War Of The Worlds – The Extinctive Cut
I already created a fanedit of WOTW in early 2006, but was never happy with the overall quality. Still my motivation remained, because I think the idea for a new ending and to remove Tim Robbins is for the greater good of this movie that has so much potential, yet falls so flat in the second half.
To remove Tim Robbins from the shack, I cut around him or rotoscoped him out of the movie, most of the time by including more shadows (which works well, because it’s a dark cellar). This was an incredible amount of work. Some of it was done by masking areas, some by hand painting images. Some scenes were restructured to have a flow as my first version of this was very jumpy. This one isn’t. It’s not 100% perfect, but a good 95% IMO.
Yes, it’s true to the book to have micro organisms defeat the Alien invaders, but in the 2000s this is a tough one to believe. An advanced species will be prepared for such a thing. Because it seems they have been doing that for millions of years on loads of different planets.
For the new ending I used scenes from “Deep Impact”, “Terminator 2″, “Terminator 3″, recolored and resized them to fit to my WOTW look. I composed a new sequence from them and created entirely new audio, using an incredible load of sound effects and score for that to make it sound appropriate.
In the original intro it says: “…regarded our planet with envious eyes. And slowly and surely drew their plans against us.” Well, I never thought that could be true. the Aliens are raiders. They go from planet to planet and harvest all the resources. Much like the Aliens in “Independence Day”. We were just next on the list. Yes, they came here a long time ago to check it out, but they did not wait. The voice overs feel outdated IMO.
That’s why I removed them (besides Morgan Freeman sounding rather bored). For the purist finale it requires some thinking of the audience, since they never get a proper explanation what killed the Aliens (only visually shown), but I take it ym audience is clever enough to do the maths.
WOTW is deep on the characters and I love that about this movie. Especially the Ray Ferrier character (played by Tom Cruise) is set as a very interesting anti-hero. It’s all totally over his head, yet he tries so hard to keep it all together and survive with his family. The development process he goes through is one of the most interesting things about the movie and such a nice and unusual approach for a science fiction / action movie.
For my edit I deleted some moments in the beginning that made it over the top clear what an asshole Ray Ferrier is and what a puny show off. That was not needed and did not add to his character.
There are still some not logical scenes, which I kept for entertainment: for example the blood sucking of the tripod, when later on this is all done INSIDE the tripods, or the Alien eye sneaking into the shack the 2nd time. But I got rid of some annoying scenes, like the camera filming when all other devices don’t work because of the EMP or the journalist not escaping directly but asking Ray for a good story.
The fades in the shack, title cards in the “Extinctive Cut” ending and the change of perspective in that ending are still of course a bit odd, but the best possible approach I could find. I used early in the movie quite a lot of fades to introduce this technique and make it feel as part of the movie. For the “Extinctive Cut” ending I tried to include Ray as much as possible to let him be a part of that. It works kind of well, yet there is only so much you can do. The rockets start in a not Alien destroyed nature, the other people in the shelter entrance wear lighter clothes and are not dirty. Those who want to spot flaws will see them. Those who follow the plot and are IN the movie, will be vastly entertained. And this time I have an awesome president. :)
For the trailer I wanted something special: I wanted to create it on one piece of score. I searched long and hard and finally found something fitting: “The Omen – remake”. Then I created the scenes to flow with the emotion of the score for a complete piece. It worked quite well, I think.
- NTSC DVD-5
6 deleted scenes
shack scene comparison
a tiny easteregg
CBB info on all 34 fanedits
runtime of extras: about 22 minutes
The extinctive cut ending is the drastically new ending for the movie, in which we fight back.
The purist ending contains the micro organisms ending, but no Robbie Resurrection or final voice over.
in both versions there is no Harlan Ogilvy and lots of other minor changes to correct the plot and improve the pacing.
- recolored movie from yellowish to blueish
- removed intro
- removed Ray explaining what his problem is
- removed Ray speeding
- removed digital camcorder filming, while it should be dysfunctional through the EMP
- moved “Are we still alive”
- removed reporter asking Ray if he was on the plane
- removed burning train
- moved “Europe got the worst of it”
- added exterior house view while the battle still takes place
- removed Harlan Ogilvie entirely from the movie
- added exterior empty night shot from the house
- moved, zoomed, rotoscoped many scenes in the house to make Harlan disappear
- added footage from Deep Impact, Terminator 3 and Terminator 2
- moved several WOTW scenes to fit to the content
- added president speech
- removed almost all of Boston arrival (and what remains is not in Boston)
- replaced end credits
- added new score
- removed Robbie’s resurrection
- removed voiceover
- replaced end credits
- added new score (different to extinctive)
“Its not enough to survive... One has to be worthy of survival. “ Commander William Adama.
Sadly, such a notion is not universal. That might explain the survival of repellent lead characters. After two hours of the original, viewers will likely root for the alien raiders to capture, consume and silence our ordinary fellow humans.
Boon is biting off a lot here, trying to paint lipstick on a cancerous pig, attempting to carve the crap without leaving behind a corpse.
Video: MPEG 720 X 480p. Let’s get this out of the way. Once you hit PLAY and have to choose which version of CBB’s edit, Extinctive is transposed to Extincitve. Oversight that should have been caught long ago.
In both Extinctive and Purist cuts, once past Chapter 10, resolution is poorer. This seems more noticeable in Extinctive, especially with blacks and deep shadows.
Audio: 2 Channel AC3. Subtitles - yes! Sound is really good here, with a nice dynamic range.
Narrative: I watched both versions, and both are cohesive and logical. Extinctive ending held an unexpected surprise. Can’t say that I bought it from a logical point of view. Questions about how long a future time frame are we looking at? Food supplies? Water? Politicians? Still, it might be taken as a Hollywood 70s ending. The Purist was OK and I had no problem with omitting the microbial aspect.
Enjoyment: Did someone say extras? Man, Boon is generous with the goodies! Trailer, Deleted Scenes, the shack with and without Robbins, a chunk of CBB edits to boot.
If one means “enjoying the actual film” - I disliked the original and my dislike for the edit is only marginally less. Problem is with source material. Characters you can’t wait to get killed. Blame script or directing. And Spielberg has a curious history of terrorizing children into screaming. Not judging, just saying. There is less of that in this edit, and CBB reimagines Robbie’s path well.
Recommended to fans of the original. Naysayers will still be displeased.
I watched this one a while ago but never wrote a review. Definitely not the best CBB edit. While I liked some of the changes (a lot of the minor cuts worked well for me) the big changes left me confused and irritated. Note, I watched the Extinctive ending, not the Purist ending. Purist ending might have been more up my alley but I never felt like rewatching the edit.
Editing was kind of a mixed bag. The removal of Oglivy (or whatever) was really well done but simple scene transitions felt awkward and other scenes were choppy.
Review by veggieguy12 — March 13, 2011 @ 2:40 pm
As the reviewer above wrote, “I’m giving this a 7/10. Not Boon’s fault at all… I greatly *admired* this fanedit, I wish I could say I *enjoyed* it as well.”
There was a vast improvement, and if Boon was in the editor’s role for Speilberg and the studio, this could have been awesome – though Tim Robbins would have gotten no paycheck.
Editing: 9/10, Movie in Fanedit Form: 7/10
Review by merce777 — July 28, 2009 @ 12:17 am
Dude, awesome edit, I loathed the original version of this movie, but you removed everything I disliked about this film (except for T.Cruises bad acting, not your fault). BUT I would like to have the DVD version of this but can only find the .avi version on torrent, could you point me in the right direction? Anyway, 9/10, only because I dislike Cruise.