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Slightly shortened UK-VHS

Needful Things

The Pope’s Exorcist

The People Under the Stairs

The Last of Us


The Burning

Life Stinks


  • International DVD-/HD-Master
  • German VHS
Release: Aug 14, 2015 - Author: Muck47 - Translator: DaxRider123 - external link: IMDB
This is a comparison between the International DVD/HD Version (represented by the US iTunes Version) and the long version included on the German VHS (and in a slightly shortened version also on the UK VHS).

52 differences, including 23 scenes with alternative material

Difference in time: 209.2 sec (= 3:29 min)
* Additional material international DVD/HD Version: 186.3 sec (= 3:06 min)
* Additional material German VHS: 395.5 sec (= 6:35 min)

This pretty funny and for Mel Brooks rather atypical comedy flick bombed at the box office in 1991. Curiously enough, ever since it came out on DVD it is only available in a shortened version. Then again, this is not quite the correct way to describe it, after all, this version also includes alternative footage, which makes it a separate cut of the movie. Interestingly enough, the US VHS and Laserdisc version already had the exact same runtime, thus it is likely that this is simply the movie's US Version, whereas the European countries received a longer alternative version. Unfortunately, we neither had a copy of the US VHS nor the Laserdisc to verify this thesis.

Especially towards the beginning, when Mel Brooks was just turned adrift, the German VHS includes several additional scenes. Especially the longer scene of the first encounter with J. Paul Getty is pretty important for the rest of the moive. These scenes were pretty much the only ones that fans explicitly missed on later releases - even though there was more missing dialog. During a detailed comparison it became clear that there are several alternative takes which, however, only are barely different from each other. Thus it is still interesting, yet not that spectacular. Sometimes these moments are the result of a handier entry into the following scene.

All in all, the international DVD/HD Version is pretty good, yet it is sad to see that the longer VHS version never made it to the digital age. If you own the Open Matte VHS that includes more image information, you should keep it or hope that a future TV broadcast might make use of this old master. However, this is becoming more and more unlikely. As you can see with the American iTunes HD Version, it is - just as with Duel - very possible that a future Blu-Ray release will also just include the shorter version.

Time designations are given as follows:
HD Master [NTSC] / German VHS [PAL]
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Logos / Credits

The fox logo was replaced by the MGM logo. Additionally, the VHS shows the German title.
Besides, here is a small image comparison. As you can see, the 16:9 master offers some more information on the sides, yet is obviously matted and misses out on information on the top and bottom of the screen.

HD-Master 4.4 sec longer

International Version (HD master)German VHS

Alternative / Additional material in the international DVD/HD master
03:29-03:31 / 03:16-03:18

When being confronted with the problem of the rainforest being lumbered, we can see the first of several (curiously enough alternative) shots of Bolt who replies "So?".

International DVD/HD master 0.4 sec longer

International Version (HD master)German VHS

Alternative / Additional material in the international DVD/HD master
03:37-03:40 / 03:24-03:26

His second "So?" also happens in an alternative take.

German VHS 0.4 sec longer

International Version (HD master)German VHS

Alternative / Additional material in the international DVD/HD master
03:50-03:54 / 03:36-03:39

Again there is a different shot of Bolt: In the international DVD/HD master he is shown earlier, thus we can see a first rapid eye movement.

International DVD/HD master 1.4 sec longer

International Version (HD master)German VHS

Alternative / Additional material in the international DVD/HD master
03:55-03:59 / 03:40-03:42

Before you see the laughing shareholders, there is an alternative shot of Bolt.
In the international version he holds up his hands a little closer together and then puts them back on his lap immediately.

International DVD/HD master 1.3 sec longer

International Version (HD master)German VHS

Alternative / Additional material in the international DVD/HD master
07:29-07:31 / 07:04-07:06

The international version constantly shows Vance when he presents his suggestion. The VHS instead shows Bold towards the end.

No difference in time.

International Version (HD master)German VHS

07:50 / 07:24-07:26

The shot from above is longer and Vance says "It means much more to me than money."

2.6 sec

12:23 / 11:48-12:05

After Vance drove away, the shot from above is actually followed by another shot of him on the pavement.
A derelict staggers towards Bold and thus blocks his way for a short time. Meanwhile we can hear first comments by the radio announcer about the hot weather in Los Angeles.

17.1 sec

12:34-12:35 / 12:16-13:31

The following shot of Bolt wandering around is shown a little earlier and with a soft transition in the international version. On the German VHS, the scene goes on a little longer.

International Version (HD master)German VHS

There is an additional scene. Bold walks on to a small, deserted place and sits down on an armchair and tries to lighten himself up by saying "I can do it".
Suddenly, another derelict startles up, comes to Bolt and says "Hey! What are you doing in my office? Do you have an appointment? Shut up! Do you know who I am? J. Paul Getty, the richest man in the world. Everybody knows that! What are you? Out of it?"
He sees a man walking by and jumps up: "He knows. What, man, don't act like you don't know what I'm talking about. You ruined me! And you know, he ruined me. Don't side with him!"
He walked back to Bolt who defends himself by saying "I'm not."
Getty: "'I'm not.' Everybody says that. What am I, alone here?"
Bolt started walking away and Getty interfers: "Where are you going? What about the company?"
Bolt: "I quit."

German VHS 74.5 sec (= 1:15 min) longer

12:49 / 13:45-14:01

When Bolt shortly after this walks to the hotel entrance, the international version again shows a different transition; the next scene comes moving in from the right.

Actually, you would see him walking on. Then, the camera pans to the two derelicts at the entrance.
One of them says to the other: "Cheer up, man! You're bringing everybody down. Shit."

German VHS 16.4 sec longer

International Version (HD master)German VHS

13:18 / 14:29-14:30

Bolt looks into the dorm room a little longer.

0.9 sec

13:22 / 14:34-14:35

When Bolt closes the curtain soon after this, the shot begins distinctly earlier on the German VHS.

1.4 sec

Alternative / Additional material in the international DVD/HD master
13:33-13:36 / 14:46-14:51

Bolt asks for a single room. In the international version there is a short additional shot, while the VHS version instead shows the following shot earlier. Thus, the man at the reception has to wait a little longer after the question. Then, the international version continues with the rest of this shot for the answer.

German VHS 2.6 sec longer

International Version (HD master)German VHS

Alternative / Additional material in the international DVD/HD master
13:38-13:45 / 14:53-14:59

During the man's suggestions, the international version shows Bolt listening. In the exact same shot he agrees to take the room.
In the VHS version, the previous shot of the man is longer and Bolt's answer is shown in a short alternative take.

International DVD/HD master 0.6 sec longer

International Version (HD master)German VHS

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