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So: What would YOUR personal "dream version" of BR

PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 8:44 pm
by dmohrUSC
First off, let me say that I know this will probably be Lauzirika's least favorite of all threads on BZ. After having worked his derriere off for the last seven years on getting the Final Cut completed, now he gets to sit back and behold the rest of us chop up Ridley Scott's definitive version of his career masterpiece into cinematic sushi. Sigh. Such is the life of anyone who works on a movie restoration with a rabid fan base always waiting in the wings

Before I get started on detailing what my own "dream version" of BR might look like, let me say for the record that I think the Final Cut is a PERFECT movie. Well, almost perfect. The only, single, itty-bitty thing I would change in it is taking out the "spinner headset audio" that is now in place during Deckard & Gaff's ride to the police station, and to the Tyrell Co. It's not a disastrous addition by any means, but I don't think it really adds much to the scenes, and (for me, at least) detracts somewhat from the majesty of Vangelis' score during those moments. But that's it, that's my only quibble with the entire Final Cut. It is a 99.999% masterpiece, and I'm celebrating that percentage of masterpiece, and not losing any sleep over the ridiculously minor new additions that don't knock me out!

So, I realize there are BR fanatics out there who've watched the 45-minute Deleted Scenes version, and would be totally fine with just slapping all of that together with the movie itself (although that wouldn't make too much sense, since so much of it consists of alternate takes, but what the hell, when you're an obsessive geek, you're an obsessive geek!) But my "dream version" of BR would be not much longer than it is now - maybe no more than 3 minutes or so longer.

(I should add that although my "dream version" of BR would be completely narration-free, that I think the finest piece of narration by Harrison Ford for BR is the "new" voiceover material found at the end of the Deleted Scenes section, with Deckard and Batty on the rooftop. Ford's voiceover here is extremely touching and unaffected and sincere - so much better than the same bit of voiceover in the Workprint - but personally, I still think the scene plays most beautifully without any voiceover narration.)

Also, for all the sections in the Deleted Scenes that I haven't added here, I've done so for good reason: so many of them are absolutely exquisite to behold, and thrilling to see from a historical lifelong-BR-enthusiast perspective -- but I personally don't feel that they would make much sense being added in to the "movie proper." I'm thinking of moments like the absolutely gorgeous tracking shot of Leon walking out of the subway up to the phone booth with Roy, and Deckard and Rachel walking together in the crowd, and Roy and Sebastian in the elevator, and the terrific exchanges between Gaff and Bryant as they watch Holden and Deckard on their office monitors (hilarious, brilliant stuff, but it almost seems like an outtake from a different movie - almost like the Coen Bros.' gangster black-comedy "Miller's Crossing".)

And yes, I would leave the Final Cut's unicorn sequence in. HELL YES! It's the best ever. Lovelovelove it!!! (The section of Dangerous Days where Jerry Perenchio talks about not understanding Ridley Scott's and Terry Rawling's original shaping of the unicorn sequence just makes me want to slap my forehead with my hand in a resounding "oy vey!")

Following is my list of changes that I would add to/remove from the movie, in order to create my own "dream version" of BR:

1. Remove aforementioned "spinner headset audio" during travelling sequences to police station and Tyrell Co.

2. Add FX shot of Gaff's spinner flying over L.A. 2019 during section of Deleted Scenes when Deckard is talking (in voiceover) about Roy Batty's dossier profile. This shot is so unbelievably impressive, and I have no idea why it wasn't used in the original movie, unless they couldn't find a place to use it (which is possible since the scene of Deckard reviewing the replicants' dossiers was eventually deleted).

3. Add very brief section (no more than 30 seconds) of Deckard walking around Leon's hotel room, with light coming through blinds; faucet drips; Deckard holds up Leon's mattress and lets it drop; camera dollies into Deckard. Cut quickly.

4. Add two or three "new" shots from the Deleted Scenes of Deckard sitting in front of the Esper machine. (They're tough to describe in exact detail, but some of these shots are so jaw-droppingly photographed, words just fail me.)

5. Add "new" shots of Deckard jumping onto car during Zhora chase scene. I know Charles d.L. has previously described extensively on BladeZone the very good and valid reasons for why this sequence was ultimately not included intact in the Deleted Scenes (although the individual shots from the sequence show up throughout Dangerous Days); but I would try to "interlace" these shots with some of the other shots in the Zhora chase sequence, of people passing by, and the scenes of the street, etc. These shots are SO UNBELIEVABLY @#$% AMAZING, I would've broken my back trying to make them work!!! (Of course, not that Charles hasn't already most likely broken his back and a few other physical and mental areas trying to do the same thing, I'm sure :D )

6. Add a minute or so of closeups of Deckard washing his face in his sink at home, and Rachel sitting down on the chair in Deckard's living room, Deckard staring at her legs, washing his face, she gets up and walks to him, etc. (I wouldn't add the blood-soaked tissue in the nostril, that's a bit "tough guy" over the top for me.) The photography of Sean Young during this sequence, especially of her legs (grrr :wink: ), adds all the sexiness that the first half of the scene was previously missing.

7. Add the shot of Batty stepping off the elevator in the Bradbury, with Deckard in the left foreground of the frame, seeing Batty step off and then jolting his head back around the corner. I know this scene doesn't make much geographical sense to the blocking of the scene, but for god's sakes, it's SO @#$% COOL!!! I would add it in like this:
A. Deckard looking around at sound of Batty's elevator as it comes closer
B. Cut to Batty's elevator arriving (this shot was previously before shot A; I would flip-flop them)
C. NEW SHOT: Batty in background stepping off elevator Deckard flinching around corner in foreground
D. Cut to medium shot of Batty starting to walk towards camera

8. Restore full shot of Deckard on rooftop of Bradbury, walking around between rotating fans (before Batty confronts him and he jumps across the roof), that was trimmed for the Final Cut. I understand this was probably done for reasons of pacing, but I still love the length and feel of the original shot.

9. Add quick shot only found in Workprint of Deckard arriving back home and carrying his gun and asking, "Rachel"? And then keep the rest of the scene of him discovering Rachel under the blanket exactly as it is in the Final Cut, not the Workprint, with the long tracking shot of the TVs, etc. I think the fast-to-slow combination of shots would make for a neat effect.

Now, which enterprising BladeZoner with a Final Cut Pro system handy will take these notes and create my "dream version" of BR for me, for a nominal fee*? (* I'll pay your lunch tab.) :lol: