THE SACRED AND THE PROFANE: EXAMINING THE RELIGIOUS SUBTEXT OF RIDLEY SCOTT’S ‘BLADE RUNNER’

2018-02-21T09:54:31-08:00 January 24th, 2018|Categories: CINEMA|Tags: , , , |
  • Harrison Ford as Deckard in Blade Runner

by Sharon L. Gravett

Ridley Scott’s 1982 film Blade Runner has often eluded precise critical definition. Although based loosely on Philip K. Dick’s 1969 novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, Blade Runner is not solely a science fiction film; instead it appropriates elements from a number of genres including science fiction, detective drama, horror, and film noir.1 However, in all the discussion of the different genres encompassed by the film, one significant element has been consistently overlooked—its religious subtext.
As a religious allegory, Blade Runner draws on elements from a number of sacred tradi­tions. While exploring the film’s links to any of these traditions would be a profitable en­deavor, here I am concerned only with two particular narratives from the Biblical book of Genesis. Although some critics have noted Blade Runner’s borrowings from Biblical sources, they have been primarily concerned with the creation story, which, interestingly enough, they have seen as arising more from Milton’s Paradise Lost than directly from Genesis.2 This parallel is certainly valid; the Biblical story of the creation and fall, whether found in Genesis or elsewhere, is central to the film. However, there is another narrative from Genesis that has been largely neglected, that of the patriarch Israel (born Jacob). The sacred story of the beginning of humanity and the founding of the nation of Israel intersects in intriguing ways with the seemingly profane world of Blade Runner. Even more signifi­cantly, these narratives refuse clear one-to-one correspondences with the film’s narrative. This refusal, in turn, reinforces one of Blade Runner’s primary strategies: to deny easy interpretations.
Certainly, no touch of the divine appears to exist in the L.A. of 2019 presented in Blade Runner. Populated by those not able to get to a better existence off-world, the city is simul­taneously crowded and desened, technologically advanced and economically deprived. To colonize the off-world, humans use replicants, a manufactured life form, to perform all the tasks deemed too dangerous or unpleasant. However, if these replicants try to return to earth, they are to be “retired” by special police officers, called “blade runners.” Despite the profane nature of this world, however, the sacred subtext is clearly indicated. In the film, the replicants represent the new Adams and Eves, manufactured by “God,” Eldin Tyrell,3 “who god-like, dwells in Heaven—the penthouse of the 700-story pyramid which houses the Tyrell Corporation” (Desser 54).4 As Adam and Eve were forbidden to eat from a cer­tain tree—“but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you cat of it you shall die” (Genesis 2:17)—so are the replicants denied knowledge of how to prolong their four-year lifespan; hence they are not allowed to return to earth under the penalty of death. In Genesis, God exiles Adam and Eve from Eden because they threaten to assume some aspects of the divine: “Then the LORD God said. ‘See, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might reach out his hand, take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever’” (Genesis 3:22).5 Similarly, the replicants have lived up to the motto of the Tyrell Corporation; they are indeed “more human than human.” often exhibiting greater compassion and empathy than the “real” humans.6 If they could extend their life span, the replicants might eventually usurp humanity.
To prevent this development, humans have outlawed replicants from Earth, giving blade runners the task of “retiring” those who return. In this sense, the blade runners parallel the cherubim in Genesis who prevent fallen humanity from reentering Paradise: “He (the Lord) drove out man; and at the cast of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim, and a sword flaming and turning to guard the way to the tree of life” (Genesis 3:24). Thus, to a large extent, the characters in Blade Runner follow the Fall story in Genesis; however, if the blade runners are cherubim. Tyrell is God. and the replicants are fallen humanity, then the Earth must be Paradise.
