Blade Runner Gender Roles

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Ridley Scott’s 1982 ‘Blade Runner’ is a mysterious film set in futuristic LA in the year 2019. Technology is incredibly advanced and capable of creating robots called ‘replicants’, which are almost identical to humans. Replicants are stronger than humans, have limited emotions and a life span of only four years. It has been argued that the way Blade Runner portrays the female characters is sexist and outdated, especially as seen in 2017. The unfavourable treatment of the lead female roles is continuous throughout the film, especially since they are all replicants and therefor artificial. The characters Zhora and Pris are both highly sexualised throughout the film, their deaths are also the most brutal and Rachael is seen as a woman who uses her sexual allure to her advantages.
-doesn’t look good to audience
Pris is described in the film as a ‘basic pleasure model’ and Zhora is presented as an exotic dancer, both highly sexist jobs for female characters. Pris also manipulates a male character, Sebastian, with her charm and sexuality to get what she wants for her greater good. Both characters wear very revealing clothing, if any, and are very open about their bodies, Zhora first appears in the film
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Zhora dies, running from Deckard as he chases her through the streets. The chase ends in Zhora being shot multiple times in the back as she crashes through panes of glass. Pris’s death is quite different, she is hiding in an abandoned building when Deckard enters, searching for her. Pris is hiding, pretending to be a mannequin when she is found by Deckard. She fights Deckard but is unarmed and gets shot multiple times until she is dead. These are the most gruesome and awful deaths of the film as the characters were not trying to cause harm to any humans, they only wanted to extend their life span.
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