Blade Runner - the Final Cut

A number of posters here have written that they’re fans of Philip K. Dick. I recommend this DVD to anybody who enjoys his stories or just a wonderful “noir” movie. Much has been made of the re-editing and the axeing of the Ford voice-over (which has certainly darkened the tale), but for me the stand-outs of this version are the lustre of the digitalisation and the emergence of the score.

I saw in a recent interview that Ridley Scott said he based his dystopian vision of Los Angeles in 2019 on his home-town of Hartlepool (or more precisely Tees-side, as it was). I can see what he meant! :slight_smile:

I mentioned it in another thread, but I’ll second it again here. This is a superb package, a truly definitive collection of everything a BR fan could want. The documentaries are excellent, the insight into the production design is fascinating, and the versions of the film itself are brilliant.

The Final Cut is quite similar to the 1992 Director’s Cut, but a much better transfer, has had some FX digitally cleaned up (in a good, non-obtrusive way, not like how Lucas re-did the FX for the STAR WARS rereleases), and the infamous stunt double scene of Zora’s death has been re-shot.

The only thing I haven’t had time to do is listen to the commentaries, but I expect they’ll be just as good as the rest of the set. Superb, and a snip at less than £20 from Amazon.

Can’t wait to see this. I received it as a gift and I’m waiting for that perfect night where the wife and kiddies go to bed early and Dad has the TV all to himself. I’ll pop a bowl of buttery popcorn and lose myself in Scott’s not-so-distant vision of the future…Glad to know there are some PKD fans on the site!

Yeah, I got this for Christmas but my mother is staying at the moment and she hates Blade Runner. I’m planning on popping it in on Sunday night. Can’t wait.

…And watched it last night (New Year’s Day). Brilliant as ever, and it looked fantastic, almost like a brand new film. Funny, too: until today I had always thought that William H. Macy acted J.F. Sebastian, but it turns out it’s William Sanderson - E.B. Farnum in Deadwood. Also, I never realised that Adama in the new Battlestar Galactica (Edward James Olmos) was Gaff.

It really is a fantastic package (all the theatrical versions, US and Europe, commentaries, documentaries, concept art postcards… really, really nice). I watched the documentary about the differences between the book and the film and the reasons they made certain changes, which was interesting. (I love PK Dick.) They mentioned how they changed the characters of Dekkard and J.F. and got rid of details such as the religion about the man walking up the hill (which becomes a big part of the book) and so on. I was a little disappointed that they didn’t go into another big changes though - the fact that in the book, Pris and Rachel are exactly the same model of android. It’s a shame they didn’t do that in the film, in fact (and I’m sure many of the actors would have been happy to get rid of Sean Young, from what I hear…). Interestingly, they didn’t mention the fact that the title “Blade Runner” was culled from a completely different script, either. Apparently it was the name of a script sitting somewhere on a shelf and they paid the writer for the rights to use it for Androids. Ultimately, of course, the book and film are completely different entities - there are more differences than similarities. They somehow have as similar spirit, though. I love them both.

Actually, I always liked Total Recall, too. It’s no Blade Runner, but for an Arnie film it does somehow catch some of Dick’s paranoid world view. I always watch it when it’s on TV…

For me, Blade Runner is one of those pieces of work (for me it tends to be books and films) that become part of your psyche, so that you refer to it to others when discussing certain concepts or ideas. As a teenager, the whole “tears in the rain” thing seemed brilliant to me, and it turns out I haven’t grown up as much as I had thought…

Anyway. Yeah. Loved it. Again.


!!! When was the last time you watched the film? I’m kind of amazed you could miss that, especially as it was the first major film role for both actors, and for years Olmos was known as “the guy who played Gaff” (notwithstanding his role in MIAMI VICE, of course…).

The script was an adaptation of Alan E Nourse’s SF novel THE BLADERUNNER, about black market medicine. While I’ve known that for years, I’m fairly certain they do also mention it on one of the documentaries on the new disc set. Have you been at the Blue Nun again? :wink:

Now now! Like I say, I’ve only watched the one documentary off it so far - the one about the transition from book to film, which is only about twenty minutes. I have yet to watch the main making-of documentary or the other smaller ones. I’m looking forward to them.

I last watched the film… Crikey, it must be four years ago that I hired it out again. But honestly, I was never even aware of Olmos until Battlestar Galactica. When I looked him up on IMDB, I saw he was in BladeRunner and was surprised. So, when I watched it last night, I knew he was in it, but the last time I watched BladeRunner the name would have meant nothing to me… As for Sanderson… I still say he looks like William H. Macy. And you have to remember that IMDB hasn’t always been around, you know!

I have the feeling you really know your BladeRunner… :smiley:


Ah, it’s probably on the other doco then. As for Eddie Olmos, I’m also a huge MIAMI VICE fan, so I’ve been “aware of his work” for many years…

And yes, I’m somewhat of a BR nut. It, SEVEN and THE USUAL SUSPECTS remain my absolute top 3 movies of all time. I even used to be on a BR discussion list back in Ye Olde Days of t’Internet, and have engaged in more “Was he a replicant?” debates than I care to remember :wink:

(Answer: of course he bloody was.)

Yeah - the red eyes are a bit of a give away (was that only added in the Director’s Cut? I don’t remember the red eyes in the original). I don’t think he was supposed to be a replicant in the book, though. (In fact, in the doc that I watched they said that PKD intended to show that Rick was just as dehumanised by his work as the androids, whereas Ridley Scott wanted something more concrete.)

