Fritz Lang’s Fully Restored Metropolis

I’m still buzzing from the cinematic experience I had last night. As promised, I caught one of the last screenings here of the 2010 restored version of Fritz Lang’s Metropolis. There is so many layers of awesome to digest, and it’s about damn time I feasted on this, the greatest silent film in history.

First of all, seeing this in Portland’s Cinema 21 was a huge factor in the enjoyment. The theater is a modernized version of an old town cinema, with one glorious screen (cloaked and bathed in red before the movies start), friendly mature staff, and relatively cheap refreshments.

Secondly, the film is a recent restoration including 25 minutes of footage from the original film thought to be lost. It was damaged, but digital technology improved it for inclusion. The result is pristine shots interspersed with grainy scenes, but it’s a minor, understandable annoyance. One whole action scene is part of that footage, so that must be exciting for those who’ve seen the chopped up version.

For 2.5 hours, I was transfixed, my eyes agog at the brilliant cinematography, my ears delighting in Gottfried Huppert’s sweeping score, and my mind slipping into this imaginative, allegorical story with ease. I’m thrilled to have this one in my “Seen” pile, and can’t wait to see it again.

Check out the Official Website for more info and photos like the one above (Kino International)

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