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Metropolis [Reconstructed & Restored] (Masters of Cinema) Limited Edition Dual Format Steelbook [Blu-ray & DVD] [1927]

Alfred Abel , Gustav Fröhlich , Fritz Lang    Parental Guidance   Blu-ray
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (141 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Actors: Alfred Abel, Gustav Fröhlich, Brigitte Helm
  • Directors: Fritz Lang
  • Format: DVD+Blu-ray
  • Region: Region B/2 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Eureka Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 22 Nov 2010
  • Run Time: 150 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (141 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0041SMF5A
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 47,351 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

From Amazon.co.uk

If you think you know Fritz Lang's Metropolis backwards, this special edition will come as a revelation. Shortly after its premiere, the expensive epic--originally well over two hours--was pulled from distribution and re-edited against Lang's wishes, and this truncated, simplified form is what we have known ever since 1926. Though not quite as fully restored as the strapline claims, this 118-minute version is the closest we are likely to get to Lang's original vision, complete with tactful linking titles to fill in the scenes that are irretrievably missing. Not only does this version add many scenes unseen for decades, but it restores their order in the original version.

Until now, Metropolis has usually been rated as a spectacular but simplistic science fiction film, but this version reveals that the futuristic setting is not so much prophetic as mythical, with elements of 1920s architecture, industry, design and politics mingled with the mediaeval and the Biblical to produce images of striking strangeness: a futuristic robot burned at the stake, a steel-handed mad scientist who is also a 15th Century alchemist, the trudging workers of a vast factory plodding into the jaws of a machine that is also the ancient God Moloch. Gustav Frohlich's performance as the hero who represents the heart is still wildly overdone, but Rudolf Klein-Rogge's engineer Rotwang, Alfred Abel's Master of Metropolis and, especially, Brigitte Helm in the dual role of saintly saviour and metal femme fatale are astonishing. By restoring a great deal of story delving into the mixed motivations of the characters, the wild plot now makes more sense, and we can see that it is as much a twisted family drama as epic of repression, revolution and reconciliation. A masterpiece, and an essential purchase.

On the DVD: Metropolis has been saddled with all manner of scores over the years, ranging from jazz through electronica to prog-rock, but here it is sensibly accompanied by the orchestral music Gottfried Huppertz wrote for it in the first place. An enormous amount of work has been done with damaged or incomplete elements to spruce the image up digitally, and so even the scenes that were in the film all along shine with a wealth of new detail and afford a far greater appreciation for the brilliance of art direction, special effects and Helm's clockwork sexbomb.

A commentary written but not delivered by historian Ennio Patalas covers the symbolism of the film and annotates its images, but the production information is left to a measured but unchallenging 45-minute documentary on the second disc (little is made of the astounding parallel between the screen story in which Klein-Rogge's character tries to destroy the city because the Master stole his wife and the fact that Lang married the actor's wife Thea von Harbou, authoress of the Metropolis novel and screenplay!). There are galleries of production photographs and sketches; biographies of all the principals; and an illustrated lecture on the restoration process which uses before and after clips to reveal just how huge a task has been accomplished in this important work. --Kim Newman

Product Description

With its dizzying depiction of a futuristic cityscape and alluring female robot, Metropolis is among the most famous of all German films and the mother of sci-fi cinema (an influence on Blade Runner and Star Wars, among countless other films). Directed by the legendary Fritz Lang (M, Das Testament des Dr. Mabuse,The Big Heat, etc.), its jaw-dropping production values, iconic imagery, and modernist grandeur it was described by Luis Buñuel as 'a captivating symphony of movement' remain as powerful as ever.

Drawing on and defining classic sci-fi themes, Metropolis depicts a dystopian future in which society is thoroughly divided in two: while anonymous workers conduct their endless drudgery below ground their rulers enjoy a decadent life of leisure and luxury. When Freder (Gustav Fröhlich) ventures into the depths in search of the beautiful Maria (Brigitte Helm in her debut role), plans of rebellion are revealed and a Maria-replica robot is programmed by mad inventor Rotwang (Rudolf Klein-Rogge) and master of Metropolis Joh Fredersen (Alfred Abel) to incite the workers into a self-destructive riot.

A'Holy Grail' among film finds, Metropolis is presented here in a newly reconstructed and restored version, as lavish and spectacular as ever thanks to the painstaking archival work of the Friedrich-Wilhelm-Murnau-Stiftung and the discovery of 25 minutes of footage previously thought lost to the world. Lang's enduring epic can finally be seen for the first time in 83 years as the director originally intended, and as seen by German cinema-goers in 1927.

