‘Blade Runner’: What Does It Mean to be Human?
Blade Runner 2049 begins like the original: a silent black screen, upon which the stage is set via text. In both movies, the text’s quiet appearance tells a brief, nearly identical backstory: Humanity’s expansion to other worlds built upon the slave labor of bioengineered, “replicant” humans. Some models of these replicants have rebelled, leading not only to the prohibition of these replicants but of a special type of police officer: a blade runner. The blade runners seek out rogue replicants to “retire”—which we soon realize is a violent act, often involving a gun.
Unlike some mysteries, what lies central to the Blade Runners is