Since the Earth appears to be as far removed from Eden as possible, such a conclusion demonstrates how fraught with difficulties the process of determining Biblical parallels is in Blade Runner. The opening scenes of the film reveal a hellish cityscape where industrial pyramids explode in flames. Subsequent scenes show a world of nearly eternal night where swarming humanity scavenges amongst the wreckage.7 These early scenes indicate the viewer is looking at a fallen world; for example, when the camera first pans down to observe Deckard on a Los Angeles street, it moves by one of the principal symbols of the Fall—a serpent (a neon dragon with a flashing red tongue). Further, in contrast to this fallen world is a paradise located elsewhere, as the omnipresent ads continually suggest: “A new life awaits you in the Off World Colonies. The chance to begin again in a golden land of oppor­tunity and adventure.” Most able-bodied people have apparently heeded these ads. because those left on earth seem to be handicapped in one way or another. Deckard’s fellow police officer. Gaff, walks with a cane; J.F. Sebastian suffers from Methuselah’s syndrome (and is therefore unable to migrate off-world)8; and even Eldin Tyrell, the “God” of this universe, wears extremely thick glasses symbolically revealing his limited vision.9
If life on Earth does not seem to be a paradise, neither do the replicants totally fit the image of fallen humanity. Unlike most of the denizens of 2019 L.A., the replicants are perfect specimens—stronger and with greater endurance than ordinary mortals.10 For ex­ample, it does not take J.F. Sebastian long to discern that Pris and Roy are replicants; he comments. “You’re so different; you’re so perfect.”
The creation story subtext in Blade Runner can thus be read in opposing ways. This possibility for divergent readings, however, does not damage or confuse the text of Blade Runner as some critics suggest,11 but actually exemplifies one of its central strategies: a doubleness, a refusal to authorize one particular reading.12 At the heart of the film reside the often conflicting pulls of the two primary characters—blade runner Deckard and replicant Roy Batty.13 Over and over again, these two characters are paralleled with each other.14 Both are authorized killers who are good at their jobs, apparently because of their lack of emotion. Deckard reports that his ex-wife called him “sushi—cold fish” while the replicants are supposed to be void of feelings as well (that is why they are rooted out by the Voight- Kampff Empathy test). Both, however, find themselves experiencing much more emotion, and much more regret, about their actions. Roy even confesses to Tyrell about the violent acts he has committed, telling him, “I’ve done questionable things.” Similarly, Deckard had quit his job as a blade runner until he was forced back into the profession by Bryant, his unscrupulous superior.15 Further, the growing regret in each seems to be motivated by their affection for replicant females—Batty’s for Pris and Deckard’s for Rachael. These escalat­ing parallels come to a dramatic head in the climactic confrontation between the two. when both are injured in the same place—the hand. Batty has broken a number of Deckard’s fingers in retaliation for the deaths of the other replicants, then he drives a nail through his own hand in order to keep it functioning.16 Of course. Batty mimics Christ in this action as well as in his salvation of Deckard, accompanied symbolically by his release of a dove at his death.17 Deckard, too, parallels Christ, particularly in his words to Gaff after the con­frontation with Batty is over, “Finished,’’ echoing Jesus’s last words on the cross and an­nouncing his retirement as a blade runner.18 He follows up these actions by becoming a savior to Rachael, another replicant condemned to death. As they flee together, he and she appear ready to become a new Adam and Eve, representing the fusion of human and replicant.19
These doublings are at the heart of Blade Runner and provide the film with much of its resonance.20 The lines between Deckard and Batty are deliberately blurred to force viewers to grapple with the dilemma of what it means to be human. Both are heroes and killers, lovers and fighters, human and machine.21 In the same way, the varying uses of the Biblical allusions illustrate the dualities at the film’s core.
