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Needful Things


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  • US Version
  • German VHS
Release: Apr 11, 2017 - Author: Muck47 - Translator: Tony Montana - external link: IMDB
Compared are the US Blu-ray by Scorpion Releasing and the German VHS by RCA / Columbia Pictures

- 7 cuts in the US Version with a total length of 207.8 sec (= 3:28 min)
- 2 cuts on the German VHS with a total length of 37 sec

There are minor jump-cuts with a length of less than 0.5 sec. In order to keep it simple, those will not be mentioned in the following comparison.

A long time before he became famous internationally, Oliver Stone directed his debut film Siezure in 1974. Though the movie lacks his typical style, it is a nice little horror flick about a writer whose characters become alive. Unfortunately, getting your hands on it is more difficult than one would expect - given the fact that this is an Oliver Stone movie. In Germany and the UK, it has only been released on VHS. At least, there is a DVD and also a Blu-ray in the US.

The problem is that despite the superior quality of the US releases, there is a catch: Almost 3.5 minutes are cut. Some dialog is missing and what also catches one's eye is the lack of vulgar scribbling and nudity. To make things worse, the German VHS is not uncut either. Two scenes containing violence are cut on the German tape and I can't determine whether or not other tapes have those cuts as well because they are quite difficult to find. So the status quo here is that only the much shorter US Version in reasonable HD quality is being left to posterity.

Time index refers to
US Blu-ray / German VHS in PAL
The US Blu-ray contains a logo at the beginning.
Subsequently, the German title has been used on German VHS. Other than that, the opening credits are identical.

US Blu-ray 15 sec longer

US-Blu-rayGerman VHS

05:21 / 04:53-04:56

Edmund on his way inside a little longer plus the subsequent shot starts earlier: There is vulgar scribbling at the door. The US DVD is back in the game when one can't read that anymore.

3.2 sec

12:58 / 12:14-12:49

Before the scene in the woods, another scene inside the house is missing: Half-naked Minnie is looking for Mark who is making out with some other chick i the room next door. Minnie is upset and leaves, Mark follows her. Serge and his wife then come in, Minnie just walks by them. Nicole asks Serge about Edmond and finds out that he intended to check on his dog and ran into woods which makes this scene a nice little introduction/transition to the following scene which takes place in the woods.

35.7 sec

Mirror Image
35:48-35:51 / 34:43-34:47

When Mark gets strangled, the US Version contains a mirror image in the middle of the scene for some reason: Cuts to him and the Queen of Evil are mirror-inverted. This goes on until the extrem close-up of his eyes which is the moment the versions continue identically. Please see the last screenshot, there is also some kind of rolling bar on the US Blu-ray. In addition to that, said shot is a few frames longer on the German tape.

German VHS 0.7 sec longer

US Blu-rayGerman VHS

35:57 / 34:53-35:07

Mark earlier at the window. He makes a few steps forward and says to Charlie that it was just his guilty conscience.

14.3 sec

Additional Footage in the US Version
37:06-37:30 / 36:13

Before Edmund and Serge go to the roomnext door, the US Version contains additional footage: There is more chaos among the guests and in all that fustercluck, someone gets shot in the head. He spits blood and dies.

+ 23 sec

Additional Footage in the US Version
53:08-53:22 / 51:11

The shot of the monster is longer in the US Version plus it relocated its head. After a cut to Nicole who looks quite shocked, there is a close-up of the slowly melting hands.

+ 13.9 sec

61:09 / 58:39-60:49

Edmund defends himself from Serge's moral comment but that only gets Serge started. The subject of their conversation is Edmund's work and what Serge thinks about it. They also talk about how to make a living in general and how Edmund resp. his work fits in all of that.

129.5 sec (= 2:10 min)

76:50 / 75:51-76:15

Again, Serge philosophizes a little more detailed.

24.2 sec

90:29 bzw 90:30-90:31 / 89:20-89:21

Another shot of the Queen of Evil. In the US Version, a part of that has been added to the middle of the subsequent shot of Edmund and then the shot of Edmund is being repeated. Apparently another screw-up in the US Version - similar to the mirror image issue at 35:48-35:51 / 34:43-34:47.

no difference (length of the missing footage: 1 sec)

Last but not least, a little screenshot comparison even though it was already implied by the mirror image alteration. The German VHS is open matte.

US Blu-rayGerman VHS