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Dean1700

Superman II - Lester Vs Donner

Which do you prefer....?  

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    • Superman II
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    • Superman II - Donner version
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Now that Donners version of Superman II is available how does it compare with Lester's version? I think I am leaning more towards the Lester version for some unknown reason.

I also recall seeing the International cut of Superman II many many years ago and it was good to see some of the scenes in this version in the Donner version.

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Lester version for sure. I guess it's because I am so used to watching that version so many times like I did when I was growing up.

Though I will admit it does make me appreciate how the movie could have been with the Donner cut.

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Guest macrea

Donner Cut: assemblage of footage providing a slightly clearer picture of the original intent masquerading as a completed movie.

Lester/theatrical: a completed film containing elements which inject a different approach that becomes less palatable as time goes on.

Almost a toss up, but I side with the version that feels like a completed movie.

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Impossible to say.

The Donner Cut is interesting, as a reconstruction of what we could have got - but it's badly structured, and really never comes together as a film. Lester's cut at least comes together as a film (sort of), even if it's still quite disjointed. I feel like I'm watching a film (if a not-very-good film) when I see that version.

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I think I'll just stick with Superman: The Movie.

I actually enjoy all the original four Superman films, to different degrees. :oops:

Superman - The Movie is the only genuinely-great Superman film, but I find 2 more than watchable, and 3 and 4 are the definitive guilty pleasures for me.

Superman Returns was just... mediocre. Not good enough to be an enjoyable film, and not bad (or rather, silly) enough to be a guilty pleasure.

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It's not really how they are marketing this thing.

If it's just to show you what's missing they could have just included the individual scenes on a bonus DVD.

But this is something they can market...

Donner's lost masterpiece!

Marlon Brando Like You Never Saw Him Before!

All new Special effects!

Come see.....COME SEE!

It's rubbish!

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I got the same feeling within me while watching Donner's cut as I did when I first saw the 1997 Special Edition of Star Wars: giddy anticipation, then the odd jolt of seeing alternate takes, low-budget cg effects, new lines that didn't contribute much, and possibly the strange feeling that I had just been "played" for a few bucks. Still, unlike the SE, Donner's film deserves the benefit of the doubt since it's missing so much and really had no budget.

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If they wanna do something no one has seen beforer they should not have done a Superman film.

Besides, no 200 million dollar film can ever be truly groundbreaking, there's to many nervous bankers involved for that.

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Yes, but it's always fun to hear repeatedly "We're doing something different, what people haven't seen before" in this particular example.

Karol

I wonder how man times that is said in the documentary.

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Yes, but it's always fun to hear repeatedly "We're doing something different, what people haven't seen before" in this particular example.

Karol

Yes, Singer managed to do something no one has done, make Superman a dull and bland superhero.

Of course he did the same thing with the X-men so no big suprise to me.

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Well, I've finally gotten through enough of my Christmas DVD stack that I've seen the Donner Cut. And...I loved it. A lot. Ever since I saw II a few years ago for the first time since I was a kid I've wondered "what if". Now we have as close to an answer as we'll get.

Now, the criticisms in here are legitimate. Yes, it does feel a bit disjointed. But given the circumstances, it's put together very well IMO. Even using the screen test for the scene where Lois discovers Clark's Superman, though it does stand out, is still integrated as well as possible. It works. Add to that just a treasure trove of new Brando Jor-El footage, possibly my favorite part of the whole thing. That part of the plot works so much better now. The big Manhattan battle is still a bit of a disappointment (but also mostly Lester footage if I'm not mistaken), and the final turning back time resolution does feel like a cop-out after using it in the original. And the music editing is atricious, prequel level in some places, but other than shelling out the big bucks to get Williams to write a whole new score there wasn't much else they could do. But as a picture of what could have been, this is all we could have hoped for. Well done all.

And, the pointless, useless, brainless Lois in Paris crap is nowhere to been seen. That alone makes it worthwhile.

Also, I remember reading that some recently unearthed alternate cues from Williams S:TM were used in this. I was trying to listen for them but didn't catch anything. Could someone (EJ, Jim Ware maybe?) point out where the new stuff is?

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Certainly the highlight of the whole movie is the restoration of Brando as Jor-El. But I liked the Lois in Paris scenes as it gave Supes a minor rescue before getting stuck into the job of dealing with the Krypton 3. Obviously this wouldn't work in the Donner Cut but the scene looked much better when Superman flies past the Concorde on his way to Paris (seen only in the International Cut though)

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Sorry to bump.

 

Is a spreadsheet of "Superman II - The Richard Donner's Cut" exists?

 

It is supposed to contains previously released John Williams's music from the first movie, but "unreleased" bits too.

 

Do we have the details?

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As I've posted before; RL is the more "complete and finished" version, but RD is by far the more "emotional" version, especially with the inclusion of the Brando footage. For me, the RD takes it.

I would dearly love to see a hybrid version, featuring the best of both.

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Hmm. Yes...and no.

From viewing the RD, it's clear that Donner gutted the film, and put back as much of his stuff as possible, using the Lester footage to plug any gaps in the narrative.

While I'll always enjoy the RD more (it's closer to what was intended) there's things I'd like to see changed, and I miss Anthony Sher's snortingly funny "Have a happy...whatever ;)".

Oh, and, although it seems odd, the "magic kiss" is still better than the seen-it-before turning back the world...again sequence.

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I can't believe it's been 12 years since the RD was released. Although heavily compromised due to the need to use screen test footage, Lester's inferior reworkings for the villains taking over "the world" and some dodgy effects, I still prefer it to the RL camp version. Margo Kidder looks emaciated and miserable in Lester's footage, Reeve looks somehow younger and Zod acts like a complete idiot ("...a very strange surface...", "...I like the globe that glows red like our Kryptonian sun..."). The Paris sequence with the ridiculous accented French speakers is the cherry on the cake (" ...ze bomb, eez it still inside?..."). Too bad Selutron never completed his version.

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JT, who is "Selutron"?

 

Agreed. The RD version overturns the villains' comic leanings, and presents them as cold-blooded killers. I especially like the 1-80 of Non.

Among the best lines: "This is the son of Jor El?".

"No, but I bet you're a sonofa-"

"Jimmy!"

As an aside, compare the two versions of the White House attack. The RL is good, but the RD is so much more dynamic. It's longer, but it seems shorter, thanks to Stuart Baird's crisp editing.

 

 

(edit) I've just discovered Selutron. It's good, isn't it?

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On 1/5/2019 at 4:28 PM, Jay said:

I've never seen this movie and have no interest in learning which pieces of the first film's score might have been tracked into it. 

 

I think you'd like the film.

 

The theatrical version is definitely different from the Richard Donner cut but I myself prefer the Donner version.

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Lester's movie always was a bad joke from the start to the end.

 

At least, with RD's cut, Brandon is back, this woman that we don't know, which is supposedly Superman's mother is gone too.

 

Oh it's not a perfect movie, but superior to Lester's farce!

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2 minutes ago, Stefancos said:

 

You mean the woman who played Superman's mum in the first film?

 

Where she almost had a silent part... she says 2 lines maybe?

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2 hours ago, Bespin said:

Lester's movie always was a bad joke from the start to the end.

Tru, dat.

2 hours ago, Bespin said:

At least, with RD's cut, Brandon is back...

Bes, I think you mean "Brando" :lol:

2 hours ago, Bespin said:

...this woman that we don't know, which is supposedly Superman's mother is gone too.

Watch your mouth, Bes, that "woman", is English rose Susannah York!

2 hours ago, Bespin said:

...it's not a perfect movie, but superior to Lester's farce!

Tru, dat.

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