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Andrew-Wan Walks Us Through The Changes & Nuance Of BLADE RUNNER: FINAL CUT, And Ponders That Deckard/Replicant Question!!

Merrick here...
I'm dying to see this film, I'm really, really X infinity excited about it. Andrew-Wan Kenobi got a look at it & sent this in over the weekend; though you might like a comprehensive rundown of what's been changed, and what remains the same. Another piece, similar in nature but differing in some details, CAN BE FOUND HERE. I'm dividing them up because they're both lengthy & rather exhaustive. The film is in New York and LA theaters now. It'll hit DVD, in various permutation, this December.
Here's Andrew-Wan..
Good hello, everyone. Andrew-Wan Kenobi, here. On Friday, I saw 'Blade Runner: The Final Cut' on the big screen. It was amazing. People were lined up outside the Zeigfeld Theater in New York City for days. Guys dressed up in Deckard's trench coat. Girls sporting Rachael's various hairdos and Pris' crazy raccoon Makeup. I'm kidding, of course. But for a Friday afternoon showing, the theater was pretty full. Obviously people are passionate about the film. Some of you may be wondering what exactly has been changed since the so-called Director's Cut. Well, here's a list... --The cables holding up Gaff's Spinner during takeoff have been covered up. The same goes for the spinner that's patrolling the area where Deckard is making his phone call to Bryant's office and Sebastian's apartment. --Bryant tells Deckard that two of the six replicants got fried running through an electrical field. Which fixes the film's most notorious continuity error. --Leon's video footage is slightly longer. Newly added exposition by Bryant explains that Leon is super strong and that he can lift up to 400 pounds. --The shot of Batty in the phone booth has been fixed. In the background we see neon lights. And, more importantly, we no longer see Tyrell's hand on his shoulder. --The unicorn scene no longer fades in and out. Deckard is sitting at the piano staring off into space... then cuts to the unicorn... back to a close up of Deckard's face... and back again to the unicorn. The Unicorn footage is from the same source as before, but has gotten the 'Final Cut' treatment. There is much more detail around the unicorn and the color has been adjusted. --When Deckard scrutinizes the picture of Batty and zooms in on the woman hidden in the background... the woman actually looks like Zhora! However, the Polaroid printout remains the same. --The magnified image of the snake scale has been changed. Now, when the Asian woman scrutinizes it under the microscope, her dialogue matches the serial number on the snake scale. --No more 'lip flap' during Deckard's meeting with Abdul ben Hassan, the replicant snake salesman. --Dancing girls in hockey masks outside the Snake Pit. Very cool. --Zhora running through the glass doesn't look like a stuntwoman in a bad wig anymore. Her head has been digitally replaced by the Joanna Cassidy's. It looks great, by the way. --I may be wrong, but Bryant's dialogue with Deckard, after he kills Zhora, seems slightly different. --The fishing wire used to reveal Leon's gun wound to the head have been erased. Also, the head wound itself looks a little different. --The thunder sound effect in the background seems to have been enhanced during the scene with Deckard and Rachael in the apartment after their encounter with Leon. The sound is much more prominent. --Batty proclaims to Tyrell "I want more life, Father". In the DC, he says "I want more life, Fucker." --Restored extended footage of Batty killing Tyrell, including Tyrell's eyes being gouged out. Not to mention a lot more blood. --Batty says "I'm sorry Sebastian" as he chases him down. This is a huge addition!!! --Restored extended footage of Deckard's fight with Pris which includes Pris shoving her fingers up his nose and Deckard shooting her a total of 3 times. Once as she rushes toward Deckard. Twice as Pris violently flails around on the floor. --Restored extended footage of Batty shoving the nail through his left hand. --The matte paintings of the street below have been enhanced by more traffic. Overall, throughout the film, the matte paintings have been improved. Also, the mattes around the spinners have all been cleaned up and look amazing. --Major overhaul of the dove flying off into a now dark and rainy sky. I may have missed a couple of other minor changes. But, there is one thing that wasn't fixed, which to me, sticks out like a sore thumb. And something you've probably never noticed. It's not even mentioned in Paul M. Sammon's book about the making of the film. --As the German little people walk towards Deckard's parked car there is a spinner off in the distance that isn't moving. It's not hovering. It's completely still. In reality, it's not moving because it's not supposed to be in the shot yet. This, I was hoping that they would fix. Otherwise, I'm probably being too picky. So, with all of those changes, how's the film? It's a near-perfect flick. I highly recommend seeing it on the big screen. The tone hasn't changed that much between the DC and the Final Cut. It's a little darker thanks to the restored extra violence. Other than that, it's pretty much the same old Blade Runner. Which is a good thing. Unlike some special editions (I'm looking at you George Lucas), the revamped special effects all have legitimate reasons for being there and are seamless. The 'Final Cut' effects teams all deserve major credit. And what about the unicorn sequence? Well, it works a lot better for me in the FC, but it still seems tacked on. You see, in the theatrical versions pre-dating the Director's Cut, there was no unicorn sequence. So, when Gaff leaves behind an origami unicorn, it can't possibly mean "I know your memories, Deckard. You're a replicant." Consider this. The purpose of Gaff's origami throughout the film is to fuck with Deckard. The chicken in Bryant's office means that Deckard's scared to come back to the job. That he's a chicken. Later, the Stick figure with the erection, implies that Deckard wants to fuck Rachael. So, when Deckard comes across the Unicorn in his hallway, it couldn't possibly be a solid statement about Deckard's memories. I always assumed that it represented that like a unicorn, Rachael isn't 'real' and that his relationship with her is a fantasy since she's not human. So when it comes to the Director's Cut and the Final Cut, the inclusion of the unicorn means that Deckard's a replicant, right? Not necessarily. I still believe that Gaff intended the unicorn to represent the 'not real/fantasy' aspect of Deckard's relationship with Rachael. The difference is that since Deckard had this unicorn vision, it adds to his (and the audience's) paranoia that Gaff might know his inner thoughts which in turn suggests that he might be a replicant. I simply see it as a huge coincidence. Sure, it's possible that Gaff had knowledge of Deckard's replicant status and his memories. But, how and why would Gaff know this information? And, if Deckard is a replicant, is the unicorn sequence a dream or a flashback? If it's a dream, Gaff couldn't know this, right? If it's a memory... then it's a strange memory to have been implanted. Just imagine Gaff going up to Deckard and saying "Remember when you were six? You were walking through the woods and you came across a unicorn. You were gonna play doctor. He showed you his, but when it got to be your turn you chickened and ran. Remember that? You ever tell anybody that?" Besides, the implanted memory concept goes against the original narration. While Ridley was opposed to it's insertion, he surely had enough control when it came to what was written and spoken. What would be the purpose of Deckard the replicant having memories of an ex-wife who used to call him 'sushi'? For the record, I'm not against Ridley wanting Deckard to be a replicant. It just doesn't work for me. No matter how hard I try, I don't see it. I can't wait until December for the DVD/HD-DVD/Blu-ray release. I'm dying to see the workprint and the 'Dangerous Days' documentary. More importantly, I'm interested to listen to Ridley's audio commentary. Maybe he can convince all us non-believers that Deckard is 'more human than human'.

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