Big Screen Classics

Giorgio Moroder presents METROPOLIS

Director Fritz Lang
Year 1927
Starring Gustav Fröhlich, Brigitte Helm
Run Time 80min
More Info IMDb

It’s 2026 and wealthy industrialists rule the vast city of Metropolis while the lower class toils away in the underground to keep the city’s power running. The Master of Metropolis’s son, Freder, follows the beautiful underground-dweller, Maria, under the city, where he is exposed to the horrors of life below his privileged world up top. Maria prophecies of a great mediator who will come and bring the two classes together, but when Freder’s father learns of this he aims to destroy Maria and any uprising that may occur.


When METROPOLIS was originally released in 1927 people didn’t understand it. German expressionistic science-fiction wasn’t exactly a hot genre at the time, and the film’s long runtime and forced censors caused a hack-and-slash cut that left the world without Fritz Lang’s true vision.


It wasn’t until 1984 that music producer Giorgio Moroder pieced together what was once thought to be a lost film. The Moroder version was tinted throughout, featured additional special effects, subtitles instead of intertitles, and a pop soundtrack featuring well-known singers including Freddie Mercury and Pat Benatar. This was the definitive version for close to 20 years...and it was AWESOME. Lang’s art deco dystopian world sizzled and popped while a raging soundtrack blew you away. If silent films cause you any hesitation, this version takes away all your excuses and provides the perfect gateway into an incredible classic film.


But then in 2005, an original and complete cut of METROPOLIS was discovered in Argentina and contained more than 25 minutes of unseen, unfound footage, preserving Lang’s original vision. Full restoration was completed in 2010, and, while the Moroder version is a phenomenal and fun ‘80s watch, this version features Lang’s true vision and the original 1927 score re-recorded by the Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra of Berlin in glorious surround sound.


Whether you're a cinephile completist or casual movie fan, you owe it to yourself to witness the true cinematic power of METROPOLIS. (Greg MacLennan)

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