Comparison between the uncut UK DVD released by First Independent / Columbia TriStar (BBFC 15 / Theatrical Version) and the uncut German DVD released by Mawa/Starlight (Director's Cut).
There are 34 differences with an overall runtime of 32 minutes and 49 seconds.
17 cuts = 10 minutes and 12 seconds
15 alternative scenes = Theatrical Version: 3 min 53 sec / DC: 30 min 28 sec = 26 minutes and 25 seconds
2 Re-Cuts in the Theatrical Version = +3 minutes and 48 seconds
This Sci-Fi movie from 1992, starring Pierce Brosnan and Jeff Fahey, has nothing to do with the original short story written by Stephen King and released as a part of his book "Night Shift". Stephen King sued the producers several times for using his name as an advertisement for the movie, even though it differs immensely from his original work. Four years later they released a rather dull sequel which starred a different cast of actors. It barely had anything to do with the first movie.
The Theatrical Version misses out on 33 minutes of footage that result from either short or pretty long cuts, or the usage of alternative footage. Whether you prefer the Director's Cut or the Theatrical Version is up to you to decide. Despite the immense runtime, the Director's Cut seems to offer a more interesting version of the movie. Outside the UK and a few other European countries it is hard to get the Theatrical Version anyways. The US DVD includes a few deleted scenes in the bonus section and we assume that these are the scenes which ended up in the Director's Cut.
Time designations refer to the Theatrical Version.
DC: A tracking shot of the city and the church. Jobe comes out of his cabin and looks up to a bird. Jobe then leaves the screen.
Theatrical Version: Sebastian pushes his access card out.
DC: Lawrence talks to Sebastion about the chimpanzee and its highly developed intelligence. He says that the animal must stay alive. Sebastian responds that the chimpanzee is a killer and then walks past Lawrence.
Theatrical Version: 1 sec
Theatrical Version: Lawrence: I've got a sour taste in my mouth! I wanna make something better than a military weapon, Timms! I'll just find funding in the private sector, that's all! Sebastian: You're not thinking straight, Larry! Lawrence: Oh? Sebastian: You signed ironclad non-disclosures! VSI owns it all! Besides, it might not be the healthiest thing to try! Lawrence: They own me? Is that it? Is that what you're saying? Sebastian: What? Lawrence: The Company will rub me out, The Shop, is I don't comply? Sebastian: You're being paranoid! Larry, look, relay! I know you're upset because! Lawrence: Relax? ...of what happened with the chimp! They want to suppress my work! The potentials for human advancement are endless! Virtual reality holds a key to the evolution of the human mind, and that's my focus! This is something, and we haven't had something for a while! Sebastian: There will be time for all this, Larry! You just have to play the game a little longer! That is how everything finally gets done in this world! Look, why don't you take a hiatus and we'll restructure around here? You could use the rest! Lawrence: Hmm! Take a hiatus! The image dissolves to the lab where we see a few employees working. In the Theatrical Version, most of the scenes start roughly 2 minutes earlier.
