Blade Runner 2049: New Vangelis Cut

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Blade Runner 2049: New Vangelis Cut
Faneditor Name:
Original Movie Title:
Franchise:
Fanedit Type:
Original Release Date:
2017
Original Running Time:
163
Fanedit Release Date:
Fanedit Running Time:
149
Time Cut:
14
Available in HD?
Brief Synopsis:
What would a modern day Blade Runner score by Vangelis sound like? This edit rescores Blade Runner 2049 with new music from the composer’s 2016 album Rosetta and his Blade Runner tribute album from 2007. The music is supplemented by some earlier Vangelis tracks, as well as material by John Barry and others. No music from the original Blade Runner is used, except when sampled by Vangelis on the BR tribute album. In addition, the edit is approx. 15 minutes shorter, mainly from trimming Wallace’s scenes to a minimum and cutting Gaff and Rachael.
Intention:
To provide a fresh experience by rescoring BR2049 with new music by Vangelis.
Other Sources:
- Blade Runner Trilogy 25th Anniversary [Disc 3] (Vangelis)
- Jagged Edge Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (John Barry)
- Rosetta (Vangelis)
image
Special Thanks:
-Thanks to Plissken1138 for viewing and providing feedback, and also to my family.
Release Information:
Digital
Editing Details:
From the original BR2049 score, only two tracks still feature in their entirety (“Mesa” and “Someone Lived This”), alongside about a dozen excerpts from other tracks, which are abbreviated or combined with new music. The rest of the score is replaced. 48 new tracks – including 35 by Vangelis, 7 by John Barry (from Jagged Edge soundtrack) and 6 by other artists – contribute to score, source music and sound design. The most significant Vangelis tracks are listed below:

- Launch Approval
- Beaubourg Part I
- Mail from India
- BR Downtown
- Dream in an Open Place
- Beaubourg Part II
- Spotkanie Z Matka
- Starstuff
- Piano in an Empty Room
- Mission Accomplie (Rosetta’s Waltz)
- No Expectation Boulevard
- Dimitri’s Bar
- Sweet Solitude
- Philae’s Descent
- Atom Blaster
- Thermo Vision
- Sunlight
- Exo Genesis
- Movement 3 (from Soil Festivities)
- Perfume Exotico
- Origins (Arrival)
- Perihelion
- Elegy
- Return to the Void
- Physical Energy
- Albedo 0.06
- Rosetta
- Up and Running
Cuts and Additions:
Note: This list includes only changes that are additional to rescoring. Changes related to rescoring (i.e. adding new music and trimming footage to fit music) are not listed.

- Added fanedit disclaimer.
- Changed the wording slightly in opening text crawl.
- Cut shot of eye opening and moved it to end of film (where the shot is played in reverse, so the eye closes instead).
- Trimmed Sapper bashing K into wall. Difficult to believe K would survive that much head trauma.
- Edited black levels in city shots so that detail can be seen easier.
- Reduced the film’s green tint to bring out detail and colour in several scenes.
- Cut Sapper’s voiceover (“You new models are happy scraping the shit… because you’ve never seen a miracle”) when K is flying to Wallace Corp. Not needed.
- Cropped out “Wallace Corporation, Earth Headquarters” location title. We can pick this up from context.
- Reordered shots of Wallace Corp exterior so they flow better. We see the base of the towers first, then K’s spinner near top of the towers, before cutting to interior.
- Cut Luv in her office with a client. Nothing notable here, except a reference to “pleasure models” from the original Blade Runner. This edit generally leans away from nostalgia.
- Cut Luv’s line “Makes one feel desire” so that she simply says, “It is invigorating being asked personal questions. Do you enjoy your work, officer?” I thought it was weird that so many women hit on K in this movie (Joi, Luv, Mariette, Joshi). So I wanted this interaction to be more about Luv trying awkwardly to connect with K, rather than anything sexual.
- Cut Gaff in retirement home. K learns nothing here and the scene exists mostly for nostalgia.
- Cut all of Wallace’s dialogue in his first scene after line “Can you at least pronounce a child is born?” Jared Leto’s cliché lines and cartoon villain acting are terrible. The scene now ends with Wallace saying “But there is a child… Bring it to me.”
- Cut Wallace inspecting and killing newborn replicant. Wallace doesn’t merit this much screentime, and the violence is totally unnecessary.
- Trimmed shot of Coco bleeding on floor. Again, unnecessary.
- Cut location title when K and Joi visit the dump / orphanage. They’ve left the heart of the city (communicated by sign reading “Now Leaving Greater Los Angeles”), that’s all we need to know.
- Cut Ana staring at K and smiling after she offers to view his memory. She looks infatuated, for some reason (see earlier note about female characters hitting on K).
- Cut K and Joi discussing consequences of K deleting her from the console. I wanted to pick up the pace here, and Joi's death later doesn’t have a huge impact anyway.
- Changed colour of the imprint from K’s fall on the hotel carpet. The red imprint looks like blood, which is confusing, so I made it closer to orange.
- Cut Frank Sinatra hologram. It’s not impressive after seeing the other holograms, and “One For My Baby” isn’t very subtle. The jukebox now plays a Nelson Riddle instrumental of “Artificial Flowers” instead.
- Cut Freysa’s line “That’s why Sapper let you kill him.” This doesn’t match what we saw earlier. Sapper put up a fight, and K beat him.
- Cut Freysa’s line “When the time comes, I will show her to the world, and she will lead our army.” From what we’ve seen of Ana, the idea of her leading the replicant army is ridiculous.
- Cut Mariette’s line “More human than humans.” This is a pointless reference to the original movie, and it doesn’t make sense for the replicant resistance to use Tyrell’s old motto as an inspirational quote.
- Cut Freysa’s line “You must kill Deckard.” Freysa has no reason to be so cold. Presumably she cares about Deckard, if not as a former friend than at least as a fellow replicant and the father of Ana. Besides, the “kill Deckard” idea is still implied without being spoken.
- Cut Wallace’s line “All the courage in the world cannot alter fact.” No need to elaborate on his previous line about the jumping fish.
- Added line “Tyrell’s final trick: procreation” after Wallace’s line “To teach them all to fly.” In this edit, Wallace’s goal is simply to create replicants who can reproduce – for what reason, we don’t know. One can guess Wallace wants to be like God, or his ambition is endless, or whatever. It’s not important to the story being told.
- Cut Wallace suggesting that Deckard and Rachael were designed to fall in love and his discussion of that idea. This is bad fan fiction, unsupported by events of the original movie.
- Cut Rachael clone. It almost looks like her, but not quite, so it doesn’t work in my opinion. I also thought it was gross and sexist to kill off Sean Young’s character before the story started, and then trot out a young fantasy version of her and kill her again onscreen.
- Cut K’s flashback to Sapper saying “Because you’ve never seen a miracle” when K is standing on bridge. Not necessary and Freysa’s voiceover works better by itself.
- Inserted shot of Ana’s hand touching artificial snow while K is dying.
- Cut Ana’s line “Just a moment. Beautiful, isn’t it?” so final scene is purely visuals and music.
- Inserted fanedit name, faneditor credit and custom end credits, including complete list of new music.
Preview

