Compared are the Theatrical Version and the Extended Version (both available on the German Blu-rays by Universal)
- 251 documented differences, among then 41 with alternate footage
- Length difference: 2001.6 sec (= 33:22 min)
Until its final cut, every film gets tightened several times. But when it comes to literary films, it is particularly interesting for audiences. Not seldom, fans of the novel are missing single passages resp. the film forcibly lacks some things, other things are altered. That makes them interesting for the home theater market because a longer version with additional value on Blu-ray and DVD is not uncommon. Footage cut from the Theatrical Version for pace reason is often back in the film.
Among all the bid budget productions of the last few years, one usually recalls the Lord of the Rings trilogy (and the Hobbit films). It is common knowledge that Peter Jackson was living it up and in spite of smaller points of criticism, the Extended Versions are much better, no doubt. As for German productions, it is common practice that there will be a longer version of motion pictures that already have excess length.
The Physician is one of those films and after its German theatrical release in December 2013, the film aired as longer two-parter. This almost 35 minutes longer "Extended Edition" is also available on Blu-ray and DVD qnd the following comparison illustrates the differences of that very version.
The Extended Version
There are not as many differences as there were in the "neverending" comparison of "The Girl Who Played with Fire" but the amount of differences with three figures is self-explanatory. Meaning: not a single minute without any differences in the Extended Version goes by, most of them are completely irrelevant and barely noticeable by an average audience.
Rather often, there are cuts for pace reasons and the Extended Version contains the original, unaltered footage. Consequently, the pace is a little lower sometimes but this also means some scenes are more atmoshperic. Same with the small recuts causing a better pace due to previous or subsequents cuts. Looking at the details, one realizes how carefully those alterations were made and sometimes, it works better in the Theatrical Version, sometimes in the Extended Version. One could say it is a double-edged sword because neither of the versions is actually superior. Anyway, the following comparison mostly consists of differences of that kind (although written in smaller letters and without screenshots in order to keep it clearer). Also, those kind of alterations mostly cause the rather huge length difference.
As a consequence thereof, new plot elements and additional content are rather rare. There are a few entirely new scenes but most of the time, the new footage is for character development only. For instance, Rebecca's husband Bar Kappara now doubts his actions and Rebecca's punishment. Moreover, he expresses a little fondness. Mirdin has several other conversations with Robert during which his opinion on religion and his principles are clearer. The same with Schah. His personality is more distinct in the Extended Version. As already mentioned, it does not make it an incredibly better film but it is a nice touch.
Last but not least, there are some special alterations which are hard to categorize, such as a slightly different score, zoomed in or mirrored shot for no obvious reason and also a few scenes exclusively in the Theatrical Version. All in all, it appears to be some fine-tuning because one was in the cutting anyway.
Eventually, the Extended Version is not the version that should be preferred under any circumstances. Especially fans of the Noah Gordon novel should take a peek at it though because some characters are more elaborate but that is it. Otherwise, it does not really matter which version one choses.
Time index refers to
Theatrical Version Blu-ray / Extended Version Blu-ray
Please note: The Extended Version on Blu-ray has PAL speed.
The Theatrical Version contains several logos at the beginning.
+ 52.6 sec
00:55 / 00:00-00:12
The first tracking shot of the actual movie begins destinctly earlier in the Extended Version. As a consequence thereof, the text appears a little later in the Extended Version.
01:24-01:26 / 00:40-00:48
A further part of the tracking shot is missing due to a smotth transition.
Extended Version 5.2 sec longer
Right before the title, another transition is slightly cut. As a result, the Extended Version is another 2.2 sec longer. Before that, the credits slightly differ as well resp. there now are production logos in the Extended Version previously shows in the Theatrical Version.
02:38 / 01:59-02:07
The children are being sent away because they did not "make enough".
02:58 / 02:26-02:29
Briefly extended shot, young Robert also stands up.
03:46 / 03:15-03:32
Extended shot of Robert walking around.
04:46 / 04:29-04:43
Bader speaks longer and assimilates Robert in his show resp. calls him on stage.
05:34 / 05:30-05:34
The mother longer, then an additional shot of Robert.
06:09-06:10 / 06:08-06:21
The Extended Version contains two long still shots of the suffering mother and Robert.
In the Theatrical Version, the following shot of the mother begins insignificantly earlier (no screenshots).
Extended Version 12.1 sec longer
07:26-07:32 / 07:33-07:38
Bader says goodbye differently. The shot of the mother in between is identical.
In the Theatrical Version, he makes a cross sign and moves backwards without having a clue.
In the Extended Version, he says no to his father. Then he walks out.
Theatrical Version 1.5 sec longer
07:33-07:34 / 07:39-08:31
At the end of the shot, Robert turns around to the priest in the Extended Version. The priest is talking to his mother, trying to sell her a cemetery plot on the cemetery that belongs to his chapel. According to him, it was at least better than being buried on a bleak meadow. She refuses his offer and when the priest starts ignoring her, she looks at Robert one more time.
In the Theatrical Version, the following shot of Robert begins insignificantly earlier (no screenshots).
