The Exorcist (William Friedkin, 1973)

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justeleblanc
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The Exorcist (William Friedkin, 1973)

#1 Post by justeleblanc » Mon Mar 14, 2005 1:20 pm

Not sure where to put this post...

But regarding the Exorcist... there are two version of the original, the original theatrical release and the "producer's cut" that was re-released a few years ago. Is there a disc that has both versions on it? I haven't seen the 25th anniversary edition in stores, but after reading about it online it looks like it only has the original version, which is the better version anyway.

Does anyone know if a disc like this exists?

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dekadetia
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#2 Post by dekadetia » Mon Mar 14, 2005 2:15 pm

JusteLeblanc wrote:Does anyone know if a disc like this exists?
Not in region 1; The Exorcist could really benefit from a multiple-disc rerelease at this point; the "25th Anniversary" dvd is rather advent-of-dvd-style with an annoying menu hierarchy and all of its bonus material on the flipside, and at least some of the footage restored in the increasingly-inaccurately-titled "Version You've Never Seen" (ex: doctor's office scene, alternate spiderwalk take) does not appear anywhere on the 25th Anniversary disc.

It's also worth noting that only the 1997 release (the movie-only dvd which preceded the 25th Anniversary disc and features a green-tinted closeup of the poster art on the front) preserves the film as theatrically exhibited. For the 25th anniversary the red 70's WB logo was replaced with the late-90s logo (pretty standard change) and the "possessed Karras" sequence from the end of the film has been altered so that the hard cuts from the possessed face to the normal face are now digitally augmented (very out of place for a film revered for its pratical and in-camera effects) so that the face now sort of "morphs" back and forth. These are the only two alterations on that disc that I know of, but at least the second is significant, and there might be others.

What this means, unfortunately, is that each time an improved transfer of The Exorcist has been released on dvd, the film has been further altered from its original form.

Hope this helps. Anyone care to chime in on other regions?
Last edited by dekadetia on Tue Mar 15, 2005 12:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

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justeleblanc
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#3 Post by justeleblanc » Mon Mar 14, 2005 2:39 pm

Maybe the 30th anniversary will see another DVD release, like Blazing Saddles.

Anonymous

#4 Post by Anonymous » Mon Mar 14, 2005 3:18 pm

JusteLeblanc wrote:Maybe the 30th anniversary will see another DVD release, like Blazing Saddles.
The 30th anniversary was 2 years ago. ;)

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The Digital McGuffin
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#5 Post by The Digital McGuffin » Mon Mar 14, 2005 7:20 pm

dekadetia wrote:Additionally, I believe that the 75-minute version of Mark Kermode's The Fear of God documentary presented on the 25th Anniversary disc is somewhat shorter than it was when the BBC originally braodcast it.

I've not heard of a longer version of the documentary myself and when watching the R1 DVD I didn't recall noticing any omissions from when I had seen it on TV. The R2 25th Anniversary edition however is trimmed down to around the 50 minute mark and removes all of Kermode's input. Personally, I think any method of minimising the amount of time Kermode is on a television screen can only be a good thing.

To the original question though, no, there are currently no editions that include both cuts of the film. It's the kind of moneyspinner however that I'd imagine Warner will no doubt eventually add to their two disc range, so there may be some scope there.

The Beaver have quite a nice comparison showing the range of alterations between the two R1 editions.

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#6 Post by THX1378 » Mon Mar 14, 2005 7:28 pm

Isn't the 25th Anniversary edition OOP? All I have seen around is the Version You've Never Seen dvd. I'd have thought that when that one came out they would have done a 3 disc set with both versions and the doc on the 3nd disc.

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dekadetia
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#7 Post by dekadetia » Tue Mar 15, 2005 12:09 am

The Digital McGuffin wrote:I've not heard of a longer version of the documentary myself and when watching the R1 DVD I didn't recall noticing any omissions from when I had seen it on TV.
As I look again, I believe you're correct. I thought I read this years ago, but I don't see it anywhere now. I went back to edit my post accordingly.
THX1378 wrote:Isn't the 25th Anniversary edition OOP?
No, but it has become scarce since the release of its inferior sibling. Still its not exactly commanding high prices on eBay (I saw a copy on there just now for 99 cents plus s&h). I actually saw both the 25th Anniversary edition and The Version You've Never Seen side by side at a bookstore earlier tonight. I noticed that the words "Special Edition" are no longer present on the 25th Anniversary edition's spine. It probably doesn't mean that there's something new in the works, but who knows...

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#8 Post by bcsparker » Sat Mar 19, 2005 5:41 pm

I've owned both of them, and the anniversary edition is the one I kept. I just didn't care for the extra footage. And the BBC doc makes it far superior in my eyes.

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Lino
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#9 Post by Lino » Sat Aug 12, 2006 10:23 am

No word on extras yet (new ones, that is) but this set will come in handy, October time.

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#10 Post by Lino » Tue Oct 17, 2006 5:59 pm

Lino wrote:No word on extras yet (new ones, that is) but this set will come in handy, October time.
And anxiously awaiting its arrival at my doorstep! For those who'd like to know, this new set simply repackages the current editions for all the films included.

Apparently, the only difference is indeed the packaging: 4 slim cases for the 6 discs. The two versions of The Exorcist on the first one; Exorcist II on the second one; Exorcist III on the third one; and both versions of the prequel on the fourth one. Nice and tidy. And cheap too. You basically get 6 discs for the price of 1 Criterion!

But in the end, I guess it's a shame they didn't go back and re-do the first three in the series, A/V wise (and extras too, considering there's plenty of demand of a director's cut for both Exorcist II and III).