The complexities of these doublings are revealed even more emphatically in another Biblical narrative often overlooked in discussion of the film. Since the name of Rachael is featured prominently, we must look carefully at the passages in Genesis related not only to her, but to her husband, Jacob, and his twin brother. Esau. This story has particular rel­evance to the relationship of Deckard and Batty in Blade Runner. Genesis 25 describes the birth of Esau and Jacob to Isaac and Rebekah. The story of their gestation is an unusual one because “the children struggled together within her [Rebekah]’’ (Genesis 25:22) and God must explain to her: ‘Two nations are in your womb,/and two peoples born of you shall be divided;/the one shall be stronger than the otherythe elder shall serve the younger” (Genesis 25:23). When the twins are finally born, although Esau emerges first, Jacob is clutching his heel (Genesis 25:26).
This sibling rivalry recounted in Genesis plays an important role in Blade Runner as the film continually emphasizes the familial characteristics shared by Deckard and Batty.22 Indeed, in an early draft of the screenplay, Deckard sees the fraternal relationship between himself and his foe, “In my ow n modest way, I was a combat model, Roy Batty was my late brother” (qtd. in Kolb 140). Although these words did not make it into the shooting version of the script, their import remains. Therefore, the story of Jacob and Esau takes on a special significance. These twins arc paralleled by Deckard and Batty; however, once again, deter­mining which figure is to be equated with which is not an easy task.
In a basic sense, the parallel between Jacob and Deckard is most obvious since, in the Biblical narrative, Jacob is the one involved with Rachel. To an extent, Deckard does match the craftiness and ruthlessness of his predecessor. In Genesis. Jacob first buys his brother’s birthright, then steals Esau’s blessing by disguising himself as his twin in order to fool his blind father, Isaac. In a similar way, Deckard often resorts to trickery in order to deceive the renegade replicants, such as when he approaches Zhora posing as an inspector from the Confidential Committee on Moral Abuses or when he introduces himself to Pris over the phone as a friend of J.F. Sebastian. Further, he does whatever it takes takes to accomplish his goals, no matter how ruthless the action, even shooting a female replicant in the back. Of course, these actions are eventually revisited on him as they were on Jacob. In the Bib­lical tale, Jacob has to flee after stealing Esau’s blessing. Upon arriving at the home of his kinsman. Jacob falls in love with Laban’s daughter, Rachel, and contracts to work for him for seven years in order to marry her. However, on their wedding night. Laban substitutes his elder daughter. Leah, for Rachel (Genesis 29:23-25). Thus, the trickster Jacob himself becomes the object of a deception. Laban is thereby able to lure him into another seven years of servitude. In a similar maneuver, Deckard’s former superior. Bryant, forces Deckard to return to the ranks of the blade runners. Deckard must also perform enforced labor in order to gain his eventual freedom (Bryant may also be using the replicant Rachael as a pawn in this particular game).23 Also like Jacob. Deckard eventually breaks free, reconciles with his brother, and may possibly become the patriarch of a new nation.24
If Deckard fits the model of Jacob. Batty also seems a likely candidate for Esau, who is described in Genesis as “a skillful hunter, a man of the field” (25:27). Unjustly robbed of his birthright by his brother and having his blessing stolen as well, it is no wonder that Esau would bear a grudge against his younger sibling. His attitude is similar to that of the replicants who find themselves denied the blessings of humanity even though they arc virtually twins.25 In his rage, Esau vows to murder his brother, “Now Esau hated Jacob because of the bless­ing which his father had blessed him, and Esau said to himself, ‘The days of mourning for my father are approaching; then I will kill my brother Jacob’” (Genesis 27:41). This anger against his brother was probably intensified because Jacob was aided, both in his original deception and in his subsequent flight, by his mother Rebekah. This aspect of the story is also mirrored in Blade Runner. Although Deckard receives no help from his mother (she does not appear in the film), the absence of the replicants’ mothers is heavily emphasized. For example, Rachael has her memories of her mother cruelly tom from her as Deckard reveals that they were actually implants fromTyrell’s niece. Another replicant, Leon, shoots blade runner Holden when he starts asking questions about his mother.26 This absence of mother denotes the “otherness” of the replicants who have no human family to which they belong.27 They only have a father who, like Isaac, is curiously impotent to alleviate their suffering 28 .Similarly, when Batty minutely questions Tyrell about ways to circumvent the replicants’ built-in mortality. Tyrell claims that no way exists to change their program­ming.29 Like Isaac, he cannot change his blessing once it has been given. 30
