The film Metropolis was way ahead of its time. If you have ever taken a film course or talked film with someone, I’m sure at some point, Metropolis by Fritz Lang has come into play.
Metropolis is a 1920’s sci-fi film set in a future urban dystopian world which explores the social crisis and impact on workers and owners on capitalism.
Now a few years ago, lost footage was found and has been added to the film and the entire film has been remastered in HI-DEF for your viewing pleasure. It was found in South America and contained about 30 minutes of extras footage.
This is also the most expensive silent film ever made. When you watch it, you won’t believe it was made in the 1920’s.
So tonight, if you have TCM on you cable, make sure to record Metropolis for this will be the first wide release of the movie in HI-DEF. The BLURAY will not come out for another couple of weeks.
Here is the press release:
For Release: October 19, 2010
TCM to Present World Television Premiere of Extensively Restored Version Of Fritz Lang’s 1927 Masterpiece Metropolis
This November, Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will present a groundbreaking achievement in filmmaking and film restoration with the world television premiere of the newly restored version of Fritz Lang’s 1927 science-fiction masterpiece Metropolis. This extraordinary new edition of the film, which had its North American theatrical premiere at the TCM Classic Festival in April, features 25 minutes of previously lost scenes, as well as the original Gottfried Huppertz score. Metropolis is slated to premiere on TCM Sunday, Nov. 7, at 8 p.m. (ET), one week before the release of DVD and Blu-ray Disc™ editions from Kino International. TCM’s presentation will be followed at 11 p.m. (ET) by Metropolis Refound (2010), a one-hour documentary about the discovery of new footage.
Metropolis is one of the most memorable films of the silent era and an iconic example of German expressionism. The story takes place in a futuristic, high-tech city ruled by Joh Fredersen (Alfred Abel). Above ground, the city’s elites enjoy all the luxuries imaginable, while underground, serfs labor long, grueling hours to keep the machinery of the city running. A young woman named Maria (Brigitte Helm) takes Fredersen’s naïve son, Freder (Gustav Frölich), down to the catacombs to see the plight of the workers. The inhumanity leads him to rebel against his father and fight to free those who suffer under the city’s streets. When Fredersen discovers his son’s betrayal, he seeks help from an old friend-turned-rival, the scientist Rotwang (Rudolf Klein-Rogge), who has created a female robot that can be used to suppress the coming worker rebellion. But Rotwang has an agenda of his own that could result in the destruction of the entire city.
Metropolis took director Fritz Lang two years to complete and soared past its original budget. Lang shot more than 1.3 million meters of footage and used 36,000 extras, including 750 children.
When Metropolis premiered in 1927, it was mildly successful, in part because its extreme length (204 minutes) made it difficult to screen. Distributors began using severely truncated versions, many of which mangled plot and character elements. Over time, only the edited versions remained in circulation, and Lang’s original vision was believed lost forever.
The restoration of Metropolis began in summer 2008, when the curator of the Buenos Aires Museo del Cine discovered a 16mm negative of the film, including 25 minutes – one fifth of the entire film – that had not been seen since the 1927 Berlin premiere. Although it didn’t include all of Lang’s original version, it was the most complete print of the film ever found.
The discovery prompted a new restoration and reconstruction project, headed by Anke Wilkening of the Murnau Stiftung (Murnau Foundation), which serves as caretaker for virtually all pre-1945 German films, and Martin Koerber, film department curator of the Deutche Kinemateque. Acclaimed German conductor and arranger Frank Stoebel, who has worked extensively with music for silent films, adapted the Huppertz score.
The newly reconstructed, 147-minute version of Metropolis features extensive scenes that flesh out many of the supporting characters, fill in jarring gaps in the plot and provide additional back story. The restoration premiered on Feb. 12, 2010, at the Berlin Film Festival. It made its North American debut on April 25, 2010, in Hollywood as part of the first-ever TCM Classic Film Festival.
Kino International will release The Complete Metropolis on Blu-Ray and two-disc DVD Tuesday, Nov. 16. Both formats are available for pre-order from TCM’s online store at http://tcm.com/shop.
About Turner Classic Movies (TCM)
Turner Classic Movies is a Peabody Award-winning network that presents great films, uncut and commercial-free, from the largest film libraries in the world. Currently seen in more than 85 million homes, TCM features the insights of veteran primetime host Robert Osborne and weekend daytime host Ben Mankiewicz, plus interviews with a wide range of special guests. As the foremost authority in classic films, TCM offers critically acclaimed original documentaries and specials, along with regular programming events that include The Essentials, 31 Days of Oscar and Summer Under the Stars. TCM also stages special events and screenings, such as the TCM Classic Film Festival in Hollywood ; produces a wide range of media about classic film, including books and DVDs; and hosts a wealth of materials at its Web site, www.tcm.com. TCM is part of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner company.
Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner company, creates and programs branded news, entertainment, animation and young adult media environments on television and other platforms for consumers around the world.
Make sure you see it and if you want, the links are below to purchase the film.