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Comparison Ofthe Theme of Humanity in Blade Runner And Frankenstein Essay


Humanity wants to test the limits of technology and imagination to create life without considering the consequences.

This is shown in Ridley Scott's 'Blade Runner' through the creator of the replicants, Dr. Eldon Tyrell who, In an attempt to demonstrate the technology and genius to mass produce a perfect replica of a human lacked foresight and empathy, uncaring of the needs and feelings of his creations. This is evident in the scene when Rachael is tested, Tyrell seems highly accomplished at how life-like Rachael is, while at the same time disregarding any needs that Rachael has. This is reinforced through the dehumanising jargon 'skin-jobs' along with the low to high camera angles of Tyrell to create a daunting effect. The replicants in Blade Runner are reflective of the ongoing advances in technology and biotechnology during the 1980's in which Ridley Scott produced the film.

Unlike in 'Blade Runner' Mary Shelley explores a more gothic approach in her novel 'Frankenstein' in which a monster is made from counterfeit body parts and graverobbed limbs, contrasting against Ridley Scott's futuristic Replicants, Shelley formed a monster that is reflective of her context and how little scientific advancements have been made in her time.

In both texts the issue of parental responsibility is explored through the lack of commitment and consideration for each of the creations, in 'Blade Runner' this lack of commitment is shown by Dr. Eldon Tyrell in the incident when Roy confronts Tyrell at his corporation, the use of cut shots to separate the two are used to emphasise the differences that they share and the moral conflict between them, also Tyrell completely ignores Roy's stories in favour of marvelling in his own joy as to how well Roy was created, this combined with the use of candlelit lighting gives the atmosphere a eerie feeling. Unlike the monster in 'Frankenstein' the replicants are given memories used to provide a 'cushion for their emotions' this metaphorical language further implies the lack of parental responsibility in order to gain further control over his 'experiments'.

Similarly in 'Frankenstein', Victor Frankenstein after labouring for several months creates a monster that even to his own eyes is too abhorred to perceive 'unable to endure the aspect of the being i had created' this is shown through the juxtaposition of light and dark imagery before and after the creation, 'it was the most beautiful season', 'a black and comfortless sky'. This idea is further explored in the conversation between monster and creator, when the monster, shunned and outlawed by all of humanity asks for a 'mate', Frankenstein accepts unwillingly, though he's parental concerns are short-lived 'the wretch saw me destroy the creature'. add.

The creations of both Tyrell and Frankenstein seem to seek freedom and to break the boundaries set by their creators. Frankensteins monster escapes the lab of his creator and runs amuck, which leads to the loss of innocent lives.

Both composers appear to hold similar ideas and values on the ethics when creating a living being. Both explore the idea of technology to prolong the life that is given naturally. Shelley observes the human want for power over life and death, and also the balances in morals of humans. She is said, along with her husband and friend Lord Byron, to favour ideals of individualism, liberalism and the power of the imagination. Her novel explores these and the dangers when not balanced with common sense, humility and empathy. When Shelley develops the Monster, she uses the belief that a being must choose its soul, whether to be good or bad. Shelley also felt that the advancement of technology would lead to dehumanisation and isolation as explored through Frankenstein.

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