DC: Jobe walks through the woods and is watched by the chimpanzee. Then follows a cut to the congress, where Lawrence gives a speech about the quick learning ability of the chimpanzee. He says that they could use him in warfare for missions that would be too dangerous for human soldiers. His main missions would be identifying the enemy, kill him, and survive. He adds that the chimpanzee never used his abilities outside their laboratoryand they thus do not know what he will do next. Cut back to Jobe in the woods. He sees the chimpanzee and recognizes that it has been wounded. The chimpanzee - who aims his gun at Jobe - realizes that Jobe does not pose a threat to it and thus lowers the gun. A helicopter circles the woods. Jobe asks if they are after the chimpanzee - the latter nods. Jobe says that they could hide inside his cabin and that nobody would find them there. He takes the chimpanzee's hand and walks it to his cabin. There, he says that they're safe now. Scene change: Sebastian says that their search for the chimpanzee was unsuccessful but that they will stay ready for action in case the animal might come back. He adds that they have to finally close the case as silent and inconspicuous as possible. Cut back to the cabin: Jobe tells the chimpanzee that it could call him Lawnmower Man since everybody does so. Terry has told him that the name results from the fact that he is able to repair things and mows the lawn better than anybody else. He adds that when the bad people come back, they could hide in the church where God lives. Then follows a cut to the church. Father McKeen nags about having told Jobe to get rid of the bugs which the latter didn't do. Now, the priest has to do it himself. He stands up and calls for Jobe several times. However, he is not there. Back in the Cabin, Jobe shows his new friend a comic from his collection which is about the chimpanzee, making it his hero. Meanwhile, Father McKeen runs to the cabin and halfway through hears the chimpanzee scream. He walks to the window, looks in and sees the chimpanzee sitting there. Back in the congress, they get to know that a priest called to tell them where the chimpanzee is. Immediately, everybody gets up and leaves. Several cars stop in front of the cabin. Lawrence asks Sebastian, what the fuss with such a big artillery is all about. He thinks that they could easily just have stunned the chimpanzee. Jobe looks out the window and sees the army in front of his home. He tells the chimpanzee that the bad people are back. Outside, Father McKeen tells the others, that Jobe lives there and has the chimpanzee with him. Lawrence asks Father McKeen if Jobe is the Lawnmower Man. The priest says he is. Sebastian asks Lawrence if he knows him and the latter responds that he always mows his lawn. He adds that Jobe's IQ is quite low and that he wants to enter the cabin to talk to him. He tells Sebastian to swear not to shoot the chimpanzee under all circumstances. While Jobe desperately tries to think of what to do now, Lawrence via speakers tells him that his chimpanzee is inside Jobe's cabin and that he should come out with the animal. Jobe replies that there are too many bad people outside who hurt ihs friend and that he doesn't want that to happen again. Lawrence guarantees that no one will hurt the chimpanzee. Jobe replies that the animal is already wounded and bleeds. Lawrence again tells him to come out and bring the chimpanzee with him so that they can help it. While the army has surrounded the building with their weapons equipped, Jobe steps out of the door with the chimpanzee. When the chimpanzee sees Lawrence, it gets unsettled and climbs on top of the cabin. The army immediately starts to shoot at the chimpanzee, while Lawrence tells them to stop their fire - whithout success. When the chimpanzee jumps on a tree and wants to climb it up, several bullets hit it and it falls to the ground. Jobe screams and wants to run to the dead chimpanzee, however, Father McKeen stops him. He tells him that he should stop screaming and hits his head several times. Father McKeen tells Sebastian that this is not an ordinary animal and that they should quickly get rid of the cadaver and then leave the chirch grounds as soon as possible. Sebastian responds that they have to take Jobe with them to interrogate him. Father McKeen doesn't agree and tells them that Jobe has seen enough bad things for a day. Sebastian responds, that he will ask him to tell nothing to anyone and that they will take care of all the damage they caused. Father McKeen leaves the screen with Jobe who is crying. Now we see Lawrence sitting next to the dead chimpanzee while Sebastian says that they should clear up the area before the whole town will take notice. Scene change: Father McKeen and Jobe are inside the latter's cabin. Jobe sits on the ground while Father McKeen is standing behind him. He asks Jobe, which of God's chastisements helps him the most for learning. Jobe points at a leather strap which hangs on a timber. Father McKeen picks it up while Jobe takes his shirt off. Subsequently, Father McKeen hits him several times as punishment. Then follows a cut to Lawrence in his cellar. He talks to his dictaphone and says that today is the low point of his career as well as his life. He says that a few persons had died and he thus will stop working for those bastards. He angrily throws his whiskey jar against the wall. THen we see Jobe inside his cabin praying in front of his shrine. Subsequently he walks to his lawnmower and proudly looks at it.