Loved Seven but I preferred Fight Club of Fincher’s work. I never really watched Miami Vice (don’t shoot me), but one of my best friends was a massive fan. I used to be crazy about Helena Bonham Carter when I was about 20, and I appreciated him making me watch some repeats because of her heroin-addict…


Crikey - Rutger Hauer actually came up with my favourite line!

Another fan of Miami Vice and Seven here.

I loved most things about MV - had a bright yellow jacket that I wore with sleeves pushed up to the elbows, imitated the Olmos and Johnson growls, always tried to catch the titles, as an aspirant windsurfer. But I felt really let down by the movie.

And Seven - serial murder as art! Somewhere I have a copy of a late-version typescript. I can’t remember whether it has the Freeman character doing the final deed (because as you probably know it’s said that that was the only way the studio was likely to give its approval - the “real” ending would have been perceived as too nihilistic for audiences).

A first screenplay by a writer who worked in a video store, I think (I’m writing from memory). Maybe there’s hope for the rest of us. 8) 8) 8)

Correct on both counts. Basically, in the original theatrical release he’s human, and Rachel will live forever. In the DC and FC, he’s a replicant - possibly not even “born” until Holden’s hospitalisation - and he and Rachel will both die soon.

I liked FIGHT CLUB well enough, but it doesn’t have the lasting appeal of SEVEN for me.

Huh, I thought he was meant to be a replicant in the original theatrical release, too, even though they didn’t use the red eyes in that one (but they didn’t use the red eyes for any of them in that, did they? I have to check out that on the DVDs…). Or at least, it was left ambiguous - the photos everywhere in his apartment, the question of whether he had ever taken the V-K test himself etc. Certainly I remember discussions about him being a replicant long before the original release.

The making-of document is looong. I put it on last night and after two hours seem only to be half-way through! Fascinating, though. There seem to be loads of deleted scenes shown in it (Holden in hospital, what appears to be Deckard using a Penfield machine in his apartment, a weird bit with Roy in the lift etc). I need to check them out on the other DVD. Have you watched the work print on the fourth or fifth DVD? Are there any major differences?



I also had the jacket and t-shirt combo. I even went around wearing canvas deck shoes for a while, before realising how silly that was in the British climate…! Ah, the follies of youth.

I still haven’t seen the movie. Borrowed the DVD off my brother-in-law months ago, but haven’t got round to it. I think the fact that he hasn’t asked for it back yet is a bad sign…

That’s one version, and was actually filmed; the story justification was that Somerset was close to retirement anyway, whereas Mills’ career was just beginning. It was also implied that Somerset had fallen in love with Mills’ wife. There’s also another draft version where it’s Mills that dies, leaving his wife a widow, and Somerset shoots Doe to become Wrath.

Heh! And if you believe the mythology, Tarantino did the same. The geeks have risen :slight_smile:

It’s ambiguous, sure, but I think it’s fair to say that the majority evidence in the theatrical release points to him being human. I’m not talking about authorial intent, of course, just on the evidence of the work.

The making of is about four hours, yeah. GLORIOUS.

I haven’t watched the workprint yet, no, but I’ve read enough about it to know it’s fairly different. The wikipedia page will have a full list of all the changes, I’m sure :wink:

For goodness sake…How many times can you cut something??? This box (which I saw in FOPP) looks like nothing more than an avaricious marketing ploy to sucker in poor, penniless SF fans.

I saw the film first time round, didn’t think much of it. Saw it years later after it was edited to be more the way Ridley Scott wanted it, and thought it was brilliant. Surely that should be the end of the story.

Come on…I accept that works of fiction, whether a play, a film or a book can sometimes be improved with editing. But this is out of proportion. After all, it’s an excellent science fiction film, but hardly the masterpiece everyone seems to think. The original Tarkovsky SOLARIS might be deemed a masterpiece, while Blade Runner and 2001: A Space Odyssey can only be described as great, but flawed. I certainly wouldn’t waste any money on a five-CD box set fetish object.

Or am I being too controversial here?


I also wanted an “Elvis”, but there weren’t many alligators in Surrey, at that time.

I was wrong about Andrew Kevin Walker. When he wrote Seven, he was working in a Tower Records store in NYC.


In all fairness, Ridley Scott didn’t have much to do with the so-called “Director’s Cut”. Bizarre, but true, apparently. The “Final Cut” is really the “Director’s Cut”. Whether you like the film or not, the fact is that it has had a massive impact on sci-fi since, on visions of dystopian future etc etc, and the documentaries offer interesting glimpses into the creation of such an interesting world - regardless of what you think of the story (even one of the crew in one of the documentaries say that they wish it had more narrative!).

All the best,

Fair point, Keith. Still don’t think it merits a 5 CD set with metal packaging! Not very environmentally friendly.

Mind you, I did like the origami unicorn at the end of the first “Director’s Cut”.

Blade Runner reminds me of another movie debacle where the studios wrecked the first version. “Heaven’s Gate”. I hated the first release, and thought the story was incomprehensible, but the director’s cut turned it into something damned close to a masterpiece, in my view.

As Keith says, BR is significant not just in itself, but for its influence - it changed the visual style of SF forever, in the same way that NEUROMANCER changed the way SF is written.

Whether you like the film or not, there are few others as deserving of the archival treatment this box set gives it. (Though god knows there are plenty of UNdeserving movies that have been released in sets just as lavish…)

Hey, at least metal rusts! Standard DVD packaging is non-biodegradable plastic! :wink: