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Absolution

Comparison:

  • Director's Cut
  • Theatrical Version
Release: Feb 18, 2019 - Author: brainbug1602 - Translator: Asphyxia - external link: IMDB
The Director's Cut was compared with the theatrical version.

In a boarding school in the middle of England, Father Goddard is the spiritual leader of a group of young people, of whom he especially appreciates the pupil Benjamin Stanfield. Things change when the hippie Blakey sets up camp in a nearby forest. Benjamin has had enough of the conservative, conformist life and finds in Blakey someone who shows him another, free life that Benjamin quickly likes. An acquaintance of Blakey suggests to challenge Goddard by Benjamin confessing to him from wild orgies in the forest. Goddard's hands are tied because of the confessional secret but he notifies the police who harass Blakey. When Benjamin learns from Blakey that he wants to move on, his grief turns into anger and he kills Blakey in an affect. He confesses the murder to Goddard, who cannot go to the police nor does Benjamin admit his guilt. When a few days later Benjamin's classmate Dyson disappears, Goddard gets a bad suspicion. But what kind of game does Benjamin really play?

Absolution is a very exciting psychothriller that attacks the antiquated rules of the church in a clever, sometimes cynical way. In the progression of the film an exciting duel develops between Goddard and Benjamin, who skillfully applies the weaknesses of canon law against the pastor. Richard Burtons as Father Goddard is terrific. If he is still the strict teacher in the beginning, the knowledge about the murder drives him more and more to madness. He becomes insecure and vulnerable, which Benjamin skillfully exploits. However, the ending has a surprise in store, so that everyone who hasn't seen the movie yet shouldn't read the cut report, as some of the listed cuts already reveal too much.

After the film was released on 5 July 2016 in the USA on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber, the Blu-ray from Indicator in England will follow on 24th September. In addition to the well-known theatrical version there is also a Director's Cut newly created by Anthony Page, which runs about 10 minutes shorter. Especially in the second half of the movie there are some tightenings to speed up the movie a bit. Among them are some too dramatic scenes like Goddard's, who dreams of being strangled by Stanfield. Also, a slightly humorous scene in which Goddard learns from a colleague that he was confronted with a terrible insight during a confession, namely a woodworm, has been removed. Towards the end, when Goddard kills Stanfield with a shovel, two bloody close-ups were removed. The whole scene also works very well without the close-ups, especially since the second shot clearly shows that it's a doll, which is why this censorship can be easily overcome. The remaining cuts are rather insignificant tightenings and no big loss. Personally, I prefer the Director's Cut.

Runtimes:

Director's Cut: 85:34 min. (DC)
Theatrical Version: 95:25 min. (T.V.)
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[00:28:41][00:28:41]

The scene in which the boys rehearse the Julius Caesar play starts a little earlier.



T.V.: 7 sec.


[00:50:55][00:51:02]

After Goddard's confession, the DC fades directly over to the scene where he walks past the tree with his shovel.



In the theatrical version Goddard can be seen longer after confession. Then you can see him picking up a shovel from the tool shed.



DC: 3 sec.
T.V.: 32 sec.


[00:50:59][00:51:35]

The DC fades to the scene where Goddard walks through the forest.



In the theatrical version you can see him walking past the tree longer and then earlier how he walks through the forest.



T.V.: 2 sec.
DC: 11 sec.


[00:54:23][00:55:08]

The DC fades from Stanfield, who runs through the forest to Goddard.



In the theatrical version you can see Stanfield walking longer through the forest. He calls for Blakey. Then you see Goddard a little earlier.



DC: 1 sec
T.V.: 7 sec.


[00:58:19][00:59:09]

The DC fades from Dyson to a black screen.



In the theater version follows a scene in which Stanfield sneaks out of the dorm at night.



The next scene with the confession starts a little earlier. Stanfield asks Dyson if he really will do it.



DC: 1 sec
T.V.: 1:15 min.


[00:59:57][01:02:09]

After Dyson's confession Stanfield gets up and walks towards the confessional.



T.V.: 11 sec.


[01:01:17][01:03:40]

The DC fades from Goddard at confession to the scene where he walks through the forest.



Goddard can be seen longer in the theatrical version. Stanfield leaves the confessional.



Then you see Goddard walking out of the church and through the forest.



DC: 2 sec.
T.V.: 24 sec.


[01:03:05][01:05:50]

Goddard says "Amen" again, then he collapses over the grave.



In the next scene you can see him walking through the passage earlier.



T.V.: 28 sec.


[01:03:10][01:06:22]

Goddard can be seen a little longer, then you can see Stanfield behind the confession wall.



T.V.: 5 sec.


[01:03:59][01:07:17]

Goddard further says that the police should be informed immediately. Stanfield does not want to take part because he fears to be locked up. Since he doesn't want to, Goddard can't leave either (because of the confessional secret).



T.V.: 28 sec.


[01:05:35][01:09:20]

Goddard runs back to his room. Dyson wishes him a good night.



Goddard dreams about how he holds a mass. Suddenly Stanfield strangles him with the stole that he nailed to the ground. Goddard is woken up by Stanfield in the morning.



T.V.: 1:31 Min.


[01:06:58][01:12:13]

In the teachers' room there is a discussion about educational methods. Goddard says nothing and sits absent at the table, then the camera fades over to the scene where he walks up the steps.



T.V.: 43 sec.


[01:07:27][01:13:25]

The camera briefly cuts at two guys Goddard walks past.



T.V.: 5 sec.


[01:09:07][01:15:10]

Goddard can be seen earlier than he walks past the pool.



T.V.: 7 sec.


[01:11:07][01:17:17]

Goddard walks past the students longer. Cut to the students in the yard.



T.V.: 14 sec.
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