League of Extraordinary Gentlemen Strikes!, The
When a threat so evil emerges that the fate of the entire world hangs in the balance, the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen is assembled. The LXG must unravel a diabolical plot and face off against one of the world's most infamous villains!
TM2YC, Rogue, Hebrides, Baileym43 and hbenthow
About This Edit
- new April 1899 title card
- cut Bobbies chasing tank through the streets of London
- couple of minor cuts during Quatermain's fight in the clubhouse
- cut CGI bullet
- cut CGI London cityscape
- new July 1899 title card
- cut "Where are we going -- Australia?"
- cut "One of our members is late"
- cut "I call it an auto-MO-bile"
- added 4x3 Deleted Scene One with rain SFX and music
- repurposed/flopped a shot of the Nautilus diving
- deleted scene of Jekyll and Quatermain -- "Hyde will get his hands dirty"
- Quatermain continues his walk, meets Mina, they observe Nemo -- "Not the one I don't trust"
- transition shot of Nautilus surfacing
- deleted/extended scene of the bridge -- clearer suggestion of Skinner's guilt
- Quatermain/Sawyer target practice scene
- deleted/extended scene with Mina and Dorian (added music)
- Jekyll/Nemo using extended deleted scene (added music)
- moved/inserted Quatermain/Sawyer meeting with Nemo
- Jekyll discovers missing formula, informs Quatermain, Sawyer and Nemo
- cut Nemo commenting on the "old tiger" and Quatermain's response
- cut the group sneaking into exterior of fortress, cut from Quatermain "the game is on" to Moriarty in his den
- trimmed Quatermain and Sawyer running through Fortress hallways
- added damaged film to the dodgy Invisible Man planting dynamite
- trim Nemo freeing the prisoners
- cut the henchman explaining the contents of the box since Skinner already did this earlier
- cut Dorien "I hoped to get to nail you one more time"
- broke Sawyer's battle with evil invisible man and fire guy into two separate scenes and reordered/trimmed the action scenes with Hyde, Quatermain, Sawyer and Mina... has a faster pace continual cliffhanger feel to it
- lots of trims to Hyde's fight
- added damaged film fx to Dorian rapid aging
- removed cut away shots to the bombs counting down
- added damaged fx to M cape glider shot
- cut CGI bullet
- added fade to black with Sawyer standing over Quatermain
- Sepia for final Kenya scene
Splendid work, BionicBob!
This edit is, without doubt, the version I will return to the next time my LXG-nerve tingles. Or pulp-nerve, for that matter. Visually the edits are flawless. Not a single cut caught my eye, thus keeping me inside the experience. As it were. However, the streaks became a tad too distracting at times. As did the hairs. Not every time and not a majority of the time, but a few times. A bit too prominent at places. The deleted scenes added into the mix did stand out, but felt more as parts of the pulp experience than jarringly out-of-place (as you said in the About This Edit-featurette. A fun thing in itself! Keep making those.).
The monochrome choice was a brilliant choice and really helped sell the otherwise lackluster movie. It obscures poor CGI in plain sight while at the same time adding to the pulp theme, which is great fun! The different colors was indeed a nice touch, as others have stated.
Dare I say it looked almost too "old timey" for me not to yearn for 1.33:1 or the like. The wide ratio almost distracted me. Almost. Re-framing it, together with less streaks and hairs, would be an impressive feat! I'd watch the hell out of that.
Vultural said what is to be said about the sound. Very well done! Perhaps a tad loud in my mind, but stellar edits.
And as others have stated, the original movie is rather lacking overall and can be tricky to do something about. I think you did a masterful job at capturing some of the good ol' adventure, fun and action spectacle the original buried somewhere.
I'll consider this a gritty-ish pulp movie from now on and will return to this when silly adventure is needed.
Overview - The original League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen was a deeply flawed mess, nor an enjoyable one at that. Top heavy with mindless action, it was also hurt by having no real plot, as well as a very poor villain. BionicBob applies his “Strikes!” vision over this, aiming to pull the edit into the pulpy serial era.
Audio - Very aggressive 2 channel PCM (translates into a large-ass file) stereo. Explosions, fights, chases were all louder than a football rally. Dialogue was clean, no mumbling words, or talk drowned out by music. Often hard to successfully pull this off, but credit to BBob for doing so.
Video - Things I like/appreciate. Nice editing job here. Numerous changes and I never noticed a one. Inspired use of tints for Africa and the subsequent snowfall in Mongolia. Perhaps too much restraint here as tints could have been used for undersea shots. Restraint can be the wise choice, however ...
Because the one effect I noticed repeatedly - and often - was the print damage. Five minutes of pristine images followed by scratches and noise. One got the feeling part of the film had been restored, the rest was in a squirrels nest. The inserted deleted scenes resembled 5th generation video tape. Don’t know if these could have restored to match the stock. When these scenes appeared they were quite noticeable.
