Metropolis Giorgio Moroder Presents Review

★★★☆☆

The Giorgio Moroder cut of Metropolis was made in 1984 and for a long time was the most complete version of Metropolis known. It features pop music by the likes of Freddie Mercury and Adam Ant and a synthesizer score by Moroder. I’m somebody who considers the recently unearthed 2 and half hour cut one of the 5 or 10 greatest films ever made so I have a lot of problems with this much-abridged version.

This version is missing over an hour of footage and that footage makes the film’s plot make a lot more sense and it includes entire subplots and characters not included in this version. This version could be compared to the “Love Conquers All” version of Brazil, which the studio made, but unlike that film, the very basic message of the film is in tune with the original version. It’s the rather native message of workers and the elite must work together and a mediator is necessary for communication between the classes.

I respect Moroder for trying to find the most complete version of Metropolis; he started his work in the late 70s. However the soundtrack dates the film to the mid 80s whilst the film itself is utterly timeless. It also does the grave sin of colourizing some scenes and adding cheesy special effects to some scenes as well. It also uses subtitles instead of the standard inter titles which makes the film make a lot less sense. The subtitles are inserted so randomly and really ruin the flow of the scenes. It also includes some mechanical sound effects, which are effective, which works ok with synthesizer score and the se are only additions to the film that is not truly awful. I wouldn’t mind if somebody did a full electronic score for the complete version, which could work quite well.

It’s an interesting cult curiosity and was a stepping-stone for the eventually full restoration of Metropolis even though that took a further 20 + years. However it is sorta turned into an 84 minute 80s music video and really taints the film’s reputation. Despite all these flaws you can tell Moroder clearly loves the film and was trying to reedit the film for a more modern audience, which in reality was needed. So if your gonna see Metropolis which you of course should go get the stunning restoration that is a part of Eureka’s (who also released this version) “Masters of Cinema” range.

Ian Schultz

Rating: PG
Directed by: Fritz Lang
Cast: Brigitte Helm, Heinrich George, Rudolf Klein-Rogge
Buy:Giorgio Moroder Presents: METROPOLIS (LIMITED EDITION DVD STEELBOOK)

Metropolis (1927 / 1984) – Trailer [HD] Published via LongTail.tv

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About Ian Schultz

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I'm the guy who normally covers stuff released by Masters of Cinema and Arrow Video along with a sprinkling of other stuff. I love a wide range of films from European art house films to silly action films. My top 10 films are Brazil, Donnie Darko, Fight Club, Jackie Brown, Seconds, Pan's Labyrinth, Badlands, Blue Velvet, Blade Runner, The Night of the Hunter.