Metropolis on Blu Ray in 2010

Martin Teller

Effects Supervisor
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Aug 24, 2006
Messages
2,414
Real Name
Martin Teller
Courtesy of The Digital Bits:

 

KINO LORBER IS PROUD TO ANNOUNCE THE HOME ENTERTAINMENT RELEASE OF METROPOLIS

THE COMPLETE METROPOLIS


PREBOOK: OCTOBER 19, 2010
STREET DATE: NOVEMBER 16, 2010

YEAR: 1927 / 2010
GENRE: SCIENCE FICTION / CLASSIC

Metropolis takes place in 2026, when the populace is divided between workers who must live in the dark underground and the rich who enjoy a futuristic city of splendor. The tense balance of these two societies is realized through images that are among the most famous of the 20th century, many of which presage such sci-fi landmarks as 2001: A Space Odyssey and Blade Runner. Lavish and spectacular, with elaborate sets and modern science fiction style, Metropolis stands today as the crowning achievement of the German silent cinema.

Kino International is proud to announce the DVD and long awaited first time ever Blu-ray release of the new restoration of Fritz Lang's 1927 science fiction masterpiece METROPOLIS, now with 25 minutes of lost footage and the original Gottfried Huppertz score. This new 147-minute version (being released as THE COMPLETE METROPOLIS), opened theatrically in April 2010 earning over $350,000 at the box office, and since it’s original restoration, has gone on to earn $1,000,000 in theatrical ticket sales!

When it was first screened in Berlin on January 10, 1927, the sci-fi epic ran an estimated 153 minutes. After its premiere engagement, in an effort to maximize the film's commercial potential, the film's distributors (UFA in Germany, Paramount in the U.S.) drastically shortened METROPOLIS, which had been a major disappointment at the German box office. By the time it debuted in the United States later that year, the film ran approximately 90 minutes (exact running times are difficult to determine because silent films were not always projected at a standardized speed).

METROPOLIS went on to become one of the cornerstones of science fiction cinema foreshadowing BLADE RUNNER and THE MATRIX to name just a few recent examples. Testament to its enduring popularity, the film has undergone restorations in 1984 and again in 1987. The 2001 restoration combined footage from four archives and ran at a triumphant 124 minutes. And at the time was widely believed that this would be the most complete version of Lang's film that contemporary audiences could ever hope to see. But, in the summer of 2008, the curator of the Buenos Aires Museo del Cine discovered a 16mm dupe negative that was considerably longer than any existing print. It included not merely a few additional snippets, but 25 minutes of "lost" footage (about a fifth of the film) that had not been seen since its 1927 debut in Berlin. The discovery of such a significant amount of material called for yet another restoration, carefully executed by Anke Wilkening of the Murnau Stiftung (Foundation) (the German institution that is the caretaker of virtually all pre 1945 German films), Martin Koerber, Film Department Curator of the Deutche Kinemateque and on the music side, by Frank Stoebel. Regarding the quality of the added footage Ms. Wilkening has said: "The work on the restoration teaches us once more that no restoration is ever definitive... Even if we are allowed for the first time to come as close to the first release as ever before, the new version will still remain an approach. The rediscovered sections which change the film's composition, and at the same time always be recognizable through their damages as those parts that had been lost for 80 years."

DVD ITEM#K690
UPC# 7 38329 06902 5
SRP: $29.95

DVD Features:

- Original 1927 score by Gottfried Huppertz, performed by the Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra, Berlin, conducted by Frank Strobel presented in 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround
- Limited Edition Collectible "O-Card" Packaging
- Voyage to Metropolis, a 50-minute documentary on the making and restoration of the film
- Interview with Paula Felix-Didier, curator of the Museo del Cine, Buenos Aires, where the missing footage was discovered
- 2010 re-release trailer

BLU-RAY ITEM#K713
UPC# 7 38329 07132 5
SRP: $39.95

Blu-ray Features:

- Original 1927 score by Gottfried Huppertz, performed by the Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra, Berlin, conducted by Frank Strobel presented in DTS HD Master Audio 5.1
- Limited Edition Collectible 3-D Lenticuar Box Packaging
- HD Video: 1920 x 1080p
- Voyage to Metropolis, a 50-minute documentary on the making and restoration of the film (presented in HD)
- Interview with Paula Felix-Didier, curator of the Museo del Cine, Buenos Aires, where the missing footage was discovered
- 2010 re-release trailer
 

 

dana martin

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
4,197
Location
Norfolk, VA
Real Name
Dana Martin
just waiting, my god, this year is breaking my wallet, wonder what kino has planned on blu next more Keaton, or maybe a film from Murnau??
 

dolstein

Auditioning
Joined
Aug 24, 2010
Messages
6
Real Name
David Olstein
I was fortunate enough to see the restored digital print screened at the Silent Film Festival in San Francisco, with the Alloy Orchestra performing its newly composed score. I believe it was announced at the festival that the Alloy Orchestra's score would be included on the new Kino DVD and Blu-Ray, but judging from the press release, that may no longer be the case. Personally, I think it would be a huge mistake not to include the Alloy Orchestra score in addition to the original score.
 

