This 2010 restoration of 'Metropolis' has made one of the most famous silent film classics whole again. Over 25 minutes of relevant scenes now added to the earlier 2001 restoration have resulted in a completely new experience, enabling 'Metropolis' to once again be seen as it was envisioned and finished by Fritz Lang and Thea von Harbou in 1927. Due to a poor reception, Lang's full premiere cut was drastically shortened and its plot grossly simplified in an effort to appeal to a larger audience. The truncated version of Lang's film played for decades to audiences worldwide, but Lang's version disappeared. The forgotten cut scenes were either lost or simply thrown away. The fact that an un-cut film copy survived to be rediscovered 80 years later is a major miracle for film culture. Argentine film enthusiast Fernando Martin Peña based his ongoing attempt to uncover the lost Argentine copy on a colleague's stray remark. The man remembered that at a 1959 screening of 'Metropolis', he had to hold his finger on the gate of a movie projector for way over two hours, to get the print to run smoothly. Frustrated for years by archive bureaucracy, in 2008 Peña finally determined that a 16mm negative copy of a former 35mm nitrate projection print was indeed far longer than any seen since the Berlin premiere. Peña was granted access to examine the archived film only after his ex-wife Paula Felix-Didier became the director of the 'Museo de Cine' in Buenos Aires. The sensational recovery of the nearly complete copy of 'Metropolis' is owed to their personal effort and persistence.
The new source materials for the 'Metropolis' 2010 restoration were so badly scratched and damaged that they required the development of new image-repair software. This new software can remove and minimize various kinds of image damage on a film frame without referencing visual information from adjacent frames. For 'Metropolis' it minimized extreme scratches and film blemishes to a degree that allowed the recovered footage to be integrated into much better material. The damage is no longer so distracting that the viewer is prevented from following the flow of the story. The greatly improved final result is an important achievement for digital restoration technology. The development of this proprietary software continues; it is already capable of even more enhanced image repairs.
|Here by permission of Kino International is the impressive theatrical trailer for the U.S. release of|
„Throw away your Metropolis DVD! The version of Fritz Lang's sci-fi classic seen and admired by the world for nearly a century is far from the epic that the director originally envisioned…But last night, 83 years after its first world premiere, the silent movie was shown just as Lang had intended it…The film now feels suitably epic and tense throughout.“
(May 4, 2010) „The cumulative result is a version of „Metropolis“ whose tone and focus have been changed. „It's no longer a science-fiction film,“ said Martin Koerber, a German film archivist and historian who supervised the latest restoration and the earlier one in 2001. „The balance of the story has been given back. It's now a film that encompasses many genres, an epic about conflicts that are ages old.“
==== Many thanks to a friend for to polish up my english and making this a good read ! (T.Bakels) ====