Red Dragon: Definitive Cut

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Faneditor Name:
Original Movie Title:
Franchise:
Fanedit Type:
Original Release Date:
2002
Original Running Time:
124
Fanedit Release Date:
Fanedit Running Time:
114
Time Cut:
10
Subtitles Available?
Available in HD?
Brief Synopsis:
This cut rearranges the scene order to tell a thought provoking, subtle, compelling story. The result is more of a slow burn-- with gradually escalating conflict (and a little less Hannibal).
Intention:
The theatrical cut of Red Dragon didn’t leave much to the imagination and its direction might be best described by Hannibal himself: it “fumbles at your head like a freshman pulling at a panty girdle.”
Release Information:
Digital
Editing Details:
Change List:

1. Complete color regrade to address scenes with hyperblues, blown-out highlights, the white point set to glowing blue, and other issues. The look now leans more natural.
2. VFX to make Hannibal look a bit younger and fitter throughout to better match his appearance in Silence of the Lambs.
3. Removed Hannibal's roughly 10 minute intro showing his pre-incarceration dining activities, fancy ponytail, and how he was apprehended by Will. Now there is more initial mystery in Will's connection to Hannibal that we learn about over time.
4. For the opening credits newspaper/scrapbook montage, replaced the in your face (and on the nose) scoring with some vintage music from the 1940’s (something Francis’ grandmother might have played). Now it has a more relaxed, confident vibe.
5. Removed the overt opening grandmother/teeth visual and most of the photos of Will.
6. Added in new disturbing/artistic visuals for the opening credits to shift the heavy handed focus from Will over to a more subtle focus on themes about The Red Dragon. We also see a hand caressing a newspaper photo of Hannibal.
7. Less filler and expository in the first conversation between Will and Crawford pre-establishing Will as “imaginative.”
8. The first time we see Francis is the darkroom scene at Chromalux, and it's moved significantly earlier to just after Will briefs the FBI team; Francis is now initially shown as just a quiet, awkward man.
9. Other scenes with Francis (acting relatively normal) also happen sooner now.
10. Fans of the Deftones might appreciate scoring added while Francis watches Reba in the rain from his van.
11. In the meeting with Will, Hannibal does not say he has “oodles” of time. Hannibal does not need to be cute and relatable.
12. While Will is watching the home video of the Leeds, we cut to Francis arriving home where he begins watching the home video of another family, a definitive but more subtle confirmation he is the killer.
13. In the tree, removed Will’s comment about the Red Dragon symbol carved into the bark.
14. Cut Francis putting red marker across Freddy’s face on the newspaper clipping. We don’t need this hint.
15. Trimmed and rearranged Will meeting with Hannibal on his weekly “walk” in chains. Now Hannibal does his lunge move right away when he first approaches Will, and the scare is much more effective.
16. Hannibal says the carved symbol is the Red Dragon without Will saying it first.
17. Cut Hannibal’s contrived malarkey about Will controlling his fear.
18. Cut the clumsy exchange about Hannibal wanting to view the Leeds family videos.
19. When Hannibal’s message to Francis is decoded, we first hear what it says from Crawford.
20. Added missing muzzle flashes to Molly’s target practice scene.
21. Moved the Francis workout scene to later, right after he kidnaps Freddy the reporter. This very first glimpse of Francis in the theatrical cut had very quickly established him as severely disturbed, which I wanted to avoid happening too early on. Cut this way it now heightens the tension of the captive reporter scene.
22. Francis does not tell Freddy, “you owe me awe.” Sounds too much like “all” with those dentures and the effect is lackluster. Instead Francis gets close up and intimidating. Added SFX.
23. Moved the most horrific flashback dialogue from good old Grandma so that Francis is in bed dreaming about her abuse now, prompting him to put the shotgun in his mouth. Saving this revelation for the end is important for building up to Francis’ dramatic action here.
24. Blood VFX added when Francis clubs the librarian; cut her dropping to the floor.
25. The art eating scene ends as Francis is still munching on the paper. Cut the other woman entering the room and Francis leaving.
26. Added some camera/ color VFX and SFX for dramatic impact to depict Francis’ transformation as he eats the artwork.
27. Trimmed end of conversation on plane discussing Francis’ adventure at the museum.
28. Trimmed down Will’s prolonged joke about Reba’s hair.
29. No more unnecessary ending teaser for Silence of the Lambs.
30. New end credits music, a classical rendition of the Deftones.

User reviews

4 reviews
Overall rating
 
9.9
Audio/Video Quality
 
10.0(4)
Audio Editing
 
10.0(4)
Visual Editing
 
9.8(4)
Narrative
 
10.0(4)
Enjoyment
 
9.8(4)
(Updated: August 26, 2023)
Overall rating
 
9.6
Audio/Video Quality
 
10.0
Audio Editing
 
10.0
Visual Editing
 
9.0
Narrative
 
10.0
Enjoyment
 
9.0
(NOTE: I watched this without reading the Change List, but I've probably seen Red Dragon 30 times, which is why I was more aware of the changes as they popped up.)

Looking at the Change List now that I've watched the movie, there were more than I thought there would be! Very impressive.

