Blade Runner 2049 |OT| Do Androids Dream of Electric Boogaloo? [Unmarked Spoilers]

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As for the question of whether Joi is sentient. You can look at in a purely commercial sense a simple machine that has basic responses would not sell very well for very long. One that is smarter and able to adapt and behaves indistinguishably from a normal human or replicant would sell very well. One that is able to adapt really well to its human companion would actually have to be smarter than the human.

Whether its sentient or not who knows. The people in BladerRunner dont believe the Replicants are sentient or have souls either.
More human than human isn't just an advertising slogan. It goes to the heart of both films.

In both films there's an inkling of an eco-feminist critique. I can dream that some day there will be a film linking the fragmentation of humanity (portrayed in both films by the free licence to kill those who aren't human enough) directly with what is happening to the planet.

I know the off-world colonies are supposed to be wonderful, and it might be very dangerous to expose them to the kind of ecological critique we see in both films. But seriously, does any modern human imagine that the societies of the new colonies are any less shitty than the mess on earth? It will be the same story there: a tiny stratum of elite rich lording it over indentured servants, freedmen and slaves.
 
I still can't get over how masterfully-done and bone-chilling that intro is the moment the eye opens and you are hit hard with this beautiful mixture of Hans Zimmer's soundtrack and Roger Deakin's cinematography. Such a remarkable film.
 
Transcript for the first baseline test I found on Reddit:



It's so unique and intense and amazing, perhaps iconic in the years to come. Of course it also hints at things to come for K.
There's at least three scenes that for sure going to be classic moments for decades to come in this movie.

Probably my favorite bit was the chase inside the casino showroom with holograms of Elvis and Monro playing in the background but the way the sound editing was done, with the mute parts and the skipping mixed in with the visuals and the staging. I was terrified.
 
Yesss!!! Been looking for it since I watched the movie.
The baseline is a fragment of poetry from the novel Joi later offers to read from. Joe reminds her she doesn't like it. It's Pale Fire, a 1962 novel by Vladimir Nabokov.

I don't read novels with my eyes much any more because my eyes are usually too busy doing other things, so I've ordered the audiobook. Pale Fire is not for everybody, I think, but it may well find a welcome home in the minds of those who like to think about literary texts like Blade Runner, which have many interpretations and have been subject to decades of scholarly analysis.

Suffice to say that the themes of this novel as described by scholars have already informed my response to the film. The screenwriter is inviting deep literary analysis, and he's had a whole lifelong career as a writer, from his earliest days trying to get Philip K Dick to take him seriously to the entire world taking him seriously.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pale_Fire
 

Creamium

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Transcript for the first baseline test I found on Reddit:



It's so unique and intense and amazing, perhaps iconic in the years to come. Of course it also hints at things to come for K.
I love these scenes because from the outset you know they're not just going to give us VK and Esper again for nudges and winks, but they riffed on the technology and showed exciting new tech. Like the Esper-inspired material scanner and that baseline test, which shared some similarities in its design to the original VK iirc. That 30 year time jump was a good move because it allowed them to reference to original enough, but still made it feel very fresh and innovative.

There was also a technique that only struck me on my rewatch of BR, which was actually reused here: showing a scene from the outside looking in. When Deckard visists Ben Hassan we only see Deckard going in and don't follow, and the same happens for Joshi's death scene, also shown from the outside window.
 
When Deckard visists Ben Hassan we only see Deckard going in and don't follow, and the same happens for Joshi's death scene, also shown from the outside window.
It reminded me most of that scene in 2001 where you see Hal's view of the conspiracy between David and Frank. Hal's microphone has been turned off, but it's still able to lip-read.

It's a rarely-used technique, or perhaps I don't watch enough films. Any other examples?
 
It being a new development has always been how I rationalized it. Unfortunately, a single number screws up the easiest possible explanation: the opening text crawl states that replicants were made illegal on Earth after an off-world mutiny by a Nexus 6 combat team. If they hadn't mentioned a model number, Deckard's lack of knowledge could have been easily explained as unfamiliarity with the new Nexus 6 model, introduced exclusively off-world after the prohibition. Unfortunately they did...
Hasn't he been out of the game for a couple of years when we meet him in BR?
 

