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62 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars all reviews etc here are BS
All comments and reviews on this film are about other versions of the movie. this includes the write-ups for the previous Kino Video release of this film, which is also for other crappy versions of this film. Epic fail, Amazon! The Kino versions are the only ones worth owning. As proof that the reviews on this particular item are crap, it has not even been released yet,...
Published on Oct. 12 2010 by Rondini

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars How could they blow this?
Metropolis is one of my favorite movies of all time. Furthermore is one of my favorite stories of all time.
I was quite exited to see a Restored "Authorized" Edition, but when I saw it I was very dissapointed.
The restauration in this one is one of the most uncaring and unloving works I have seen. They did not care if the story in the movie was told...
Published on Dec 9 2003 by D. A


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62 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars all reviews etc here are BS, Oct. 12 2010
By 
Rondini (Ontario Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Complete Metropolis [Import] (DVD)
All comments and reviews on this film are about other versions of the movie. this includes the write-ups for the previous Kino Video release of this film, which is also for other crappy versions of this film. Epic fail, Amazon! The Kino versions are the only ones worth owning. As proof that the reviews on this particular item are crap, it has not even been released yet, as of this writing. This version include approx 20 minutes of recently recovered footage that was found in Argentina. Combined with the original orchestration of the movie, it is the must have version for TRUE fans of cinematic masterpieces, silent or otherwise. Check out company website for correct info. [...].
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Most complete/coherent version, but I miss the 'YES' music, Feb. 24 2005
By 
Heather (Barrie, Ontario Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Metropolis [Import] (DVD)
As other reviewers have noted, this KINO release is the most complete and restored version of the movie that exists. The storylines make a lot more sense, and the video quality is excellent. I have to confess that I miss the wailing rock soundtrack from the earlier, less complete version of the film. Overall though, the musical score fit the film quite well, and like everything else in this film, it was reconstructed to be as close as possible to the original.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Most Influential and Enduring of the Silent Classics, March 10 2004
By 
Michael R Gates (Nampa, ID United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Metropolis [Import] (DVD)
Fritz Lang's 1927 cinematic masterpiece METROPOLIS is arguably one of the best and most influential films EVER made...or at least the best and most influential SILENT film ever made. As a work of cinematic art or literature, it actually functions on two levels. First, it is an expressionistic cautionary comment on the dehumanizing effects of a mechanized high-tech society, as well as a not-so-subtle jab at the imbalanced social stratification that results from unfettered capitalism. And secondly, it is one of the first speculative science-fiction movies, offering interesting--and in some cases, prophetic--glimpses into a potential future that offers technological advances such as common commercial flight, video-telephones, mechanical prosthetics, electronic computers, robotics, and much more.
The groundbreaking special FX and film techniques created for and used in METROPOLIS have left an indelible imprint on the SF and horror genres, influencing filmmakers from James Whale to George Lucas and beyond. Indeed, the special FX seen in the robot-creation scene in METROPOLIS are obviously updated and reinterpreted in the creation scene in Whale's 1931 classic FRANKENSTEIN, and George Lucas has publicly admitted that he was inspired to create his STAR WARS character C3P0 after being awed by the robot character in Lang's film.
As for the plot of METROPOLIS, it is set in the year 2026 and revolves around a slice from the life of young and handsome Freder Fredersen. Freder is the only offspring of the wealthy politician and businessman who governs the city-state of Metropolis, and as such, he lives a fairly privileged and carefree existence. But after a happenstance encounter with the beautiful peasant Maria--she a messiah of sorts who preaches a message of peace and hope to the lower classes--Freder follows her into the bowels of Metropolis and quickly learns firsthand the true plight of his city's enslaved working class. With this newfound social awareness, he is ashamed of the selfish excesses his class obtains on the backs of others, and he resolves to help Maria free her people from a life of perpetual toil and make Metropolis a place where all can share in both the labor AND the fruits therefrom.
Some contemporary audiences eschew METROPOLIS with claims that it is dated and too naive in its worldview. While the decades since the film's creation have certainly revealed its simple socialist philosophy be both naive AND impractical, it actually isn't all that different from the feel-good subtext of many of today's films. And there is no cogent grounds for regarding METROPOLIS to be dated or passé, as the narrative is strong, the acting is good (relative to the silent cinema), and most--if not all--of the special FX remain aesthetically powerful and stand strong against even some of Hollywood's modern and lavish CGI FX.
