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Black Sunday

original title: maschera del demonio, La

Comparison:

  • US Version
  • European Version
Release: May 11, 2013 - Author: Buster - Translator: DaxRider123 - external link: IMDB
Moldova in the year 1630: The beautiful witch Asa Vajda and her beloved lgor Javutich are accused of performing witchcraft by Asa's brother and thus sentenced to death. Before she's burned, Asa vows revenge and puts a curse on the family of her brother and all of his descendants. They put a metal mask with sharp edges on the inside (a devil mask) on Asa's face. However, rainclouds prevent her from being burned. As a result, Asa is buried in a coffin inside a crypt nearby and Igor Javutich awaits an anonymous grave.

200 years later, Dr. Thomas Kruvajan and his assistand Dr. Andre Gorobec travel all the way through Moldova to get to a medical convention. While waiting for their coachman to repair a broken wheel, the doctors walk around and find Asa's grave.

By accident, Kruvajan breaks the casket lid as well as the cross above it. He lifts the devil mask and thus sheds light on Asa's - surprisingly pretty well-preserved - corpse. However - surprise surprise - he cuts his hand on a shard of glass, some of his blood drips on Asa's dead face and terror takes its course...


American International Pictures (AIP) bought the marketing rights of the movie for 100.000$. However, in order to make the movie more marketable for American audiences, AIP cut out roughly 3 minutes of violence and offensive content. Both English versions available also differ in terms of their dubbing. For example. in the Italian original, Asa and Igor Javutich are brother and sister. Since this results in incest, the US Version made Javutich into Asa's servant. Some dialogue was toned down for the US Version. For example, when Asa says "You too can find the joy and happiness of Hades!", the AIP turned it into "You too can find the joy and happiness of hating!".

The voice-over at the beginning of the movie was slightly changed, too. Apparently, they didn't think that the American audience was smart enough to be able to figure out who is who by themselves:

European Version:

"In the 17th century, Satan was abroad on the Earth and great was the wrath against those monstrous beings, thirsty for human blood, to whom tradition has given the name of 'vampires'. No appeal for pity or mercy availed. Brothers did not hesitate to accuse brothers and fathers accused sons in the frantic attempt to purify the Earth of that horrible race of blood-devouring assassins. But before putting them to death, human justice anticipated divine judgement by burning into the flesh of those damned ones the brand of Satan."


US-Version:

"One day in each century, it is said that Satan walks amongst us. To the God-fearing, this day is known as Black Sunday. In the 17th century, the Devil appeared amidst the people of Moldavia. Those who served him were monstrous beings, avidly thirsting for human blood. History has given these slaves of Satan the name of 'Vampire'. Whenever they were caught, they were put to a horrible death. Princess Asa of the aristocratic Vajda family was one of these. She was sentenced to a witch's death by her own brother. Before the moment of death, the brand of Satan was burned in her flesh."


Roberto Nicolosi's beautiful music for the movie was replaced by compositions by Les Baxter, which are a little more effective for horror movies.


For this report we compared the European Version (BBFC 15 DVD) with the US Version (BBFC 15 DVD). (Both versions are included on the DVD released by Arrow Video)

Runtimes:
US Version BBFC 15: 79:40 Min. PAL (incl. credits)
European Version BBFC 15: 82:57 Min. PAL (incl. credits)

Overall, there are 3 minutes and 17 seconds of missing footage.
Additional Sequence in the US Version:
00:00:00
The US Version begins with the "American International Pictures" logo, followed by a caring warning to the audience.

US Version +48 seconds

The producers of the picture you are about to see feel a moral obligation to warn you that it will shock you as no other film ever has.
Because it could be very harmful to young and impressionable minds, it is restricted to only those over fourteen years of age.





Opening Credits:
00:03:15
Shortly after the devil mask was put on princess Asa's face, the US Version fades to black, while the European Version shows the sequence a little longer. The intro of the US Version ends after the names of the main actors have been shown. It's noticeable that Barbara Steele's name has a typo in the European Version's opening credits.