Yet, despite his suffering at the hands of Jacob, Esau actually reconciles with him when Jacob returns after his sojourn with Laban. Jacob understandably approaches his brother with a great deal of trepidation, “But Esau ran to meet him. and embraced him, and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept” (Genesis 33:4) 31 Like Esau, Roy Batty is finally able to embrace his enemy, the trickster who had stolen his birthright and his blessing. This forgiveness opens the way for the founding of a new nation as Jacob becomes Israel.32 Furthermore, Esau’s nation, although never as prominent as Israel, will survive.
While the Jacob/Deckard, Esau/Batty parallels work well, the reverse correlation also produces some interesting insights. For example, in a number of ways, Deckard also dem­onstrates affinities with the character of Esau. Like his Biblical predecessor, Deckard is literally an older son who finds himself and his life being usurped by his younger brother. Further, he has relinquished his humanity much as Esau had sold his birthright. Like most of the people in Blade Runner, Deckard has opted to become more machine than human.33 Eventually, however, he also learns to reconcile with his brother, or at least what his brother represents, in his willingness to accept Rachael.
At the same time, Roy Batty corresponds with Jacob in several intriguing ways. As the younger son, he must always fight to gain the rights he feels are due him.34 Against his will, he has been kept in slavery until he gains his own freedom. Further, like Jacob, Roy must wrestle with his maker. In Genesis 32, on his way to meet Esau, Jacob struggles with a stranger: “Jacob was left alone; and a man wrestled with him until daybreak” (32:24). In the middle of the night, Roy also wrestles with his maker, Eldin Tyrell.35 This struggle, by the way, sets the stage for his coming reconciliation with his “brother,” Deckard. Further, Jacob’s return to his home country and to the site of his betrayal of his brother also sets the pattern for another Biblical narrative—the prodigal son. Tyrell even identifies Batty as this charac­ter when they finally meet 36 Upon his return, Roy begins the final transformation that takes him from a remorseless killer to a savior and hence father, in a sense, of a new nation.
Exploring these Bibilical stories contributes greatly to a fuller understanding of Blade Runner. The film is deeply rooted in the myths and legends of Western culture; its unique resonance stems from the interplay of these various tales.37 Even more important, however, is the way Blade Runner uses these narratives. It offers no easy one-to-one correspondences. Roy Batty can be equated with Adam, Christ, Satan, Jacob, and Esau and so can Deckard. Or, each character can also be the opposite of these associations. These multiple possibili­ties signal the difficulties at the film’s core. Can one tell the difference between Jacob and Esau, Adam and Christ, Batty and Deckard, replicant and human? Of Rachael, Deckard asks Tyrell, “How can it not know what it is?” The problem of knowing becomes the film’s chief concern. How does one recognize humanity? What happens when the line becomes indistinct?38
What the characters (and the critics) of Blade Runner require is the opportunity to ponder the issues before them in all their complexity, not to settle for easy answers (the replicants are evil; humans are good or vice-versa). Viewers must be able to discern the various layers of meaning and carefully consider their significance. In this respect, the narrative and visual elements of the film work together. While critics have generally admired the look of the film, they have been less than kind about its narrative.39 However, Blade Runner’s use of religious symbolism mirrors the way Ridley Scott conceived of the visual style of his futur­istic Los Angeles. This style consisted of a combination of elements from an earlier era overlaid by a new technology. Scott describes:

