Overview: “The #1 Sci-Fi Film of all time” marks it’s return with an all new 4-Disc Blu-ray/DVD and UV 30th Anniversary commemorative gift set. Revisit the illustrious Final Cut on Blu-ray, DVD and get a UV copy of the feature. Additionally, the gift set features an all new concept spinner car for your collection, action Lenticular and a 72 page art production book with never-before-seen Ridley sketches, poster art and photos from the set.
My Thoughts: Blade Runner was adapted from the novel "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?" by acclaimed science-fiction author Philip K. Dick. The story takes place in the year 2019 and revolves around genetically manufactured beings called "replicants" that were designed to do dangerous and degrading work on Earth's "Off-World colonies." Physically identical to adult humans, yet much more powerful, a group of mutinous replicants hides in Los Angeles while searching for answers that can ultimately only be found from the man that created them. Heading the all-star cast, many in career-expanding roles, is Harrison Ford as Rick Deckard, a special police "blade runner" assigned to hunt down and kill the escapees. Also starring are Sean Young as Rachael, Deckard's replicant lover; Edward James Olmos as Gaff, a mysterious fellow policeman; Daryl Hannah as Pris and Joanna Cassidy as Zhora, two beautiful yet murderous replicants; and Rutger Hauer as Roy Batty, the replicant leader who challenges Deckard's ideas of what it is to be human.
Blade Runner is a classic American film that made its first appearance in U.S. theaters on June 25, 1982, dazzling audiences with its stylish, brooding look into the future. From its intelligent, provocative story line to its stunning camera work and state-of-the art special effects, the film opened the door to a new view of tomorrow in addition to prefiguring important concerns of the 21st century, such as globalization, urban decay, global warming, over-population and genetic engineering. Set in a multi-ethnic, overcrowded, high-tech city of the future, Blade Runner was also a benchmark in costume and production design and helped spawn a new genre/lifestyle – neonoir cyberpunk which has flourished in today’s mainstream society and is reflected in all facets of entertainment, design and fashion trends.
In celebration of its 30th anniversary, Warner Home Video (WHV) will end the film’s moratorium with the debut of a beautiful new commemorative 4-Disc Blu-ray™ + DVD Combo Pack which also includes an Ultra Violet (UV) copy of The Final Cut feature. This comprehensive gift set edition includes The Final Cut version of the feature presented on both Blu-ray and DVD, as well as the other four versions: 1992 Director’s Cut, Domestic and International Theatrical versions, and the rare Workprint feature version previously only available in the 25th Anniversary Ultimate Collector’s Edition. The set also boasts never-before-seen production photos with more than 1,000 archival images presented in hi-definition, a 72-page production art book with printed versions of the newly discovered art, a collectible Spinner car replica from an official concept sketch conceived by Blade Runner’s visual futurist Syd Mead, and collectible motion lenticular
card. In addition, included are all 10+ hours of bonus content from the critically acclaimed 2007 Ultimate Collector’s Edition.
This set doesn’t offer anything new relative to the previously released home video versions of the film but contains some goodies that might be enticing for diehard fans. I am pleased to add it to my collection and recommend it for those that love the film as well as gathering collectible memorabilia.
