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Subject: I saw “The Complete Metropolis” last night rss

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My birthday was last Sunday (also Fathers’ Day here in the US) and as my final present for the year my wife took me to the local "art film" theater and we saw "The Complete Metropolis". This one has about a half hour of recently discovered film -- some of it from Buenos Aires, some from New Zealand -- added back in. The print from B.A. was a near-complete copy of the uncut original film done, but done on 16mm. It was heavily damaged, but a good portion was usable. The New Zealand print had different scenes edited out, and it covered nearly all the bits the Argentine print didn’t.

The restorers took the longest current print, then spliced in the missing scenes from the B.A. and NZ prints to bring it almost back to original status. There were several places where they had to insert dialog cards that explained the action, but the card was only on screen about as long as the scene would have taken, based on copies of the script and old German censorship documents. I thought there was only about three minutes still missing, but my wife thought it was more like five.

How was the film overall? My wife and I agreed that watching this version compared to previous versions was like watching the extended version of Fellowship of the Ring after seeing the theatrical version. The story made so much more sense. I had read the book years ago, so I knew the story, but this version makes it much more coherent. You also learn more about the motivations of the various characters. Much like the LotR movies, what you saw had some scenes extended and some were entirely ‘new’.

The re-edited portions tended to be "streaky" and grainy, but if you focused on the characters and action, you didn’t notice so much. The print ran about 140 minutes.

Also, the soundtrack was a live recording of the original score for the movie. At first I found the occasional cough, foot-shuffle, or turning of the pages of the score irritating, but after a while you didn’t notice so much. The music doesn’t follow the action exactly, like modern soundtracks, but was intended more to set a mood for the current scene.

Anyway, I highly recommend seeing this on the big screen if you can. It should be available on Blu-Ray and DVD in November of this year.

(Edits: Gave up trying to get a link to work)
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Eric Dodd
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Looking forward to it on the Film Festival circuit! i still have a soft spot for the coloured Gergio Moroder version, especially as it allowed Queen to use parts of the movie for the Radio Gaga video
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claymore_57 wrote:
My birthday was last Sunday (also Fathers’ Day here in the US) and as my final present for the year my wife took me to the local "art film" theater and we saw "The Complete Metropolis". This one has about a half hour of recently discovered film -- some of it from Buenos Aires, some from New Zealand -- added back in. The print from B.A. was a near-complete copy of the uncut original film done, but done on 16mm. It was heavily damaged, but a good portion was usable. The New Zealand print had different scenes edited out, and it covered nearly all the bits the Argentine print didn’t.

The restorers took the longest current print, then spliced in the missing scenes from the B.A. and NZ prints to bring it almost back to original status. There were several places where they had to insert dialog cards that explained the action, but the card was only on screen about as long as the scene would have taken, based on copies of the script and old German censorship documents. I thought there was only about three minutes still missing, but my wife thought it was more like five.

How was the film overall? My wife and I agreed that watching this version compared to previous versions was like watching the extended version of Fellowship of the Ring after seeing the theatrical version. The story made so much more sense. I had read the book years ago, so I knew the story, but this version makes it much more coherent. You also learn more about the motivations of the various characters. Much like the LotR movies, what you saw had some scenes extended and some were entirely ‘new’.

The re-edited portions tended to be "streaky" and grainy, but if you focused on the characters and action, you didn’t notice so much. The print ran about 140 minutes.

Also, the soundtrack was a live recording of the original score for the movie. At first I found the occasional cough, foot-shuffle, or turning of the pages of the score irritating, but after a while you didn’t notice so much. The music doesn’t follow the action exactly, like modern soundtracks, but was intended more to set a mood for the current scene.

Anyway, I highly recommend seeing this on the big screen if you can. It should be available on Blu-Ray and DVD in November of this year.

(Edits: Gave up trying to get a link to work)


I just found out that this is being screened this September at the Milwaukee Film Festival. It was my first request to their board... I was listening the BBC do a story about it when the Berlin festival released it for the first time.

I was immediately obsessed with seeing it.

Much like the extended version of Red Cliff (another must-see), I decided that I would push for its inclusion on that very day. Well, I got my wish.

Well, off to screen a couple of films for the festival. They won't be anything nearly as spectacular as this will be, but it still should be fun.
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Edit me jealous.
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claymore_57 wrote:

Anyway, I highly recommend seeing this on the big screen if you can. It should be available on Blu-Ray and DVD in November of this year.


Ooooohh. Me want.
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