- THX 1138: Italian Cut -
Available on MySpleen, give me a PM or ask in this thread; http://originaltrilogy.com/forum/topic.cfm/Once-upon-a-time-on-MySpleen-Open-Registration-and-FREELEECH/topic/12652/ if you need an invite.
Year: US 1971, Italy 1976
Length: Approx. 81 Minutes
Source: Italian TV - broadcast
Format: NTSC DVD
Video: 4:3 Pan & Scan (Aspect Ratio 1.33:1)
Language: Italian Dolby 2.0 Mono
Special thanks go to:
and Petar Karan
- The different versions of THX 1138 –
The official story is that when THX 1138 was originally released in 1971, Warner Bros. had cut 4-5 minutes from it without Lucas’ approval. Dale Pollock describes it in his 1983 book Skywalking - The Life and Films of George Lucas, how Warner turned the film over to in-house editor Rudi Fehr - “Fehr cut only four minutes from THX, mostly scenes in the White Limbo and some of George’s bizarre attempts at humor.” This original theatrical release version has never officially been released on video.
In 1978, after George Lucas’ enormous success with Star Wars the previous year, Lucas was able to receive final cut when the film was prepared for a limited theatrical re-release. This version reportedly restored the 4-5 minutes of previously cut scenes. It was later released on video rental in 1982. This version was widely available on Betamax, VHS and Laserdisc through the 80’s and 90’s, the last release was on VHS in 1996, it has not yet been released on any new video formats.
Finally in 2004, a new version was released in theatres for a short limited time and released on DVD and later Blu-ray under the rather silly banner “The George Lucas Director’s Cut”. Anyway, this version uses alternate takes and has much different editing which even alters the story in subtle ways, utilizing modern CGI etc,. Lucas even let new footage be shot to insert actors and to replace and manipulate existing footage. While interesting in its own way, this is the only official version currently available on modern video formats.
That’s the common official story. But, a few 16mm prints and a 35mm IB Technicolor print dated 1971 show us something different, that the only differences between the original 1971 release and the re-release is that the original have SEN’s conversation with the children being a few seconds longer and that there’s a different arrangement of scenes…
Scene order in vintage German and Italian TV-broadcasts and 1971 English 16mm prints:
Drug evasion arrest --> LUH visits THX --> THX gets medical examinations --> Trial & “pain prods” (electro-shock batons) scene --> THX is being monitored & researched --> THX put in prison
Scene order in English home video versions and 2004 Cut:
Drug evasion arrest --> Trial & “pain prods” (electro-shock batons) scene --> THX gets medical examinations --> THX is being monitored & researched --> LUH visits THX --> THX put in prison
Even though THX 1138 was released in UK and France in 1971, it wasn’t released in Italy until 1976, then under the title “L’uomo Che Fuggì Dal Futuro”, literally translated: “The Man Who Escaped From The Future”. This cut is remarkably different and shorter than any other version of the film. The most significant difference is that the film opens with a segment of the chase sequence from the end of the film narrated by THX himself, complete with an added background story in place over the title sequence, it’s like it sort of trying to tell the whole film as it was projected through THX’s mind, a flashback or perhaps like THX himself describes it in the narration “I want to leave a telepathic message so that posterity will know my real story…”
Besides the different editing, the Italian dubbing is sometimes very poor with translation errors in a few places, making the plot confusing in some parts. In addition to the previously mentioned opening narration, the dubbing also alters the story and plot in many other ways throughout the film, sometimes new concepts are added to the film and sometimes the dialogue is just completely different. Much of the story differences and concepts that occur in the dubbing are most likely liberties taken by “Società Italiana Distribuzione Films” which was the distributor for it in Italy, or by the dubbers that worked on the film.
Has there been any good efforts to preserve these two classics in their original form? if so, could someone please point me in the right direction. I am dying to see them again and I’ve searched everywhere with no luck. 😦 Have them on VHS of course but the quality is so bad you cannot watch them anymore and I thought there must’ve been some LD to DVD preservation done to them and was chocked that I couldn’t find any. Any help would be much appreciated, thanks.