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DVD Talk review of 'The Thief and the Cobbler'

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DVD Talk review of 'The Thief and the Cobbler'

Old 11-14-06, 02:22 AM
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DVD Talk review of 'The Thief and the Cobbler'

I read Thomas Spurlin's DVD review of The Thief and the Cobbler at http://www.dvdtalk.com/reviews/read.php?ID=25051 and...

A few things...

This is a Panavision 2.35:1 film that's presented in pan & scan from the VHS master. A 2.35:1 letterboxed version exists, which was used for the laserdisc.

Also, this DVD uses the version that has a ton of redubbing and editing done compared to the version released in Australia. It's missing nearly 10 minutes. There's the uncut version that's only a bootleg that has nearly 30 minutes of material that was cut!

This DVD is a piece of shit. I have a bootleg that has over 6 hours of supplements and is widescreen (and uncut). Weinstein Co. can take this DVD and cram it up their arses.
Old 11-14-06, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by PatrickMcCart
This is a Panavision 2.35:1 film that's presented in pan & scan from the VHS master. A 2.35:1 letterboxed version exists, which was used for the laserdisc.

Also, this DVD uses the version that has a ton of redubbing and editing done compared to the version released in Australia. It's missing nearly 10 minutes. There's the uncut version that's only a bootleg that has nearly 30 minutes of material that was cut!
It's a shame, too. I discovered this after the review had been compiled. Indeed, this IS the re-edited, re-voiced, pan and scan version that is not the animator's vision. My review (and my first exposure to the story) is based on the DVD alone, which is still serviceavle as a relatively enjoyable film geared towards families. The artwork and general storyline is still worth a watch since it is readily available.

A few additions have been duely marked on my review.
Old 11-15-06, 02:40 PM
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the true thief and cobbler dvd cut

There is a DVD of a "director's cut" that can be downloaded with bittorrent apps. It's pretty awesome. It was assembled from the bad DVD, a rough cut, and some other sources. It recreates the directors' intent as closely as we are likely to see. Awful voiceovers and musical numbers gone. It still has terribel conceptual problems, but it's the only way to see it.

It's not illegal to download; it is not a copyrighted version.

UPDATE: -- Complete on DVD as of May 2006! Watch the entire film on Youtube! Download the DVD at Demonoid via torrent for free!
http://www.youtube.com/view_play_lis...EE5872FE454FBA

Last edited by torgotom; 11-15-06 at 03:55 PM. Reason: link to directors cut - fully legal
Old 11-15-06, 10:43 PM
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There's a further updated version here: http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...43258119&hl=en (which you can actually put on your iPod or PSP).

It's important to know that it's a blend of all available footage, including poorly animated Korean finishing that was done after the director was fired. It sticks out like a sore thumb, so you won't have trouble spotting it.

As for conceptual problems, the problem is that the original edit lost nearly 30 minutes of footage when it was re-edited by the investors. Some scenes had a terrific editing rhythm, but that was lost. It doesn't help that the only lead anyone has on what the original edit was is a work-in-progress bootleg that doesn't feature material worked on for the last few months of production before it was halted.
Old 11-19-06, 08:32 AM
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Can anyone tell me if there is any difference between this and the Miramax DVD version? For whatever reasons, my kids love this movie. I see that the Weinstein version on Amazon lists it as widescreen whereas the Miramax does not. Is one of these versions better than the other?
Old 11-19-06, 04:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Tomboymama
Can anyone tell me if there is any difference between this and the Miramax DVD version? For whatever reasons, my kids love this movie. I see that the Weinstein version on Amazon lists it as widescreen whereas the Miramax does not. Is one of these versions better than the other?
It's important to note what the differences are between the uncut 90 min. workprint and the 80 min. version released in 1993 as The Princess and the Cobbler (but only in theatrical release in Australia and South Africa - it was sold to Miramax as The Thief and the Cobbler).

Workprint vs. "International Re-edit"

Re-editing:

- Prologue heavily re-edited and re-written, lacking original narration by Sir Felix Alymer and a gorgeous score. Most of the original footage was thrown out, but some snippets were kept and finished in full cel form. However, most of it is new stuff created only for that version

- Order of scenes often changed. The prologue originally segued into the introduction of Tack the Cobbler. Instead, it segues into the One-Eye Army right after a massacre. This originally was about 30 minutes into the film.