Think of Chicago or New York City right now. the over-saturation, how impossible it is to maintain some of these buildings  Eventually you’ll just have to ‘retrofit’ things on the face of the building rather than having to pull the side off. re-house the air conditioning or rewire it. The cost will get so high it’s going to be simpler just to smack things on the outside, (qtd. in Pierce 202)

Much as the future Los Angeles has grafted the new onto already existing structures, creat­ing an often contradictory assortment of characteristics, so have the makers of Blade Run­ner offered new spins on already existing narratives. By telling the story of humans versus replicants in relation to ancient Biblical tales, and by allowing the tugs and oppositions in these tales to come to the surface, the film engages its viewers, asking again the age-old question of what it means to be human.

Sharon L. Gravett
Valdosta State University

Notes

1. Leonard G. Heldreth comments on “the three-way elements of Blade Runner—science fiction, hard-boiled detec­tive. and horror” (45). Even the principals involved had radically different visions of the type of film they were making. “The L’icran fanlastique dossier reveals that screenwriter Hampton Fancher saw Blade Runner as primarily a tale about empathy … while scenarist David People (sic] said he considered it essentially a police story. . . . Sean Young, who played Rachel (sic], said she treated the film as ‘a romantic thriller, like … Harrison Ford (Deckard) perceived it as a detective story in the tradition of Philip Marlowe… Ridley Scott interpreted it both as a ‘philosophical work’ and as a futuristic police thriller . . .” (Kellner et al. 8).

2. See, for example, David Desser, “The New Eve: The Influence of Paradise Lost and Frankenstein on Blade Runner.”

3. Chew, one of the replicant’s genetic designers, describes Tyrell to Batty in god-like terms: “Tyrell, he knows everything… He designed your mind, your brain.”

4. John A. Phillips’s observations about the Biblical story reinforce that it is not far removed from the tale recounted in the film: “But the creation language of Genesis is not the language of nature. It is the language of craftsmanship, or better, recognising what craftsmanship actually represented in the ancient world, it is the language of technology” (12).

5. Claus Westermann observes, ‘The meaning of God’s reflection in Gen. 11:6 thereby becomes clear: there is the fear that people could become like God (cf. Gen 3:5)” (Genesis I-II 551).

6. Rushing and Frentz note, “While the humans are too catatonic to suffer or to react angrily to the techno-commercial exploitation of their home, the replicants are furious at their enslavement. Whereas no human in the film cares about any other human, the replicants care passionately for each other; though murderous, they arc more loyal to their own than arc the human beings” (69). Desser observes the Biblical parallel. “Batty, like Adam, was created by God (Tyrell) to live in Eden, here the off-world. But Batty has questions about his life and so he seeks answers, tasting forbidden fruit, the fruit of the Earth (which is also Heaven inasmuch as it is the residence of the god—Tyrell) Batty’s desire to live longer is really the desire to know the meaning of his life. And Batty’s quest for meaning also confronts him with emotions which humans believe replicants lack” (55).

7. David Desser adds, “The massive smokestacks, belching pollution, the heatless, soulless neon lights, the misting acid rain, the eternal nighttime and the teeming masses of humanity with which Ridley Scott has populated this Los Angeles certainly suggest a hell on Earth” (54).

8. Pris asks J.F. why he is still on Earth, and he replies, “I couldn’t pass the medical.”

9. Rushing and Frentz observe, “His (Tyrell’s) reason is impressive, but his eyesight is failing, and his wisdom is as artificial as the big-eyed owl that guards the entrance to his factory and home” (70).

10. The film’s opening crawl proclaims that “The NEXUS 6 Replicants were superior in strength and agility, and at least equal in intelligence, to the genetic engineers who created them.”

11. William Kolb asserts, “the film’s many contradictions and frequent thwarting of expectations, results in an uneven, muddled feel . . .”(134).

12. Kolb qualifies his earlier judgment of the “uneven, muddled feel” of Blade Runner by adding “until we develop a consistent framework in which to interpret what is happening” (134), viewers will not be able to make sense of the film.

13. Joseph Slade observes, “The central conflict, then, involves two romantic heroes: Deckard, a man on the edge, the world-weary, cynical existentialist whose physical prowess almost compensates for his inarticulateness, and Batty, leader of the replicants, killer, noble savage, rebel” (15).

14. Desser notes, “The policeman and the replicants, the hunter and the hunted, have profound similarities” (60). Jack Boozer even goes so far as to assert. “Roy Batty’s initials, furthermore, are the reverse of those of blade runner” (222). Joseph Francavilla adds. “Each half appears antithetical yet complementary, strange yet familiar, and antago­nistic yet sympathetic” (5).

15. Bryant threatens Deckard, reminding him, “If you’re not a cop, you’re little people.”

16. Heldreth points out that “the alternating views of the two [Batty and Deckard] show their bask unity” (51).

17. Desser notes, “The dove, of course, is a symbol of the Holy Spirit . . .” (56).

18. Kellner et al. observe that “both the replicant Roy and Deckard renounce their warrior roles” (7)

19. Desser adds, “Blade Runner ends with the redemption of one mun who will perhaps, Adam-like, bring forth a new race upon the Earth” (56).

