The New 'Blade Runner: 2049' Trailer Barely Looks Like Blade Runner At All

Monday, 19 December 2016 - 12:51PM
Blade Runner
Blade Runner 2049
Monday, 19 December 2016 - 12:51PM
The New 'Blade Runner: 2049' Trailer Barely Looks Like Blade Runner At All
When you say the name"Blade Runner" to someone, a whole bunch of really cool sci-fi images swell up in your mind: the steamy nightscape of a cyberpunk Los Angeles, the huge smiling digital billboards selling Coca-Cola, the giant pyramids and flying cars, and Rick Deckard in his trenchcoat, shooting down some lady in a plastic raincoat as she crashes through panes of glass. The gritty, striking visuals were on full display from the first minute of the trailer back in 1982. Seriously, go back and watch it. It's bonkers.

So how does the new trailer for Blade Runner: 2049 measure up? Well, take a look.



Okay, it starts with those steamy LA streets and a silhouetted Ryan Gosling in a trencchoat, evoking the city-bound neo-noir atmosphere that made the original famous. Good. Then we...we got to some kind of yellow, hazy desert...and see some ruined statue head that sort of reminds us of Ozymandias meets Westworld. Where are we? A dream? Gosling enters some kind of building with Korean symbols on the windows, hinting at least some connection to the city streets we're familiar with (and its hybrid Cityspeak and Asian influences), but there's no clue to where he is or how he got there. It seems almost dream-like, but then we see Deckard level his famous gun at Gosling and give just a couple lines about the old days (back when you could shoot a Replicant in a plastic raincoat through a crowd of people and not pay for all the broken glass). Finally, we see Gosling back at the neon lights and crowds of the city.

All in all, the trailer is pretty underwhelming—mostly because it fails to tell a coherent story by itself and doesn't have many strong images to latch onto. It's disappointing to not see more of Los Angeles, especially when the concept art for a 'toxic, dystopian' cityscape was so interesting and evocative. Even paired with the synopsis, the trailer doesn't get too exciting, since we now know Gosling will find the man he's looking for:

Opening quote
Thirty years after the events of the first film, a new blade runner, LAPD Officer K (Ryan Gosling), unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what's left of society into chaos. K's discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former LAPD blade runner who has been missing for 30 years.
Closing quote


The only interesting hook is that the quest for Deckard means we may finally get a definitive answer on whether he's a Replica—wait, no, that's still never gonna happen! We don't want to dismiss the film out of hand after one 2-minute trailer, but this seems like a lame way to bring back one of the most well-respected and visually stunning sci-fi films of all time.

Blade Runner: 2049 hits US theaters on October 6th, 2017.
Science Fiction
Sci-Fi Movies
Blade Runner
Blade Runner 2049