The definitive version of METROPOLIS--at least for the English-speaking audience--is the Restored Authorized Edition from Kino International. Not only is the image clear, sharp, and relatively clean, but at the points in the film where long-lost segments belong, intertitles are inserted that summarize those missing pieces. So even though the full visual beauty of the work isn't restored, the logicality of the narrative is. This is as close to the original as audiences are likely to get, and it is breathtakingly wonderful. There are some bonus extras on the disc, too, but just having the "complete" masterpiece is worth the cost.
A must-see, nay, a MUST-OWN for both science-fiction fans and serious students of the cinema.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Movie that Inspired Many, March 5 2004
This review is from: Metropolis [Import] (DVD)
Metropolis was directed by Fritz Lang and, as a black and white silent film from 1927, had HUGE impacts on filmmakers for decades to come. The tale was of a large city with two classes. There was the elite class that lived above ground, enjoying the fresh air and gardens. Then there was the working class that lived in tightly-packed apartment buildings below ground. You can find this same theme in hundreds of movies afterwards that were influenced by Metropolis.
What's amazing is that the movie was lost for pretty much the entire time between its release and 2003. Viewers in those years had to make do with bits and pieces of the movie, often with giant gaps in the storyline. This re-release is the result of years of work, where film historians painstakingly went through all sources they could find and cobbled together a version complete with storyboards where gaps were large. For the first time in almost 80 years, viewers can get a sense of what the original story was all about.
The musical score is great, and the storyline is classic. The young man of the elite class falls in love with the young worker woman. There is great strife as the boy's family tries to keep them apart and keep the workers down. The workers believe in prophecies that say they will find a way out of their desolation. The elite believe that their 'golden rule' will last forever. In the middle, a mad scientist believes he has created a robotic woman to keep him happy without any need of human interaction.
There are some minor gripes even with this restored version - the motion is often speeded up, when all notes of the original story indicate that the director deliberately made scenes go slowly to give them importance. This is a German movie, but everything has been done in English so you can't really appreciate its true roots. But even so, this is a stellar achievement and one that can be built on going forward. Kudos so the restoration team!
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5.0 out of 5 stars So, You Think Your Job Stinks..., Feb. 26 2004
This review is from: Metropolis [Import] (DVD)
Have you ever just wanted to quit your job, due to it's monotony, misery, or drudgery? Well, come to METROPOLIS and see what it's all about! See the fun-loving upper class, frolicking their days away, running through eternal gardens, complete with peacocks and babes in funny clothes! Then, travel deep below ground to where the workers toil their days away, slaving over titanic machines that suck the life right out of their bodies and putrify their souls! Sound like your job? Thankfully, Maria is there to comfort the workers and give them hope of future deliverance at the hands of a great "mediator". Freder, the son of METROPOLIS' top dog and despotic ruler, is mesmerized by Maria and falls in love with her. This leads to problems since she's such a trouble-maker! Frader's dad goes to his mad scientist, Rotwang to check on his latest creation, a robot with very feminine curves. The two evil minds decide to turn the robot into a Maria-double, a wicked doppelgangar, which will destroy her image in the minds of the workers. Unfortunately for dad, Rotwang has ideas of his own and sends his mecha-Maria on a mission to incite the working class to bring down the machines upon which their very lives depend. This will bring METROPOLIS to the ground and ruin Freder sr. (dad) in the process. METROPOLIS is amazing for 1927. The robot scenes are almost supernatural in their effect. The portrayal of the workers as plodding, hopeless drones is unforgettable. Brigitte Helm pulls off her dual role as good Maria / evil Maria with ease and believability. She is modest and virginal one minute, then wanton and sly the next! The city scape and lower levels of the workers' world are surreal. Fritz Lang made a true masterpiece. This is one of a handful of movies that everyone should see at least once before they die...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Ahhh - silent movie bliss!, Feb. 9 2004
By 
H. Lim (Carlingford, NSW Australia) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Metropolis [Import] (DVD)
I was lucky enough to see this film in its 2003 restoration - with the full original soundtrack - in a boutique cinema. The only other version I have seen is the Moroder version.
