Blade Runner

Blade Runner (1982; directed by Ridley Scott): On the surface Blade Runner, appears to be just another dystopian sci-fi film loosely modeled on the formula established in Mary Shelley’s gothic novel, Frankenstein: artificial humans (in this case, called “replicants”) are created who become unhappy with their lot, and so seek out their human creator, demanding to know why they were created as they were. The key to appreciating the film’s abundant philosophical riches appears early in the film when the replicants’ creator boasts that his creatures are “more human than human.” As the story unfolds, we see that claim exemplified in the replicants’ existential quest as they (and we) struggle with questions about being human, consciousness, personal identity, free will, morality, God, death, and the meaning of life. [recommended by Timothy Shanahan, Loyola Marymount University]

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