Friday, September 14, 2007

Living in the future.

I'd noticed recently that first generation iMacs had become stupid cheap on ebay and decided to try to score a couple. Well, originally, I figured I'd just get one for the museum, but then I realized that a second one might come in handy, too.

At less than a hundred bucks, shipped, these are some of the earliest "obsolete" machines that incorporate USB and run a fairly modern operating system, so if I scooped up an iMac DV and fitted it out with WiFi, I could park it atop the dresser in my bedroom and have a fairly compact DVD player/web browser that looked cool and didn't take up a ton of real estate on the dresser. Plus, the iMac DV I settled on is convection cooled, which makes it nice and quiet.

I arrived home from work last night to find a huge box on my front porch and eagerly dragged it inside, tore it open, and plugged the machine in. Easy-peasy iMac setup; plug unit into wall, plug keyboard into unit, plug mouse into keyboard, turn on. It burbled to life, and I figured I'd pop in a DVD, lay back in bed, and enjoy living in the future. (A computer in every room!) I grabbed my boxed set of the first season of Futurama, considering that to be futuristic enough, and opened the first DVD case. Ah, how appropriate. There was my missing disc of the director's cut of Bladerunner. Even more futuristic than Futurama!

As all of you who've met me in real life have heard a thousand times, when I'm rich and famous, I'm going to have a flat-panel screen hanging on the wall of my house doing nothing but playing Bladerunner with the sound off on an endless loop; it is the pinnacle of lush cinematographic eye candy. My DVD had been missing for a couple of years, so it was with no small sense of anticipation that I put in the movie, cut off the light, and hopped into bed. It may not have been a flat screen hanging on the wall, but it was a totally extraneous computer in my house whose only job at the moment was to make me feel like I was living in the future by playing Bladerunner. I felt sorta rich and kinda famous, and it was really great for a second, but pretty soon I had an epiphany; I suddenly realized something about living in the future that I hadn't counted on.

Living in the future means you're older. Because for the first time, I realized that Harrison Ford in Bladerunner looked young.

24 comments:

phlegmfatale said...

Eep!
I watched Alien a couple nights ago and had the SAME epiphany about Sigourney Weaver - she looked like an absolute baby! In fact, Sigourney was 30 the year that film was released.

Harrison Ford was 40 the year Bladerunner was released.

Tam said...

Yeah, here was a guy who was old enough to be my father when I first saw the movie, and I'm watching it and realizing "Wow, he was my age when they filmed this."

Hobie said...

Welcome to the club.

Jeffro said...

Plus, Sean Young looked pretty fresh as well, which is a good thing.

Edward James Olmos looked old, even then.

Tam said...

That was the other weird thing; in thirty seconds Harrison Ford went in my mind from "Handsome Older Man" to... well, this is a family blog...

Oleg said...

"this is a family blog..."

Is there something you'd like to announce, Tam? I thought your nesting instincts were limited to not kicking the cats.

Billy Beck said...

I used to dream about older women.

Now, they're all my age.

DirtCrashr said...

Olmos has a picture in an attic somewhere...

TBeck said...

Have you seen Rutger Hauer lately? Not even having Jennifer Jason Leigh on his arm could keep him looking young these days.

I've been trying to find a copy of the non-Director's cut, but it is very difficult to find.

T said...

Ridley Scott does do up a stunning picture of the future, don't he? The effects still hold up as looking great, which is hard to say about a lot of older sci-fi films.

Ben said...

Blade Runner is an old favorite. It just has a cool look and feel that's been oft imitated but never quite captured again. Some have come very close, but never got it just right.

I remember hearing something a little while back about Ridley Scott releasing yet another version. Some sort of anniversary deal with some new footage. Not the version release theatrically 10 years ago, but something newer.

Did that ever happen? Is that the version you were watching?

Kevin said...

Ben, you're thinking of the upcoming collector's editions coming out in December.

Tam probably had the 1997 Director's Cut edition.

I don't remember the exact year that pops up on the screen in the opening scene ("Los Angeles, 20XX"), but when I first saw the film in the theater with my brother and the scene ran, he broke up the entire crowd by saying "Hasn't changed much!"

ravenshrike said...

tbeck, you have very, very odd taste if you're actively trying to find the non-director's cut of Blade Runner. Cause it's really, really bad. Possibly not worse than the non-director's cut of Alien 3, but damned close.

Anonymous said...

OK, if that's where the missing disk of Bladerunner was hiding, where's your Futurama disk?

Anonymous said...

You know you're old when the only guys in the NFL that are your age are the kickers.

marcus

Anonymous said...

3 versions of blade runner are being released at christmas.. the original, the director's cut release, and a new directors cut.. all digitally remastered with 5:1 sound. I've already placed my order on Amazon. My most favorite movie of all time.

montanabob said...

want another iMAC??? Got one sitting at the house right now that you could have for the cost of shipping. Plus 10 bucks.

triticale said...

You know you're old when the only guys in the NFL that are your age are the kickers.

Yer still a kid. Only guys in the NFL my age are the defensive coordinators.

Draven said...

Tam, you know that Bladerunner is coming to HD-DVD/Blu-Ray before Xmas, right?

And in the proper (i.e. 'theatrical release') version, as well.

Bob Hawkins said...

You know you're old when you look at Emma Watson and think, "Her parents must be so proud of her."

jsr said...

Middle age is when you take out your high school yearbook and while flipping through the teacher section it suddenly strikes you how young they look. Then you realize that the rookie teacher you had the older-woman crush on would now be too young to respectably date, assuming she'd give an old fart like you the time of day.

Jack Okie said...

ravenshrike:

What are the differences between the theater release and the director's cut that make you prefer the latter? I haven't seen either one for a long time, but the only thing I remember is the lack of the voice-over narration in the director's cut - IIRC.

Thanks.

Trebor said...

The new "Ulmitate" five-disc set has every version of Blade Runner you could want.

Ridley Scoot's *new* "Director's cut."

The 1992 Director's Cut.

The original theatrical version.

A foreign theatrical version.

And the complete work print of the movie.

There's a slightly cheaper four disc version coming out as well that deletes the work print.

As far as I can tell, both the four and five disc versions will have a crapload of extras, deleted scenes, etc.

I haven't preordered yet, but I'm putting it on my wish list.

http://www.amazon.com/Blade-Runner-Five-Disc-Ultimate-Collectors/dp/B000R5N1MC

Anonymous said...

"What are the differences between the theater release and the director's cut that make you prefer the latter?"

Other than the voiceover, the big diffs are the unicorn dream being added (which I hate) and the happy ending being dropped (which I like).

-b