Tears In Rain
There are a few movies that I've seen in my lifetime that I'll never forget seeing for the first time. "Blade Runner" is most definitely one of them. It continues to captivate and move me, and most certainly is a film that defines a genre and was vastly ahead of its time.
Part of what drew me in from the very first time I watched it were the Biblical and universally spiritual themes that I see weaving their way throughout the film. In the grandest sense, it is a movie about something that each of us wrestles with: Who are we? Why are we here? Who made us? How long do we have to be here? What happens after we die?
All of those themes come together in this scene from the end of the film, as the climactic chase between Deckard (Harrison Ford), a Blade Runner who chases down humanoid robots called "Replicants" and Roy (Rutger Hauer), one of the best replicants to ever be made, comes to an end on a rainy rooftop.
Roy is far stronger than Deckard, and at the end here when he has Deckard's life in his hands as he realizes his time is almost over, he takes a moment to chose between granting life or imparting death (all the while standing there with a nail through one hand and a white dove in the other - talk about subtle metaphor). Ultimately, he grants life and reflects on the meaning of his short life of four years as he dies.
It is a remarkable, moving scene; famous in part because it has been called one of the most moving death soliloquy's in film, and that the line "All these moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain" was improvised by Rutger Hauer and was never in the script.
I was thinking of this scene today because I got to thinking about the legacies we leave. Whenever we leave something and move on to the next: a new job, a new relationship, a new home, or ultimately when we die, what do people think of us? What imprint have we left on the lives we've touched? How will we be remembered?
Or will we be remembered at all? Roy seems to think that his life's memories will be lost over the course of time, washed away in the rain of the years as easily as the tears he sheds as he speaks these last words. I imagine a lifetime of only four years might lead one to have such concerns.
What Roy hadn't lived long enough to realize is that those moments are not lost, but rather become part of the rain, which then become part of the seas, which become the clouds above that bring more rain to gather more moments.....it never ends.
In considering that, what resonance do I wish to contribute to the fabric of time as I leave my own legacies? If I'm to become part of the greater Sea of Moments that are the collective residence of our Spirit, in what profound ways do I wish to become a part of that?
In the end, Roy opted to have his legacy be one of Life in the face of Death. He could have chosen otherwise. That choice will live on in Deckard and all whom he touches....and so on.
What choices will you make, and how will you be remembered?