Extended Version 50.9 sec longer
08:01 / 08:57-10:08
Another shot of the deceased mother at which Robert says she was still breathing. They remove the cover and realize she was cold hence she needed to be covered up. Robert gets some water and pours it in her mouth. Eventually, he determines she was dead already.
09:12 / 11:16-11:19
The shot Robert left alone starts earlier...
09:13 / 11:20-11:26
...and only in th Extended Version, it gets interrupted for an additional shot over his shoulder.
Subsequently, a few already used frames of the shot are being repeated.
09:17-09:22 / 11:30-11:40
The Theatrical Version cuts to another angle for a second while the Extended Version sticks to the previous shot. As a result, the Extended Version is longer.
Extended Version 5.9 sec longer
09:26 / 11:44-11:45
Insignificantly longer shot.
09:28-09:30 / 11:47-12:10
Robert much longer, then Bader turns around to him and throws a wallet in his direction. Then he tells him to take a hike.
When Robert returns and offers to take care of the horse, the Theatrical Version is back in game - but with an alternate take.
Extended Version 21.1 sec longer
09:31 / 12:11-12:23
In the Theatrical Version, Robert only mentions at the end that he can cook as well.
In the Extended Version, the shot is identical but he says he knew a lot about horses. Furthermore, the scene is longer. He claims to have watched his mother cook and sew. Bader explains he did not need a groom and he certainly did not need a cooking child being in his way.
09:34-09:37 / 12:26-12:37
The Extended Version sticks to the very same shot when Bader learns about it and Robert remains alone.
The Theatrical Version on the other hand contains a tiny shot from a different angle and with the shot of Robert at the end of the scene, the Theatrical Version is back in the game.
Extended Version 8.8 sec longer
Theatrical Version longer
09:39-09:41 / 12:39
Robert slightly longer at the end of the shot in the Theatrical Version.
+ 1.8 sec
09:56 / 12:53-12:56
Bader approaches from further behind.
10:10-10:13 / 13:10-13:13
In the Extended Version, Bader turns around in the same shot while he does that in an earlier beginning distance shot in the Theatrical Version.
10:25 / 13:25-13:26
Bader a bit earlier after the shot of Robert in the cart.
10:52-11:20 / 13:52-14:53
The conversation between Robert and Bader is basically identical. However, alternate takes have been used. When being asked about siblings, Bader explains more detailed he had enough to worry about already. Furthermore, he gets upset at the end of the scene because Robert is about to ask something else.
Finally, the first shot at the following morning begins insignificantly earlier.
Extended Version 34.5 sec longer
Theatrical Version longer
11:30-11:33 / 15:03
The dissolve starts earlier in the Extended Version.
+ 3.3 sec
Theatrical Version longer
11:51-11:55 / 15:19
The trip across the village is slightly longer in the Theatrical Version. Then an additional shot of Bader.
+ 4.6 sec
11:59 / 15:23-15:24
Robert slightly longer on the ground.
12:03 / 15:28-15:34
Robert insignificantly longer, followed by the girl in the background. The man yells at her.
Robert attracts attentions with a stupid line.
12:04-12:16 / 15:35-15:41
Alternate footage until Robert's punch on the nose.
The Theatrical Version shows Bader at the market square for the very first time. Then further attacks by the man, followed by more footage of Bader.
The Extended Version sticks to the fight and contains other shots with more of Robert's stupid comments.
Theatrical Version 5.4 sec longer
12:18-12:19 / 15:43-15:46
Before the man goes down, the Theatrical Version shows Bader again.
The Extended Version sticks to Robert and the man.
Extended Version 2 sec longer
12:20-12:24 / 15:47-15:53
Same pattern here.
Extended Version 1.7 sec longer
12:26 / 15:55-15:58
Robert earlier plus his comment is on-screen (also in the Theatrical Version beforehand but off-screen).
12:29-12:30 / 16:01-16:03
Longer shot in the Extended Version. In the Theatrical Version, the following shot starts slightly earlier.
Extended Version 1.2 sec longer
12:32-12:34 / 16:05-16:11
Alternate shot of Bader. In the Extended Version, the shot of Robert making his way through the crowd is longer.
Extended Version 4.7 sec longer
13:20 / 16:56-16:57
Slightly longer transition.
13:45-13:46 / 17:21-17:30
In the Theatrical Version, the camera is close to Robert asking "Who is next?". In the Extended Version, he asks that at the end of the previous shot.
Only the Extended Version then shows several people from the audience raising their hands. Among them is also the man he got in a fight with before.
Extended Version 7.8 sec longer
14:20 / 18:03-18:24
After the hooker comment, Bader intones a song.
15:01 / 19:02-19:06
Robert approaches from further behind.
15:29 / 19:33-19:46
Additional distance shot of Robert approaching Bader. Then he takes off his shirt.
15:39-15:47 / 19:55-20:07
The Theatrical Version shows the conversation via distance shot, the Extended Version contains close-ups of them with a bit longer pauses between identical comments.
Extended Version 4.1 sec longer
Shortly afterwards, the Theatrical Version sticks to Robert a while longer. As compensation, the Extended Version shows Bader earlier.