Watching this film as it was originally shown is silent movie bliss. The soundtrack, which I expected to be rather weak and "old fashioned", turned out to be every bit as exciting and dramatically orchestrated as any modern film - and of course it is newly recorded in Dolby Surround!
Of course, this is the film that was butchered by studios just like Abel Gance's "Napoleon". Unlike Abel Gance's "Napoleon" we will probably never, ever see this film completely restored. The company that restored this film in 2003 must have been through a great deal, finding as many of the remaining fragments as possible, to reconstruct this film to the best level of completeness possible.
Alas, many scenes were still missing. Alas, they will probably remain missing. This version provides text summaries for the (now much fewer) remaining gaps in the story. It is much more comprehensible than any previous version; the storyline may still suck, but at least it's much more coherent!
The restorers also redid many of the special effects using original elements - my favourite is the infinite streams of slaves making the Tower of Babel! - and also restored the image so that it literally looks like a new film.
Overall, this film was quite an experience in the theatre. If only more silent classics were shown in such painstaking restorations!
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3.0 out of 5 stars How could they blow this?, Dec 9 2003
By 
D. A "zona_rosa" (MEXICO DISTRITO FEDERAL, DISTRITO FEDERAL Mexico) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Metropolis [Import] (DVD)
Metropolis is one of my favorite movies of all time. Furthermore is one of my favorite stories of all time.
I was quite exited to see a Restored "Authorized" Edition, but when I saw it I was very dissapointed.
The restauration in this one is one of the most uncaring and unloving works I have seen. They did not care if the story in the movie was told smoothly or not, they just said "hey we found this footage... lets stick it in!!", and they did.
Some of the the chunks they put in made the story relly on the written letters and less in the image, and some others were just not calibrated at the right speed (but oh, yeah, we managed to restore this "lost marvels"... right).
People in charge of restaurations, please: before gluing the pieces together, first learn to love the film you are working , wonder if the restauration you are making adds some merit to the film or it is just candy for the depraved film experts out there... Movies are not meant to be classes of history (although they are) they are supposed to be tales told with lights and shadows and wonder... Do not spoil them with bits and pices that spoil or might spoil the fun.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Kino or Moroder? I like both apples and oranges., Nov. 22 2003
By 
Leslie A. Lovesee "74s181" (Houston Lake, MO United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Metropolis [Import] (DVD)
I won't repeat what others have already said about the historical significance of this film or its contents. I do want to share my opinions about the Kino restoration vs the Moroder version.
I already owned the Moroder version when I purchased the Kino restoration on DVD. Like many others, I was amazed at the incredible visual clarity of the Kino restoration when compared to the Moroder version, as others have said it looks like it was shot yesterday, not 70+ years ago. Also, seeing it with a performance of the original score provided a different experience.
Some of the other differences are:
1. The Kino version contains some footage missing from the Moroder version, but not a lot more. The scene that stands out most for me is the first scene in Frederson's office - we gain a better understanding of how hard he works and how much he expects from those below him, so the firing of Josephat and Josaphat's reaction makes more sense than it does in the Moroder version. Another scene that is significantly different is the first meeting between Frederson and Rotwang - their rivalry is portrayed in greater depth in the Kino restoration, although it is also perfectly clear in the Moroder version.
2. Many 'purists' have complained about the music in the Moroder version. I disagree, I think that the music and the lyrics greatly enhance the emotional impact of the Moroder version. Don't misunderstand, I think the original orchestral score as presented in the Kino version is great, but words and music together are far more powerful than either alone.
3. The story is a bit different. Personally, I think that the story as presented in the Moroder version makes more sense, why would Frederson want his workers to revolt? But this is his motivation for having Rotwang create the machine-man in the Kino restoration.
4. Many 'purists' complain about the colorization in the Moroder version. I admit, there were places where I found it a bit jarring, but overall I think it adds to the emotional tone of the film. Still, I think the Kino restoration is valuable for what it is, a restoration.
