Movie Revisions: Fad or Fact?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by DaveF, Mar 5, 2002.

  1. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2001
    Messages:
    18,847
    Likes Received:
    1,858
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    One Loudoun, Ashburn, VA
    Real Name:
    David Fischer
    I'm curious what the HTF crowd thinks: Do you think that the fairly new phenomenon (AFAIK) of directors to re-cut their movies (e.g. Star Wars, E.T., Aliens, Bladerunner) is a fad, like "colorization" was? Or is it a new fact of movie-dom?
    Or is this "new" thing actually a long-standing practice in cinema? Or, for that matter, are old movies still "colorized"?
     
  2. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

    Joined:
    May 16, 2001
    Messages:
    7,590
    Likes Received:
    236
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Georgia (the state)
    Real Name:
    Patrick McCart
    I think it's wrong to compare director's cuts to colorizations.

    Director's cuts are exactly what they are while colorizations are done just to "prettify" a film to please those who can't stand to see black & white.

    Director's cuts are great for a simple fact...would you call the restored version of Lawrence of Arabia inferior to the version that was released in 1962? Sir David Lean finally got to perfect his film.

    I think director's cuts are a great thing because they allow us to get closer to the intended vision of the film.
     
  3. Terrell

    Terrell Producer

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2001
    Messages:
    3,216
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Well, not every movie is necessarily made better by revisions. Many think Star Wars was worsened by Lucas' revisions. I myself prefer the original theatrical versions of Star Wars, although I actually like a lot of the new CGI editions. ET looks like it's been made worse by the revisions. However, I think TPM was better with the small added in scenes of the podrace.

    However, having said that, I don't mind revisionist think at all. In fact, I kind of enjoye recut films. But one thing is a must. When you put out a DVD of the film, the original theatrical cut of a film must always be included first and foremost. Then, I'll be happy to watch whatever director's cut of the film you want to add in as well. It' very simple to add both versions of the film on DVD, either by seamless branching, or two seperate discs. Whatever the case, I hope Lucas can be persuaded to include the originals, if he actually had no intention of releasing them. Fans were able to persuade him to put out TPM on DVD through a lot of protests. Because he probably would have waited for all 3 films to be finished. Hopefully, through protests or whatever, he will include the originals on the eventual DVD. Hopefully Spielberg will include the original of ET in whatever new DVD of the film is produced. And hopefully, every director will make a habit of this.
     
  4. RobR

    RobR Second Unit

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2000
    Messages:
    275
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  5. WoodyH

    WoodyH Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2000
    Messages:
    228
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I think part of it may be whether a film is re-cut to create an actual "director's cut", an "extended cut", or some entirely other beast.
    For instance, if I'm remembering correctly, James Cameron was actually quite fine with the original theatrical versions of 'Aliens' and 'The Abyss', and created the "extended cuts" to please fans (I'm more sure of this on 'Aliens' than 'The Abyss', and could be completely off base, but that's what my lil' brain's bringing to the surface). These, then, while created and authorized by the director, aren't "directors cuts" as much as they are "extended cuts" - the "directors cut" was the original released cut of the film.
    What was marketed as the "directors cut" of 'Bladerunner' is fairly well-known to have been no such thing - though it was overseen by Ridley Scott, the final result wasn't what he was aiming for, due to studio pressure and a looming release date. I wouldn't put it in the camp of an 'extended cut', either, because rather than just expanding and fleshing out the story, substantial artistic changes were made. The true "directors cut" of 'Bladerunner' won't be seen until the upcoming (someday) DVD release.
    The ultimate (and you had to know this would get brought up) example of a "directors cut" that I can think of today is the 'Star Wars' trilogy, even though we've yet to see the actual final 'directors cut'. Much as we may dislike his choice, Lucas has made it quite clear that the original releases of the original SW films were not what he wanted them to be, and he is (constantly, it seems) in the process of creating the final 'directors cut' of these films (which, if I'm lucky, I may be able to watch in some form of home video format by the time I want to introduce my grandchildren to them [​IMG]). We may not like or respect his choice, but (unfortunately), we don't seem to have much say...but I'm digressing. The point is, when (if) these come out, they will be a true 'directors cut'.
    I'm not sure how 'new' of a 'trend' this is. The earliest example of post-release re-cutting I can come up with off the top of my head is 'Close Encounters', but not being a film historian and being a tender 29 years of age, it's almost a given that there are earlier examples. I do agree with Patrick about it not being analagous to colorizing, though.
    In the end, I enjoy directors cuts, and while I'd often prefer the original released cut to be available, I can accept if the director's cut is the only available release, as long as it is a true director's cut. Shoud a film be released as an extended cut (or that third category) when the director has made it known that the originally released version was the final director's cut, than I'd definitely prefer that both versions be made available - a sore spot with "Aliens".
     
