is particularly nasty.
But everybody else is overwhelmed by indifference and the promise of an early bed