Mr. Arkadin wrote:
MichiganJ wrote:But while artists can work with limitations and constrictions, and often produce masterpieces, putting those restrictions on them means they cannot produce the work they would really want to.
That happened before and after the code and is till going on today. Film (and other art) is often altered for many reasons, not least of which is the idea of commercial appeal. A perfect example of this is Blade Runner
(1982), where frightened investors demanded cuts, voice-over, and a new "happy" ending, because they had invested twenty million dollars (an unheard of sum at that time) and wanted to make sure they recouped their returns. In other instances, it's the working with different people who don't share the same goal, or perhaps have a completely opposing view, where the only solution is compromise. While we can discuss the idea of what Notorious might
have been, we cannot really say if the result would actually be a better film because it simply does not exist. All the "director cuts" floating around these days give us access to undiluted visions and the results are often mixed for me. In some cases (like my namesake Mr. Arkadin
), they make a disjointed mess watchable and entertaining (as well as coherent), in others (Amadeus
 is a good example), I find them excessive and pointless.
I think there is a big difference between an anonymous board censoring and the purse string holders censoring. One has the power to determine what is acceptable and unacceptable for society, while the other is protecting an investment. In the case of the latter, both artist and patron agree on terms; final cut for instance. With Breen and MPAA, there is no agreement. They can rate a film any way they want.
In the case of Blade Runner
, Scott did not have final cut and the powers that be thought they had a turkey on their hands, so they re-edited, and created said turkey. Home video had the executives seeing green and created a "Director's Cut." Never sated with Scott's films, the studio saw another chance to make dough and thus, Scott's "Final Cut."
Film history is littered with studios and executives monkeying around with a film to make it "better." There's a whole book about Terry Gilliam's Brazil
In both Blade Runner
, it was the money men who demanded the happy endings. That's unfortunate and short-sighted, but it's their money and their film.
It was the Breen office that demanded the happy ending for Notorious
As I said, to me there is a big difference.
RedRiver wrote:I don't watch director's cuts or additional footage. They may very well be superior to the mainstream release. But I like to experience the project that has been dropped into history. For better or worse.
Most theatrical releases are the director's "approved" cut. The advent of home video begot The Director's Cut, Extended Edition and Special Edition, all generally meaning extra footage has been added to a film, with or without the actual director's participation. Sometimes it simply means an alternate cut of a film. Some are better, some are worse. I prefer the Extended "Bootleg Edition" of Crowe's Almost Famous
, but the original theatrical release was Crowe's, approved director's cut.
"Let's be independent together." Dr. Hermey DDS