Viewing humans in Blade Runner

How can the human characters in the film be viewed?

It is somewhat ironic that the ‘artificial’ beings in Blade Runner seem fully human and alive, while the human characters are closer to the opposite.

In the film, perhaps the humans have lost their humanity. Maybe the human has become more like the machine, a self-interested one obsessed with status, wealth, power and material greed.

The human is isolated and deluded: “I make friends”, says J.F. Sebastian, probably trying to convince himself that he really does enjoy their company.

It is interesting that the role of a blade runner requires an emotional detachment and a clear belief that replicants are non-human and as such able to be ‘retired’ morally. It is as if Deckard has to become a machine to kill the other machines. This ‘role’ that Deckard has to assume is really just the same as many of the other roles that people have to assume when they enter the economic system and perform tasks (work for someone in return for pay). Many of these roles could be viewed as both false and dehumanising. So to what extent do we lose our humanity when we take on certain roles in our society?

update in progress…


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