Release: Feb 29, 2016 - Author: Eiskaltes Grab - Translator: Tony Montana - external link: IMDB - more from this series
Compared are the cut US DVD by Artisan Entertainment (Not Rated / Movie Version) and the uncut German DVD by Paramount Home Entertainment (FSK 16 / TV Version).
7 cuts = 19 minutes and 28 seconds.
1 cut with alternate footage = 7 seconds +Movie Version.
In an experimental laboratory, janitor Harlan Williams gets contaminated by mysterious chemicals set free by an explosion. Due to radiation, he slowly mutates in a mysterious way. The government intends to figure out what happened to Harlan at any cost so they assign their best and most cold-blooded agent. Harlan, his wife Gina and the wonderful and young head of security Terry are in grave danger. They run from the brutal killer while Toddhunter, head of science and a totally obsessed professor, keeps experimenting. He intends to finish his secret object successfully, no matter what the cost.
The miniseries produced for US TV is based on an idea by Stephen King who also wrote most parts of the screenplay. All in all, 7 episodes with a total length of more than 6 hours were produced (among them a two-part episode). The ratings were not exactly satisfying though and they got lower with every episode. For that reason, the decision not to continue the show - as originally planned - was made. Unfortunately, the last episode ended with a cliffhanger because further were originally planned - as already mentioned. For the VHS and DVD release, a second alternate ending that ends the story was shot. Also, the running time of more than 6 hours was lowered to almost 4 hours in order to release it as a feature film. Apparently, the studio did not want to "torture" the audience with a feature film longer than 6 hours one more time. As for the actors, there are some quite familiar faces in Golden Years - such as Frances Sternhagen, Ed Lauter and R.D. Call. Especially fans of The X-Files should not be oblivious to the last two actors.
The Movie Version with a lack of story elements and an actual ending is available on VHS and DVD worldwide. In the Netherlands, the longer TV Version has been released on DVD by Video/FilmExpress. In Germany, it has been released on DVD by Paramount Home Entertainment. It is doubtful that the cliffhanger ending from the TV Version is available in the bonus features somewhere...
Terry walks a few steps. Then Lt. McGiver would like to speak with her.
Lt. McGiver: May I have a word with you?
Terry: Is it important, Lieutenant? I've got a chopper full of DSA people arriving!
Lt. McGiver: It might be very important!
Extended shot of the chopper. The Movie Version contains the above-mentioned conversation between Terry and Lieutenant instead.
Movie Version: 15 sec
TV Version: 8 sec
Toddhunter is sitting on a rocking chair. He says: Jackson yelled! We had a red light on the board! It was very hard to hear! I hadn't the slightest idea anything was wrong! Jackson yelled! We had a red light on the board! It was very hard to hear! Verry hard to hear! It was very heard to hear! I hadn't the slightest idea anything was wrong! Until Jackson yelled! Red light on the board! I know my prober place was... at the board with those two men, but I was... excited and determined to observe the results of the experiment! I was excited and determined! I was excited and determined! I hadn't the slightest idea that anything was wrong until...
Change of scenery. A meeting takes place at the conference room:
Toddhunter: Jackson yelled we had a red light on the board!
Man: Did you call for an immediate shutdown?
Toddhunter: No! It was very hard to hear! At first, I thought Jackson was cheering, but I wanted to be sure! So I yelled: "Say it again!" The second time I heard him! I called for them to dump the board!
Man: Which they didn't want?
Man: Let's cut to the chase! Jackson and Redding froze, right?
Toddhunter: Well, my guess is that if they had moved at once to dump the board, there would have been no explosion! But I am not without blame here! My place was at the board with those two men! After I verified the fact that we had a green board, I walked to production! I admit that was a dereliction of duty, but you must understand that I was excited and determined to observe the results of the test! This was to have been the first real test of a process to which I have given half of my adult life! I was excited! I was excited and determined! And my irresponsible behaviour may have cost two fine men their lives!
Terry turns to Crewes and says: That was an Academy Award-level performance!
Crewes: Shut up, Terry!
Andrews: Tell us about the fire extinguisher!
Toddhunter: I beg your pardon?
Andrews: I want to hear how you intended to damp a runaway hydrogen turbine with a class B chemical fire extinguisher! Toddhunter looks at him speechless. Andrews: Tell us, Doctor! We are all ears!
Crewes: Did you hear the question, Richard?
Andrews: He heard! Didn't you, Doctor?
Toddhunter: It's very hard to answer that question without sounding cowardly!
Crewes: Why don't we take a break, adjourn for the day, reconvene tomorrow?
Toddhunter: No! No adjournment! I want to get this settled!
Crewes: I think tomorrow would be soon enough, Dr. Toddhunter! This meeting is adjourned!
3 min 13 sec
Extended shot of Burton listening to the recordings.
At the eye specialist, Harlan has to make an eye exam. To be more specific, he has read out loud a very small-written text. When he is done, the doc administers some eye drops. Subsequently, his eyes are being examined with a magnifying glass.
1 min 55 sec
Because of her husband's loud singing, Gina wakes up. She gets out of bed and runs to the kitchen. Harlan is already there. He is singing and making pancakes.
Harlan: Are you hungry? I'm making pancakes! Gina makes a face. Harlan: You never were much of a morning person! Sit down, Mother! Coffee will be ready in a minute!
Gina: Your arm is all better?
Harlan: Just a little sore! My eyes were itching when I got up this morning, though! I couldn't see through my new glasses, so I found this old pair! I can see fine now! It must have been the eye drops!
Gina: You're not thinking of going to work?
Harlan: Why not? I feel great! Can't wait to tell that jerk Moreland I passed!
Harlan continues to sing. Gina is not exactly thrilled about it. Harlan turns around and would like to know what was going on. Gina asks if he would mind waiting until she had finished her coffe before he continued to sing. Harlan is alright with that. He then turns back around and keeps making pancakes. Gina watches him and shakes her head in disbelief.
2 min 5 sec
Harlan is standing in front of his locker. His friend Billy surprises him with a plastic lizard resp. he holds it right in front of Harlan's face.
Billy: It's for you! It's a welcome back present! Then he gives Harlan the plastic lizard
Harlan: That's...very...nice, Billy! Thank you!
Billy: One of the eyes goes up like that! It's kind of hard to get them just right!
Harlan: I see! Oh, that's very nice! Very! Thanks Billy!
Billy: I missed you, old man! I'll see you upstairs! Billy leaves.
The shot of Harlan and Gina in front of the mirror is longer. A freeze frame follows. The scene fades out, scenes from the next episode follow. Then the end credits.
1 min 49 sec