Introduction In the science of studying media and communication, there are many different ways of approaching the subject in which you are going to analyse. That is to analyse advertisements, texts, TV-series, films etc. and other media. My task for this assignment is to give an analysis of a film of my choice.
A film is a quite complex medium to analyse; thus it is important to have analysis ‘tools’ or some criteria to follow. In my analysis I am asked to consider the use and resolution of binary opposition and through analysis of narrative structure. In my assignment I am going to consider how the couple is represented, and how the narrative structure and binary oppositions have influence on the plot of the story. blade runner is a dark, futuristic science fiction movie, which has been described as a hybrid of science fiction, film noir, detective thriller, bounty-hunter western and love story. Thus, it is a complex film, and there are many possibilities to consider as they relate to the subject matter of science and society, due largely to the plot diversity.
Film Analysis of "Wag the Dog" (political satire)Wag the Dog is ...
I am of the opinion that the most important plot is that androids or vs humans. Deckard’s dramatic need in BR is to hunt and kill four ‘nexus 6’ that are considered dangerous to humans. Another plot is the romance between Deckard, human, and Rachel, replica nt. Further, film analysts and Blade Runner fanatics frequently ask the question as to whether Deckard himself is a replica nt; his glowing eyes, and his fascination for photos are some of the hints which suggest that he is, as photos were a way for to tie themselves to their non-existent past. The reason why this film is such a ‘hybrid’ is that the elements of the science fiction lies clearly in the visual aspect of the film. The notions Film noir and detective thriller are due to the fact that Deckard is sort of a classical 50’s detective that is put into the 21 st century.
He has got a drinking problem and his wife has left him. Other typical Film noir effects is the voiceover and also the presence of the ‘femme fatale’ Rachel. We can also see that the film uses what is the central theme of traditional western movies, and the conflict between civilised order and the lawless frontier. Finally, there is the love-story between Deckard and Rachel. These are two opposites that attract. Narrative structure I am going to start with discussing the narrative structure in BR.
According to Todorov (in O’Shaugnessy, 1999, p. 107) there is a basic standard to narratives. In the start of the narrative, there is a stable situation (equilibrium) that is disrupted (disequilibrium) by a ‘villainous force’ (Todorov in Taylor, L. , & Willis, A. , 1999, p.
This stable situation is restored in the end of the narrative. Or as O’Sullivan et al. says ‘A meets B; something happens; order returns’ (O’Sullivan et al. , 1994, p. 195).
According to Turner ‘most films start by establishing the lines of conflict which will determine or motivate the events and actions of the story ‘ (1988, p. 85).
The opening sequence of Blade Runner displays the main conflict. Holden, who is a human interrogator, is killed by the replica nt Leon. These are opposing forces that set the main conflict or the plot of the story. However, this theory is not too easy to apply to Blade Runner.
The movie does not start with what Todorov calls ‘equilibrium’ (O’Shaughnessey, 1999, p 107).
In BR the equilibrium is quite diffuse. Even though the situation is going to get more unstable throughout the movie, there is a lack of stability, or plenitude, here. Deckard is in the middle of the chaos existing in Los Angeles in 2019, in a hostile atmosphere.
... see that Deckard is possibly not "human" as well, but a replicant. He shows no compassion when he tells Rachel of her being ... strong emotions, perhaps even love for his fellow replicants. After Deckard killed Pris, Roy leaned over her and kissed her showing that ... spiritually and emotionally throughout the film.The characters in the movie, even the ones that were not human, had many humanistic and ...
The disequilibrium starts when Roy and Leon (two) enter the eye laboratory of the Tyrell Corporation. It is the first time in the film we encounter the cold and cynical behaviour. This is followed by an emotional disturbance, when Rachel comes to Deckard’s department. This is one of the most emotionally ant agonising scenes of the film, as Deckard informs Rachel of her status as an android or replica nt by explaining that her memories are implants made by the Tyrell Corporation.
This is the emotional catharsis for Deckard: he experiences emotions for non-humans, which is a disruption to his normally cold indifferent state of mind. However, this disruption also changes Deckard’s view on, which he used to kill for a living. He regains his lost emotions after this encounter with this non-human, but very life like replica nt. This emotional change is expressed when Deckard has killed his first replica nt, the female Zhora. This is how he expresses empathy after the replica nt ‘retirement’ (killing):’ The report would be routine retirement of a replica nt, which didn’t make me feel any better about shooting a woman in the back. There it was again.
Feeling, in myself, for her, for Rachael’. (Blade Runner, 1982).