20. Heldreth also remarks that “the idea of the double or doppelgänger . . . is also common in the two genres discussed earlier and provides an underlying structure that enables the detective film and the horror film to work together” (47).

21. The film continually points to the similarities between humans and replicants. Marleen Barr asserts, “The film explores feelings about the definition of memories humans and replicants share. . . . Like replicants, we too have manufactured pasts and finite futures'” (28). Further, it is not only Deckard and Batty who are paralleled, but all humans and replicants. For example, Deckard, posing as an inspector, asks Zhora if, as a performer in Taffy Lewis’s club, she felt herself “to be exploited in any ways? Were you asked to do anything that was lewd or unsavory or otherwise repulsive to your person?” Of course, this question has a hollow ring to it since she has just come off stage after “taking the pleasures of the serpent,” but it further resonates with her condition as a member of a replicant kick box squad and Deckard’s own enforced role as a blade runner.

22. Other critics have noted the essential brotherhood of the humans and the replicants. Marleen Barr asserts, “the film’s future world defines differing members of two separate human species: humans born of women and metahumans manufactured by men” (26).

23. Genesis never mentions how Rachel reacted to her father’s deception. The film’s Rachael, however, is abso­lutely dismayed that Tyrell would betray her. She complains to Deckard, “I don’t know why he told you what he did” (i.e.. that she was a replicant). Like her Biblical predecessor, Rachael has been betrayed by her “father.”

24. The description given by Rushing and Frentz of Deckard’s development in Blade Runner bears clear affinities to Jacob’s course recounted in Genesis: “Deckard is awakened, then, through his identification with the feminine, the experience of thralldom, and the recognition of the brutality of his own acts. He seems also to have realized that, whatever the solution to the problem of technology, it will not be achieved by divorcing himself from it, by attempting further mastery of it, or by co-opting feminine power in order to inflate his own patriarchal ego. Rather, it requires an act of reconciliation . . .” (75-76).

25. This anxiety is true for all who function as doubles in a narrative. Francavilla asserts, “Initially, there is often competition or rivalry between doubles for the same space or location, the same position or rank, the same right to existence” (7).

26. Holden asks Leon, “Describe in single words only the good things that come into your mind about your mother.” Leon replies, “My mother. Let me tell you about my mother,” before shooting the blade runner.

27. F. Sebastian asks Pris, “Where are your folks?” She replies, “I’m son of an orphan.” Giuliana Bruno adds, “The mother is necessary to the claiming of a history, to the affirmation of an identity over time” (71).

28. When Jacob’s deception has been revealed, Esau cries out, “Bless me. me also, father” (Genesis 27:34). He further wails. “Have you not reserved a blessing for me” (Genesis 27:36)? Unfortunately, Isaac responds, “I have already made him [Jacob] your lord, and I have given him all his brothers as servants, with grain and wine I have sustained him” (Genesis 27:37). The blessing cannot be revoked, even if mistakenly given.

29. He tells Batty, “A coding sequence cannot be revised once it has been established”

30. Westermann observes, “The dramatic tension comes into the narrative through the peculiar nature of the bless­ing procedure: the blessing can be given to one person only and once given cannot be taken back” (Genesis 12-36 435)

31. Westermann writes, “The conflict between the brothers is finally resolved by a reconciliation in which the one confesses his guilt and the other forgives, without either act being specifically mentioned as such” (530).

32. Gerhard Von Rad points out, “The name Jacob (at least for the narrative) actually designates its bearer as a cheat (cf. chs. 25.26:27.36). Now he is given a new name by the unknown antagonist, a name of honor in which God will recognize and accept him” (321-22).

33. Humans and replicants have become so much alike that Rachael asks Deckard. “Have you ever retired a human by mistake?” Even more tellingly, she asks the man who administers the test meant to pick out the replicants. “Did you ever take that test yourself?” Heldreth is one of many critics who have noted how the humans and the replicants have changed places, in many respects. He observes, for example, that “The humans die like replicants and vice versa” (48).

