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REVIEW: Metropolis BD+DVD




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GeorgeC



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
Posts: 682
PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2018 10:34 am Reply with quote
Ummm...

This is actually the THIRD release of Metropolis on Blu ray in the States/North America.
Sony did a BD-R through their online print-order program (equivalent to the Warner Archive which by the way presses all its Blu ray discs including Warner animation titles).
They sublicensed Metropolis to Mill Creek which did an exclusive Blu ray release for Wal Mart which was barebones -- it was movie-only with both audio tracks.
The US steelbook is the THIRD release overall in North America and Mill Creek's second edition of Metropolis.
What it looks like Mill Creek did here was just reprint the BD edition they created for Wal Mart and then essentially replicated the previous DVD with the special extras on the same disc. So, in other words they recreated the 2000s release all on the same DVD instead of splitting between a 5-inch feature disc and a mini-DVD (special features disc) like the original Metropolis DVD release in the States was.

On the British import release of Metropolis, the extras were put on the main feature BD disc and it was the same mini-documentaries and other extras that were on the mini-disc that came with the original Metropolis DVD release in Region 1 back in the early 2000s (2002?). I kept my original DVD release so I wasn't miffed that the British steelbook came with a DVD (Region 2) that was unplayable on my machines. The British BD itself IS compatible on Region A players; it was soft-coded for security. It was advertised as Region B but early importers found out quickly it played without issues on Region A/American BD Players.

The video master for Metropolis has always been messed up and Sony has NEVER done a proper HD remaster of this movie because it's not a perennial best-seller like The Fifth Element which has had AT LEAST 4 HD remasters -- 3 Blu ray, the fourth for the 4K Blu release. That film pays for itself. Nobody at Sony has faith Metropolis is worth the remaster which is why we're stuck with what looks like an upscale of the DVD master tape.

Yes, everybody's noticed the banding that occurs in some scenes. It's on every Blu ray release of Metropolis because every company that's done a Metropolis (anime) BD has been forced to use the same flawed video master.

The Metropolis anime IS based on the Fritz Lang silent movie classic. It's obvious Tezuka used that as the basis for his manga. The ideas of revolt and an out-of-control creation (artificial woman) and industrialist ambitions are the common themes in both the anime and original silent classic. They complement each other well, actually, and both are films worth seeing.
The anime feature is a loose adaptation of the manga. The Tima arc is in the manga and there's an additional scene that was inexplicably cut from the original US release that I saw in the British BD release. Yes, I'm a nut -- I have both Blu ray steelbook editions. I DO think the British BD had the better steelbook edition as far as the casing was concerned. The choice of art and color of the steelbook were nicer on the British edition as far as I'm concerned.
The Metropolis anime is probably one of the prettier anime features in at least the last 25 years, I'd say closer to 30 years.
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LegitPancake



Joined: 26 Jun 2017
Posts: 492
Location: Texas, USA
PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2018 11:02 am Reply with quote
GeorgeC wrote:
On the British import release of Metropolis, the extras were put on the main feature BD disc and it was the same mini-documentaries and other extras that were on the mini-disc that came with the original Metropolis DVD release in Region 1 back in the early 2000s (2002?). I kept my original DVD release so I wasn't miffed that the British steelbook came with a DVD (Region 2) that was unplayable on my machines. The British BD itself IS compatible on Region A players; it was soft-coded for security. It was advertised as Region B but early importers found out quickly it played without issues on Region A/American BD Players.

...

The anime feature is a loose adaptation of the manga. The Tima arc is in the manga and there's an additional scene that was inexplicably cut from the original US release that I saw in the British BD release. Yes, I'm a nut -- I have both Blu ray steelbook editions. I DO think the British BD had the better steelbook edition as far as the casing was concerned. The choice of art and color of the steelbook were nicer on the British edition as far as I'm concerned.

I see a rather inexpensive standard BD/DVD combo on Amazon UK (not steelbook). Is that one the same disks as the steelbook? I’ve never seen this movie, but wouldn’t mind importing it for 14 bucks, especially if it’ll work in the US. I have a region-free player just in case, though.

GeorgeC wrote:
The Metropolis anime is probably one of the prettier anime features in at least the last 25 years, I'd say closer to 30 years.

Hmm. I find that hard to believe after watching Akira, Redline, and Your Name on bluray, but I guess I’ll see in a few weeks!
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
Posts: 2241
PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2018 11:52 am Reply with quote
Yeah I remember it being mesmerizingly beautiful but the plot kinda going in circle for most of the movie (never watched the original so I can't say if it's the fault of the adaptation), although I didn't mind too much cause just watching the background was enough to make it worth it all.
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Zin5ki
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Joined: 06 Jan 2008
Posts: 6651
Location: London, UK
PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2018 12:25 pm Reply with quote
I always vowed that I would never upgrade to a Blu-Ray player until this film was available on such a format, a task I finally performed in the form of a used PS3. My only criticism about the new US release is the choice of the cover illustration. spoiler[It is the most memorable scene of the film by far, but is it typical for a story's climax to be used for the box art? I am glad that the UK release opted to use a more abstract image from the Japanese theatre programme.]
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Triltaison



Joined: 03 Jul 2011
Posts: 260
PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2018 3:43 pm Reply with quote
Zin5ki wrote:
spoiler[It is the most memorable scene of the film by far, but is it typical for a story's climax to be used for the box art?]


