by Afra Nariman
Blade Runner 2049 (2017)
Director: Denis Villeneuve
Stars: Ryan Gosling, Ana de Armas, Harrison Ford, Jared Leto, Sylvia Hoeks, Dave Bautista, Robin Wright
Some loose connections between Kafka’s ‘K’ and Villeneuve’s ‘K,’ as seen in Blade Runner 2049:
In a simplified sense, in his writings, Kafka’s ‘K’ often experiences the conditions which define what it means to be human. Kafka’s texts are in many ways, about exploring the human condition (alienated), our psyche, and our reactions to the systematic and social realities of a specific time and place.
Blade Runner 2049, if anything, is about exploring what we conceive means to be human; or moreover, if being specifically human is the the only way of being — what constitutes “real” being? (at the level of our human conception of the term): consciousness, emotion, pain, memory, desire, love, conviction, etc.
At the center of 2049 is Villeneuve’s ‘K,’ a protagonist who like many of Kafka’s, finds himself at the mercy of the social realities constructed around him, specific to the cultural anxieties of a moment in time (in this case, the future); and like Kafka’s K often does, he finds himself dealing with a society, or a “community” of sorts, that he knows very little about, but that mostly without his knowledge, influences his daily existence, his understanding of self, the things that happen to and around him, and in this case, even his memories.
Anyways… I personally enjoyed this more than the original, and believe that it highlights its themes more concisely and effectively; and that it also brings in some things that weren’t present in the original. I’m upset I waited this long to watch this, but I’m glad I finally did.
MY RATING /5:
View this Review on Letterboxd: https://boxd.it/3xpAn7
Like and Follow on Letterboxd to see my other reviews, and for new ones regularly.