THINGS I LOVED:
* Removing the opening helps turn the movie into a story about "Will and Dolarhyde, plus Lecter," so in that sense I like it.
* I also like that it helps mirrors Silence of the Lambs, where Lecter doesn't enter the film until around the 20-25 minute mark.
* Separating the child abuse scenes was a great choice and it kept those lines in the forefront of your mind as the movie progresses.
* Moving/removing the bench press scene to make it part of the Tattler murder was smoothly done.
* Cutting back the "fix your hair, please" comments at the end was perfect. I always felt like it went from cute to like "hey ugly fix your fuckin hair."
* Adding blood to the knockout in the museum was solid, I actually really liked it, it was gruesome.
* The tightened up dialogue around the codebreaking scene really kept the tension those extra 5 seconds, good edit
* Moving the "hiss" jump scare in the "Lecter exercise yard" scene to the beginning of the conversation really made the conversation flow more naturally (but the editing was a bit rough).

THINGS I DIDN'T LOVE:
* Removing the opening doesn't detract but you really need to rely on the credits montage to fill in the story on Will, his scar, his hospital stay, his line "I let him kill me", etc. It works but it's a bit vague.
* The weird supernatural shake while he eats the painting was odd, almost made it seem like the Red Dragon *is* alive, which I didn't like since the movie is clearly not supernatural.
* Why remove the "you owe me awe" line? Sure it's a bit odd but I liked it. Showed how insane he is.
* "Why'd you put mirrors in their eyes?" is one of the dumbest lines in the movie and I wish it had been removed. It only serves to back up the "orbital sockets" line for people who don't know what those are, and it treats the audience as dumb. Likewise I would've cut the "folding Rorschach tests into origami" bit. That never struck me as particularly powerful.

I found the movie had a smoother flow, there was more "evil" spread out through the movie, and more pressure and tension in all the good ways. I only marked down slightly because there were a few parts where I could tell there had been some editing done, but I also understand that it needed to be that way for the changes to fit the soundtrack, dialogue, etc.

Overall this edit succeeds!

User Review

Do you recommend this edit?
Yes
Format Watched?
Digital
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful? 0 0
(Updated: March 11, 2023)
Overall rating
 
10.0
Audio/Video Quality
 
10.0
Audio Editing
 
10.0
Visual Editing
 
10.0
Narrative
 
10.0
Enjoyment
 
10.0
I will keep my review short as the other reviews pretty much said it all. Red Dragon is the best Hannibal novel and it is unfortunate that it did not turn out to be the best film in the series. Regardless, I still enjoyed the original so I was very eager to watch this edit. Krausfadr took a slightly bloated, occasionally disorganized mess and trimmed the fat to create a taut, visual dish. Special marks for the new opening credits, getting rid of the bloat to create a darker, moody film, and of course the beyond professionally de-aging of Hannibal make for an absolute delight of a film. If you are a fan of the Hannibal series or want to see what a masterful edit looks like, check out this cut and enjoy!

User Review

Do you recommend this edit?
Yes
Format Watched?
Digital
R
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful? 0 0
Overall rating
 
10.0
Audio/Video Quality
 
10.0
Audio Editing
 
10.0
Visual Editing
 
10.0
Narrative
 
10.0
Enjoyment
 
10.0
Amazing! Better paced, more eerie, and love the de-aged Hannibal. It keeps up the intensity throughout which is more than I can say about the original. Thank you for letting me see this!

User Review

Do you recommend this edit?
Yes
Format Watched?
Digital
J
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful? 0 0
Overall rating
 
10.0
Audio/Video Quality
 
10.0
Audio Editing
 
10.0
Visual Editing
 
10.0
Narrative
 
10.0
Enjoyment
 
10.0
Ah, Red Dragon. Such a missed opportunity. Based on what's likely the best Hannibal Lecter novel, guess it was obligatory to re-adapt with Anthony Hopkins despite having been made into a very good film already in 1986 (Manhunter), given the post-Silence of the Lambs popularity of the character as played by Hopkins. Also, it could have been a proper apology to the audience after the awful Hannibal by Ridley Scott. Unfortunately... they gave it to Brett Ratner. A complete hack. And since hacks gonna hack, the movie came out totally flat and uninspired, feeling a hundred per cent generic and undistinguishable in its directing from any run of the mill Hollywood thriller. A far cry from the powerfully raw Silence or the amazingly stylish Manhunter.

Of course not much can be done to improve the directing, or the miscasting of about half of the characters (ffs, they gave Dolarhyde to Ralph Fiennes when they had Philip Seymour Hoffman, who REALLY wanted the role, right there?), but still, from the very opening moments of this edit the difference is abysmal. Gone is, of course, the whole ponytail thing (Hannibal would for sure have eaten Ratner for the offense of depicting him in such a tacky way - with McDonald's fries and a Coke, as fava beans and Chianti would have been way too refined for this), and now the film opens with an old-timey song over the credits that sets the mood perfectly. The trims and slightly reordered narrative do work wonders for the movie overall. It still feels too generic, particularly towards the end, but it flows so much better. It is now an inferior Silence of the Lambs rather than a mockery of it. In fact, I had considered editing this one myself but abandoned the idea out of fear that it would still come across as pretty dull. However, this edit kept my interest all through!

And the de-aging works better than I expected. Superior to quite a few professionally made in Hollywood ones that I've seen. Sure, if one wants to nitpick it's still a digital effect so there's still a slight uncanny factor to it, but it's Hannibal we're talking about. He's uncanny by default. So, success.

Video and audio quality, as well as the editing itself, are completely flawless. The result is, most definitely, the best that this movie will ever be. Highly recommended for any Hannibal fans.
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