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Metropolis

by

Jeff Nelson

Metropolis is a must-see for all audiences and is highly recommended.

Metropolis
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When viewing older films, they are generally relevant to society in some way, shape or form. Events that have occurred at that time greatly influenced the work of the filmmakers. In 1927, the silent masterpiece known as Metropolis would continue to be relevant in society even in 2012. Unfortunately, a lot of the footage was lost and an incomplete version was released. However, in the summer of 2008, a 16mm negative version of the uncut film was found. More than 25 minutes have been added into Metropolis, although there are still some missing pieces. To replace these spots, the screen goes to black and title cards explain what occurs during those lost sequences. It's delightful that modern audiences are now able to view one of the most iconic films of the silent era.

In the year 2026, when the populace is divided between workers who must live underground and the wealthy, who enjoy a futuristic city of splendor, a man from the upper class abandons his privileged life to join oppressed workers in a revolt. Metropolis deserves much more attention in modern society than it currently possesses. While there isn't any dialogue since this is a silent film, the story is exceptional. It's straight-forward, but it kept me engrossed from start to finish. It's strange how a lot of aspects of this society aren't so different from the year 2012. Despite the fact that this film isn't exactly short, the time spent watching this is definitely worth it. One could depict Metropolis for hours. It has so many themes and inspiration gathered from society that it should most certainly be shown in film schools all around the world. This is a gripping piece of filmmaking that has gotten only stronger with the restored footage. A lot of movies that have a bit of a longer running time are filled with a lot of filler. This fortunately isn't the case with Metropolis. Every minute oozes with originality. The characters and his or her role in society is rather interesting. By the time the ending approached, I found myself overwhelmed as I didn't expect anything to this caliber. I don't know very much about the actors, so I will not be giving that a dedicated portion of this review. However, the acting is solid. They're all equally convincing and perform marvelously with the expressions and displaying his or her character without the use of dialogue.

Currently, audiences have movies such as Avatar to drop jaws from how much money it took to make it to the ultimate outcome of the brilliant visuals. Metropolis is the most expensive movie of its time. For this period, these visuals are top notch. The cinematography is outstanding and all of the visuals overall are extraordinary. The camera work is great and the machine utilized for this movie has become a symbol for not only the movie itself, but has even taken its place in modern society by influencing many modern filmmakers. A lot of the restored prints did have a little bit of damage to them, which is why there are so many scratches and the picture goes a bit soft. However, the bulk of the film was remastered very well. For a movie made so many years ago, it still looks absolutely incredible. To add to that, the audio is spectacular as well. The orchestral score is truly memorable. The visuals here are much better than an average moviegoer would expect.

It's a bit difficult to make Metropolis overrated. It's a masterpiece of the silent film era. A lot of motion pictures that have been released ever since have traces of Metropolis. Whether it be visually or according to the story, this movie has changed filmmaking forever. Thanks for the restoration team, audiences are able to see this brilliant movie with 25 minutes of missing footage. There are so many references to society, one can dissect this one for quite a while. Not only does this film stand as one of the greatest silent movies of all time, but also one of the science fiction features as well. I'm a big fan of silent film, but this took me by surprise. I thought that it was being simply overrated. I was absolutely incorrect with thinking that. Metropolis is a must-see for all audiences and is highly recommended.

My Rating = Five Stars

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