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Minted from a new 4K master back in 2007, The Final Cut, which my comments will focus looks terrific in high definition and is the standout among the four versions presented here. This is a rather dark film that strives to recreate the look and feel of Ridley Scott’s vision. Blacks are deep without compromise to delineation, and appear dynamic and velvety in texture. They look stunning when onscreen with mixed content. The opening sequence is a good example. Shadow detail is excellent and offers strong depth of field and perceptible nuance in the various segments that utilize uneven lighting. The film doesn’t make use of an extensive array of colors but primary colors (especially red), are punchy, bright and well saturated. Many scenes in the film utilize a stylized look compromised mostly of dark blues, grays, browns and blacks which does a decent job of conveying the film’s optical/effects. While these segments don’t boast eye catching vivid colors they look stunning. Combined with the video’s excellent resolution these scenes have superlative depth that captures even the most subtle elements seen by the camera’s lens. The result is an excellent video presentation that features crisp high level detail, incredible three dimensional depth and rewarding film like quality. Video rating = 94
Blade Runner was a film that was tailor made for surround sound and this high resolution Dolby TrueHD audio mix does a terrific job rendering the intricacies in the soundtrack. Perspective has to be kept in mind. I point that out because obviously there are dated elements in the recording that can’t be negated by a remix. Fidelity remains intact across the board and the results are indeed impressive. Dialogue has discernible intonation, with distinctive clarity and above average room penetration. There is active use of the entire surround platform which delivers a well integrated audio experience that is highlighted by solid impact, defining clarity, and Vangelis’ defining music score. Dynamic range is quite good and seems minimally effected by the age of the recording. Sounds and effects have copious expression that extend well into the room. Surround activity can be engaging as discernible spatial ambience and discrete sounds fill the listening area. The LFE channel is liberally used but adds robust low frequency weight that extends the depth and palpability of the action. It sounds great. Audio rating = 88
The Final Cut - With Introduction by Ridley Scott
The 1982 Theatrical Cut - With introduction by Ridley Scott
The 1982 International Theatrical Cut - With introduction by Ridley Scott
The Director’s Cut - With introduction by Ridley Scott
Dangerous Days: The Making of documentary
Featurette The Electric Dreamer: Author Philip K. Dick
Featurette Sacrificial Sheep: The Novel vs. The Film
Philip K. Dick: The Blade Runner Interviews (Audio)
Featurette Signs of the Times: Graphic Design
Featurette Fashion Forward: Wardrobe and Styling
Screen Tests: Rachael and Pris
Featurette The Light That Burns: Remembering Jordan Cronenweth
Deleted and Alternate Scenes
1982 Promotional Featurettes
Trailers and TV Spot
The rare Workprint Feature Version
Introduction by Ridley Scott
Commentary by Future Noir Author Paul M. Sammon
All Our Variant Futures
Syd Mead Gallery
Bonus DVD: Blade Runner – The Final Cut
Blu-ray Release Date: October 23, 2012
Here's the 30th Anniversary Trailer:
Ralph Potts AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews
Reference Review System:
JVC DLA-RS55 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100” 16x9 Screen
Onkyo PR-SC5508 THX Ultra 2 Audio/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo BDP-93 Universal Disc/3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Panasonic DMP-BDT310 3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro HD Universal Remote Control
Canton "Ergo" Series speakers
Axiom Audio QS8 Quadpolar speakers
SV Sound PB-13 Ultra (Rosenut finish)
APC AV S15BLK Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Wireworld, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package
I purchased the less expensive 30th Anniversary Collector's Edition DigiBook and am quite pleased with it. This was an upgrade from my older DVD versions of the movie, so the video and audio are the best I've ever seen and heard them. The 'Final Cut' version of the movie seemed just right, too.
Great, insightful review of a classic Blu-Ray experience. It's such an astonishing visual treat that I actually turned my Darbee down because the picture is so good on its own. Rutger Hauer has the role of his life and Sean Young looks so beautiful. A great Blu-Ray for collectors!
Does anyone have any idea if any of the cuts here are recoded from the 2007 release? I'm assuming not, seeing as Warner appears to have fit the entire contents of the 2007 5-disc set onto 4 discs, but if anyone were able to get a look at the file sizes it would be good to know for sure.
"There's a... big machine in the sky... Some sort of... electric snake. It's headed right for us..." "Shoot it." "Not yet. I want to study its habits."
I've bought the Final Cut blu-ray, and noticed that the sound level dips during chapter 24, just after Batty moves the Chess piece...does anybody else get this? It seems worse in Dolby TrueHD, than it does in normal stereo (I'm using a stereo set-up).
Edit: It seems both English audio tracks are 5.1, Dolby TrueHD, and plain old Dolby Digital...is there a way to get it in stereo; would this sort the sound dip out, i.e. is it just 5.1 coming over stereo poorly...or do I have a duff blu-ray?