Blade Runner: Humanity of Deckard & Roy Batty
Roy Batty and Deckard both demonstrate what it means to be human.
To what extent do you agree? Through Blade Runner, we see an epic quest filled with meaning and symbolism applicable to the human condition. Replicants are basically human beings, except for the fact that they lack a history. As a consequence of this, perhaps, they also lack proper emotional faculties, especially empathy. Empathy is the ability to place oneself in the position of another living being and understand that person’s feelings. Blade Runner promotes that empathy is the defining characteristic for humanity.
The replicants, designed not to show any emotion, develop spiritually and emotionally throughout the film. The characters in the movie, even those that were not human, had many humanistic and believable qualities. Many of them were able to feel love as well as hate. Although Deckard is supposedly human, he at times shows less emotion than Roy. He seems heartless and uncompassionate, making himself look very inhuman.
We see that Deckard is possibly not human,” but a replicant. He shows no compassion when he tells Rachel that she is a replicant with implants. Rachel sneaks out of Deckard’s apartment in tears and into the streets. The only time Deckard shows emotion is when Roy, through a harrowing battle, terrifies him knowing that he is going to die. Through this, Roy tries to communicate his life experiences and the importance of life before his own flame extinguishes, explaining the horrors of their enslavement. All of these human characteristics that the non-human characters showed make them more believable for the viewers.
The whole definition of humanity is changed by its interaction with the Replicants. For the replicant Roy Batty, it was obvious that he felt strong emotions, perhaps even love for his fellow replicants. After Deckard killed Pris, Roy leaned over her and kissed her, showing that he had loved her. He also showed these feelings for Pris and Zhora, breaking two of Deckard’s fingers, one for Pris and one for Zhora. Although this act seemed quite inhuman, the motivation behind it seemed quite believable. He also demonstrates an inhumane role when he kills Tyrell, but Tyrell is inhumane to create intelligent beings with such a limited lifespan, displaying greed and manipulation.
Batty also showed many human emotions as he talked about the horrors he had endured. It was obviously very difficult for him to experience these nightmares as they affected him much in the same way they would affect any human. He also exhibited human qualities when he saved Deckard from falling off the building. He said, Quite an experience to live in fear, isn’t it? That’s what it’s like to live as a slave.” At the last moment, Roy saved him by grabbing his wrist with the nail-impaled hand, drawing him up to the roof, and laying him down.
Pris also exhibits human qualities. She was very naive and appeared to be the least developed of all the Replicants, making her a follower. However, she also possessed a certain innocence.
Quote: Then we’re stupid, and we’ll die!”
She says this after Batty tells of the deaths of their friends, which shows that she is scared and starting to get worried that she’ll die. She has feelings and starts to panic. Towards the end of the movie, it becomes clear that both Batty and Deckard show us the meaning of what it means to be alive. Roy Batty shows this by saving Deckard from falling off the building, sitting in front of Deckard, releasing a dove to commemorate his death that he most likely learned to accept and appreciate. Deckard demonstrates a humane act when he hurries home to find Rachel, desperate to escape the city with her before someone in the Blade Runner unit finds them. As they leave, Rachel knocks over the unicorn that was placed on the floor, symbolizing her escape from the Tyrell Corporation, which only looked upon her as a replicant. Deckard fell in love with her as a human, and by doing so, she became human which in turn replaced Deckard’s cold-hearted contrast to a more humane replicant. Deckard joins Rachel in the elevator.
He has found love with a replicant under unlikely circumstances. The elevator doors close on Deckard and Rachael as they leave to escape the law.