Monday, February 12, 2007

Superman vs. Superman

Got together with my friends John and Deshant yesterday specifically to compare and contrast the original theatrical cut of Superman II credited to Richard Lester with last year's restoration of Richard Donner's vision for the movie.

John set up two DVD players in his living room so we could switch between the movies, and of course I lost track of which we were watching. In any case, it was Deshant's first viewing of the Donner Cut, and we all agreed there was more to love about the Donner. Unfortunately, we also agreed that its coolness was undermined by the infamous turn-back-time super-spin to before the Phantom Zone villains were released.

Say what you will about the Lester cut and its kiss of forgetfulness, at least the events of that movie technically happened.


John Ricotta said...

We need to find out what Donner's initial intention was for the ending of II. It couldn't have been the super-spin redux that ended up on the Donner Cut. No way could they have purposefully intended to go to the Stupid Well twice. Like we said, it must have been just the easiest way to wrap up the loose ends, without costing much money.

Deshant said...

I'm sorry Gerald you keep talking about this Donner cut thing but I have no idea what you are talking about.... The second sequel to Superman was directed by Richard Lester after Richard Donner and the producers had a falling out. I wish we could see a complete Donner version but you know you can't put toothpaste back in the tube.

Gerald So said...

Here's what Donner Cut producer Michael Thau had to say when interviewed by Barry Freiman regarding Donner and Mankiewicz's original intent for the ending:

[T]hey couldn't remember. I begged them to put their thinking caps on. 'I don't know, I don't know.' Tom said, 'We would've thought of something.' And I said 'Tom, now, think of something now that costs like nothing so I can do it.' But I couldn't get anything out of them.

So Donner and Mankiewicz began to shoot the movie without completely plotting it out? That's a shame.

John Ricotta said...

They don't remember? It's not like they're being asked what they had for breakfast thirty years ago.

There's got to be some clown that was associated with the script of the movie that had an idea for the ending. That's crap, man.

Thomas Pluck said...

They made a lot of movies.
Donner doesn't have the best track record (Lethal Weapon 3 and 4? Ugh) but I like his cut better until the ending. The original idea was to only use the back in time thing once, to pay for using the kiss of forgetfulness. And Supposedly it was a visual trick to explain Superman flying so fast that he traveled back in time, not "spinning the Earth backward" but either way it was silly.
I love the scene where he breaks down holding Lois's corpse in the first movie, but hate that he can bring her back so easily.