Saturday, October 6, 2007

So Good I Could Plotz... Or Purge

The long-promised "Final Cut" of Blade Runner is now playing in New York and LA. I saw it at the Ziegfeld today. Sweet Jesus. It's odd to be that blown away by a movie one has seen so many times, but hot damn, is it looking and sounding better than ever.

I noticed only one new shot (dancing stripper ladies, which made me think I was about to see the infamous snake dance scene), plus a lot of digital fixes: Tyrell's thumb removed from the flipped close-up that introduces Roy, a CG fix on Deckard and Hassan's lips during the scene in which their dialogue was obviously rewritten and looped later, and a CG matte painting of the LA cityscape behind the obviously-shot-elsewhere insert of the dove at the end of the film. Roy's calling Tyrell "fucker" was changed to "father," and the bloody eye-gouge missing in the previous Director's Cut has been restored. Also, I didn't see the wire on the first spinner take-off; maybe it was erased. Did I miss anything? Yes, I've seen this movie once or twice. In the grand scheme of things, these are probably nitpicky points. The movie didn't need the fixes, but I'm sure if I were Scott, these trifles would annoy me.

Bottom line: the movie is damn near perfect now. It looks gorgeous, still holds up, and it's worth a pilgrimage to LA or New York if you can cut it. The DVD comes out in December. Last thing: I was reminded of the "PURGE" screen on the spinner's dashboard early in the film. It's the same exact screen seen in the cockpit of the Narcissus in Alien, shortly before Ripley escapes while the Nostromo self-destructs. Does Ridley Scott have recurring bouts of the runs? What gives?