Theatrical Version: 1 min 20 sec
DC: 13 min 26 sec
DC:Sebastian: You have had incredible success, man! No one is saying stop! Lawrence: I know! That's why I'm quitting! I've been sucking on the military tit for too long! I've got a sour taste in my mouth! I wanna make something better than a military weapon, Timms! I'll just find funding in the private sector, that's all! Sebastian: You're not thinking straight, Larry! Lawrence: Oh? Sebastian: You signed ironclad non-disclosures! VSI owns it all! Besides, it might not be the healthiest thing to try! Lawrence: They own me? Is that it? Is that what you're saying? Sebastian: What? Lawrence: The Company will rub me out, The Shop, is I don't comply? Sebastian: You're being paranoid! Larry, look, relay! I know you're upset because! Lawrence: Relax? ...of what happened with the chimp! They want to suppress my work! The potentials for human advancement are endless! Virtual reality holds a key to the evolution of the human mind, and that's my focus! This is something, and we haven't had something for a while! Sebastian: There will be time for all this, Larry! You just have to play the game a little longer! That is how everything finally gets done in this world! Look, why don't you take a hiatus and we'll restructure around here? You could use the rest! Lawrence: Hmm! Take a hiatus!
The camera fades to the lab, some employes are working in it. In the Theatrical Version, a majority of the scene starts approx. 2 minutes earlier.
1 min 33 sec
Theatrical Version: The shot of Jobe at the gas pump is longer.
DC:At the gas station: after Jake messed with Jobe, he complains to Terry about having to do all the work himself. Terry calms him down. Subsequently, Ed arrives and stops. He gets out of the car and asks Jake and Terry about the riot the day before and says many cops had been there. Terry pretends to be clueless and approaches Jobe who’s filling up a can with gas. He wants to know from Jobe if he knew anything about it. Jobe does know but shakes the head because it seems to be a little embarrassing. Ed adds he’d heard a wild animal had been involved. Now, Jobe does start to talk about it and explains they’d killed his friend Cybo-Man and that Cybo-Man had visited him in his shack before his death. Jake starts laughing and makes fun of Jobe while Jobe is looking at the ground in a pretty sad and thoughtful way.
Theatrical Version: 4 sec
DC: 1 min 20 sec
Now one scene in the Theatrical Version, consisting of three earlier single scenes in the DC.
Father McKeen is getting rid of the bugs in his church. He complains that it was Jobe’s job actually. After killing all the bugs, he gets up and calls for Jobe in an angry way but Jobe doesn’t respond because he’s not present. So Father McKeen goes to Jobe’s shack. The camera zooms in and the scene of Father McKeen whipping Jobe follows.
Theatrical Version: +1 min 59 sec
Theatrical Version: Lawrence is in his basement, pouring himself some whiskey.
DC: Lawrence is in the basement as well. He’s wasted and mumbles something while pouring whiskey.
Theatrical Version: 7 sec
DC: 27 sec
Theatrical Version : Now the scene with Jobe sitting in his shack, praying in front of a shrine. Subsequently, he goes to the lawn mower and looks at it with pride.
DC: After Caroline went upstairs with a lot of anger because got wasted again, he follows her. Being outside, he apologizes for his behavior and tells her not to make a big deal out of it. But Caroline doesn’t give the back of a rat about Lawrence’s apologies and drives off. Carla, who heard everything, aproaches Lawrence. She tells him that it probably wasn’t his best day. He replies he’d had worse ones. They keep talking, mainly about Carla’s son Peter. Carla also says Lawrence would probably a good dad but he explains he didn’t have the time because he had to work a lot. Carla offers to watch Peter anytime if he needed help. He thanks her, then they say goodbye. Then he watches Carla return to her house. Change of scenery: Jobe and Terry enter the premises. Terry stops at the bar while Jobe maunders. Terry calls Jobe and asks if he didn’t want to order. Jobe orders something to eat and goes to the comics where he says hello to two little boys who show him the latest comic. While Jobe is looking at it, Jake leaves the restroom and scares Jobe. He also insults him and makes fun of him. Subsequently, he leaves the premises with a laugh. Terry is POed and says he’d give him hell if he was a couple of years younger. He goes to Jobe, hugs him and they sit down at the bar. Jobe explains to Terry Jake had scared him pretty good. Terry replies he knew and Jake was the devil. He adds he’d make it.