  6. Terrell

    Terrell Producer

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2001
    Messages:
    3,216
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  7. Dave Barth

    Dave Barth Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2000
    Messages:
    230
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  8. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 1998
    Messages:
    21,763
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    5,110
     
  9. Hendrik

    Hendrik Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 1998
    Messages:
    595
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    ...Abel Gance recut his 1927 silent Napoléon for a 1934 sound re-release...
    ...Sergei Bondarchuk's 1967 four-part, 507-minute War And Peace was cut down to two c. three-hour films for consumption in countries outside of the Iron Curtain...
    ...the WB DVD of John Huston's 1945 The Big Sleep also features the 1944 'original' cut (which was never released theatrically, but only shown to the military overseas)...
    ...and on and on...
    . . . [​IMG] . . .
     
  10. John Thomas

    John Thomas Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2000
    Messages:
    2,633
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  11. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    9,306
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    It's not new, not by a long shot. I've been going to a Fritz Lang series for the past few weeks, and looking at these movies on the IMDB, the number of different versions is unreal - M has multiple endings and running lengths, and next Sunday's show, Spies is 175 minutes but the version most commonly seen for most of the 20th centure was only 88 minutes long! And then there are some which are totally cynical, like Charles Chaplin adding incessant voice-over narration to The Gold Rush, apparently so that he could get control of the copyright, despite how it makes the film almost unwatchable.
     
  12. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 1998
    Messages:
    21,763
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    5,110
     
  13. Hendrik

    Hendrik Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 1998
    Messages:
    595
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    ...ahh... I knew that! [​IMG]
    (Note to self: check your facts/dates first, i.e. get up and get the damn DVD off its place on the shelf you lazy [email protected]@rd!))
    . . . [​IMG] . . .
     
  14. Damin J Toell

    Damin J Toell Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2001
    Messages:
    3,762
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Real Name:
    Damin J. Toell
     
  15. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2001
    Messages:
    18,847
    Likes Received:
    1,858
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    One Loudoun, Ashburn, VA
    Real Name:
    David Fischer
     
  16. WoodyH

    WoodyH Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2000
    Messages:
    228
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  17. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 1998
    Messages:
    21,763
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    5,110
     
  18. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

    Joined:
    May 16, 2001
    Messages:
    7,590
    Likes Received:
    236
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Georgia (the state)
    Real Name:
    Patrick McCart
    Colorization has it's place.
    The ONLY times I've seen it actually work out is a handful of Looney Tunes Warner had colorized in 1995. (Their colorized versions have a 1995 Colorization copyright on the opening)
    The color choices are very well done and the programming is extremely Technicolor-like. (Meaning it looks like real color...not obviously fake looking).
    If anyone has seen the computer colorized version of the Looney Tune, "You Ought To Be In Pictures," you might not even believe it was shot in B&W. There's numerous shots involving live-action footage that looks real. Even a great scene showing Porky Pig speeding down a busy street has so much attention to detail, it looks like the real thing.
    But it's not with the aid of the original director or animators, so it's probably not what would have been if it WAS made in Technicolor.
    Bottom line: If it's by someone involved with the production (Such as the director, producer, cinematographer, etc) it's fine.
    If it's OK'd by Mr. Exec-who-cares-nothing-about-film, it's
    [​IMG]
     
  19. TheoGB

    TheoGB Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2001
    Messages:
    1,744
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I wouldn't give up on the idea of colourisation entirely. While it could hardly be considered necessary it would be interesting to see what could be done in a few years time with the technology we have.

    I remember seeing in a documentary a scene from a film shot in early colour (we're talking 20's or 30's here). I think they said the whole film had never been done this way but the director tried it out.

    Very peculiar to see the scene start in B&W and suddenly flick to colour, and what a difference it made to what you saw.

    Also, I wonder how many old films could have been filmed in colour but processed in B&W due to cost? I know that for the World War II in Colour series, there was definitely footage they 'recovered' in this way because for years only B&W prints had been available and used...
     

Share This Page