Brianruns10

Second Unit
Joined
Sep 14, 2008
Messages
276
Real Name
Brian Rose
Man, those features on the Kino edition are rather pitiful, even by Kino's standards. No Alloy score, no commentary track. They used to do commentary tracks for their old releases, including the 2002 version of Metropolis, and now they've quit...nothing for either of the Buster Keaton releases, which cry out for a commentary. Jeez, I don't even see the stills galleries! It's like they're cutting corners left and right.
 

I'm quickly growing tired of Kino. Frankly, some of the films they handle are too big for them, and deserve better treatment.

 

Considering how many versions there are of this film, Metropolis needs a "Mr. Arakadin" type comprehensive set. Disc one would be the restored version, disc two could have the edited American cut.
While it is a bastardization, I believe it is worthy of inclusion, both because it can demonstrate how drastically the film was altered, and because the cut version has its own importance, since many of us (myself included) were first exposed to this film via the American release. God, if they could only resolve the music rights, I'd like to see the Moroder cut somewhere too.
 

On top of that, there should be alternate scores, like the Alloy performance, at least one commentary track, and stills galleries. Not to mention, with how many filmmakers being influenced by Metropolis, you could have a whole featurette on the films' impact on cinema and directors.

 

There is so much here! You could easily do a three disc set on DVD, two for Blu.

 

I was expecting a lot more from this Kino release, and I'm not sure I'll get it...

 

But I probably will, god dammit.

 

BR
 

oscar_merkx

Lead Actor
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2002
Messages
7,626
Originally Posted by Brianruns10

Man, those features on the Kino edition are rather pitiful, even by Kino's standards. No Alloy score, no commentary track. They used to do commentary tracks for their old releases, including the 2002 version of Metropolis, and now they've quit...nothing for either of the Buster Keaton releases, which cry out for a commentary. Jeez, I don't even see the stills galleries! It's like they're cutting corners left and right.
 

I'm quickly growing tired of Kino. Frankly, some of the films they handle are too big for them, and deserve better treatment.

 

Considering how many versions there are of this film, Metropolis needs a "Mr. Arakadin" type comprehensive set. Disc one would be the restored version, disc two could have the edited American cut.
While it is a bastardization, I believe it is worthy of inclusion, both because it can demonstrate how drastically the film was altered, and because the cut version has its own importance, since many of us (myself included) were first exposed to this film via the American release. God, if they could only resolve the music rights, I'd like to see the Moroder cut somewhere too.
 

On top of that, there should be alternate scores, like the Alloy performance, at least one commentary track, and stills galleries. Not to mention, with how many filmmakers being influenced by Metropolis, you could have a whole featurette on the films' impact on cinema and directors.

 

There is so much here! You could easily do a three disc set on DVD, two for Blu.

 

I was expecting a lot more from this Kino release, and I'm not sure I'll get it...

 

But I probably will, god dammit.

 

BR


You should check here http://metropolis1927.com/#dvd what is released here (UK)
 

dana martin

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
4,197
Location
Norfolk, VA
Real Name
Dana Martin
havent done this yet, but does anyone know if MoC is locked to region B? because it looks to be the better release, and the fact that they say other extras , seriously this could have been a 4 disc set, Restored, American, Truncicated, Mordor.
 

Brian Borst

Screenwriter
Joined
May 15, 2008
Messages
1,137
Originally Posted by dana martin

havent done this yet, but does anyone know if MoC is locked to region B? because it looks to be the better release, and the fact that they say other extras , seriously this could have been a 4 disc set, Restored, American, Truncicated, Mordor.

They were asked to by Kino to region lock it. However, since Kino have already released several region free discs, Eureka hoped they could release this one region free as well. As far as I know, it's still uncertain which it's going to be.
 

Jim Peavy

Supporting Actor
Joined
Aug 12, 2002
Messages
725
Originally Posted by Brian Borst They were asked to by Kino to region lock it. However, since Kino have already released several region free discs, Eureka hoped they could release this one region free as well. As far as I know, it's still uncertain which it's going to be.

