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Rabid Dogs (Mario Bava) Can You Help.


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#1 of 13 tele1962

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Posted November 29 2013 - 12:34 PM

This from Arrows Facebook page:

 

About
Arrow Video need YOU

We are on a mission, a mission to release Mario Bava's lost crime classic RABID DOGS in its most complete form in high definition.
Description
Join our campaign to find the original materials for Mario Bava's RABID DOGS.

Our release was originally planned for December - we had strong leads for high quality material located in Germany which at that time seemed the end of the journey. When this was delayed we moved the release date back to February to incorporate access and restoration time. To our great disappointment the materials in G...ermany turned out to be unsuitable, leading us once again to look down other paths, enquiring with libraries, archives and individuals for material but despite our best efforts unfortunately nothing could be found.

Now, with this public appeal we are looking for any information regarding the whereabouts of original film elements for RABID DOGS, in whole or in part. If you have access to any of these or know someone who might then please do get in touch!

Even if you don't have any information about these materials, but you do want to see Rabid Dogs given the release it deserves, you can help by liking and sharing this page - the wider the net the greater the chances of success.

Yours,

Arrow Video

 


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#2 of 13 Jari K

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Posted November 30 2013 - 02:39 PM

This is released in the US by Kino. No extras, but how's the A/V quality?

#3 of 13 schan1269

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Posted November 30 2013 - 03:45 PM

The problem with Kino's* Kidnapped/Rabid Dogs has nothing to do with its video quality(as it is quite good). The problem is the version it is.

 

Arrow is attempting to find/re-create the original version.

 

*for better or worse...you can never complain about Kino using DNR/sharpening. But you can't count on them cleaning anything either.

 

And FWIW, I have the Kino and plan on buying the Arrow as well...if it ever sees the light of day. These two versions(if there ever is a 2nd) should not be considered a "double dip"....as they won't even be the same movie.



#4 of 13 schan1269

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Posted November 30 2013 - 03:57 PM

By the way...

 

There are 3(at least) versions of the movie...

 

Original(lost?)

Lea Lander's

Leone/Lamberto's

 

 

Depending who owned the rights, and when, and who distributed the DVD(before this Kino BD), there are...last I checked, 5* versions of this movie out there. 

 

*3 turns into 5 when you take into account rated R and then the unrated ones you might still be able to find.



#5 of 13 Jeffrey Nelson

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Posted November 30 2013 - 06:25 PM

I thought that the version of the film contained in the old Lucertola DVD consisted of the Bava work print with the opening scene of the crying woman (planned by Bava but never filmed) newly-created and added, and Stelvio Cipriani's existing musical cues edited together for a music score (which ends up working really well, considering the score was never finished). I thought this was all that remained. The Anchor Bay DVD includes this version minus the opening sequence from the Lucertola, and adds a new opening credits sequence edited and manipulated from footage of scenes later in the film; this DVD also includes Alfredo and Lamberto's lousy re-cut with newly-shot scenes and a rotten new Stelvio Cipriani score that is totally irrelevant to onscreen action and sounds nothing like his classic cues for the original version. Unfortunately, the Kino Blu-ray only includes this re-cut.

Is there additional existing original footage? Or is Arrow trying to locate better quality elements of the known footage?

#6 of 13 schan1269

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Posted November 30 2013 - 06:42 PM

Arrow thought(I'm going to guess...cause I can't believe their excitement would be for anything "else") they found a pre-death "government-owned" "piece of film" to finish...



#7 of 13 Ignatius

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Posted November 30 2013 - 07:14 PM

From what I recall, there technically is no 'original' version, as Bava never had the chance to complete his edit before the elements were seized by creditors. The 'Rabid Dogs' edit included on the Anchor Bay release essentially corresponds to the rough work print as it was before work on the film was halted. As Jeffrey Nelson said, credits and extra music cues have been added to make the whole thing hang together, and it works very well as a film, but there are definitely sections where the pacing seems off as Bava never had the chance to do a fine cut. It is, however, the only version of the film that remains almost exclusively Bava's work, even if that work is unfinished.

 

Based on the recovered elements and the late Bava's notes, Leono and Bava Jr. created a "finished edit" of the film, shooting new sequences that were apparently part of the original plan, tightening some of the pacing, and commisioning a new score from Cipriani. This is the 'Kidnapped' edit that also appeared on the Anchor Bay release and is the only version of the film on the new Kino Blu-Ray. Many Bava fans regard it as something of an aberration, if not an outright abomination.