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I love these scenes because from the outset you know they're not just going to give us VK and Esper again for nudges and winks, but they riffed on the technology and showed exciting new tech. Like the Esper-inspired material scanner and that baseline test, which shared some similarities in its design to the original VK iirc. That 30 year time jump was a good move because it allowed them to reference to original enough, but still made it feel very fresh and innovative.
Both tests are designed to detect traces of empathy. But the condition for passing is reversed. That's pretty neat.
 
Hasn't he been out of the game for a couple of years when we meet him in BR?
Possibly. It's never stated how long. It's long enough to need a refresher because Tyrell is turning new models out swiftly. The film was made in 1982 when, for about five years running, the audience had seen microcomputers showing exponential growth in capability.
 
Out a couple of hours ago.

Really fantastic stuff, but at times felt quite hamstrung by trying so pointedly to build on the original. I feel like it might have been stronger if it was a slightly more stand alone narrative, eg if the replicant child wasn't Deckard's and he was just another lead. But of course it all linked with Rachel etc beautifully.

I also wished that Deckard donned the original outfit when they came under attack. He never quite felt like real Deckard to me because he was just in an olive tee the whole time.

Still, a great sign that all i can come up with is nitpicks.
 
Hamstrung? Hmm, I don't know. That fake Rachael scene wouldn't have had the same impact on me if it didn't involve Deckard I think. And I think his sacrifice in regard to giving up his daughter for her "freedom" is a lot more poignant knowing that it's Deckard that made the sacrifice. It all felt like a natural continuation of something that started at the end of the first movie. In that he seemed to have more of an appreciation for the replicants, and viewing them more like humans than soulless androids.

Also, Rachael being a "prototype" in BR19 is like way too perfect of an "in" to pass over.

Do you really think it would have been better if they had a random joe schmoe as the father to Ana?
 
Saw it today. The film certainly lingers... I keep thinking back on the visuals and soundtrack. A true visual and auditory experience. Day one on UHD, to be sure.

"She had green eyes." I had a feeling Deckard would reject her, but interesting that he would do so with a continuity error from the first film.. lol.

Definitely going to have to watch it again. So many references to things that the audience isn't aware of early in the film, that will probably take on more meaning on another viewing.

Surely I'm not the only one that realized the wooden horse wasn't a horse, right? The horn was broken off. Saw that one coming a mile away once I found out Rachel was the mother.
 
"She had green eyes." I had a feeling Deckard would reject her, but interesting that he would do so with a continuity error from the first film.. lol.


Surely I'm not the only one that realized the wooden horse wasn't a horse, right? The horn was broken off. Saw that one coming a mile away once I found out Rachel was the mother.
I think Deckard said that to fuck with blind Wallace. Cause him a second of doubt.

I need to watch this again to watch for the unicorn now.
 
The wooden one was a horse. The origami was a sheep.

Don't know anything about a unicorn but wouldn't be surprised if I missed something.
Yea the Gaff origami I did pick up on as a sheep. I guess it works both as a nod to the original novel and as a characterization of K being a sheep at that point in the story
 
Got in on a 3 pm showing after shuffling the schedule around. First movie I've gone to twice in theaters in a very long time. Picked up on a lot of interesting things that just didn't register before.

Luv seemed miffed with K when she said being asked questions makes you feel wanted, then she starts asking K awkwardly about his job and he is plainly uninterested. Just another thing that may have damaged her sense of worth. The actress really did a great job of being a replicant losing balance between a composed corporate and increasingly unhinged hitwoman.

Also regarding Luv, the final fight was actually clearly going to K until he became distracted with Deckard sinking and she got a chance to knife him anew. He really was a tough customer, never mind being close to blown up twice in a short period of time before that.

As for Joi, I'm even more on the side of this specific instance of the "product" evolving beyond (while perhaps most other instances may not). The moment that really stood out is that SHE was emphatic about being brought along to find Deckard. K neither requested nor really wanted that, concerned more about her database being destroyed than she was. But she implored him to do this, referencing feeling like a real girl in the process.

Lots more but leave there for now. An overarching takeaway is that all the actors put in great work. Especially Gosling, just exactly right for the part.
 

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"She had green eyes." I had a feeling Deckard would reject her, but interesting that he would do so with a continuity error from the first film.. lol.
My interpretation is that Deckard was lying. He knows Wallace can easily create another Rachel exactly (without the ability to give birth of course), but he rejects the idea that his Rachel can be duplicated, no matter how exact Wallace can make her.