Narrative - Minimal improvement to the original structure. BBob’s tighter pace shifts this from “change channel now” to watchable.
Enjoyment - As always, BionicBob is very generous with extras. Trailers, artwork, a multi-paneled making of document. The latter gives insight into the editor’s artistic choices. Thank you very much for those.
As for actual enjoying, after awhile I was checking the time. I was disappointed when I viewed this at the cinema, the DVD reminded me of that disappointment. BionicBob is one of the most talented editors on FE, but he went overboard on the visual damage this go around. I would have expected this from a fledgling editor, but not from him. Less is more.
To be honest, League might be too difficult to salvage. The story itself was derivative and dull, the direction amateurish, there were too many characters, and most of the actors seemed to walk through their roles. If - IF - you enjoyed the original, and if you don’t view black n white as a stigma, you will appreciate this edit.
It's been many years since I watched LXG (bought the DVD secondhand) and I dismissed it as one of the many CGI-laden franchise-hopefuls that fizzled out in the vein of Constantine, Van Helsing, etc. Bionicbob presents the film here as it should be seen-- a true Victorian steampunk/pulp adventure. I'm not familiar with Alan Moore's comic book series, so I'm judging the narrative solely by the way its presented in this edit-- it is pretty damn fun.
The grindhouse effect, faded look and varied color hues were a great choice and gave the film authenticity. My favorite was the cool blue Mongolian sequences and the orange tinted Africa sequences worked well too. Not only do they help place the sequences geographically and thematically but also help compartmentalize and move the film along in chapters. There is a lot of grain (and some artifact), but honestly, this is a grindhouse film--it is part of the look and feel of the edit itself and it is not distracting in the setting of the scratches, film damage, dust and other grindhouse signatures that are present throughout. The deleted scenes look grittier so I could tell them apart from the actual theatrical cut, but again, all part of the presentation.
There were no audio blips or hiccups at all.
Narrative wise, it is a fantasy film-- and a very entertaining popcorn flick. Its not meant to be taken seriously, but is supposed to be a thrill-ride and certainly delivers, especially in the last quarter. As a comic book film, this film should not be judged against darker films like the dark knight, but against lighter fare (van helsing, etc) and for my money bob's version of LXG blows the others out of the water. I rated it a 10 because it was such a significant improvement over the original that this should certainly be considered the definitive cut of this fun movie. And dude, it has freakin Sean Connery-- that's enough reason to watch the movie. If he can make Zardoz look good, he can make this movie look good.
Great work all around. Highly, highly recommended for fans of steampunk and comic book movies, as well as those just looking for a fun popcorn flick. Congrats bob ;)
First off, I'll give my view on the original movie...
The script is a rambling, incoherant, contradictory, convoluted, nonsensical and cliche-ridden mess. In fact, it's scarcily credible that something like this could be written this badly by accident. The makers bought the rights to a fantastic concept and then threw as much of that original concept down the toilet as they could and filmed their own thing (I'm sure that now, in these post MCU days the source would have been respected to the benefit of all).
It's to this film's credit that despite those huge negatives, there is a lot of fun to be had so long as you disengage the logic enters of your brain. I'm pleased to say BionicBob has brought the movies' strengths to the fore.
There is a hell of a lot of compression in this encode. It's present throughout but in the Sepia scenes it is really bad. Although, as this edit is a kind of "Grindhouse" job with film-damage and stuff, the poor image quality becomes forgettable to some extent.
Nearly seemless from start to finish. The removals were well executed and the swapping round of scenes was always for the better. Especially in the snooze-fest that was the original sequencing of the Nautilus dialogue scenes. The pacing felt much more even in this edit. I didn't get bored of the talking and I didn't get bored of the over-cooked action either. Despite the extreme low-quality of the deleted-scenes I think they could have been colour-graded better to match in. However again, the mismatch fitted okay with the "Grindhouse" aesthetic.
Switching to monochrome was a great choice as the CGI effects looked cheap when this film came out a decade ago and look positively embarrassing now, which the single colours hide quite well (Except the Mutant-Hyde-Creature at the end, there is no disguising that atrocity!). The Cyan Mongolia sequence looked stunning and really looked like footage from a hundred years ago. I saw a silent movie about the Titanic a couple of years ago and the icey landscape looked just like this.
Again it's nearly seemless with only one or two moments where I noticed anything at all. The music changes are all excellent and well integrated.
The deleted material is all welcome and improves the narrative on a character level. I felt much more for characters like Quatermain and Jekyll and despised Tom Sawyer a whole lot less. The plot is still full of holes large enough to park a Zeppelin in though but there is little that any editor could do about that.
BionicBob's edit felt more "Old-timey", it felt more "Pulpy" and it felt more adventurous. I doubt this film can ever be fully saved, short of scrapping it and starting again but there is no question that this is a far superior cut of the film than was originally released.
p.s. As per usual with a Bob release, there are a few nice DVD extras including a trailer and an extensive and fun image gallery.