That seems like a drastic over-reaction, and it's not as if there are persuasive alternatives.Perkins Cobb wrote:And that's at least three films that have confirmed cuts, ranging from the very minor all the way up to the catastrophic. So basically the whole Artificial Eye Angelopoulos project can be binned. Appalling.
From the descriptions Brad has so diligently and helpfully provided, it seems like these are authentic alternative edits, not lab accidents or instances of wilful butchery - unless you believe the folk at Artificial Eye went through the masters provided by Angelopoulos' producers maliciously and expensively trimming random seconds here and there just to mess with you. In most cases I don't think we even have enough evidence to conclude which of the variants would have been the director's preferred one - tiny trims like those described actually sound more like 'final touches' than 'early drafts'.
The Hunters is the only case where the variation is drastic and unfortunate, but even then, the nature of the cuts suggests that this too was an authentic alternative edit rather than a random botch. If only the full-length version were available elsewhere, this would be a valuable resource. As it is, at least we have a kind of work-around now that the 'deleted scenes' have been posted.
If cinephilia means a hysterical refusal to support releases of marginal films because they're less than perfect, then include me out. If you want to boycott the Artificial Eye sets out of misguided purism, that's your prerogative, but if you think this is going to encourage somebody else to put out a superior edition, you're crazy. It'll just be another nail in the coffin of challenging cinema getting released at all.