Five Takeaways From the New ‘Blade Runner 2049’ Trailer

Five Takeaways From the New ‘Blade Runner 2049’ Trailer

The sequel to the sci-fi classic is slated for 2017.

The sequel to the sci-fi classic is slated for 2017.

Text: Thomas Freeman

34 years later, the first official teaser trailer for Blade Runner 2049 sends audiences back to the neon-tinged hellscape of a future Los Angeles. The debut was arguably one of the most hotly anticipated in recent memory as Ridley Scott’s 1982 original has become something of a sacred work for fans of cerebral science fiction.

There was plenty to ooh and awe over in the new trailer—the preserved noirish feel of the original, the reappearance of Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) and a sleek new blade runner character, played by Ryan Gosling in some killer outerwear. Still, the trailer is all too brief and leaves viewers with plenty of uncertainties.

Seeing that the film does not even have its theatrical release until October 2017, it will take nearly a year more of promotion for the pieces to slowly fall into place and for fans to decide how much they actually want this sequel. Even with the air of skepticism, there are five clear takeaways from the release of the the new Blade Runner 2049 teaser:

Fans are pinning full faith on director Denis Villeneuve.

With any sequel/reboot, there is the perennial fear that it is just a cheap cash-in. Fans online, however, have near unanimously given director Denis Villeneuve the benefit of the doubt. His most recent film, Arrival, is still nabbing accolades and has proven his ability to juggle sci-fi spectacle with complex themes. “All I know is that I love Enemy, Prisoners, Sicario, and Arrival, which makes me so pumped he's directing the sequel to one of my favorite movies of all time,” beamed one Redditor.

The '80s are alive and well.

Although the first film was set in the not-so distant future of 2019, its aesthetic and synthy soundtrack are undeniably situated in the ‘80s. A snippet of the new soundtrack from Oscar-winning composer Jóhann Jóhannsson (The Theory of Everything), which reaches its crescendo over the title card, maintains a distinctly retro sound.

Ryan Gosling’s character will likely be the lead protagonist.

Although Harrison Ford makes a brief cameo in the trailer, Ryan Gosling is clearly its star and will presumably bridge the gap for modern audiences not familiar with the plot of the first. The official synopsis is similarly focused on Gosling: “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.”

The question of whether or not Deckard is a human or replicant still looms large.

The enduring debate over whether or not Harrison Ford’s character is actually one of the humanoid robots, or replicants, he is ordered to retire will likely reemerge in the sequel. Ridley Scott expressly stated in a 2014 interview Dreckard was conceived as a replicant, but it is left open-ended in the original film. Perhaps Gosling was sent to retire Dreckard? Who knows how Villeneuve will decide to interpret it?

Some of the film may take place on Mars.

While the original film is set exclusively in Los Angeles, there is talk of human colonies existing on Mars. Even if this sounds like a totally wild conjecture, there must be some reason Ryan Gosling is shown lurking around an otherworldly orange desert landscape. Unless California’s droughts really get that bad in the future... Blade Runner 2049 is slated for a theatrical release on October 6, 2017.


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