I’ve recently dived into doing ”best of’ lists, so as I’ve explained, I’ve decided to do my top 20 SF films. This is my personal list, so feel free to disagree with it and of course, you’ll be horribly wrong.
Previously at # 20, The Matrix, 19, Seconds, 18, A Boy and His Dog, 17, Sunshine, 16, Dark Star, 15, Rollerball, 14 Altered States, 13, Close Encounters of the Third Kind ,12, Forbidden Planet, 11, The Star Wars Trilogy, 10. The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension, 9, Dark City, 8, 12 Monkeys, 7, Starship Troopers, 6, The Day the Earth Stood Still ,5, Videodrome, 4, 2001: A Space Odyssey and 3, Alien/Aliens.
At number two it’s another Ridley Scott film, Blade Runner.
This is simply a classic in any genre. It’s one of Harrison Ford’s best films and it changed not only how films look after it was released, but other aspects of modern society including how we build cars and design buildings. I struggle to think of any other film of the last 30 years that’s had such an impact, and of course it’s still the best version of a Philip K. Dick story you’ll see.
What makes Blade Runner what it is, is a perfect storm so Scott is the perfect director, the designers are astonishing, the effects stand up miles better than anything CGI can vomit up and the performances are some of the best Scott got out of his actors, especially Rutger Hauer’s tortured Roy Batty.
This is a film I wore out two VHS copies from watching it too much. My spiffy DVD box-set of every version ever made is still going strong but then again, this is supposed to last longer so I expect it to have turned into dust by 2017.
As a piece of SF it’s essential. It deals with big ideas about humanity, our future and how we deal with machines who might become smarter than we are. In 1982 that seemed far- fetched even for SF, but now it’s becoming more and more prescient the more we see artificial intelligence becoming more advanced, while robotics and computing leaps forward in such advances on an almost daily basis. This film speaks about the future we live in now which is extraordinary though sadly, we don’t have pleasure bots or live Off-World.
By 2019 I demand pleasure bots and life Off-World.
And here we are. Next blog in this series is my favourite ever SF film. Anyone got a clue what it is?