Studying Blade Runner (paperback) – Sean Redmond

£8.99   96pp   ISBN: 978-1-903663-79-0   2008

Ridley Scott’s 1982 film Blade Runner is now widely recognised as an undisputed masterwork of science fiction cinema and one of the most influential films released in the last thirty years. Yet on its original release it was both a critical and commercial failure, criticised for its perceived prioritising of ‘style’ over ‘content’ and a narrative that did not deliver the anticipated high octane action that its star casting and large budget normally promise. How did a film that was removed from circulation within a month of its premiere come to mean so much to modern audiences and provide such a rich seam of material for Film and Media Studies?

In Studying Blade Runner, Sean Redmond uses the key concepts of Media and Film Studies – Film Language, Representation, Institutions and Audiences – to excavate the many significances of the film:

  • Its breakthrough use of special effects as a narrative tool
  • Its revolutionary representation of the future city
  • Its treatment of racial and sexual politics
  • Its unique status as a text whose meaning was fundamentally altered in its re-released ‘Director’s Cut’ form, then further revised in a ‘Final Cut’ in 2007 – and what this means in an Institutional context.

Sean Redmond is Senior Lecturer in Film Studies at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. He has research interests in East Asian cinema, film authorship, genre, whiteness and stardom and celebrity. He is also the author of Studying Chungking Express for Auteur and the editor of Liquid Metal: The Science Fiction Film Reader and The War Body on Screen.


“I found the range of information, depth of analysis and provocative arguments presented here quite eye-opening.” Media Education Jnl


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