I have to watch the scene again, but I think it's juxtaposed or is near with the scene with K and the giant Joi hologram, both reinforcing the fact that a loved one that died can never be replaced, not even by an exact copy.
 
As for Joi, I'm even more on the side of this specific instance of the "product" evolving beyond (while perhaps most other instances may not). The moment that really stood out is that SHE was emphatic about being brought along to find Deckard. K neither requested nor really wanted that, concerned more about her database being destroyed than she was. But she implored him to do this, referencing feeling like a real girl in the process.
If he really didn't want it, he could have refused to transfer her. I think he did want it, deep down, because it is proof she really cares. Even though she really is just a non-sentient algorithm trying to predict what he wants, and "care" doesn't really mean anything in that context.
 
My interpretation is that Deckard was lying. He knows Wallace can easily create another Rachel exactly (without the ability to give birth of course), but he rejects the idea that his Rachel can be duplicated, no matter how exact Wallace can make her.

I have to watch the scene again, but I think it's juxtaposed or is near with the scene with K and the giant Joi hologram, both reinforcing the fact that a loved one that died can never be replaced, not even by an exact copy.
Yeah, Deckard clearly understood that, that even a perfect copy would only look like her, and wouldn't have everything that made Rachel Rachel. He was definitely lying, because Sean Young has brown eyes. :)
 
I also got Deckard was lying when he said Rachel had green eyes. It worked as a rejection and a mocking statement, so classic Harrison Ford stuff.

Definitely going to rewatch the first Blade Runner before i rewatch this movie again with friends. I'm not sure theyll love it, but they'll definitely appreciate it. Excited to see their reaction to the "sex" scene.

Really hoping I pick up a quote from the movie that sticks with me as much as the 'like tears in rain' quote from the first.
 
I still don't quite understand the baseline test. I get the concept of it - to make sure there's nothing odd about the replicants, but what is it about this weird, cult like chanting that would suddenly cause something to show up?
 
Yea I think you're right and this cut scene with Holden further supports it. Also I really like this scene. Anyone know if it's in the Workprint?

https://youtu.be/QpLoDADYF5g
The clip is also notable for the book Dave Holden is reading: Treasure Island. When he first encounters Joe in the sequel, Rick quotes Ben Gunn's words from Treasure Island about craving cheese. Ben is a castaway, marooned, encountered by young Jim Hawkins.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ben_Gunn_(Treasure_Island)
 
I still don't quite understand the baseline test. I get the concept of it - to make sure there's nothing odd about the replicants, but what is it about this weird, cult like chanting that would suddenly cause something to show up?
It's similar to the VK test in that they ask emotional questions to see if there is a reaction or any hesitation in the reply.
 
I was just watching BR deleted scenes and its at the end when Rachel and Deckard are driving away. Rachel says to Deckard, "you know what else I think? You and I are made for each other." Cue end credits music.

Now I never batted an eye at this before watching 2049, but it gave me a chill thinking of Wallaces' words.

EDIT: Doubly so when you think of Rachel asking Deckard, " you know that VK test of yours.. you ever think of taking that yourself?"
 
If he really didn't want it, he could have refused to transfer her. I think he did want it, deep down, because it is proof she really cares. Even though she really is just a non-sentient algorithm trying to predict what he wants, and "care" doesn't really mean anything in that context.
One could reverse this. K's immediate negative reaction seemed clear, so if she was simply reactive to his requests she would have fallen in line and awaited him to come home. Instead, she doubled down with the "real girl" bit to get him to cooperate, as well as delete her outside of the 'gift" device.

And if we were just to say fancy algorhithm, at one point might there be a transition of this futuristic ai to following its own preferences? Don't have a sure answer, one of the reasons I enjoy this Blade Runner.


I was just watching BR deleted scenes and its at the end when Rachel and Deckard are driving away. Rachel says to Deckard, "you know what else I think? You and I are made for each other." Cue end credits music.

Now I never batted an eye at this before watching 2049, but it gave me a chill thinking of Wallaces' words.
Huh. Yet another thing to check for when rewatching the original. In just a few minutes actually.
 
I need to get the bluray for the audio commentary alone. Also hope it'll have plenty of making of material. This is a movie I could watch an entire making of doc of.
Me too, I need this this bad in my life right now.

Tomorrow, going to see this again, then for a 3rd time later on in October. I am legit excited.
 
