Metropolis (Reconstructed... View large image

Film Details

Directed by: Fritz Lang

Produced: 1926

Countries & Regions: Germany

DVD Details

Certificate: PG

Length: 150 mins

Format: DVD

Region: Region 2

Released: 22 November 2010

Cat No: EKA40321

Extras:
Languages(s): English
Interactive Menu
Screen ratio 1:Other

Moviemail Details

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Metropolis (Reconstructed & Restored) (Masters of Cinema)

Cast: Alfred Abel , Brigitte Helm , Rudolf Klein-Rogge , Gustav Frohlich , Fritz Rasp , Georg John , Theodore Loos , Gustav Frolich , Heinrich George , Olaf Storm , Hanns Leo Reich , Margaretta Lanner , Heinrich Gotho , Walter Kohle

DVD
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Restored version of the Fritz Lang classic containing an extra 25 minutes of new footage previously thought lost. Lang’s acclaimed vision... Read More

£23.48

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Restored version of the Fritz Lang classic containing an extra 25 minutes of new footage previously thought lost. Lang’s acclaimed vision of a 21st century city is widely held to be one of the greatest films of the silent era. In the year 2000, industrialist John Frederson (Alfred Abel) rules over a giant city where the workers exist only as an underclass. They call for rebellion, but their leader Maria (Brigitte Helm) urges them to wait for a mediator. When Frederson kidnaps Maria and replaces her with a robot replica, the workers are incited to revolt.

The breath-taking, nightmarish cityscape, inspired by the towering Manhattan skyline, attests to Langs artistic vision. Here is the maddest of mad scientists, a welter of mythological symbolism, and a robot that is both alarmingly sexual, and the forerunner of the prissy C-3PO. Whether taken as a humanistic political tract or simply a lavish and thrilling spectacle, this is something that nobody with even the faintest interest in the genre, in silent cinema, or in film itself, should fail to see.

Fritz Lang’s Metropolis was a landmark in film history and had a huge influence on the development of science fiction and fantasy films (think Blade Runner, Star Wars and Batman for example).

It is also a terrifically enjoyable film with a great story, based on the novel by Mrs Lang – Thea Von Harbour, full of excitement, romance, amazing special effects and set designs to die for. This restoration, initiated by the Friedrich-Wilhelm-Murnau-Stiftung was shown at the Berlin Film Festival to wide acclaim and is accompanied by the original 1920’s score written by Gottfried Huppertz.

Metropolis was conceived as a mega project with a length of 153 mins at its premier in January 1927. However it failed at the box office and was cut to a more modest size in the USA by Paramount with the playwright Channing Pollack, and then again in Germany by UFA, the German production company.

This version, lovingly pieced together by various film archives, gets very close to the original story and gives the best possible picture. It is now possible to view Metropolis again with much of the original sequencing and a photographic quality near to that of the 1927 premiere.

Watch it and marvel.

It’s strange to think that one of the best-loved silent films, Fritz Lang’s dystopic vision of a future society, has until now only been available in a heavily edited and confusing version.

But thanks to a miraculous discovery of 25 minutes of lost footage, it can now be seen almost in its entirety for the first time since 1927. The added material expands three sub-plots which cast new light on the power struggles in the city, and also ups the action movie quotient.

But the film’s principal pleasures remain the same: the vast sets and extraordinary production design, Lang’s depiction of factory workers reduced to a macabre dance of robotic movements that became the definitive representation of the mechanised world, and best of all, Brigitte Helm, playing both the saintly Maria and her diabolical robot double who whips high society into a frenzy with her ‘Whore of Babylon’ dance routine.

Seldom have sci-fi and the erotic blended so successfully.

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