Unlike most film-noir movies, Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner takes place in a futuristic, dystopian wasteland. Just as discussed in class with Django Unchained, this film seems to be a combination of two different genres. It is a film-noir mystery, having much in common with older film-noir masterpieces of the 1940s and 1950s, but it also has a sic-fi spin on it, and the combination of the two genres in one film work together to create a unique picture.
The cinematography of Blade Runner is very characteristic of film-noir, using smoke, side lighting to create shadows, and framing to create suspense, and to draw interest from the audience around the mystery. Ridley Scott sets almost every scene of the film at night, and does this to create the eerie, unsettling effect that the film-noir genre aims to create. Scott also uses weather to create a dreary, dark, damp diagetic world; it is always raining, and there is always heavy fog. Finally, the lighting is shined from the side in most shots, creating silhouettes and shadows among most of the characters, especially with scenes in alleys or dark places like that. This is also commonplace for film-noir, reminiscent of The Third Man and basically the whole catalogue of Humphrey Bogart films.
Despite all this talk of film-noir, Blade Runner is considered by some to not even be a film-noir. Truth be told, it is a hybrid film, combining the cinematography of film-noir with the plastics of science fiction. The film takes place in a futuristic, dystopian wasteland, where technology is very advanced. Flying cars, or “spinners” are omnipresent throughout the film, and the costumes and outfits are far-fetched and futuristic. Plus, the technological effects, which where extremely advanced at the time, still influence and set the benchmark for science fiction films today.