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Lang's METROPOLIS ('26)


mr6666
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Fritz Lang's silent classic airs early Fri., 5-30 @6:30am ET

 

Article: http://www.tcm.com/tcmdb/title/5892/Metropolis/articles.html

Mr6's.. Have you seen this particular restoration yet? There are a couple going around with at least one containing marred segments. Many of the flooding scenes are heavily scratched, still. The one TCM showed last is supposed to have been a restored version but had those heavy scratches in the flooding scenes.. that's why I ask.

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"The premiere version was cut down for the official release (after bad word of mouth) in the USA to 159 minutes, while the German official release ran 153 minutes.

A restored version was prepared by the Filmmuseum Munich. Restored according to the original script, this version replaces lost scenes either with stills or titles. Its running time is about 150 minutes. ***

A new UK video version (wrongly called "Director's cut") is 139 minutes long.

A version restored by the German Democratic Republic in the eighties runs 115 minutes (still shown on German TV sometimes)"

 

the posted running time is 149 min.

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Ok. I couldn't watch this one. Was it a good, clean restoration - no scratches?

Alas, there were scratches.  What TCM showed, and presumably will from now on, is the most recently restored version which includes the footage recovered from Argentina.  It is those shots which appear to be the scratched ones.  The rest of the film is sparklingly clear.

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  • 1 month later...

I see that Metropolis is the Essentials selection this week.  For those that have not heard the details of the 2010 restoration, the new Argentinian sections mentioned previously are from a 16mm copy of an original 35mm print (sadly the 35mm print was then destroyed).  The print itself was in bad shape when the copy was made, and when copying from the 35mm frame size to a 16mm frame size the borders of the image were cropped.  Since these new sections cannot be restored to the same quality as the rest of the film, they are quite obvious when watching the movie and I agree that some may find them unacceptably distracting.

 

As one who loves this film, however, I found the newly added material to be a wonderful improvement in restoring the film to a much closer approximation of the original movie.  The "Thin Man" character, for example, comes to life in this version after being almost totally excised from previous versions.  This restoration also includes an updated score to match the reconstructed material.  In addition, there are other portions of the film outside of the Argentine sections that have been upgraded, with much of it now approaching pristine quality.

 

I would encourage anyone interested in this film to "go with the flow" and watch and hopefully enjoy the latest restoration version of the film.

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Thanks for the opinions here. There will be a private screening of the newest restored version for employees, friends & family of the movie theater where I volunteer.

 

What an excellent choice for a Private Party on the Big Screen! 

 

(too bad they're not hiring an organist to play on the vintage organ in the theater-wah)

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  • 11 months later...
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