Frankenstein Values and Blade Runner Values

Frankenstein Values and Blade Runner Values

Tegan explains about Frankenstein Values and Blade Runner Values.

  • Romanticism 1800s

    An artistic, literary and intellectual movement that commenced during the Industrial Revolution.

     A revolt against the Enlightenment period and against the rationalisation of nature.

    • It stressed strong emotions, placing new emphasis on beauty, horror and ‘wildness’.
    • The Unitarian religion and the concept of the Gothic are both linked to Romanticism.
  • Literary Texts Referenced in Frankenstein

    • The Prometheus Myth – Ovid
    • Paradise Lost – John Milton
    • The Rime of the Ancient Mariner – Coleridge
    • Mount Blanc – Percy Bysshe Shelley
  • Values in Frankenstein

    • The aesthetics of nature (derived from God) was a value of the Romantics.
    • What was natural and instinctual was considered healthy and good.
    • Beauty was considered a virtue and ugliness a vice or evidence of poor character.
    • Thus the ugly monster is an abomination of nature and must therefore be wrong or evil.
    • The power of reason to order the universe is questioned by the novel which sees Frankenstein as presumptuous to think he can play god.
    • However, the true message of the book is – beware logic without reason or compassion.
    • If Frankenstein had been a more responsible “father” to his creation perhaps it wouldn’t have gone on crazy killing sprees.
    • At first, the monster wishes to learn about itself and the world in a philosophical, almost noble fashion – it embodies Rousseau’s reasonable, natural man.
    • The role of women in the novel is a passive one, where Frankenstein’s girlfriend waits to marry him for years before being sacrificed to his monster’s rage.
    • She is childlike to heighten her role as a victim but also to show that Frankenstein’s dependents all suffer when he neglects them.
    • Don’t play god: Frankenstein’s subtitle is the modern Prometheus.
    • The moral of the story is: God gets cranky when you do the magic tricks reserved only for him.
    • The story is a Greek tale of an old god who makes the first human out of clay. Zeus has his liver pecked out by eagles for his trouble.
    • Human ambition: exploring frontiers, new science, revolutionary governments, and discovery were all considered good things.
    • The Enlightenment tried to emulate the Renaissance, so Humanism was popular.
    • However, some people worried about how these new discoveries and genius pursuits of man would be used.
  • Ridley Scott

    • Born in 1937.
    • an English film director known for stylish visuals and obsession with detail.
    • Grew up in Teesside, whose industrial landscape inspired scenes in Blade Runner.
    • He is known for atmospheric lighting, smoke, fans, slow pacing, strong female characters and sons who kill their fathers.
    • Bladerunner is based on Philip K. Dick’s novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
    • Starring Harrison Ford and featuring an acclaimed soundtrack by Vangelis, Blade Runner was a disappointment in theatres in 1982.
    • Scott’s notes were used to create a rushed Director’s Cut in 1991 which removed the voiceovers and modified the ending.
    • Scott personally supervised and approved the Final Cut.
    • Today Blade Runner is ranked as one of the most important sci-fi films of the 20th Century, responsible for initiating the cyberpunk genre.
  • The 1980s

    • The 80s was the consumerist decade. The stock market was glamourised. Fast food chains boomed. Corporate and government institutions were rife with corruption and sexual harassment.
    • Arcade games, video games and computers became a major industry.
    • Scientific growth included manned space flights resuming in 1981 and advances in genetics, with the first mouse “Masha” cloned in 1986 by Soviet scientists, published in Biofizika volume ХХХII, issue 5 of 1987.
    • Pop music, music videos, keyboard synthesisers and drum machines were invented. It was the era of the DJ.
    • Fashion included: perms, shoulder pads, leggings, leg warmers, hair gel , multiple bangles and plastic jewellery.
  • Values in Blade Runner

    • Corporate greed and consumerism are emphasised in Blade Runner’s billboards and the continual drone of off-world advertising.
    • Scott’s warning against the soulless capitalist trend of the US is seen in Tyrell’s pyramid which represents the capitalist social pyramid or the abuse of power by the ancient Egyptians.
    • The technology of Blade Runner might not look like much to us, but it was state of the art visually in the 80s, influenced by electronica, and the revival of the space program which made us dream of space exploration, expansion and money to be made off-world.
    • Environmental concern of the 60s and 70s took a backseat to 80s industrialist profits. Ridley warns against this by providing unnatural lighting, and only genetically -modified animals, since the real equivalents are extinct.
    • The science of cloning was a reality for 80s dwellers. Christian groups and ethics groups protested against the technology whilst scientists, university and medical groups were generally in favour. The public were often affronted by a technology they did not quite understand.

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