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Attack of the Robots

original title: Cartes sur table

Comparison:

  • US VHS (Sinister Cinema)
  • Original Version
Release: Jul 09, 2022 - Author: brainbug1602 - Translator: Mike Lowrey - external link: IMDB

Cards on the table

After several influential politicians are assassinated by dark-skinned men wearing sunglasses, the police manage to catch one of the assassins. The man is a car mechanic who was kidnapped over a year ago. During an escape attempt, the assassin dies. In the process, his skin mysteriously lightens. Interpol agent Baxter notices that the assassin had rhesus factor zero, as well as some outstanding kidnapping cases. Baxter activates agent Al Pereira, who also happens to have the same blood type. After a short time, Pereira is contacted by Chinese gangster Lee Wee, who also wants to hire him. The trail leads to Alicante. There, after a short time, he befriends the nightclub singer Cynthia Lewis. Pereira quickly falls into the clutches of the dark-skinned assassins, but who is behind the attacks?
 
In Attack of the Robots, the character of Al Pereira appears for the first time, which Jess Franco used later in following films. Here he is played by Eddie Constantine, who has been seen a few times before as Lemmy Caution and plays a similar role here. Franco had a somewhat larger budget at his disposal and the result is a quirky agent thriller with sci-fi elements that doesn't take itself too seriously.

US Theatrical Version shortened

In the US, Sinister Cinema released the film first on VHS and later on DVD. Presumably, a US theatrical print in moderate condition serves as the template. Especially during the reel changes there are more film tears. The US Theatrical Version was shortened in plot, presumably to make the film a bit more fast-paced. In addition to the plot scenes, a somewhat frivolous dance number by Cynthia is missing, as are a few instances of violence. Although the opening credits are in English, the lyrics in the US version are still in French. For the US Blu-ray, Redemption had access to the restored and uncut Gaumont version. The film is here in its entirety and in excellent picture quality. Choices include English or French audio with optional English subtitles.
 
Short film tears are not listed in this report.
 
Picture Comparison:
 
VHS (Sinister Cinema):
 
Blu-ray (Redemption):
 
Runtimes:
 
VHS (Sinister Cinema): 87:44 min.
Blu-ray (Redemption): 92:46 min.
 
Comparison between the US VHS by Sinister Cinema and the US Blu-ray by Redemption.
[00:00:00][00:00:00]

The Blu-ray begins with the Gaumont logo.



BD: 9 sec


[00:01:28][00:01:40]

Alternate title inserts. On the VHS, many of the titles are cut off due to the incorrect aspect ratio.



No time difference.


[00:10:10][00:10:28]

Film tear during reel change. Baxter adds that Pereira has a scotch as well as the blonde. The next shot starts earlier.



BD: 2 sec


[00:12:28][00:12:50]

The canoe with the kidnapped Pereira on board sails away. A man whistles. Pereira is being dragged along a bridge. Secretly, Pereira opens one eye.



The VHS shows only the end of the shot of Pereira when he has already closed his eyes again.

BD: 25 sec


[00:15:42][00:16:29]

Pereira can be seen earlier. He says that he will be sorry if he disobeys Lee Wee's orders.



BD: 2 sec


[00:16:41][00:17:31]

The shot in which Pereira comes home begins earlier. From a fountain, the camera pans to Pereira.



BD: 4 sec


[00:21:36][00:22:33]

The image of Cynthia can be seen. In the next shot, the boat is seen earlier.



BD: 3 sec


[00:24:49][00:25:51]

Jump cut: Pereira and Cynthia getting off the bus.



BD: 2 sec


[00:25:06][00:26:10]

Jump cut: the man continues to describe the figure of Cynthia with his hands.



BD: 2 sec


[00:31:27][00:32:36]

Cecilia continues to walk past the robots.



BD: 2 sec


[00:34:30][00:35:42]

In the VHS, the image closes from the sides and then opens again in the next scene.



In the Blu-ray, Percy can be seen for longer.



This is followed by a dance number by Cynthia in a club wearing a tight full body suit. She dances on stage around the musicians. Pereira sits in the audience watching her while he lights a cigarette.



BD: 1:27 min


[00:37:29][00:40:10]

Jump cut: the men sneak into the room.



BD: 2 sec


[00:38:18][00:40:59]

A violence cut in the VHS. The man who was hit by the knife falls back into the closet.



BD: 3 sec


[00:38:53][00:41:37]

Film tear: The men leave the room longer. The next shot starts earlier.



BD: 3 sec


[00:44:04][00:46:51]

As the corpse emerges from the closet with the knife in its body, the VHS inserts a fade to black and fades to the next scene.



On the Blu-ray, the body can be seen for a longer time. Cynthia faints, and suddenly room service knocks on the door. Pereira hides the body in the closet again and puts Cynthia on the bed, then runs to the door.



The VHS resumes as he opens the door.

VHS: 2 sec
BD: 32 sec.


[00:44:47][00:48:04]

Pereira closes the door and looks toward the bed, but Cynthia is gone. He hears water running from the bathroom and finds Cynthia there, taking a shower. Pereira goes back to the bedroom to look in the nightstand. It is empty. Somewhat grimly, he looks toward the bathroom.



BD: 53 sec


[00:49:58][00:54:08]

The man is following Pereira. In the next shot, the two are seen earlier on the boat.



BD: 2 sec


[00:55:41][00:59:56]

Jump cut: Pereira runs to the window.



BD: 2 sec


[00:55:44][01:00:01]

Cecilia is seen earlier walking to her car.



BD: 2 sec


[00:55:57][01:00:16]

Jump cut: Pereira runs around his car.



BD: 2 sec


[00:59:13][01:03:38]

The VHS fades off to the side as the RV is seen.



The Blu-ray shows the motor home for longer. This is followed by a cut to Pereira lying inside. The next shot starts earlier.



VHS: 1 sec.
BD: 6 sec.

[01:00:23][01.04:55]

The woman in the tube is seen longer. The next shot starts earlier.



BD: 3 sec


[01:27:38][01:32:24]

The VHS fades in "The End" at the end, while the Blu-ray reads "Fin". On the Blu-ray, the music continues after that with the black screen.



VHS: 6 sec.
BD: 22 sec.