*metropolis

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Fighting for truth, justice and the people of Metropolis is a bit harder these days for a powerless Superman. Jason speaks with ACTION COMICS writer Greg Pak about where the story is going, and what we can expect from the newest woman in Superman’s life.

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METROPOLIS
(1927) Dir. Fritz Lang (Giorgio Moroder version - 1984)

With wild color tinting, sci fi sound effects, and Giorgio Moroder’s great 80s rock soundtrack (w/ Pat Benatar and Queen among others comes) this continues the FANTASIA style protean music video narrative; I like this version way better than the digitally restored super long version (also on Streaming) thatgot a theatrical release back in ‘05, which has a classical score, because frankly, I think Lang would have roared in approval to see his 1927 sci fi parable turned into a stoner (the dark outlines dividing some of the color restoration give a HEAVY METAL-Ralph Bakshi rotoscope vibe) rock musical (the workers get grand pop anthems like a FLASHDANCE steel mill, and the whole upper class brothel debut of the robot Maria is given growling rock authority via Bonnie Tyler’s “Sweet Jane”-chorded “Here She Comes”). 

If Lang could see the genius in Jess Franco’s SUCCUBUS, he could see  Moroder’s grandiloquent disco cocaine-shiver synth 80s synth grandeur is the perfect fit for his cast’s Weimar era’s rabid frothing-at-the-mouth acting style and the sped-up herky-jerk of Karl Freund’s silent 'crank’ camera. If only all silent sci fi films were given such loving attention from synthesizer-twiddling Italian disco composers! You’ll be wondering where lurketh thy holy copy of 1980’s FLASH GORDON after this, for the two would be a great double bill. Some detractors say the story’s harder to follow this way, I say those people are just not high enough, and neither is their stereo volume. If possible, see it at a college revival in 1987. 

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The original premiere cut of Metropolis eventually disappeared, and a quarter of the original film was long believed to be lost forever. However on July 1st 2008, film experts in Berlin announced that a 16 mm reduction negative of the original cut of the film had been discovered in the archives of the Museo del Cine in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Along with additional footage found in New Zealand, a long restoration process began. The fully restored film was finally shown on large screens in Berlin and Frankfurt simultaneously on February 12th 2010