SPECIAL FEATURES:
150-minute reconstructed and restored 2010 version (including 25 minutes of footage previously thought lost to the world)
- Wraparound embossed sleeve
- Pristine new HD transfer (1080p on Blu-ray)
- New 2010 symphony orchestra studio recording of the original 1927 Gottfried Huppertz score in 5.1
- Newly translated optional English subtitles as well as the original German intertitles
- Full-length audio commentary by David Kalat and Jonathan Rosenbaum
- Die Reise nach Metropolis (2010, 53 minutes), a documentary about the film
- 2010 re-release trailer
- 56-page booklet featuring archival interviews with Fritz Lang, a 1927 review by Luis Buñuel, articles by Jonathan Rosenbaum and Karen Naundorf, and restoration notes by Martin Koerber.
and more!


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
102 of 103 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Metropolis, 2010 - A Classic Rediscovered 11 Sep 2010
By M
Format:Blu-ray
I recently saw this newly restored version of Metropolis at Chichester Film Festival (in a Blue Ray presentation) and cannot recommend it highly enough - whether you know this film or not it should be seen. The inclusion of the previously missing 25 minutes (easily noticed due to the poor state of the source material) makes an enormous difference to the film, significantly changing the story line and the overall feel of the film. The poor quality of the inserted film does not diminish its importance and effect (ranging from a few seconds here and there, to whole scenes) but combines to effectively make a new film - or more accurately the resurrection of a lost one (the original 1927 premiered cut). Of course this version does not affect the obvious faults of the film but certainly makes for a more satisfying experience - it completes (apart from about 4 minutes apparently) and confirms the place this film has in the history of cinema. Whether you are interested in silent movies (then I'd highly recommend PiccadillyPiccadilly [1929] [DVD]), the development of cinema (then you should also see Fritz Lang's MM [Masters of Cinema] [Blu-ray] [1931]), special effects (and what incredible effects!) or the history of science fiction on film, this version must be seen.
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41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sci-Fi? It All Starts Here. 19 Nov 2010
By Brady Orme VINE VOICE
Format:Blu-ray
Don't take the title literally, of course cinematic Sci-Fi existed before Fritz Lang filmed METROPOLIS... However, for most people the Sci-Fi we enjoy today have this film as their Primer so basically yes, this is where it all began. Having been a fan of the film for years I was lucky enough to receive my limited-edition Steelbook early from Eureka! themselves, so I can report exactly how this film looks in 1080p, and the extras it contains.

Firstly, it's a print that is comprised of many different sources so don't expect a pristine experience from start to finish... the original METROPOLIS that premiered in Germany was 40 minutes longer than the version most commonly seen (I'm going to forget Giorgio Moroder's synth-pop mutation ever existed, thanks), which was butchered and truncated after bombing at the box-office. Thanks to a recent discovery of an almost-complete print in Buenos Aires F.W. Murnau-Stiftung in Munich was able to take the extra footage from this print, splice it in to the familiar version and presto... Cinema History back where it belongs. It must be remembered however, that the Buenos Aires print was in exceptionally poor condition and it shows when these frames are shown, and a scene detailing Maria's escape from Rotwang is still absent and is simply narrated via text... But so what? The film is 83 years old and it's a privilege to see it again, especially if we remember that we may have never gotten the chance to see it.

Extras-wise, I found the extras on the Blu-Ray slightly lacking from MOCs usual banquet, comprising of a commentary, trailer and German documentary on history of the film and it's restoration. This could be due to the size of the high-definition movie file however.
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64 of 66 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb restoration of Lang Masterpiece 12 April 2006
By Amazon Customer TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
Metropolis as originally conceived by Fritz Lang only survived a short premiere run at one Berlin cinema after which it was withdrawn and the negative sent for re-editing to Paramount the Holly wood associates of the German UFA company.

Paramount considered Metropolis incomprehensible and created a new simplified plot line discarding twenty five percent of the film, and for over fifty years this was the only version available. The vast majority of the missing material is now considered lost forever.

However as a result of research in the 1990s it was possible to definitively reconstruct the plot and the current restoration incorporating all the available material was undertaken. The missing sections of the film are narrated by means of the original captions for the missing sections and additional notes. In addition there is an excellent commentary filling in the gaps.

So at last we can see Lang's original 1927 vision of a horrific future with a favoured elite living on the surface of the earth enjoying a life of luxury, and a vast army of nameless workers living in a grim underground city toiling ten hour shifts.