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#11 Post by Michael » Tue Oct 17, 2006 6:44 pm

You basically get 6 discs for the price of 1 Criterion!
True but only one is a keeper.

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#12 Post by ByMarkClark.com » Wed Oct 18, 2006 12:17 pm

This only delays my long-dreamed-of 2-disc EXORCIST SE.

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#13 Post by exte » Wed Oct 18, 2006 12:52 pm

ByMarkClark.com wrote:This only delays my long-dreamed-of 2-disc EXORCIST SE.
It's already a decent disc. It's double sided, sure, but it has a feature length making-of documentary, and a very rich commentary by the director, plus some comments on a second track by the author, plus some original sound effects following it. All it needs, really, is a brand new 4K High Definition digital transfer, without molesting it with CGI...

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#14 Post by Lino » Sat Oct 21, 2006 7:56 am

DVDActive reviews the new set.

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#15 Post by Lino » Mon Oct 30, 2006 6:18 am

And now DVD Talk.

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#16 Post by Lino » Sat Nov 18, 2006 4:33 pm

And Horrordvds.com.

I have to say I'm kind of glad that I bought this set for three main reasons: 1) what better chance to own both versions of the original one; 2) the Exorcist II version on this set is the american one, which I'd never seen as I was only exposed to its european version up until now; 3) I finally saw Exorcist III and the Paul Schrader version of the prequel, both of which I enjoyed watching, though I do admit that they never came close to the power of the original one.

All in all, a very handy set and like I said, very affordable too.

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#17 Post by Gordon » Sat Nov 18, 2006 6:01 pm

Great cinematography by Gerry Fisher on Exorcist III. He wasn't nominated. Dean Semler won for Dances with Wolves, which isn't that impressive - lots of straightforward natural light exteriors. The competition was strong that year, though for so-so films: Allen Daviau (Avalon), Vittorio Storaro (Dick Tracy), Gordon Willis (The Godfather: Part III), Philippe Rousselot (Henry & June), so I have no idea why Fisher was overlooked. He also shot Blatty's, The Ninth Configuration. Have you seen that one, Lino? Astounding film - very strange, but thought-provoking and visually arresting. Strong performances by all.

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#18 Post by Lino » Sat Nov 18, 2006 7:31 pm

Gordon wrote:The Ninth Configuration. Have you seen that one, Lino? Astounding film - very strange, but thought-provoking and visually arresting.
I'm afraid I haven't. Went googling for a bit and turns out this was Blatty's directorial debut and the reviews seem to be on the enthusiastic side. I always love my films quirky, kooky and well-done, pun intended, so I guess I will give this one a chance when it passes my way.

What's it about, without spoiling it too much for me?

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#19 Post by Gordon » Sun Nov 19, 2006 6:57 am

Lino wrote:What's it about, without spoiling it too much for me?
Lino wrote:What's it about, without spoiling it too much for me?
Many people ask that question, before, during and after seeing The Ninth Configuration! :wink: If I give a serious answer, it may make the film seem like a heavy trip, which it isn't and if I give an answer that reflects the zaniness of it, then it may seem that it is a silly comedy, which it isn't. It is one of the few films that I have seen that genuinely defies categorization. It has to be seen to be appreciated. Basically, it is about a doctor and his patient's (the astronaut from The Exorcist, apparently) search for proof of God's existence in an insane asylum.

It walks the finest of lines between existential seriousness...

Colonel Kane (Stacy Keach): Maybe we're just fish out of water.
Col. Richard Fell (Ed Flanders): What was that?
Colonel Kane: I just think about sickness, cancer in children, earthquakes, war, painful death. Death, just death. If these things are just part of our natural environment why do we think of them as evil? Why do they horrify us so? - unless we were meant for someplace else.

... and craziness:

Captain Cutshaw (Scott Wilson): The man in the moon tried to fuck my sister!

The baroque production design by Bill Malley (The Exorcist) is always beautifully illuminated by Gerry Fisher - this may actually be Fisher's very best work; it is similar in design to Malpertuis, which he also shot. Barry De Vorzon (The Warriors, The Exorcist III) contributes a wonderful score, also.

The film was nominated for Golden Globes for Best Picture and Scott Wilson and Blatty won for his script.

DVD Savant's excellent review

The British and American DVDs are non-anamorphic, but the Italian DVD is anamorphic, apparently. Batty's commentary, moderated by Mark Kermode, is as absorbing as the film itself. The deleted scenes and alternate takes are also very interesting, though of poor quality at times.

Definitely worth seeing.

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#20 Post by tavernier » Sun Nov 19, 2006 12:40 pm

Gordon wrote:Batty's commentary, moderated by Mark Kermode, is as absorbing as the film itself.
That name fits him better than his real one!

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#21 Post by Gordon » Sun Nov 19, 2006 12:57 pm

Ha-ha! A brilliant mistake, for a change. :oops:

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#22 Post by tavernier » Sun Nov 19, 2006 1:05 pm

Gordon wrote:Ha-ha! A brilliant mistake, for a change. :oops:
=D>

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#23 Post by Antoine Doinel » Tue Jun 24, 2008 7:35 pm

Get your Regan doll now!

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#24 Post by Cinephrenic » Tue Jun 24, 2008 7:46 pm

One of the funniest and most overrated films in the history of cinema? Let the rebuttal begin... :twisted:

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exte
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#25 Post by exte » Tue Jun 24, 2008 8:28 pm

When I was a kid, there was nothing funny about this film, even on WPIX tv... The bed violently shaking was perhaps the single most wrong thing I had ever seen as a child from a film. I couldn't use the bathroom without the door being cracked open with my mom standing outside. I needed all the lights on to fall asleep. And maybe a million prayers went through my head. And we're talking the tv edit...

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