 

My assumption is that Arrow is hunting for the original elements that made up the 'Rabid Dogs' version, as their licensing deal probably only lead to them receiving high-def elements for 'Kidnapped'. There's certainly a decent SD source of 'Rabid Dogs' out there, but without any film elements Arrow would be reduced to only including that cut in SD, or creating a hybrid cut by using the 'Kidnapped' HD elements, mixed with the 'Rabid Dogs' audio and splicing in footage from the SD source where appropriate.

 

I think that's correct. I'll dig out my copy of the Tim Lucas Bava book later today to check that I haven't really muffed any details.


Edited by Ignatius, November 30 2013 - 07:15 PM.


#8 of 13 bgart13

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Posted November 30 2013 - 08:24 PM

So what happened to the materials AB used, then?

#9 of 13 Ignatius

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Posted November 30 2013 - 10:20 PM

I guess that's the big question. As far as I can tell the only difference between the Anchor Bay and the earlier Lucertola DVD is that Anchor Bay ditched the newly created credits sequence of that version and put together their own. It seems entirely possible that they only had an SD master to begin with. Though those releases look different enough that they may have come from different sources, so who knows?

 

I just dug out my Anchor Bay release and did some checking to confirm something mentioned in the Mondo Digital review. The horrific final shot of 'Rabid Dogs' (over which the end credits run) is of markedly lower quality to the rest of the film, approaching VHS in the smeariness and lack of detail. That shot (and most of the final scene) don't appear at all in the 'Kidnapped' cut of the film. And frankly the ending of the 'Kidnapped' cut is awful. I just re-watched it and it totally destroys the most effective part of the entire film. If Arrow didn't have access to materials for that scene, even if they tried to create an HD/SD composite using the material they had for 'Kidnapped', the editing between the two versions is so drastic the entire scene would have to be sourced from SD.

 

The ending of 'Rabid Dogs' is incredibly important to the impact of the film as a whole, to have the final shot of the film only available in something resembling VHS quality is unfortunate on a DVD release, but potentially disastrous on a Blu-Ray. Based on what Arrow has said so far, my assumption is that without access to any film elements for the 'Rabid Dogs' cut they'll only have the existing SD master to go with.



#10 of 13 Mark Edward Heuck

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Posted December 03 2013 - 12:49 AM

Is Lucertola founder Peter Blumenstock still around? Maybe he knows where the elements went. Unless of course he turned them all over to Alfredo Leone and he in turn is impeding Arrow's ability to access them.


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#11 of 13 tele1962

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Posted December 10 2013 - 10:33 AM

If any of you Movie insiders can help I know it would be much appreciated. :)



#12 of 13 Jari K

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Posted December 10 2013 - 11:27 AM

How about Tim Lucas? Is he still around?

#13 of 13 Jari K

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Posted April 24 2014 - 12:59 PM

Arrow facebook, 14.4.14:

"***RABID DOGS RELEASE UPDATE***
Unfortunately no suitable material for the new HD transfer of RABID DOGS has been uncovered. Lamberto Bava (assistant director) and Alfredo Leone’s (producer) re-cut of the film, KIDNAPPED has been transferred in High Definition. This version of the film has many differences not common to RABID DOGS so it cannot be simply re-edited to the RABID DOGS version.

After communicating with Lamberto Bava we have discovered the original negative of RABID DOGS was used to edit KIDNAPPED and the off-cuts could not be located and are now presumed either lost or destroyed. Unfortunately the negative was not transferred to another source suitable for HD transfer, no 35mm exhibition prints are known to exist and no other pre-print sources such as an internegative or interpositive have been recovered or known to exist. The original transfer for the Standard Definition RABID DOGS Anchor Bay DVD was a Standard Definition transfer only and the source for that transfer is unknown as the original lab is no longer in operation and whatever material that may have been transferred may have gone with it.

In light of this information from Mr Bava regarding the negative and the lack of suitable materials we have taken the decision to continue with our release of the films. Therefore RABID DOGS will be presented in a mixture of High Definition and Standard Definition in order for the film to be presented in the best quality possible.

RABID DOGS will now be released later in the year so please do keep checking back for a confirmed date which will be announced soon. We thank you all for your understanding and patience with this release."
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