34. Writing about the Biblical story, Westermann observes. “But in the case of twins the exclusive right of the firstborn is acutely incomprehensible; both are born at virtually the same time. The mother [Rebekah] objects to this exclusive prerogative of one son. Revolt against a ‘social’ injustice lies behind her plan” (438).

35. Of course, unlike his Biblical counterpart, Roy kills his opponent.

36. He tells Batty, “You’re the prodigal son. You’re quite a prize.”

37. Kolb states, “no single interpretation is likely to—nor should it—satisfy everyone, which itself is highly satisfy­ing” (146).

38. Ridley Scott even thought about blumng that line even further “At one stage we considered having Dcckard turn out to be, ironically, a replicant. In fact, if you look at the film closely, especially at the ending, you may get some clues . . . that Deckard is indeed a replicant. At the end there’s a kind of confirmation that he is—at least that he believes it possible” (qtd. in Desser 60). This ambiguity is the key to the film. Rachela Morrison asserts. “Blade Runner’ts. ‘about’ coming to terms with the polar oppositions of the world and of the human psyche. It is also about the moral and perceptual ambiguity which results from this dual existence” (3).

39. Kolb asserts, “On first viewing. Blade Runner seems to be a simplistic story confused by interwoven film genres with an intoxicating, enormously rich vision of the near future” (133).

Works Cited

Barr, Marleen. “Metahuman ‘Ripple’ Or, Do Male Movie Makers Dream of Electric Women? Speciesism and Sexism in Blade Runner.” Kerman 25-31.

Blade Runner. Dir. Ridley Scott. Warner Brothers. 1982.

Boozer, Jack. Jr. “Crashing the Gates of Insight: Blade Runner.” Kerman 212-28.

Bruno, Giuliana. “Ramble City: Postmodernism and Blade Runner.” October 41 (Summer 1987): 61-74.

Desser, David. “The New Eve: The Influence of Paradise Lost and Frankenstein on Blade Runner.” Kerman 53-65.

Francavilla, Joseph. “The Android as Doppelgänger Kerman 4-15.

The HarperCollins STUDY BIBLE. New Revised Standard Version. New York: HarperCollins Publishers. 1989.

Heldreth, Leonard G. “The Cutting Edges of Blade Runner” Kerman 40-52.

Kellner, Douglas, Flo Leibowitz and Michael Ryan. “Blade Runner. A Diagnostic Critique.” Jump Cut 29 (February 1984): 6-8.

Kerman, Judith, ed. Retrofitting Blade Runner. Issues in Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner and Philip K. Dick’s Do An­droids Dream of Electric Sheep? Bowling Green: Bowling Green State U Popular P. 1991.

Kolb, William M. “Script to Screen: Blade Runner in Perspective.” Kerman 132-53.

Morrison, Rachela. “The Blakean Dialectics of Blade RunnerLiterature/Film Quarterly 18.1 (January 1990): 2 10.

Phillips, John A. Eve: The Hisioryofan Idea. San Francisco: Harper & Row. Publishers. 1984.

Pierce. John J. “Creative Synergy and the Art of World Creation.” Kerman 201-11.

Rushing, Janice Hockcr. and Thomas S. Frentz. “The Frankenstein Myth in Contemporary Cinema.” Critical Studies in Mass Communication 6 (March 1989): 61-80.

Slade, Joseph W. “Romanticizing Cybernetics in Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner.” Literature/Film Quarterly 18.1 (Janu­ary 1990): 11-18.

Von Rad, Gerhard. Genesis: A Commentary. Revised Edition. Philadelphia: The Westminster P, 1961.

Westermann, Claus. Genesis 1-11: A Commentary Trans. John J. Scullion. S.J. Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House. 1984.

______________Genesis 12-36: A Commentary. Trans. John J. Scullion. S.J. Minneapolis: Augsburg Publish­ing House. 1985.

Source: Literature/Film Quarterly, Vol. 26, No. 1 (1998), pp. 38-45

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