The music in films plays such a massive part in creating the atmosphere of the whole thing, and so a good film becomes a great one when the soundtrack is good. I can’t even really thing of a popular movie without almost omnipresent music in it.
The Bladerunner soundtrack is one of the special ones. Written by the Greek composer Evángelos Odysséas Papathanassíou, who is mostly known, thankfully, by the shorter Vangelis name, it tries to capture the bleak dystopian vibe of the film. It’s dark, melancholy music, played on synthesizers and with orchestration.
Deckard is very alone, and the Love Theme is a reflection of this. The haunting saxophone, played by Dick Morrissey on the final release, provides the most recognisable melody, backed up by a rich array of strings, and some delightful twinkling noise that I can’t quite work out what it is, possibly a piano with a lot of reverb effects on. It’s a regal piece, evocative of a stately and sombre reflection on love and heartbreak whilst staring out of raining windows…
The soundtrack itself was obviously on the film in 1982, but a legal dispute meant that only a reduced soundtrack performed by the New American Orchestra was released. In 1994, the true Vangelis version was released, to critical acclaim.