Man I hope this is region-free! The MoC Blu definitely looks to be the one to beat.
 

jerauf

Agent
Joined
Aug 6, 2010
Messages
32
Real Name
Jeremy Aufderheide
I think the problem with the Moroder version of Metropolis is the music rights. Imagine unravelling all of that legally. Wouldn't it be cool if they expanded Moroder's soundtrack to fit the restored film? I know that there would be film speed issues. But one can dream...since it would never happen anyway.
 

ajabrams

Second Unit
Joined
Mar 15, 2009
Messages
391
Location
NYC
Real Name
Alan Abrams
I don't really care for the Moroder version but I certainly respect the opinions of those who do. Nonetheless, simply adding to the Moroder score wouldn't solve the problem of matching his music to the new restoration because, if I recall correctly, Moroder's version had a lot of re-editing of scenes. These included shifting things around quite a bit and eliminating some of what was already available at the time. It would probably require an entire new scoring.
 

compson

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Sep 4, 2006
Messages
55
Real Name
Robert
When the BD comes out, I'll be interested to read what people more knowledgeable than I have to say about it. I saw a digital copy of the new version on a Sony 4K projector at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor. The 16 mm additions are extremely obvious because of vertical lines running throughout them, but generally the picture looks remarkably good. Some of the exterior shots, however, had a scrubbed digital look and appeared to be devoid of grain. They weren't offensive, and they had the pristine look that some on-line reviewers prefer, but they didn't look like the interior shots with their appropriate grain. That is to say, they didn't look like film. Regardless, the restoration is a remarkable achievement and an unexpected gift to movie buffs. I'm not complaining, just curious.
 

johnSM

Second Unit
Joined
May 24, 2006
Messages
439
Real Name
John
I've seen some clips from the restoration and the bulk of the film does look pretty good. However with a film as important as this I'm wondering why the 'recent' 16mm sections couldn't have been digitally restored by Lowry or a similar company to really bring the film back up to pristine condition 'as new'? Surely if James Bond, Star Wars, North by Northwest etc are deemed worthy enough to get the de-scratching treatment then a film as important as Metropolis surely deserves equal if not better treatment? Is this a case of budget, or are the recently discovered elements in too bad a shape to be digitally restored?
 

Brandon Conway

captveg
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2002
Messages
9,339
Location
North Hollywood, CA
Real Name
Brandon Conway
The elements are too far gone. They did a lot of work on the 16mm newly rediscovered footage. There are some restoration clips online on the official website I believe.
 

Will_B

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Mar 6, 2001
Messages
4,731
Originally Posted by johnSM

I've seen some clips from the restoration and the bulk of the film does look pretty good. However with a film as important as this I'm wondering why the 'recent' 16mm sections couldn't have been digitally restored by Lowry or a similar company to really bring the film back up to pristine condition 'as new'?

What you'll see IS restored, by people better than Lowry. That the damaged sections still look damaged just confirms how far gone they were to begin with. Short of reanimating the scenes (recreating them), this is as good as it could get. Bear in mind Lowry is the company that screwed up the framing of the James Bond films and the colors of Star Wars films -- they aren't exactly cream of the crop.
 

johnSM

Second Unit
Joined
May 24, 2006
Messages
439
Real Name
John
Sorry, but Lowry had nothing to do with the awful colour of the Star Wars DVDs (pink lightsabres aside!) - that was Mr Lucas & his team who wanted the palette more in line with the garish prequals. Lowry just dealt with getting rid of dirt, and grading the grain so it looked constant between FX and non-FX scenes. Certain scenes were also sharpened too, again at the behest of Mr Lucas... It was also a rush job, Lowry themselves complaining that they really needed more time but Lucasfilm wanted a speedy release...


"We'd done a lot of work on the films prior to going to John," says Lucasfilm's VP Jim Ward, "re-mastering them in high-def, down-converting them into standard def, and re-color timing them. We actually took a cleaning pass through Industrial Light and Magic, as well, but then ultimately took them down to John to make them pristine."


http://secrethistoryofstarwars.com/savingstarwars.html


Sorry this is a wee bit off topic folks.
 

Nelson Au

Film Editor
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Mar 16, 1999
Messages
15,523
I don't think I've seen any reviews here yet? This is a film I've been really curious about to see. I've never sat through it. Also brings to mind "Things to Come". Not that I'm comparing the two films in stature. They are two early science fiction films.
 

Nelson Au

Film Editor
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Mar 16, 1999
Messages
15,523
Thanks Adam. I didn't know it was delayed, saw it in the New Releases thread for this Tuesday. I had a look at Amazon and they list it for release on the 23rd, as you posted above.
 

Forum Sponsors

Forum statistics

Threads
344,126
Messages
4,701,314
Members
141,175
Latest member
jessnick