The Representation of Genre and Narrative in the Opening Sequence of the Film Blade Runner

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The Representation of Genre and Narrative in the Opening Sequence of the Film Blade Runner

For this essay question I am going to be viewing and exploring the

themes of genre and narrative in the first 10minutes of the film Blade

Runner. Blade Runner was first released in 1982, directed by Ridley

Scott ('The Duellists' 1977 and 'Alien' 1979), Blade Runner was a film

adaptation of Phillip K Dick's novel 'Do Androids Dream of Electric

Sheep?'. Originally a box office flop the film soon built itself a

cult following. Its status as a significant science fiction film was

further enhanced by the re-release of Blade Runner - The Director's

cut in 1992 which omitted the voice-over and, more significantly,

featured a substantial change to the original 'happy' ending. I will

be analysing a section of approximately 10 minutes in length from the

point where we first encounter Deckard (Harrison Ford) in the downtown

area of Los Angeles to the end of the scene in the police station.

Blade Runner falls into the category of Science Fiction as in terms of

genre, genre is the French word which translates literally as 'type'.

Films of a specific genre follow and utilise similar elements such as

character types, settings, etc. These are known as conventions of the

genre. Science fiction has been popular since the early days of cinema

when George Méliès astonished his audience with special effects

combining theatrical tricks and photographic techniques to portray a

landing on the face of the moon 'A Trip to the Moon', (1902). In the

1930s and 1940s audiences enjoyed the fantasy adventures of comic book

heroes such as Flash Gordon, Dick Tracy and Captain Marv...

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...f world colonies', as this shows and represents the

notion that man has mastered the technology to explore and travel

beond our earth. As a convention about science fiction genre is space

travel and mans relationship with technology, this Is fairly

represented here. The film then presents us with an 'obscuring

mise-en-scene' as we descend into the street level scene, this is to

show us how these people in the future are living their lives, there

is a great squash of people in this scene with people walking by.

There is a general confusion around this part as there is so much

going on, sounds, music talking, as the camera decends to the people

in this scene the cacophony fades in as we drop with the camera and

the confusion is created here. We then travel through the crowds and

fall upon our main character Rick Deckard.

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