‘Blade Runner’ at 40: Director Ridley Scott’s dystopian masterpiece continues to reverberate today

It’s a tall task to imagine a more pivotal year for classic Hollywood genre films than 1982. The cosmic tumblers aligned to smile on geeky, big-budget releases that included such iconic flicks as “Poltergeist,” “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan,” “The Thing,” “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial,” “The Dark Crystal,” “Tron,” “Conan the Barbarian,” and director Ridley Scott’s neo-noir jewel, “Blade Runner.”

Warner Bros.’ “Blade Runner” opened on June 25, 1982 and received a mediocre reception upon release and was nowhere near the influential masterwork that’s now considered to be one of the greatest science fiction movies of all time. Its dystopian tale of a future Los Angeles of 2019 that’s become a crumbling megalopolis and its team of anti-android assassins was adapted from the award winning author Philip K. Dick’s 1968 novel “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (opens in new tab)” Here’s our streaming guide for the Blade Runner franchise if you need to catch up.

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