Director: Ridley Scott

Starring: Harrison Ford, Sean Young, Rutger Hauer

The late arrival or non-existence of key titles on DVD is rather irksome. What’s the point of having films like Inseminoid available if you can’t buy Star Wars? Similarly, what’s the point of releasing a bona fide genre classic, like Blade Runner, if you’re not going to stuff it to the gunnels with extra materials or, at least, re-master it with state of the art sound? Warner’s Spartan Blade Runner disc is a wasted opportunity that should bring shame to anyone involved in releasing it. The DVD contains the 1993 “Director’s Cut” (a label which, as any fan will tell you, is pure marketing bullshit), presented in its original widescreen (2.35:1) ratio, enhanced for 16:9 sets. The sound is an enveloping, but, for obvious reasons, hugely disappointing Dolby Surround mix.

For some time the film’s legions of admirers have been promised the Blade Runner DVD that they deserve: presumably one offering the choice of the original version of the film, or the re-issue; one with an astonishing new Dolby Digital 5.1 remix; one that includes deleted scenes like the legendary hospital sequence; one with a Scott commentary and a “making of…” documentary featuring interviews with all the key cast and crew members. Sadly, this isn’t it. No siree, Bob. Not by a long chalk.


It currently seems more unlikely than ever that we'll be seeing a multi-disc Blade Runner Special Edition DVD in the foreseeable future, apparently due to an ongoing dispute between Warner Brothers and one of the film's producers.  Since this disc was released mastering techniques and telecine technology has improved significantly, and this release must now be classed as barely acceptable.


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