Theatrical Version: 53 sec
DC: 3 min 35 sec
DC: Father McKeen is on the phone with Lawrence. Father McKeen asks Lawrence if he was actually serious about teaching Jobe and says Lawrence shouldn’t overestimate his low IQ. He also works as landscaper and he has commitments. Lawrence promises anything was going to take place under scientific control and that he was going to donate to the church as well. Father McKeen says he was going to talk to his brother Terry about Jobe getting half a day off because helping him was part of Christian charity. Lawrence is pretty excited about the offer.
Theatrical Version: A different shot of Lawrence on the treadmill.
Director's Cut: Lawrence can be seen again, a shot of him on the treadmill is included as well. He talks about Jobe's fast and unbelievable progress and that it was a lot better than the chimpanzee's. He can sometimes be seen practicing with Jobe while talking. However, during the virtual training something goes wrong and the computer displays an overload error. Lawrence runs to Jobe and takes his glasses of. He says – a bit hysterically – that everything was ok again and asks how Jobe is. Jobe answers that he is fine but hungry.
Lawrence is sitting alone in his basement. He talks about the training earlier: The seizure was mild! And if I can keep tighter control over the stem flow, I should be able to prevent it from happening again! The results have been so exciting otherwise! I must continue the treatments!
Scene change – In front of the church: Terry is standing at the car and fixes his gardening tools to it. He walks to Jobe and asks him what he is reading. Jobe answers that they are exercises for his brain so he could get smarter. Father McKeen approaches, Jobe hides his book. Father McKeen wants to know what he is hiding behind his back, but Jobe does not want to show it. McKeen asks again, louder, and Jobe gives it to him. McKeen looks at it and says that he is there to work and not to read. Terry now tells McKeen not to make a scene and there is a discussion between the two. At the end, Father McKeen is offended and leaves. Terry gives the book back to Jobe and tells him to defend himself the next time. Terry also says that he will show Jobe how to drive and gives him the car keys. Jobe is very happy and gets into the car. When Terry is in the car as well, they leave.
Theatrical Version: 3 sec
Director's Cut: 2 min 56 sec
Lawrence asks Sebastian to be allowed into the laboratory because he can only make progress with Jobe there. In the Theatrical Version, the camera cuts to Sebastian sitting there silently and pondering about it. The DC features a longer dialog scene:
Sebastian: The Shop scrutiny is very tight!
Lawrence: Jesus Christ! Listen, all of humanity can benefit from this, for Christ's sake! All we've got to do is take the ball and run with it!
Sebastian: Very risky!
Lawrence: No, no! If we can kepp them out of it long enough to get publishable results, then the lid will be off and they won't be able to control the ramifications! Hey, I can't do this without your help!
Sebastian: There might be a way!
Theatrical Version: 6 sec
Director's Cut: 32 sec
Theatrical Version: A shot of Lawrence sitting in the car with Jobe.
Director's Cut: Jobe asks Lawrence whether he wants to do something new with him concerning the experiment. After some chatting, Lawrence affirms and says that the experiment is only supposed to make him better. He mentions the experiment with the chimpanzee and that they wanted to make a soldier out of it, however, there were some errors and the experiment failed.
Theatrical Version: 3 sec
Director's Cut: 50 sec
Theatrical Version: A short talk between Lawrence and Sebastian, then the camera tracks to the laboratory where Jobe is sitting at the computer.