European Version +1 minute and 4 seconds

European VersionUS Version




Extended Scene in the European Version:
00:41:23
Javutich wiles Dr. Kruvajan into the crypt which contains princess Asa's coffin under a pretext. The coffin lid opens and Asa thanks Kruvajan for resurrecting her with a drip of his blood. However, she also wants the rest of his blood to be able to put her plan into operation. Asa asks him to kiss her. The kissing sequence was cut out of the US Version.

European Version +8 seconds




Additional Sequence in the European Version:
00:46:45
Brother Constantine delivers the sad message of her father to Katia.

European Version +15 seconds

Constantine: "Katia! Poor father!"
Katia: "No!"




Extended Scene in the European Version:
01:00:20
Dr. Andre Gorobec watches Katia in the garden. When the camera pans to Katia, the US Version lacks a shot of the castle garden.

European Version +19 seconds




Extended Scene in the European Version:
00:46:45
The entire dialogue between Katia and Andre in the castle garden was cut out of the US Version.

European Version +1 minute and 42 seconds

Andre: "Princess Katia. I hope I'm not intruding."
Katia: "No. l just feel so desperate and alone."
Andre: "l understand, but you mustn't despair. You must always have faith in yourself. in life."
Katia: "In life? What is my life? Sadness and grief. Something that destroys itself day by day. and no one can rebuild it. Here is the very image of my life. Look at it. lt's being consumed hour by hour like this garden. Abandoned to a purposeless existence."
Andre: "lf the hand of man abandons this castle, or even this Earth. There is no reason why you should do likewise with your life and your youth. Go far away from here and you will be happy again. Katia. Forgive me if l call you by name. And remember that l'll always be ready to help you."
Katia: "You're very kind. Andre, but today everything seems so hopeless. l feel a sense of terror, a presentiment of death, of being destroyed by something that's inside me. How l wish l had your faith, your strength."
Andre: "You mustn't give in to despair. l know it"s hard for you, but even here in this garden the sun will reach into the darkest corners and chase away the shadows of the night."
Katia: "Andre. help me. l beg you to help me."




Additional Sequence in the European Version:
01:03:17
Another dialogue between Katia and Andre - while he accompanies her to her room - was cut out.

European Version +21 seconds

Katia: "Thank you. Without you l wouldn"t have had the courage to go on."
Andre: "ln moments like this it"s difficult to... find the right words. but... when this is all over. Katia..."
Katia: "Thank you. Andre. Thank you."




Extended Scene in the European Version:
01:09:27
Andre and the priest spot undead Dr. Kruvajan inside Igor Javutich's grave. The priest knows only one way to give the doctor's soul eternal peace. Just before Kruvajan's eye is stabbed with a nail, the US Version fades the scene out. In the European Version we hear him scream and additionally see some liquid splashing out of the eye.

European Version +2 seconds




Extended Scene in the European Version:
01:12:24
Katia wanders through the castle and searches for help. She finds the servant Ivan who was hung in front of the main entrance door and runs back into the room where her father's corpse is laid out in his coffin. When the father suddenly gets up and makes a bolt for her, the US Version does not show how she loses consciousness.

European Version +2 seconds




Extended Scene in the European Version:
01:13:01s
In the European Version prince Vajda burns in the chimney fire a little longer.

European Version +14 seconds




Extended Sequence in the European Version:
01:20:52
When the mob burns Asa on the stake, there's a short missing sequence where Andre talks to the priest.

European Version +27 seconds

Andre: "Why was Katia taken away from me. Father? And she is dying with Katia's beauty. Katia... My life is finished too now. How can l ever forget her? How can l resign myself? l will never find peace. Look. her young body... destroyed."




End Credits:
01:18:26
While the European version ends with the classic "The End" title card, the US Version shows end credits.

US Version +1 minute and 14 seconds

European VersionUS Version





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