Billy Soistmann

Metropolis Restoration

In 1927, Berlin, Classics, Coming Soon, Distribution, Festivals, Fritz Lang, Home Entertainment, News, Silent on February 11, 2010 at 7:45 PM

Exciting news on the film restoration front. Metropolis, Fritz Lang’s 1927 silent classic will be screening at the Berlin International Film Festival Friday night in a new, restored cut.

In July, 2008, film experts discovered a 16 mm reduction of the original cut of the film in Argentina that ran over 210 minutes. As of that time, the best version available was a 126 minute cut available on DVD, but now, after extensive restoration, the film will be shown on the big screen once again.

The current version is much closer to the original cut, although one scene was too badly damaged. Unfortunately, I have never seen the film, but this is an extremely important find for cinema. As a cinephile, it really excites me that such a classic film that once was lost can now be enjoyed in its original form.

As many of us in the states cannot make a trip to Germany for the première, there is hope. It will be broadcast on ARTE in Germany and France, so if you can get that somehow, you can see it that way. Even better, Roger Ebert is reporting that the film will be streamed on the internet via http://j.mp/9SS92S, http://j.mp/9W8Pua, or http://j.mp/dhktCR. At this point, it is unclear which link will be streaming it, but we’ll have to wait and see.

The show starts at 8:15 PM Europe time and the film premieres at 8:40, so tune in around 2:15 Eastern Time. I won’t be able to be there at that time, but I have a friend in Germany who I think can tape it for me.

Hopefully, we will all be able to see this classic film in this new form very soon.

Thanks to Roger Ebert for the tip, via Twitter.

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