Friday, August 05, 2005

Dude, I've got my $30 (with tax) waiting!!


"Also coming from Fox on 10/18 is an Elektra: Unrated Director's Cut (SRP $26.98). The new 100-minute version will be in anamorphic widescreen video, with DTS and Dolby Digital 5.1 audio (the original theatrical cut is 96 minutes long). Extras on the 2-disc set will include audio commentary with director Rob Bowman and Kevin Stitt, the film's theatrical and teaser trailers, 2 documentaries (including Relentless: The Making of Elektra - Part 1: Production and Relentless: The Making of Elektra - Part 2: Post-Production) the Showdown at the Well: Multi Angle Dailies featurette, deleted scenes (with optional commentary by Bowman and Stitt), alternate and extended scenes including an alternate opening (also with optional commentary), 4 photo and artwork galleries (including Costumes, Production Design, Weapons and Unit Photography), and a storyboard gallery (containing boards for 7 scenes)."

Ok, first...the "unrated" thing. Generally 'unrated' only makes sense if the film would recieve an X or NC17 rating from the board. Since those limit which theaters will show your film, which newspapers will accept advertising for it, etc., sometimes makers of extreme films will bypass the rating board and release their film as officially "unrated."

Sometimes films have to make cut in sex or violence to get their R rating (which, again, is generally required for a mass commercial release), and the footage will be put back in for the DVD release. Occasionally the film is actually strengthened by this, but more often it's a ploy to glean the sheckles of the crowd that thinks "More boobies be better!" Unrated versions of raunchy comedies (Old School, National Lampoon's Van Wilder, etc.) usually find this a successful strategy, since the unrated versions of the movies have more of the stuff that the core audience went to see in the first place.

However, occasionally this has purely become a raw and rather deceptive marketing gimmick. For example, take Elektra. (Please! Rimshot) Elektra was released as a PG-13 film, because those are much more likely to make money than R rated movies. Even so, it bombed, and the critics didn't exactly shower it with praise.

This means that even if there is 'harder' footage that was cut from the film, it is exceedingly unlikely that the result would garner (ha ha) anything more than an R rating, and probably a soft R at that. Unless Elektra is dealing out more violence than the R rated Kill Bill Vol 1 contained, which would be a task; or else Elektra engaged in startling amounts of nearly hardcore sex, the film would not be likely to get an NC17 Rating from the ratings board.

Which means the 'unrated' thing is a complete con.

Second, does the world really need a two-disk Elektra set? And I'm asking that as the guy who tittered with delight at the double disc Raiders of the Living Dead package.


At 11:02 AM, Blogger Zack Handlen said...

I guess this would be the dark side of the DVD Revolution.

I'm pretty sure I've seen seen "Unrated Director's Cut" type DVDs before, but I never really thought about it that specifically; I always just assumed they were too lazy to get it re-rated. (Yes, I'm not particularly bright.) Thanks for showing just how stupid the idea really is.

At 8:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not really -- it costs money to submit a cut and get a rating. Why spend it if you don't want to?

-- John Nowak


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