It took everything that was cool about Blade Runner and made it blockbuster-ey, which isn’t bad necessarily but also isn’t an improvement.
Noir films don’t have happy endings, and they don’t really have heroes in the conventional sense.
This movie had both, which is fine but the idea of a hopeful future for Replicants seems fundamentally against what this world is about. Deckard’s cool because a) he’s Harrison Ford, and even phoning-it-in Harrison Ford is dope, and b) he’s just a guy. Maybe he’s a good detective, but in this brutal dark universe even a good detective shouldn’t be able to change much of anything.
By demonstrating his inability to affect the outside world significantly, the movie allows us as viewers to instead focus on him as a character, which I think is where the question of whether or not he’s a Replicant (also, I guess he’s definitely not?) became such a focus for people, because like… he didn’t really DO much of anything in the movie, so we can’t talk about his actions, but we’re not really sure who he is, so we CAN talk about that. 2049 made sure that we knew that everything that was happening was definitely happening, even the twist at the end. Very watchable sci-fi blockbuster (T2 is a good comparison), but not a noir.
Hated Jared Leto. Loved his kimono.