Cinematic Music Videos: Tonight, Tonight, Tonight/Blade Runner

"More human than human, is our motto"

When these words were uttered in movie theaters in 1982, audiences had no idea that they were watching a masterpiece. Blade Runner came and went from theaters without consequence, but would forever change the landscape of film, pop culture, music and the sci-fi genre.

Blade Runner is adapted from Phillip K. Dick's novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? and has gone on to pioneer the film sub-genre known as future Noir. It is also important to note that there exist no less than seven different versions of the film. The cultural significance of Blade Runner can not be overstated. The story of Deckard hunting "Replicants" or robotic humanoids, while wrestling with the nature of corruption and humanity is a story that is often imitated. It carries with it echoes of Frankenstein as much as The Big Sleep. We have Scott's film to thank for many

references and influences in modern media and pop culture, which is why it comes no surprise that this film has influenced music. Blade Runner is in fact one of the most sampled films for music ever on record.

In the late 80's Genesis (as fronted by Phil Collins) were at their zenith, and found new audiences with the popularity of MTV (they used to run music videos!). The band had several hits in the 1980s not the least of which was their highest selling album, Invisible Touch, released in 1986. In the music video realm however, Genesis is perhaps best known for their 1987 video for Land of Confusion, featuring puppets of themselves and a deranged Ronald Reagan.

The Genesis' music video for Tonight Tonight Tonight off of Invisible Touch, showcases several 80's music video tropes (Silouettes, stark lighting, the band in drape coats). However, this video has undeniable visual and musical ties to Ridley Scott's film. The dirty, dystopian streets play like they're deleted scenes from Blade Runner. The blue gels and alleyways echo the scene in which Pris discovers Sebastian's workshop. The song's electronic/industrial sound filled with electric piano and hard drums also goes a long way in illustrating a 1980's version of the the future. genesis' signature sound creates a futuristic vibe that would certainly not be out of place in a world where cars fly and synthetic people roam the filthy streets.

This video for Tonight Tonight Tonight is not a rip off, pastiche or homage. We see no shots of a Deckard look alike prowling the video. Instead, this video seems to be drawing from the film's visual style to make it's own statement and if you're not familiar with Blade Runner, you could miss the parallels. Although the shots of the mannequins should be enough.

-Rob Out.

Below are a few other cool Blade Runner items and links which you might want to check out:

Some wonderful original BR posters. See Them HERE

A real no foolin' BR Umbrella from Thinkgeek.com! Now I just need a noodle bowl.

Sean Young's polaroids from the set of Blade Runner

Awesome Papercraft from Planetpulp