Man what a stunningly well made film. It's been a long time since I've seen a sci-fi film with such a purposefully crafted world. All the color schemes and detail. What a gorgeous movie.
 
I still don't quite understand the baseline test. I get the concept of it - to make sure there's nothing odd about the replicants, but what is it about this weird, cult like chanting that would suddenly cause something to show up?
From Blade Runner:

Tyrell: Is this to be an empathy test? Capillary dilation of the so-called blush response? Fluctuation of the pupil? Involuntary dilation of the iris?
Deckard: We call it Voight-Kampff for short.
In this film they start with an android, and they want to know if he is well behaved.

The idea is that emotional stimuli cause an involuntary reaction in humans but not in well-adjusted androids. During the test there is a prescribed text which I think you hear Joe recite in full at the beginning.

The text is then read back to him, interspersed with dehumanising statements and questions about his android status. His task here is to repeat back key words and phrases while being verbally pelted with this crap. When he's tested, his response is presumably compared to earlier calibrated responses (hence the baseline) and if there's a close enough match he passes. If he doesn't, that means he's no longer to be trusted to do what he's told. He's thinking for himself.
 
One could reverse this. K's immediate negative reaction seemed clear, so if she was simply reactive to his requests she would have fallen in line and awaited him to come home. Instead, she doubled down with the "real girl" bit to get him to cooperate, as well as delete her outside of the 'gift" device.

And if we were just to say fancy algorhithm, at one point might there be a transition of this futuristic ai to following its own preferences? Don't have a sure answer, one of the reasons I enjoy this Blade Runner.
I agree, there is definitely no sure answer (edit: I think that's one of the messages of the movie - we can't what is really conscious). I'd just say that you can't infer one way or another from her not being reactive to his explicit request. A good companion product wouldn't just be listening to the words, it would be trying to intuit the real feelings.

Imagine a scenario where you made plans to go play poker with friends, and forgot a dinner plan with your AI Wife. You will say, of course honey. I'll cancel poker, I want to be with you. Good AI Wife would be ignoring your words, and saying go out with your friends, no problem if it knew that's what would really make you happier, and it even make you like the AI Wife more be appearing selfless.

Wasn't there a line by Luv before she stamped out Joi to the effect of: Hope you liked our product. I might have that wrong, but I took it mean that the Wallace corp was both responsible for the product, but also Luv was mocking K for being a sucker for it.
 
Wasn't there a line by Luv before she stamped out Joi to the effect of: Hope you liked our product. I might have that wrong, but I took it mean that the Wallace corp was both responsible for the product, but also Luv was mocking K for being a sucker for it.
There was indeed...and I almost brought it up for an opposite reason. Joi's connection was being used by Luv to track K, and when it disappeared she was extremely angry, jumping from her desk to investigate. Then she got to K's apartment and finds the deliberately broken transmitter. Luv is clearly annoyed yet further upon seeing Joi still there in Vegas and vindictively stomps the gift. In my viewing, the "enjoyed our product" line came off as an angrily dismissive last insult to Joi primarily, as something that caused her unexpected problems. Perhaps just as Mariette also seemed compelled to take a dismissive shot at her...
 

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You're right. Decard does seem surprised to learn about the 4 year lifespan. Which really doesn't make much sense since he's been retiring Replicants his whole life at that point. Unless, like you mention, the 4 year lifespan is a new development and prior Replicants' lifespans were open ended
I thought it was always clear that the 4-year lifespan was specific to Nexus 6 models? The N6 have shorter life spans than usual, and fake memory cushions. Bryant says it's a safety device because they're almost like humans.
 
Yeah, Deckard clearly understood that, that even a perfect copy would only look like her, and wouldn't have everything that made Rachel Rachel. He was definitely lying, because Sean Young has brown eyes. :)
It could a commentary on the fallacy of human memory and how we often mislead ourselves via false memories. Much like how replicants are implanted with false memories, Deckard maybe misremembering the color of Rachel's eyes. It could be further humanization of Deckards character or intentionally used to keep the question of whether he is a replicant mysterious. Just my 2 cents
 
You're right. Decard does seem surprised to learn about the 4 year lifespan. Which really doesn't make much sense since he's been retiring Replicants his whole life at that point. Unless, like you mention, the 4 year lifespan is a new development and prior Replicants' lifespans were open ended
Unless thats just not part of Deckards memories for other reasons as well.