Thanks for keeping us in the loop, Mr. Friedkin.
Doesn’t “color timing” sound like a song by the Chocolate Watch Band, circa 1967? “What time is purple?”
Fantabulous news. Various sources suggest there’s plenty of deleted bits to fill out the “extras” quotient. Would be good to understand the causes of the diminution of Nilo’s confidence. Granted I am posing the following question based on the CIC international cut posted online for some years, but why does the “Grind” sequence conspicuously forego many opportunities to include sound effects? Sorry, indulging the “armchair redux editor” here. Damn my caring too much!
Hey Pat, I’ve seen the international cut albeit with German dubbing. Do you know where could it be obtained with original English voices? I’m also curious about certain threads in the movie, not only dimunition of Nilo’s confidence but also his health. However, I think all those omissions were made to distance himself as much as it was possible from Cluzout’s version. I’d maybe add that steep downhill sequence and maybe that additional supply where the nitro isn’t there – that would explain beyond any doubt that they had simply no other choices but to use these particular sticks of dynamite they had to use. My only beef is – this sequence has b-roll feel to it…And apart from that it’s just occasional tidbits here and there I’d insert. I wonder if there are any more sequences featuring Manzon and Kassem. I know, international cut features some additional bit of dialogue between them just before wooden planks.
It’s always very tempting to add to a film, having time and objectivity to think about it, but rarely do these new cuts add anything of worth or improve the film as was… in fact, with only a very few rare exceptions (‘The Abyss’ and ‘Kingdom of Heaven’ to name but two), newly extended cuts actually more often than not ruin the overall flow, pace, and rhythm of a film that was worked so hard to achieve in their initial post-production phases.
We all saw what happened when Billy Friedkin went back for the extended cut of ‘The Exorcist’ in 2000, to be brutally frank it was an absolute atrocity, and I want to see ‘Sorcerer’ as it was originally made and released (as I was able to do with ‘The Exorcist’s 25th anniversary UK theatrical re-release back in 1998)… there’s a reason that footage you mentioned was cut in 1977, and I hope Friedkin keeps to the theatrical cut, that excised footage should and likely will be included as deleted scenes on the DVD and Blu ray release, and that’s as it should be!
I’m hoping ‘Sorcerer’ gets a theatrical re-release here in the UK, it’s a film that simply HAS to be experienced on the big screen…
BTW he also added that “Warner Bros. and Universal share the domestic rights”.
Hello Jakub, the CIC cut was posted in ten parts on YouTube by Manuel Cardenas, under the title “Carga Maldita”. This has English dialogue and Spanish subtitles. At present, I cannot view it in the USA as it has been blocked per the copyright holders’ request. Can you find it and see it from your location? I admit I saw this out of sequence and it has been some years since renting the USA cut presented on the visually inferior DVD offering. Is the German-language version you mentioned the TV edit referenced at http://www.movie-censorship.com/report.php?ID=4978 ? I gathered the impression from this account that there is some material not common to either the CIC or USA versions. The sequence with Nilo falling in the water may answer your question about his health, what with water-borne illness a factor in tropical areas. I can only recall from what I have seen that his “illness” during the scene with the guerrillas appeared to be faked in order to buy time and strategize his attack on them. I believe restoring the downhill sequence would help explain why Scanlon drives the entire time and reinforce that Nilo finds himself increasingly out of his depth during the journey. There certainly seems plenty for Friedkin and the DVD authors to choose from in their task, though putting too much of it in might arguably disturb the films’ pace. We will (happily!) see. Good work on the Wiki page, thank you!
Thank you, Pat! I actually finished the article for now. It is pending its peer review and hopefully with some few suggestions, it’s gonna get ironed out and finally achieve Featured article status.
Like I said, two scenes might have been added in – the downhill one and the one showing the original explosive depot – where it turns out guerrillas stole the dynamite. What a cruel twist – probably the same guys who shot off the tire of Victor’s/Kassem’s truck were the ones to steal the nitro that prompted those losers to carry the unstable cargo, and subsequently get killed. Right? Regarding the scene with Scanlon and Nilo, I love the cinematography, the truck really seems muscular and powerful during that scene, very menacing.
I think the downhill scene wouldn’t hurt the movie’s pacing one bit. It’s only up to Friedkin whether he’d see it as too similar to the washboard scene in Wages of Fear. As for the flooded part of the road sequence with Nilo being sent to investigate, I think it’s too similar to the oil pool sequence, but it adds continuity to the movie because some thunders could be heard which herald the storm that soon takes place in the movie. I wonder what other scenes were cut, especially ones featuring Victor and Kassem…
Downhill scene could be either inserted immediately after Grind montage, but then there’s a question of music which segues into the scene with that Native American, it would’ve segued into the scene showing some nearby settlement right before the downhill ride. Or it could be inserted after the wooden planks sequence, right before or after the odometer shot / start of the torrential downpour. The only negative side to it is that Jackie and Nilo would have more “solo” sequences and thus we’d expect them more to survive (assuming we’re seeing the movie for the first time).
I think that tidbit where Serrano wishes Dominguez luck but Dominguez ignores it and shoves it up his ass would also be a nice touch (because it adds another layer to their rivalry, which is very evident), as would be that little conversation between Nilo and Dominguez when Nilo explains his motives a bit.
Jakub, thanks for sharing, I have many thoughts as well. While restoring certain sequences may lend more depth and clarity in some instances, I must consider my generally negative reactions re: Apocalypse Now Redux and Alien (Directors’ Cut). Northern Star’s observations of 29 June are not baseless in a general way (I’ve avoided The Exorcist “expanded” cut). Perhaps I ought to be cautious of what I wish for as Sorcerer is brought to life in the 21st century. It is all as may be until Friedkin and his collaborators are done and I am at attention irrespective of the outcome. You touched on the music in one of your comments and I admit that TD’s score is how I came to this film. Irrespective of its’ origin, the album is certainly a very fine one from them, an adept mix of both their abstract and more conventionally musical abilities, delivered in a way that is unmistakably identifiable as their own. Given the soundtrack album release is just short of 45 minutes, I have to wonder what else they provided which was not released. I have long suspected (this is 100% GUESSWORK on my part) a substantial portion of the offered recordings was found unsuitable for use in the film and this fact explains the wholesale licensing of Jarretts’ Spheres recording for use “as needed” in the film. I can easily imagine that by the time post-production was under way, both Universal and Paramount execs were pressured to get the film released at the least expense and as soon as possible. “Retakes” from an as-yet unproven band (by Hollywood standards) at additional time and expense would have been an extremely unattractive proposition. A thoroughly conjectural “my two cents” here.
Great discussion here, fellas. Keep it up!
Friedkin has already said he’s not going to monkey with his original edit, and I thank him for that. It’s the right decision. Sorcerer is one of the tightest films I have ever seen. Nothing is wasted, nothing seems padded — every frame NEEDS to be there. And while some of the cut scenes might fill in a character detail here or there, we came to appreciate the film without them.
If these scenes are gonna make it to the DVD, they should be supplemental stuff. More often that not, when you see such footage, you understand why they were cut. (Friedkin did this with The French Connection — the extra scenes made for an interesting bonus feature, but they didn’t need to be in the film.)
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