Interpretative Claims on Film Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Blade Runner directed in 1982 by Ridley Scott, is a film which examines the nature of reality, something that it plays with very heavily using factors like visuals and memory design. The film features Deckard, the protagonist who hunts replicants. However, over time, it becomes clear that Deckard is not too different from those he hunts (Reagle, 1996). "The replicants rely on photographs and implanted memories to bolster their nascent and fragile emotions. After Deckard tells Rachael that her photos and memories are merely copies of those that belong to Tyrell's niece, he falls asleep amidst his own childhood photographs" (Reagle, 1996). This demonstrates both the sanctity and fallibility of memory has a whole and how memory, along with the visual elements of one's collective reality can do a great deal when it comes to shaping one's perspective. Memory can distort, the film gently reminds one, and this distortion can be tremendous when it comes to skewing one's point-of-view, along with skewing one's perspective.

The primacy of visual images and memory and the overlap between them becomes all too apparent in the film, when one examines the director's cut. Certain scenes never made it into the film, but watching those scenes now, it becomes lucid that the film means to toy with the overlap between fantasy and reality, ultimately determining the importance of both. The released footage in the director's cut of Blade Runner is the footage of Deckard's dream, which is of a unicorn. "This is directly referenced at the ending in which another blade runner, Graff, leaves an origami Unicorn outside Deckard's door to signify that he is allowing Deckard to escape with Rachael. By this inclusion, Scott lends weight to the "Deckard as a replicant" concept by implying that another blade runner knew Deckard's dreams" (Reagle, 1996). This makes one truly wonder about the true nature of Deckard's relations with the replicants as a whole. Furthermore, it sends a clear message about the nature of dream life and the influence that dreams, images, and memory can have on one's interpretation of reality.

Form: When We Were Kings

It took so long for When We Were Kings to get made, that one could argue it's simply miraculous that it got made at all. One of the overwhelming aspects of the form in general is the fact that it strongly feels like a concert film, as it has all this behind the scenes coverage which pushes to a powerful conclusion regarding the violence at the Altamount.

Another interesting form about this documentary is what it lacks: there's an absence of coverage with the major players who were involved in the events. Foreman, Ali, King, and Brown were not interviewed. One can't simply explain this away by claiming that Gast wanted to avoid the major people of the period, as Mailer, Plimpton and Bowens are all present. Another aspect of the documentary that is a bit different is how it is firmly rooted on the side of Ali. Lots of other documentaries at least try to take a more diplomatic and consider a range of viewpoints: this one is on the side of Ali and the editing, as one critic points out, "…appropriately seems to dance, like the champ himself, fast and nimble and sort of floating along like the butterfly of his most famous quote. Sure, his presence is bigger due to his hamming and boasting for the press and the camera and the way he collaborated with Gast on shots and early morning set ups, tipping him off to his runs, etc. And Foreman was less cooperative, less outspoken, not as interested in talking with the press, not all that friendly a guy back then in general, and so he wasn't as attractive to the camera, even if he'd been more involved" (Campbell,…

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