Freder (Gustav Frolich) son of the ruler of Metropolis and one of the favoured elite investigates the plight of the workers and is so horrified decides to do something about it, and falls in love with Maria (Brigitte Helm) who gives a stunning performance in her first film role. Maria is a leader of the workers seeking justice for them by mediation and sees Freder as the mediator. A major sub plot is the enmity between the ruler (Alfred Abel) and Rotwang (Rudolph Klein-Rogge) who is attempting to create a mechanical version of the dead woman they both loved.
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259 of 271 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazon.confused 4 Nov 2010
Format:Blu-ray
How do you get a balanced review of a new release when Amazon bundle old reviews of the DVD version (as old as 2001 !!!) with the new ones. CHUMPS. Get your act together Amazon this is a frequent fault.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Format:Blu-ray
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[I've added some photos to the item page showing the steelbook packaging and the internal arrangement/contents]

There is a dedicated website about this new edition. I have added the URL for it as an Amazon 'Customer Discussion' post on the item page (as reviews cannot contain external Internet links).
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This is a German film originating from 1927, so obviously is filmed in black-and-white and it relies on dialogue 'frames' interjected into the footage and a musical soundtrack to emphasise what occurs. Considering when it was made it is extremely innovative with the futuristic depiction and the grand/often complicated production aspects.

Being interested in it but not having watched the film before I pre-ordered this steelbook Blu-ray/DVD combination as the previews stated that, considering how many different iterations have been issued beforehand, it was likely to be about as good as we can get for completeness, restoration quality and originality (especially regarding the musical soundtrack). Whilst a bit pricey, this Limited Edition issue can be considered something of a treasured investment, not just for the updates but because of the 'package' as a whole. On Blu-ray the basic 'stock' of the film looks very good and the audio is quite superb if you can exploit properly the DTS HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack. In comparison to the DVD version there is an improvement for the picture, but the difference is especially significant for the audio presentation.

For the uninitiated, the (very) basics of the plot are that a father (who is the master of 'Metropolis') and son are at odds with each other, with the son unhappy with the way the workers of the city are treated; ultimately, he sets out on a path of rebellion on their behalf.....
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A clasic film.
An early silent classic restored with extra scenes put back in. If you like silent films buy this DVD.
Published 5 days ago by Mr. J. G. Malone
3.0 out of 5 stars This review is for the GIORGIO MORODER version of Metropolis, but will...
In case you're not aware, Amazon have a practice of placing reviews for any one video release of a film on the page for every other release of that film, regardless of how... Read more
Published 14 days ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars The classic that keeps giving!
For a silent, this has in many ways remained timeless. Themes of class war, oppression, power and science - as well as the inevitable romantic sub-plot - still remain relevant... Read more
Published 20 days ago by dwwray1
5.0 out of 5 stars fantsatic
this is really brilliant this is a piece of history restored some of it thought lost.it really goes to show what a genius Fritz Lang was in hes direction.
Published 29 days ago by Mr. R. Jolliffe
5.0 out of 5 stars Metropolis rediscovered!
This is the perfect treat for cinema lovers: this fantastic movie which was well ahead its time in a never-before-seen version with 25 minutes of extra footage and a great... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Alessandra
5.0 out of 5 stars Spell-binding
I had this version on video years ago, and have spent a very long time trying to find it on DVD.

I think it's the only silent film I've watched from start to finish. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Jonathan
5.0 out of 5 stars A++
excelent very happy with the service i hadnt seen the film all the way through befor only little clips nice to see everything
Published 2 months ago by mr m temple
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Service
I ordered this DVD over the Easter holidays, it came within a few days. I don't usually write comments, but I was so impressed with the speed at which Metropolis was sent, I had... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mrs Illyana Angele
1.0 out of 5 stars METROPOLIS SHOULD ONLY BE SEEN IN THE CLASSROOM
THIS FILM IS FOR PRETENTIOUS FILM BUFFS, WHO LOVE THE SMELL OF THEIR OWN FARTS, LETS FACE IT THIS FILM IS A HEAD ACHE AT BEST, WITH TERRIBLE MUSIC, AND A BAD PICTURE TO BOOT. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Kathleen Daly
5.0 out of 5 stars The large vision of 'Metropolis'
Of its kind - silent and exploring new perspectives on the world along with age-old problems of exploitation and greed - 'Metropolis' is outstanding. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Petronella
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