Use of Mis en Scene in Blade Runner by Ridley Scott
Blade Runner, 1982, and Blade Runner: The Directors Cut, 1992, wasbased on the 1968 novel, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Writtenby Philip K. Dick. The film was made at a cost of $25million eventhough they expected to be half as much. At the time of its’ releasecritics hated it and so it was poorly received in the media but whenit became able to buy on video people began to appreciate it, so itbecame more popular.
The film is set in 2019 and industry has taken over the once glamorouscity of Los Angeles. The Tyrell Corporation has made history with thedevelopment of Replicants. Replicants look like normal humans but theyare faster, stronger and smarter and for this they were not allowed tolive on Earth but used for slavery in space. They have a life span ofonly 4 years; this is to stop their minds developing. Roy (RutgerHauer) leads a group of four Replicants to find their creator and askfor their life span to be extended. Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) is aBlade Runner, and his job is to track the Replicants down and retirethem. After Deckard has retired two of the Replicants, Leon and Zhora,Roy and Pris get the help of J.R. Sebastian, a graphic designer whohelped to design the Replicants. We also meet Rachael (Sean Young) sheis also a Replicant but has been kept by Tyrell and has been givenmemories. Rachael however doesn’t know she is one. Roy and Pris go toTyrell and ask him about a life extension but Tyrell is unable to helpthem. Roy then kills Tyrell his creator, his God, in a way. It allends with Deckard retiring the last two remaining Replicants in a…
… hear that L.A. islike hell. You get this impression of hell by the way the musicaccompanies the opening shot of the flames rising from the factoriesthe music suddenly is louder and a lot more powerful than when we seethe close up of the eye and the space ship flying towards thebuildings.
I think that Ridley Scott has created a very effective Mis-en-Scene inevery aspect of the film, from the sets to the costume. I think thesets were the most effective because every detail was there, thecrowded markets, the cluttered shop windows. The Mis-en-Scene shows uswhat we fear the most in the future, the fact that we destroyed theplanet that has been our home for millions and millions of years. Itis a ‘man against machine’ world and when Roy kills Tyrell, it meansthat even the creator is powerless against them.