Director's Cut: On the way to the laboratory, Lawrence tells Jobe that he wants to pause the experiment for a while in order not to risk another overload. Jobe does not agree and says that he already told Lawrence he was fine. Lawrence affirms his position and wants to continue the experiment on a safe basis. He shows Jobe the computer in the laboratory, with which he can passively and virtually learn about various topics. Jobe tries it out instantly while Lawrence explains the system to him. Lawrence has to go somewhere, in the meanwhile Jobe is sitting at the computer and passes one topic after the other. When Lawrence comes back, he tells him about his new knowledge. Lawrence asks him how many topics he already has completed. He does not believe at first that Jobe is supposed to have completed all of them in the meantime and says that no one can learn that fast. Jobe replies that he can learn better when the speed is higher, and wants to prove it to Lawrence. Now, the computer monitor can be seen showing several questions from various fields and Jobe's answers. He actually gets everything right and Lawrence is very surprised. He tells Jobe that he could get a PhD in philosophy in two days like that. Jobe says that he wants to do that but needs more data CDs to get more information. Lawrence says that slow learning, e.g. by reading a book, is good as well because he has more time to think about it then and that learning things by heart is not everything. Jobe says that he would not just learn by heart and his knowledge would rather expand like an explosion. He adds that books are obsolete in modern days and that modern technology, which transformed him, was the right thing for him. Lawrence says that probably no one would believe them.
Theatrical Version: 50 sec
Director's Cut: 4 min 2 sec
Theatrical Version: Jobe drives the car out of the picture after he ran out of the premises.
Director's Cut: Jobe drives to Lawrence's house and stops before it. He gets out of the car while having a large amount of pain in his hand and walks towards the house. He meets Carolin, who is sitting on a bench. He asks her whether Lawrence is there and continues to walk to the door when she affirms. However, he stops shortly before it and turns around when he suddenly can hear her throughts, saying that Lawrence is an asshole and probably sitting in front of his damned computer again. He then enters the house.
Theatrical Version: 3 sec
Director's Cut: 31 sec
DC: Lawrence and Sebastian are looking at Jobe expanding his abilities in front of the computer:
Lawrence:He absorbed Latin yesterday in less than two hours! I took me a year just to learn the Latin alphabet!
Sebastian: God damn, Larry, I am speechless! I think it's time we brought this out of the closet! Now, we can report these results directly to the Department of Scienttific Intelligence in Washington! DSI is bound to offer you both tits!
Lawrence: The timing isn't right! There's some factors that need ironing out!
Sebastian: Well, iron them out! I'm not going to be able to keep this quiet much longer, Larry! The camera tracks down to Jobe again.
DC: Sebastian opens the cooling compartment and exchanges the psychotropic substance with something else. He then goes to the computer and changes the program. Jobe can be seen again, practicing his abilities at the computer, Lawrence is with him. Suddenly, the computer displays an alert due to the altered program and Jobe is in a lot of pain. Lawrence runs to the computer and interrupts the program. He then removes Jobe's helmet. Jobe is in shock and tells Lawrence that he was able to see and feel god.
Cut to Lawrence in his basement: I was pushing! I was pushing! I didn't even thing of Jobe's safety! That amount of brain swelling should have killed him! Instead, it completely disappeared, leaving no lesions! Somehow the experiment is out of my control! I'm stopping the treatments until I can figure out what went wrong!
1 min 48 sec
The Theatrical now shows the scene that was missing before.
Theatrical: +1 min 49 sec
DC: In the laboratory: Lawrence walks to Jobe, who is sitting relaxed in his chair and listening to music. Jobe switches off the music because he could already see Lawrence coming in his thoughts. When he asks Lawrence whether he wanted to sneak up on him, he answers that this probably would be of no use anyway. Lawrence asks him how he is and Jobe answers that he already had acquired a lot of data and that he realized that most of the brain's abilities are sleeping and waiting to be awaken. Lawrence agrees and adds that telekinetic and telepathic abilities also are in every human bur are rarely activated. Jobe then tells Lawrence about a study in which hypnotized patients had developed blisters. When Lawrence says that there was no proof for telekinetic forces Jobe answers that they would deliver it soon. He then blames Lawrence for halting the normal project and suspects him of being afraid of the speed of which it progressed. Lawrence tells Jobe to be patient and that scientific research is a long and tiring process. He walks outside and Jobe turns back to the PC, when he suddenly has pain in his hand and blisters start developing there. The camera pulls back and Jobe can be seen from above as he looks at his head while hundreds of data CDs are lying all around him.
