Film, Blade Runner, Patriarchy, Eugenics

Film is an important part of society, whether it be small budget short films, independent films shown at film festivals, Hollywood films or other types of film. Film is an art, and as such, it reflects and helps shape our views, in good ways and in bad ways. It is a form of storytelling, of how we see the past, how we see the present, and how we think the future will look. Every film has a message for the audience, something it is telling the audience through the story.

Ever since I was a child, my dad would take my twin brother and I to a movie basically every Friday night. During the summer, our Friday movie would be at a Drive-In theater, because why not? As a young adult, life has other priorities, but at worst, we still see at least one movie a month, usually on Friday’s, but sometimes on Monday, sometimes Thursday, depending on when we all have time. Occasionally it’s just my dad and my twin, sometimes just my dad and I, sometimes my twin goes to a movie by himself. We all have different movie tastes, but we compromise. We see everything from comedy’s to romance to action packed to futuristic movies. We see independent original films to trilogies. Point taken, we see everything.

As a kid and teen, I would just watch movies because they were fun. Now, as a young adult, when I watch films, I watch, uh, critically, if that’s the right word? I’m always trying to figure out how a film connects to real life, what is the message of the film? Personally, I find it more fun this way, because it makes me think, it wires up my brain and makes me overthink at a million miles per hour, in a good way.

Anyways, last night my dad and I went to see the new Blade Runner movie, because at least on Twitter, a lot of my favorite leftists had seen it, so although I knew nothing about Blade Runner, I had to see it. I came away with more questions than answers though. This Blade Runner movie takes place in 2049, meaning it’s a vision of a possible future. This future is ruled by corporations, who have destroyed all non-human life on earth, including trees. The humans, or white humans from what I’ve heard, have been moved to off-world colonies. The space colony economy is entirely dependent on a slave labor force, which are the replicants. These are artificially created humans, who have shortened lifespans and are hunted down and killed by blade runners if they disobey. As the film pointed out in a worded script at the beginning, this is a eugenics program, run by the powerful Tyrell Corporation. To be blunt, the human space colony economy is dependent on a massive eugenics program creating generations of slave labor.

Within the society of the replicants, there are women sex slaves. These are replicants created specifically to be sex slaves, to be taken advantage of by the male replicant slaves, so they can have the pleasure of sex to feel human, without the emotional attachment of love, because to love is to be truly human. To love is to exist, to resist, to rebel and so forth. To love is to seek meaning in life, something the replicants can’t be allowed to do because it’d lead to them seeking freedom. The bottom line though is that in this future, there is still patriarchy. In fact, the use of sex slaves, by giving the men non-consensual sex free of emotions, keeps them content, if that’s the right term? The male slave labor replicants get to think they’re having the human experience without actually having feelings. Long story short, patriarchy plays a huge part in upholding the space colony economy.

So yea, in this future society, the corporations have killed the earth, so humans live on space colonies. That economy is built on the backs of a slave labor force created by a eugenics program run by the Tyrell Corporation, which uses patriarchy to strip away the humanity of the women and male replicants, to keep them both from resisting. That’s my take away. There’s so many questions I have though.

How did these corporations become so powerful in the first place? How did they deplete and kill the earth? How did the eugenics program begin, what political leadership allowed it, how was it justified by the humans? Who are the stockholders of the Tyrell Corporation, which people are getting insanely rich off the slave labor force? What does the human society on the space colonies look like? Are they separated from the replicants, and thus completely oblivious to the exploitation going on to enable their economy? There’s so much back story I want to know so I can fully understand this future society. Sure, it’s just a movie, but it’s someone’s vision of the future, of what they see could be our future, one that isn’t totally unrealistic. If the future is an earth with dead ecosystems, no trees left, humans living on space colonies, corporations have total control, using slave labor and patriarchy with a eugenics program, I want to know why. Why is that our possible future? How could that possible future come to be? Who would want to make that happen, and why?

Anyways, this is how I watch film these days.

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