Hard Target is 20 years old this year so I thought Id finally finish my fan edit which originally began on VHS 15 years ago!
PM me for Details.
Hard Target - Ultimate Cut
In the City of New Orleans, Chance Boudreaux (Van Damme) is hired by <span><span>Natasha</span></span> Binder (Yancy Butler) to help find here estranged homeless father. quickly they become the target of an evil mercenary (Lance Henriksen) who recruits homeless combat veterans for the ‘amusement’ of his clients who will pay to stalk and kill the most challenging prey of them all… Man.
John Woo’s Hollywood debut see’s him electrifying deal with classic ‘Most Dangerous Game’. Shot with a modest budget & featuring some of the most extravagant action sequences ever put on film. Woo took Hollywood action cinema to new heights combining the Kick Boxing style of superstar Van Damme with his own explosive flair.
But Hard Target had to deal with studio politics, an actors ego and a NC-17 rating resulting in the film being re-cut and released in various forms.
Intention Of the Edit
The ‘Ultimate Cut’ is a ‘Fan Edit’ built from the various available versions of the film.
This cut contains a few tweaks and complete re-edits to bring it as close to John Woo’s original vision in DVD Quality. The ‘Ultimate Cut’ follows the plot structure of the ‘Sneak Peek’ cut and contains an alternative audio mix including different music cues and enhanced effects.
The Ultimate Cut is not a reconstruction of the 'Sneak Peak / Work-print but a version close to its mood.
Sources used, & Work done
R4 DVD - 720x576i 16.9 25 fps - 5.1 Dolby Digital.
Conversion to 23.976 and colour corrected due to poor transfer, way to dark! Encoded Digital 5.1 Audio to 5.1 pcm and did a bit of tweaking. Creating .avi & 5.1 wav
R1 DVD - 720x480i 16.9 29.976 fps- 5.1 Dolby Digital.
Conversion to 23.976 using Pull down. Encoded Digital 5.1 Audio to 5.1 pcm and did a bit of <span><span>tweaking</span></span>. Also Ripped the trailer which was 4:3 and converted to 16.9 and tweaked to match the film as much as possible. Needed a couple of shots not in any of the released versions. Creating .avi & 5.1 wav
HDTV Rip - 1280 x 720p - 23.976 fps 2.0 Dolby Digital.
Created .avi & 5.1 wav
’Sneak Peek’ Work-print VHS Rip - 720x480i 4:3 29.976 - Mono Dolby Digital.
Encoded Digital Mono Audio to pcm and did a bit of tweaking_. Creating .wav_
Original CD Soundtrack - 44kHz Stereo
Ripped to .Wavs
No Mercy R1 DVD 720x480i - 29.976 - 5.1 Dolby Digital.
Needed a shot so encoded only that bit. Created .avi
John Fogerty- The Long Road Home CD
Used 2 Creedence Clearwater Revival tracks from the CD
Fortunate Son & Down On the Corner. (Born on The Bayou was used in the closing Credits and thought these were consist ant with that)Created .wavs
The resulting files looked good. R4 looking the best. The R1 DVD is pretty poor compared but only need a few shots from it.
I later came across the HDTV rip which is of the ‘U.S Theatrical Cut’ but had a logo in the corner. Using a combination of frames from the R4 video I used After effects to cover the logo with video from just that area. If that was impossible I just cropped into it.
The edit consists mainly of the R4 video but I used the R1 / HDTV where I needed it for the alternative shots. As mentioned I followed the structure of the ‘Sneek Peek’ Work-print so moved scenes around <span><span>accordingly.
I uprezzed the final to 720p for the BD9 Disc.
Audio was pretty good quality but tweaked it to make it pop. I used the R1 cut mainly and added in the R4 for moments and the entire ending. The mixes differ slightly.
I used some dialogue snippets from the ‘Sneek Peek’, cleaned them up and blended them the best I could with the main audio. These include -
- Replacing dialogue through out where the production audio flowed better (Hard Target had alot of ADR done)
- Additional Dialogue not included that I thought fit.
I used alternative music cues in some moments from the Soundtrack CD and the Creedence Clear Water revival tracks. Plus added Aditional Sound Effects throughout e.g Bullet Ricochets.
BD9 / AVCHD on a Dual Layer 8.5gig with menus and patched for PS3 support.
- Video - H264 1280x720p 23.976
- Audio - Track 1 - Dolby Digital 5.1 640kbps. Track 2 - DTS HD Master Audio 5.1 core 1509kbps.
If you get to see this I hope you enjoy. There are a few problems with it still that I could tweak a little, but Ive got to put this behind me. Its been taking up way to much space on my hard drive and Brain. There maybe a V2 of the Edit in the distant future but for now I’m happy with this version.
I may do a Disc with all versions of the film on 1 Blu-ray disc / DVD set but I do not have a BR burner at present and Ive other projects to attend to.