The point I am trying to make is this. The Kino restoration is an incredible piece of work that will be of great value to all who wish to experience as much of the original film as is possible today. But, in my opinion the Moroder version, with its modern lyrical score is also of great value, maybe not as much in a historical context but as a separate film experience. Think of the Moroder version as a new work based on an old work, not as a restoration.
My recommendation? See them both, but see the Moroder version first, the Kino version second. Otherwise, you'll be distracted by the degraded video quality in the Moroder version and you'll miss the incredible soundtrack. Someday when home computers become more powerful and video production software is cheaper and easier to use I'll probably dub the Moroder soundtrack to the Kino video and have the best of both worlds. Until then, the Moroder video isn't that bad, it is about what you would expect from a 70+ year old silent film, but the Kino video, in comparison, is incredible.
And, by the way, the Japanese animated film produced a couple of years ago bears only the most superficial resemblance to the original, I was seriously disappointed.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A great vision gone awry., Nov. 12 2003
By 
James Ferguson (Vilnius, Lithuania) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Metropolis [Import] (DVD)
The saving grace of this version is that it attempts to restore the original vision of Fritz Lang. However, no version will ever be complete since so much of "Metropolis" ended up as scraps on the studio floor with numerous outtakes that will never see the light of day. A good read is Thomas Elsaesser's book on the movie, published by BFI Film Classics.
What one marvels at is Lang's pyrotechnics, which were pretty amazing at the time. The story itself is a rather poor one with over-the-top acting, which was the norm in the age of silent movies. One had to try to connote as much as he could with facial expressions and body language. It is really hard to figure out what all is going on in this movie. But, it has been praised over the years for prophesizing the rise of Hitler.
The movie is ostensibly about a totalitarian state run by an industrialist, John Fredersen, who lives high atop a world built upon layers of society. His son, chasing after a lovely vixen, is made privy to this "underworld" and vows to destroy the great engine of this society, Moloch. But, first he has to get past the evil scientist, Rothwang, who has made his love interest into a robot, which will supposedly placate the masses, which seem ready to revolt. But, Lang didn't seem in control of his vision, as it spins violently out of control leaving as many questions as it does answers.
In its full-length version it is rather boring, and I found myself fast-forwarding through parts which seemed excrutiatingly long-winded. Kind of like reading an Ayn Rand novel. But, the cinematic vision of this futureworld is fantastic, drawing on some of the currents in Modern architecture at the time. Lang's ideas seem to stem more from the rise of Socialism in Europe, than it did the rise of Fascism in Germany. This seemed to be his greatest fear, although he knew to get out of town when Hitler came to power. He politely refusing the Furer's offer to be the chief filmmaker of the Third Reich, and took the next ship to America, where he wasted away his remaining years in Hollywood.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A classic of the genre, beautiful DVD restoration, Oct. 10 2003
By 
Ted (Dallas, TX) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Metropolis [Import] (DVD)
I just saw this DVD last night for my film studies class and I must say that both the movie and the transfer are top quality. Based on the print quality and production values, I would never have guessed that the movie is over 75 years old. There are a few missing scenes, but the titles fill in the gaps unobtrusively.
The story of a priviledged young man who discovers his father's underground empire of mechanization and virtual slavery is complex and engrossing. You can watch this movie from a variety of different viewpoints (economic, political, sci-fi, entertainment) and continuously discover new ideas.
And of course, the allusion to the Italian superspectacle, Cabiria (Moloch), portrays the machines as demanding human sacrifice to provide the life of luxury for those oblivious souls in the city above
My only complaint with the script is the fact that the director overemphasises the moral of "brain and hands must be united by the heart." But this is a minor quibble compared to the gradeur of the movie. I did not have a chance to explore the special features.
I saw quite a few parallels between Metropolis and The Matrix. Not sure if the Wachowski brothers intended this, but it's certainly possible. Common threads: man living in underground cities, man subjugated by machines yet needing them to live, a savior who falls in love with his accomplice in liberating the people...the list goes on.
Truly the definition of a Classic film, right up there with Citizen Kane in its timelessness.
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The Complete Metropolis [Import]
The Complete Metropolis [Import] by Fritz Lang (DVD - 2010)
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