and it is indeed a fine film, and worth seeing the full version.
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I have the LD version,and it is in mono,unfortunately. The Morroconi soundtract is hauntingly beautiful. This guy writes some beautiful music for movies.--I also believe the soundtrack "makes" the movie.(as in;try watching this movie with no music) Ennio has written some 300 or more movie scores/without an Oscar.--Many nominations--To me,just because he wrote the music,is reason enough to see the movie.--Don't forget The Mission. --Melana,was nominated a year ago and he lost again for the umteenth time.
This movie is not available yet in DVD format. I have the letterbox laserdisc. The Uncut version is also available in VHS (2 tapes).
They not only cut the US version, they rearranged the plot lines, which makes it very confusing. Note: the young girl main character is played by a 10 year old Jennifer Connelly.
The VHS 2 tape set is available at Amazon.com for $26.97. You can probably find it used on eBay, Half.com, or Amazon
I also have an LD which I spent more than $30 but it was worth it. Yes, my mistake... it's by Sergio Leone.
I've got notious watching it yesterday on AMC: either we shouln't show it at all or show it in full version. It is definitely not for kids and to make it up for minors isn't possible.
As to US puritan's anti-sexual mentality which is probably the primary reason for such restrictions, in Germany men and women(different ages including kids) go into one sauna completely naked having no assoult on each other...
It's all depend on how society is built to accept what is true.
You really do need to search for the uncut version. The short version barely makes sense, and the slower pacing is a huge part of the movie's magic (working very much like "Once Upon A Time In The West"). I may be mistaken, but I believe the uncut version is 4 hours long and the US version was about 2-1/2 hours. 1-1/2 hours is a whole lotta movie to cut. I'm sure there may have been some nudity and violence cut out, but I don't think it was cut due to America's puritanism...I think it was cut when some Hollywood execs soiled their shorts after hearing about the 4 hour running time. Corporate Hollywood generally believes that most Americans won't sit through a three or four hour movie. That's probably true where a mass audience is concerned, but most long movies tend to be more artisitic and less mass appeal anyway. "Once Upon A Time In America" would never have been a huge money maker in this country, no matter how long it was.
Phil, What about Godfather? Star Wars?
Once Upon A Time In America is generally ~2x the length of an average Hollywood movie but all you have to do is just spare the time, sit and watch from beginning to the end where every episode MAKES sence no matter how long it takes. There is no such strong acts of violence as it was in Casino for example. There were only two exposed sexual episodes: first with cop's naked butt being fotographed during an intercourse with minor and second exposed women's body inside the funeral transporter(they were all cut of course). The rest of episodes with sexual content was not exposed but was spoken among the kids and adults as well(also cut).
recently bought DVD Star Wars Trilogy on eBay and was careful about the version, there were several. the copy is excellant but I think the US release will be better when it finally happens. better I mean audio/video quality, additional content, and packaging. however I am real happy with the purchase
you can get the same version somewhere from $50 (unless you are lucky) to $100...I split the difference and did $75 includes shipping deal...a little high but I am a big fan and most were selling for right around there and this was no hassle...if interested email and I will tell you the version.
probably find the same thing with this film and others
I don't know about the running time of the film being a Hollywood nightmare. Remember that some of the most popular (and successful) films of all-time are long one's. I'm thinking Ben-Hur, GWTW, Lawrence of Arabia and as more recent examples go, how about Dances With Wolves or (the highest grossing movie of all) Titanic - I guess even Lord..Rings would fall in here. True, they can't show it as often during the day but this is usually countered by the number of prints and screens it is being shown on. I think the thing with "Once Upon a time.." might have been the (ill-perceived) notion that it would be "offensive" to Americans as Americans - if you know what I mean. Don't know for sure but definately a fine film!
Hey Treyhoss and Marakanetz...don't get me wrong, I love the film. I love everything about it. It's one of my favorite movies ever, but it's not the type of movie that usually appeals to a mass audience. It's way too subtle, somewhat depressing, and has an open ending...those are usually things that frighten major studios. I'm not saying that the Hollywood executives are right in their thinking that shorter is better, but it's a fact. There have been hundreds of movies that directors were forced to chop for every successful long movie that the two of you mentioned, and none of the movies you mentioned were four hours long. Sure...Titanic, GWTW, Godfather, Lord Of THe Rings, Lawrence of Arabia, and Ben Hur, THe Ten Commandments, etc. are all closer to three hours long and they all did well (though really...most of them are more than thirty years old, and people's attention spans have changed a great deal in the past few decades). And since you're mentioning long successful films, don't forget some long films that weren't huge (as far as the studios profits were concerned, anyway)...Magnolia, Malcolm X (both great), and then there was a little film called Heaven's Gate. That may have been four hours long, but I don't know because no one ever saw it. :-) I don't know about the two of you, but I know several people who refused to see Titanic or Lord of The Rings in a theater because of the length...they decided to wait for them to come to home video, so they could watch them from the comfort of their own couch and pause whenever they felt like it. I can't comprehend that sort of thinking, but it's out there. As far as the studios go, they make most of the money from any theatrical release in the first few weeks. Their contracts with the theaters are set up so that the theaters percentage from the ticket sales increases every week that the movie plays. The first few weeks the studios get most of the money and the theaters make the majority of their profits from concessions. The longer a movie runs, the higher the percentage a theater will make. The theaters make the majority of the profits on any movie that runs for months on end. Knowing that, it does make sense that Hollywood would want every opening to be as huge as possible and yes...the length of a film does affect that profit in many cases. A 3 or 4 hour movie means 2-4 showings per day instead of 4-8, so their box office take is automatically cut by 50% (not taking the quality or popularity of the film into account). When studios release a long film, they need it to do well commercially. I think you'll agree that most of the above mentioned movies were heavily backed by the studios and most had a huge amount of pre-release advertising. That approach may very well have worked with Once Upon A Time in America, but...right or wrong...the studios obviously didn't think they would get a good return on their investment, so they chopped it and gave it a half-assed release. I'm just happy that someone decided to release the original, uncut film on video...that doesn't always happen.
Face the fact:
The movie is not yet available on dvd.
It did not bring enough money from the box offices on the first place. It's passed through our society as it was never shown.
Because it was circuimsized!
And the answer is simple: statistics of lack of cultural literacy of an average american citizen that might take this movie different way especially consearning sex with adolescents.
Will it ever make money if it's released on dvd?
I doubt it, but for the sake of art, culture and moral enhancement of society not only movies that made or make money should be available in video stores and/or movie theatres...
That brings me to an idea that the only thing Hollywood cares for is to entertain for money,money,money and any movie that is not falling onto that category is to be cut. By cutting this movie Holliwood actually cut the American History that was so brightly reflected there.
Because it was circuimsized!
And the answer is simple: statistics of lack of cultural literacy of an average american citizen that might take this movie different way especially consearning sex with adolescents.">
Uh...haven't 50% of all Hollywood movies from the past thirty years featured sex with adolescents?? It's the American dream, fer christsake. :-)
You're right though...it's really disappointing walking into a Blockbuster and being able to rent every crappy Steven Segal film on DVD, but half of the Coen Brothers films haven't been released yet. Unfortunately, this film falls into that same category...as do many other great movies. I hope the studios get their act together and start releasing their back catalogs at a faster pace (with good quality). I've heard that some Blockbuster stores are going to be DVD only, so I hope that means things will change soon.