sábado, junio 03, 2006

Metropolis (1927) Man vs Machine

It is the future, and humans are divided into two groups: the thinkers, who make plans (but don't know how anything works), and the workers, who achieve goals (but don't have the vision). Completely separate, neither group is complete, but together they make a whole. One man from the "thinkers" dares visit the underground where the workers toil, and is astonished by what he sees...

Tagline: There can be no understanding between the hands and the brain unless the heart acts as mediator.

Note: I originally started this post on a new book speaking about the future battle between man and machine but the discussion moved onto Metropolis itself and now the original text is just another comment.

Fritz Lang Collection


La coleccion completa.

7 comentarios:

Anónimo dijo...
Este blog ha sido eliminado por un administrador de blog.
Anónimo dijo...

There is a site on the movie Metropolis (based on the comic by Osamu Tezuka, directed by Ritaro and screen play by Katsuhiro Otomo).


Anónimo dijo...
Este blog ha sido eliminado por un administrador de blog.
Anónimo dijo...

In the case you haven't seen this please take a look to this>

The all new restoration of Fritz Lang's 1975-2002 Metropolis.


Anónimo dijo...

Popping my silent-film ‘cherry’ while watching the crisp restoration of Fritz Lang’s legendary 1927 Metropolis, I finally realized what inspired a majority of contemporary sci-fi flicks; what stemmed bleak futuristic visions from Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner to Madonna’s Express Yourself music video. With a bizarre plot often digressing into irrelevancy, none of the half-dozen versions of Metropolis have ever been structurally perfect, although the restored print screening in Manhattan’s Film Forum is impeccable, yet it remains unfazed by technologically advanced features like T2: Judgment Day. The fact that it plays through images, with occasional black frames of summarized dialogue, is special and rhythmic in ways only silent films can be. Audiences are able to contemplate and establish an opinion without having the story distinctly explained through dialogue. For some, it’s a treat, others consider it a burden to avoid at all cost - - which is why we have films like Vanilla Sky where the plot (once complex and provoking) is hand-fed and defined in the final 20-minutes.

Since its initial release, Metropolis has been considerably trimmed, had scenes shifted and played with a new-age score, but never until now has it been reassembled so faithfully to appease film aficionados and historians alike (although no one will see Lang’s original vision till the remaining 25% of footage is recovered). This restoration is not a DVD “director’s cut” or Coppola’s Apocalypse Now Redux, in the sense of a filmmaker splicing in footage he would liked to have used but felt skeptical come premiere time, rather, it’s a salvage job. The surviving negatives had to be cleaned and pasted accordingly to Lang’s intentions. As was done with the Touch of Evil DVD, which revived Wells’ opening tracking shot. The result is a fascinating experience that is a treat to anyone who’s ever wondered what cinema meant before synch-sound arrived.

In its opening scene, where a herd of zombie-like workers exhaustedly waddle out of a factory only to be relieved by a new flock entering on the opposed side for the next shift, there is a scarily satirical aspect that rings true nowadays. Manual labor has always dehumanized mankind, numbing us into a mechanical state of mind, but furthermore, it forms envy towards those privileged enough not to have worked a dead-end-minimum-waged job. And this is the city of Metropolis, where men with brains own the machines and the machines control the workers.

The film surprisingly still has themes relevant to modern societies. Throughout Lang tries proving that “the mediator between the hand and mind must be the heart”; meaning nobility and understanding must connect workers with intellectuals. While Lang’s budget rose out of control, eventually bankrupting its financers, his film has and will continue to stand the test of time.

* Metropolis will eventually be extensively analyzed and placed in Movie Navigator’s Elite section (we’ll wait for the restoration DVD to come out), but until then it’ll be playing at Film Forum until 8/15.
-Copyright 2002 by Shaun Sages

Anónimo dijo...

Metropolis is, at many levels, an impressive blending of styles and techniques. The sets, backgrounds and "hardware" are a nearly (repeat, nearly) seamless blend of computer and traditional animation, alternatively reminiscent of early 20th century art deco and Akira-like cyberpunk cityscapes.

Thematically, this film is inspired by the legendary Osamu Tezuka's manga series Metropolis, which was in turn vaguely inspired by German director Fritz Lang's 1926 silent masterpiece of the same name. As a result, this Metropolis takes various elements of Lang's Metropolis and rearranges them in unexpected ways. The Tezuka/Lang corollaries are evident (an explanation of which could fill a master's thesis), but viewers expecting a re-imagining of Lang's film will be disappointed. Despite the name, Osamu Tezuka's Metropolis is best viewed as an independent work of art.

The people of Metropolis are cartoonish even for anime, with the doe eyes and childlike physiques most prevalent in the earliest manga (think Astro Boy visiting the set of Akira). They clash visually with their sophisticated backdrop, something particularly distracting during the most serious and violent scenes.

Finally, the film's use of a predominantly ragtime jazz soundtrack is jolting. While this unusual choice deserves a tip of the hat, it just doesn't work. The requisite skyline-obliterating finale features Ray Charles' "I Can't Stop Loving You"!

Despite its visual and musical schizophrenia, Osamu Tezuka's Metropolis stands head-and-shoulders above most anime. It's fresh, it's bold, and actually has a discernable plot (albeit with some head-scratchers). Rintaro and company have created an interesting and worthy homage to the seminal work of Japan's most legendary animator.

Nestor Marquez dijo...

Man vs Machine. Fron Wired.

“The purpose of this book,” Daniel Wilson writes in the introduction, “is to prepare you for the future robot uprising.” And he’s only half joking. Wilson, who has a PhD in robotics from Carnegie Mellon University, tapped top scientists to complete his exhaustive list of realistic tips for surviving a “kill all humans” android insurrection. The result is equal parts sci-fi send-up and technical primer, blended with enough skill to land the 28-year-old two more book deals and a movie option from Paramount. Bookstores make the mistake of filing this under humor, but as Wilson says, “lots of government agencies hire researchers to build real killer robots.” So be prepared, just in case.