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9.9
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10.0(16)
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9.8(16)
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9.2(16)
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9.9
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8.0
The visual changes to the movie are very well done and make for a very enjoyable narrative - less Wallace is of great benefit to the film!

The re-score was about 50/50 for me; about half the time I thought the bgm was *chef’s kiss* - very Blade Runner-y and fitting the scene perfectly - and the other half thinking it didn’t compliment the visuals or should have been absent entirely.

I highly recommend this edit as I think it improves the film; though I felt some of the music choices were a bit off the technical editing is without fault.
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I really enjoyed this and appreciated the decision to eliminate some of the ickier bits from the narrative.

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(Updated: February 13, 2024)
Overall rating
 
9.2
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10.0
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8.0
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8.0
BR2049 is one of my favorite films of the past decade, but even upon the first viewing it felt obvious that this score should have gone to Jóhann Jóhannsson (the director Denis Villeneuve's chosen composer for several previous projects) and/or Vangelis, and that Zimmer's best tracks were when he hewed closest to either or both of their styles. With only a few exceptions, his attempts to substitute or supplant them in 2049 swing from adequate to exhausting, and in particular, his choices toward the end of the movie veer ever-closer to the musical equivalent of getting repeatedly smacked in the temple with a rubbet mallet. (For the record, I think his score for Dune is great, but that he wouldn't have gotten there without practicing imitation of these two composers on 2049 first.)

I really enjoyed this edit, with only a few quibbles with scoring choices, almost none with the narrative restructuring (sure don't miss Leto's bits at all, tunnel scene greatly improved in every way as well as its implications for the flow of the last act of the film--and flawlessly done from a technical standpoint). After the first 20 minutes or so, I started watching it in more-or-less parallel with the theatrical cut and comparing straight across because the cuts are seamless. (Yes, this made this a roughly 8-hour project spread across days. I really like BR2049.)

All of my disagreements with the edit are about making quiet parts louder and specifically *pushier*, like adding music during the crash landing in San Diego, K's entrance into Vegas, and the Wallace/Deckard interrogation. These scenes felt to me in the theatrical cut as if the existing quietness heightened the drama, with the stings of Zimmer's already incessantly-pushy, demanding score only distracting from action better served by silence; adding more music in these cases seems like an odd choice. I also think the entire flying car chase would be far better without any music at all, Zimmer's or Vangelis', until at least the crash of Luv and Deckard's car; there's already so much going on in the audio. Watching this edit caused me to realize that the film might be better served by having no music at all from the beginning of the chase until after Luv's death--and possibly through the end of the film. I'm not a huge fan of the score for K's death in either edit, but I do think that removing Ana's dialogue from Deckard's reunion with Ana makes for a much stronger final scene.

Most of the rescoring choices, however, are unambiguously superior, and some scenes are made truly beautiful: in particular, K's discussion with Ana feels much more moving, and it leads exceptionally well into the bit of Zimmer's score that remains in the snowfall scene directly after; the mingled-body sex scene with Joi and Mariette remains unsettling, as intended, but the rescore keeps it romantic as well, as I think was also intended by Villeneuve. Overall, I think as a Vangelization, this edit is very good, but I'm still searching for a definitive version of BR2049: one with more silence, and more Jóhannsson, yet still with Vangelis. I've never before been so motivated to learn how to edit myself.

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The new score achieves everything that’s possible within this film, and the feel and atmosphere of it becomes incredible. The score is mesmerizing, ethereal, celestial… It changes the film for the better, every scored scene has its meaning changed / intensified.

The ending song, in particular, was pure perfection; it changed an ending that didn’t “click” for me into one that really works (coupled with a short video edit).

The video changes and the small edits and reordering of scenes all contributed to create a better, more streamlined story. I particularly enjoyed the removal of many of the fanservice moments.

Cheers!

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(Updated: July 20, 2023)
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Essentially perfect.

All of the new music matches up well. There were two moments where I felt myself missing/expecting the original score, but the substitutions were nonetheless inspired, so I can't find fault.

While this cut largely removed material, it somehow resulted in Luv's character having a more robust role, in my opinion. Maybe it's just something about percentage of screen time (having reduced Wallace's time), but I empathized with her more in this cut. An unexpected change, but a welcome one.

Everything I enjoyed from the original is still here but with improved pacing and more memorable music. This'll be my go-to.

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