Sadly, it happens quite a lot now. Try looking up covers for Planet of the Apes and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. It seems like Steelbook releases do this more often (presumably targeting people who have already seen the film with a memorable scene) in a slightly fancier edition, like the (admittedly gorgeous) art Alex Ross did for the Universal monster movies. Frankenstein is a good example of those.
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gpanthony



Joined: 18 Dec 2013
Posts: 121
PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2018 3:55 pm Reply with quote
GeorgeC wrote:
Ummm...

This is actually the THIRD release of Metropolis on Blu ray in the States/North America.
Sony did a BD-R through their online print-order program (equivalent to the Warner Archive which by the way presses all its Blu ray discs including Warner animation titles).
They sublicensed Metropolis to Mill Creek which did an exclusive Blu ray release for Wal Mart which was barebones -- it was movie-only with both audio tracks.
The US steelbook is the THIRD release overall in North America and Mill Creek's second edition of Metropolis.
What it looks like Mill Creek did here was just reprint the BD edition they created for Wal Mart and then essentially replicated the previous DVD with the special extras on the same disc. So, in other words they recreated the 2000s release all on the same DVD instead of splitting between a 5-inch feature disc and a mini-DVD (special features disc) like the original Metropolis DVD release in the States was.

On the British import release of Metropolis, the extras were put on the main feature BD disc and it was the same mini-documentaries and other extras that were on the mini-disc that came with the original Metropolis DVD release in Region 1 back in the early 2000s (2002?). I kept my original DVD release so I wasn't miffed that the British steelbook came with a DVD (Region 2) that was unplayable on my machines. The British BD itself IS compatible on Region A players; it was soft-coded for security. It was advertised as Region B but early importers found out quickly it played without issues on Region A/American BD Players.

The video master for Metropolis has always been messed up and Sony has NEVER done a proper HD remaster of this movie because it's not a perennial best-seller like The Fifth Element which has had AT LEAST 4 HD remasters -- 3 Blu ray, the fourth for the 4K Blu release. That film pays for itself. Nobody at Sony has faith Metropolis is worth the remaster which is why we're stuck with what looks like an upscale of the DVD master tape.

Yes, everybody's noticed the banding that occurs in some scenes. It's on every Blu ray release of Metropolis because every company that's done a Metropolis (anime) BD has been forced to use the same flawed video master.

The Metropolis anime IS based on the Fritz Lang silent movie classic. It's obvious Tezuka used that as the basis for his manga. The ideas of revolt and an out-of-control creation (artificial woman) and industrialist ambitions are the common themes in both the anime and original silent classic. They complement each other well, actually, and both are films worth seeing.
The anime feature is a loose adaptation of the manga. The Tima arc is in the manga and there's an additional scene that was inexplicably cut from the original US release that I saw in the British BD release. Yes, I'm a nut -- I have both Blu ray steelbook editions. I DO think the British BD had the better steelbook edition as far as the casing was concerned. The choice of art and color of the steelbook were nicer on the British edition as far as I'm concerned.
The Metropolis anime is probably one of the prettier anime features in at least the last 25 years, I'd say closer to 30 years.


Does this latest blu ray have the after credits illustration? I hated the US release so much because it cut the illustration from the theatrical and DVD versions.
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James_Beckett



Joined: 23 Nov 2015
Posts: 170
Location: USA
PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2018 4:14 pm Reply with quote
gpanthony wrote:


Does this latest blu ray have the after credits illustration? I hated the US release so much because it cut the illustration from the theatrical and DVD versions.


Yup, it's there!
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gpanthony



Joined: 18 Dec 2013
Posts: 121
PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2018 4:41 pm Reply with quote
James_Beckett wrote:
gpanthony wrote:


Does this latest blu ray have the after credits illustration? I hated the US release so much because it cut the illustration from the theatrical and DVD versions.


Yup, it's there!


Cool! Thanks for the reply on that!
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AiddonValentine



Joined: 07 Aug 2006
Posts: 1461
PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2018 11:48 pm Reply with quote
James_Beckett wrote:
gpanthony wrote:


Does this latest blu ray have the after credits illustration? I hated the US release so much because it cut the illustration from the theatrical and DVD versions.


Yup, it's there!


Well alright then. When I discovered that there was a cut illustration that is supposed to show what happened afterward, I was STUNNED. Good to see it's been restored
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Top Gun



Joined: 28 Sep 2007
Posts: 3148
PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2018 12:42 am Reply with quote
I've loved this movie ever since [adult swim] aired it many years ago. I have both the original DVD release and the plays-in-region-A UK Blu-ray, but I may have to triple-dip just to show some support for it getting re-released domestically.
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jdnation



Joined: 15 May 2007
Posts: 872
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2018 1:05 pm Reply with quote
LegitPancake wrote:
GeorgeC wrote:
The Metropolis anime is probably one of the prettier anime features in at least the last 25 years, I'd say closer to 30 years.

Hmm. I find that hard to believe after watching Akira, Redline, and Your Name on bluray, but I guess I’ll see in a few weeks!


Oh yes it is! I have the DVD version. It is definitely one of the best animated films ever made, and not just limited to anime, but worldwide. A great mix of 2D/3D aesthetic. Simply outstanding!

Now I didn't know about there being a missing illustration from after the credits... Hmmm, maybe I should double dip on the blu-ray?
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Cardcaptor Takato



Joined: 27 Jan 2018
Posts: 800
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2018 9:10 pm Reply with quote
I haven't seen Metropolis since late high school but I always loved this movie. The animation was a visual feast for the eyes and I personally always liked the story, especially it's themes about the roboticization of the work force and how this would effect manual labor. Somehow this theme seems even more relevant in modern times than it did when this movie came out. I've also always enjoyed the English dub and Kenichi has always been one of my favorite of Brianne Siddall's voice acting performances.
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