2 min 26 sec
DC: Sebastian talks to Lawrence in the car and says that their plan had changed. Lawrence answers that this probably means they are not going to Washington. Sebastian affirms and inform Lawrence that he will present his results in Virginia. Lawrence asked whether he meant their head quarters and that he thought they did not have contact to it anymore. Sebastian looks at Lawrence, saying nothing. Lawrence then tells the driver to turn around. Sebastian tells him that they would only follow the rules, but Lawrence does not seem to agree and gets really angry. When Sebastian asks him to calm down, he just tells him to shut up.
Theatrical: An agent is walking through the hotel lobby.
DC: Lawrence asks the receptionist for a rental car. He looks around for the agents, which are already following him. The woman asnwers that they do not have any car but that she would look into it.
Theatrical: 10 sec
DC: 1 min 3 sec
DC: The camera pans to the agent walking through the hotel lobby and looking around.
DC: Lawrence enters the kitchen, Caroline is there as well. She greets and kisses him. She says that she had cooked the whole day and hopes that Lawrence is hungry. Lawrence asks her several times where Jobe is. She does not answer but stares into the air while cooking. Lawrence runs into his basement.
Theatrical Version: Shot of Jobe looking at Lawrence.
DC: Jobe looks from Lawrence to Caroline running down the stairs. She asks them if they wanted some refreshments. Lawrence tells her to stay out of it, he sounds incredibly serious. But he can’t even speak it out loud because Joe manages to wrap a sling around Lawrence’s mouth by the power of thought. This is also in the Theatrical Version btw.
Theatrical Version: 1 sec
DC: 9 sec
DC: Jobe and Caroline are looking at each other. Jobe gives the order to accomplish their assignment. She nods and runs up the stairs. Lawrence, tight up at a chair, tells Jobe he was freaking monster. Now Caroline in the kitchen. She gets a gun from the drawer and reloads.
DC: Caroline on her way to the window.
DC: Lawrence witnesses through his cyber-glasses how Caroline is standing at the window, looking outside.
Theatrical Version: The two agents get out of their car. Then a shot of the principal.
DC: One of the recently arrived agents approaches Lawrence’s house and rings the bell. Caroline opens. The agent wants to know whether Lawrence was there. Caroline says that he was and that she was going to let him know. Without saying one more word, the agent turns around and makes a few more steps. Caroline draws a weapon and shoots him with five bullets. The second agent arrives and takes Caroline down with several shots. In between, a shot of tied up and screaming Lawrence who witnesses everything with his cyber-glasses.
K Theatrical Version 8 sec
DC: 55 sec
DC: Shot of the agent’s dead body on the ground. Jobe, who’s standing further up, lets the grass grow around the agent with his mind.
Theatrical Version: Extended shot of Lawrence putting the explosives in the bags.
DC: Carla and Peter are rushing to Lawrence. Carla needs to know what’s going on. Lawrence explains he needed her car keys, he was going to fill her in later. First, Carla wouldn’t accept that and starts arguing with Lawrence but he calms her down and makes it perfectly clear that it was an emergency because he had to go to BSI asap. Peter wants to know from Lawrence if Joe was there, too. Lawrence says that he was there and that he needed urgent help. Carla asks what Joe was doing there. Lawrence gets upset and yells at Carla to get her car immediately.
Theatrical Version: 2 sec
DC: 21 sec
DC: Shot of Jobe driving. Then a shot of the security getting attacked by cyber-wasps.
DC: Close-up of Jobe’s eye.
DC: The camera zooms in to Carla sleeping in the car. Then Peter sitting next to her. He turns around and looks at the building Jobe and Lawrence are in.
DC: When Jobe’s head kind of crumples up, his screaming cyber-face pops up.
Theatrical Version: Extended shot of Jobe as cyber character.
DC: Peter and Lawrence hug. Peter asks Lawrence about Jobe’s whereabouts. Lawrence says he was dead and so were they if they didn’t hurry.
Theatrical Version: 2 sec
DC: 10 sec