‘Blade Runner 2049’ Review

‘Blade Runner 2049’ Review

Makeup Department Head is DONALD MOWAT

‘For committed fans who have patiently waited 35 years for a sequel to Ridley Scott’s mesmerizingly lento sci-fi landmark Blade Runner, the good news is that helmer Denis Villeneuve achieves something very close to the same narcotic effect in Blade Runner 2049 with a voluptuous mood bath that’s impressively sustained from beginning to end. The problem is that 164 minutes occupy the distance between that beginning and end, yet another example of directorial excess where self-discipline would have been a great benefit (the release version of the original ran 118 minutes).

There are many reasons to see this entrancingly immoderate work, but just as the original was a box-office short-faller in its day, it’s doubtful that the mainstream masses will pile in for this follow-up despite the presence of Ryan Gosling, and especially the returning Harrison Ford in one of his most dynamic performances.

The French-Canadian Villeneuve has developed through Prisoners, Sicario (both brilliantly shot by Roger A. Deakins, back for a third turn here) and Arrival to establish himself as one of the more visually expressive directors now working on big Hollywood films; the often portentous nature of his style suggested him as an excellent match for this second cinematic go-round with the late Philip K. Dick’s post-apocalyptic noir mystery featuring detective Rick Deckard…’

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