This line clearly states the change that is going on in Deckard’s mind. He is developing emotions for the non-human, which he used to kill in cold blood. The feeling he discovered when Rachel visited him in his apartment came back after he had killed a replica nt. Furthermore, Deckard’s quest for the leads him into lot of danger and situations that affect him and also change him.
The main change happens when he falls in love with the replica nt Rachel. This gives Deckard a real challenge, because his dramatic need in BR is to haunt and kill the remaining on earth. Rachel is the films’ femme fatale and Deckard cannot resist her, even though she is a replica nt. The structural roles of the characters in Blade Runner can be applied to Vladimir Propp’s (1975, in Turner, G. ) theories of the different roles of characters in a story. We have got ‘the villain’ in the strongest and most elegant replica nt, Roy Batty.
... had just never killed Duncan he still would have been able to live. Macbeth lives life for his future ... he will only desire more and more. Life would only be happy if Macbeth enjoyed his ... , Macduff would not have been trying to kill Macbeth if Macbeth had not committed treason in ... . Unfortunately for Macbeth, with each person he kills he becomes progressively guiltier and less satisfied. Then ...
He is the arch-replica nt, or head of the evil force. On the opposite side we have got Deckard, which is ‘the hero’ of the story. He fights the villain and his associates. The ‘helper’ in the story is the other blade runner is Gaff, even though he doesn’t appear too often. He is still on Deckard side, and he keeps leaving small origami objects wherever he goes. The ‘princess’ though is undoubtedly Rachel.
The ending of BR, is like a classical one, where the ‘hero’ gets the ‘princess’. The hero fights and defeats the villain. The way the audience view the events in the film, is very much decided by whose point of view that is being used (O’Shaugnessey, 1999, p. 113).
The way Deckard’s voice-over is used in BR makes it easier for us to know which characters to sympathise with, and also to follow the plot.
Deckard’s voice-over lets us in on his emotions and how he views things. It is also easier to follow the changes he is going through. In the ‘Director’s Cut’ -version of Blade Runner, the voice-over is let out. This detail makes this story a lot more intricate, because the protagonist is much more difficult to understand.
Even though the voice-over is a very small part of the movie, it makes it a lot easier for the audience to know how to ‘read’ the narrative structure. The way women are positioned in BR is quite interesting, because none of them are human. There are three women present, and they are all. Deckard kills Zhora, who works as a stripper at a sleazy strip-bar. The second female, Pris is the main replica nt and Roy Batty’s right hand, and she is also killed by Deckard. Pris is described by Deckard’s boss, Bryant, as ‘a basic pleasure model’ (Blade Runner, 1982).
This can in other words mean prostitute. Rachel is also replica nt who is a secretary for Tyrell at Tyrell Corporations. As we can see, the female characters in BR are strongly dominated by males. Therefore even though BR could be considered in some opinions a misogynist movie, this is a typical element in Film Noir.
... 8217;s loose interpretation of a Philip K. Dick novel, Blade Runner (1982), and the quintessential cult classic The Rocky Horror ... esoteric few, it makes every amount of difference. References “Cult Films. ” Film Site. Org. Tim Dirks. (2007) Retrieved 12 December 2007 ... of the blockbuster, hollywood and hollywood-type mainstream feature films being screened in major movie houses today. Cult movies ...
Ideology To show the ideology of BR, I will give a short analysis of the climax of BR. In my opinion the cat-and-mouse chase and battle between the protagonist and antagonist sums up the ideology in BR. The sequence brings the climax of the movie, and it is between the opposing forces of good and evil. The main plot is displayed here, when man is fighting the replica nt.
The protagonist versus the antagonist, good versus bad, man versus machine and so on. Deckard and Batty find themselves being in J. F. Sebastian’s apartment just after Deckard had killed the female replica nt, Pris. At first Deckard is hunting Batty, but all of a sudden, this is reversed and the protagonist is the hunted. This last struggle between mankind and man-made-machines displays the questions this story asks, as Batty asks: ‘Who am I? Why am I here? What does it mean to be human?’ (excerpt from Blade Runner).
In other words, the movie asks the question of what it is that makes us human. As I see it, the answer to this is empathy: the ability to feel for other things. This ability is achieved by Batty in his last minute of living, when he saves Deckard’s life. Deckard realised this and stated:’ Maybe in those last moments, he loved life more than he ever had before. Not just his life, anybody’s life, my life.
All he’d wanted were the same answers the rest of us want. Where did I come from? Where am I going? How long have I got? All I could do was sit there and watch him die’ (Blade Runner, 1982).
Another interesting point in this last sequence, is the Christian symbolism. As Batty’s life is about to run out, his hand is grasping in spasms. To halt this process, he drives an old nail spike through the palm of his hand. The sign of the nail spike connotes crucifixion.
When the two opposites are up on the roof of the building, Batty is seen with a white dove in his hand. Deckard is trying to escape from Batty and jumps over to another roof in desperation. But Deckard misjudges the distance, and falls short. As he hangs there, hundreds of stories above the abyss of the busy streets below, Batty appears, carrying a white dove.
This living creature is in contrast to Batty – it is a living creature that brings connotations and associations of peace, freedom, love and soul. Batty saves Deckard as he loses his grip. Back on the roof, Batty’s life span is running out, and he finally says: ‘time to die’. His head drop, and the white dove he held in is hand, is released and flies toward the blue sky. The doves’ flight toward the sky is symbolic for Batty’s soul to leave the earth. This last sequence is packed with Christian symbolism.
... is fact that we cheer for the average human being accomplishing more than they expected to be ... time. The camera usage is amazing, as every blade of grass looks so green, and every other ... deals with a whole other aspect of sports films. This film is a documentary that deals with real life. ... general. It seems that all the great sports films have emotional side stories that revolve around the sport ...
First there is the aspect of the nail in Batty’s hand, which clearly connotes the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. The second aspect here is the dove, which flies up to the sky, connoting the soul of Batty going to heaven. The third aspect is Batty saving Deckard, and then giving his own. This connotes the Son who sacrifices his own life, so that Man can live – the death of Batty is the rebirth of Deckard. Binary oppositions In any film there are lots of binary oppositions. Some of them are important, others are not.
O’Sullivan et al. argues that a binary opposition is ‘an analytic category from structuralism, used to show how meanings can be generated out of two-term systems’ (1994, p. 30).
This means that for instance words that means the exact opposite of the other. For example sea / land , male / female , black / white and so on. According L’ev i-Strauss, all contrast makes meaning (L’ev i-Strauss, in Taylor, L.
, & Willis, A. , 1999, p. 72).
The most important and also most obvious oppositions in Blade Runner is that between the humans and the. This is implied in the opening sequence where the replica nt Leon kills the human interrogator Holden.
Here we can clearly see the opposites between humans and the generated. Here we can clearly see what the main conflict of the film is between opposing forces (Turner, G. , 1999).
The opposing forces here are obviously the replica nt and the human.
And this conflict is also the main conflict of the story. There is also a quite complex opposition between Deckard and Rachel. There is one obvious opposite, the fact that she is female and he is a male. There are also a few other oppositions between these two characters: Deckard Rachel Male Female Human Machine Strong Weak Rational EmotionalDeckard’s rationality is changing during the film. This point makes Deckard a binary opposition on himself.
... which technology grows and the sometimes dark consequences of human actions. Blade Runner is an example of this, showing what could happen ... of technology and the improvements made in the film making digital processing. When Blade Runner was presented in movie theaters in 1982, ... be dressed like. Except for Deckard, dressed like the old school police / detective from the film noir genre. The streets of ...
The mission he is supposed to accomplish is being forgotten due to him falling in love with Rachel. The emotions take control over the rationality. Deckard chooses to spear Rachel’s life, even though he is supposed to take it away from her. But in this comparison we also see the main opposite of the film, which is the replica nt versus the human. This also makes a conflict, because the protagonist (Deckard) makes a relationship to the antagonist (replica nt Rachel).
In other words, she is an opposing force to Deckard.
Another binary opposition in BR is that between the protagonist (Deckard) and the antagonist (Batty).
Deckard is the best Blade Runner there is, and Batty is the strongest and most perfect replica nt that has ever been made. These are also the two characters the climax of the film is between. The villain meets the hero and the hero fight and defeat the opposing force, and also re-establish the equilibrium. Conclusion In conclusion, while studying media text, there are certain similarities that most media texts have in common. During this assignment I have discovered the applicability of the analytical ‘tools’ binary oppositions and narrative structure.
Using these ‘tools’ made it easier for me to understand my text, and it will also make it easier for me to be critical to different kinds of media texts in the future. Even though Blade Runner has its own way of telling this particular story, it is also possible to ‘read’ it when considering the binary oppositions and the narrative structure. When doing this, it is possible to see that this story follows the same pattern as other media texts. References: – Blade Runner [Film]. (1982).
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