- Scene in Zig-Zag's tower with exposition on his plan originally went after the original placement of the One-Eye massacre, about 40 minutes into the film. Instead, the released version puts it right after Tack is "recruited" to fix Princess Yum-Yum's shoe.

- Many little shots were chopped in half or thirds and intercut with other shots chopped up.

- The helicopter flyover has a lot of superimposed dissolves added from the later war machine sequence, spoiling the surprise.

Deletions:

- Opening shot of Tack the Cobbler (pencils-only in workprint) never used, half of the second interior shot used instead.
- Half of that second shot deleted (with the first 1/4 covered with a dissolve from the previous shot)
- Several little sections throughout were trimmed.. most notably many longer takes split into two short takes by a crude jump cut.
- Princess Yum-Yum's introduction with the flowers heavily cut and partially replaced by a song sequence.
- Zig-Zag's introduction of the Maiden from Mobassa (she's in the canopy tent that he has carried into King Nod's palace) deleted, covered up by a jump cut (and causing a continuity problem with Zig-Zag suddenly appearing from in front of Nod to behind him)
- A ton of short shots all over the film
- Tack leaving King Nod's palace room to fix Yum-Yum's shoe
- Thief falling through canopies in a fall (first one, not second scene)
- A lot of the polo scene deleted, including a shot of him climbing down a tree.
- The Thief getting caught stealing an emerald and subsequently having his hands chopped off (avoids this by using backscratchers he stole from Yum-Yum's bathroom) (part of the last shot of this sequence was edited into a scene much earlier, despite you being able to see the chopped backscratchers)
- Last half of Zig-Zag's tower scene (with him descending stairs)
- Thief attempting to steal Yum-Yum's shoes (same scene has her breaking all her shoes in half - in relation to the earlier scene)
- Entire scene with Thief trying to steal the golden statue gone
- Thief flying "biplane" in war machine deleted
- Huge amount of the war machine destruction deleted (though, more was kept in this version than the Miramax cut)
- Original ending with Thief and Tack on a teetering over a plank about to fall into a jagged death pit replaced with the Thief barely hesitating to give back the balls

Additions

- Three horrible song sequences added
- More expository scenes/shots with Tack and Yum-Yum
- Fight scene between Tack and Zig-Zag (also trying to snatch up Yum-Yum)
- A few extra shots of the Thief with really awful animation

Audio:

- Original score totally thrown out except for an excerpt of "Night on Bald Mountain"
- Tack, Yum-Yum, King Nod, the Nurse, Mighty One-Eye, and narrator all re-dubbed.
- One scene actually keeps Sir Anthony Quayle's v/o for King Nod and the Witch's voice is kept except for new lines inexplicably. Bobbi Page replaces Hilary Pritchard as Yum-Yum, Steve Lively does Tack's formerly mute voice (except for one line originally spoken by Sean Connery), Kevin Dorsey's voice replaces a much more demonic voice by Paul Matthews for Mighty One-Eye, and Mona Marshall replaces an uncredited v/o for the Nanny (speculated to be Joan Sims - who also did the Mad Holy Old Witch)
- LOTS of added and inappropriate sound effects.

Misc.
- A few shots were re-shot with changes.
- Many unfinished scenes were poorly completed in Korea
- Some were actually done well.
- Many of the deleted Thief sequences are shown under the closing credits.
- Color timing is often different and oversaturated.

There's more, but those are the more obvious ones.

Miramax changed things further.

- Prologue shortened even more, with Matthew Broderick narrating instead.
- Jonathan Winters constantly babbles in the third-person form for The Thief
- Broderick redubs Tack, Jennifer Beals re-dubs Yum-Yum, Eric Bogosian re-dubs Phido the Vulture (Donald Pleasence's squawks are in the workprint and "Princess" version)
- Bravura pullback inside Mighty One-Eye's tent with dancing femme one-eyes deleted (probably since they're all in scant clothing)
- Reaction shots in response to the approaching war machine of King Nod, the Lackeys, and other people in the city deleted
- Most of the "March of the One Eyes" sequence deleted
- Demise of Mighty One-Eye deleted
- Shot with Zig-Zag getting kicked in the crotch deleted
- King Nod running out of the palace towards the battlefield ("Oh my God, my daughter!") deleted
- Nearly all of the sequence showing the war machine being prepared deleted
- Entire witch scene deleted by jump cutting from first to last shot.
- Shot of Thief sliding down a "death chute" and running out of the war machine deleted
- A few shots of the Thief flying deleted (one is only shortened)
- Original pullback from golden city to the "THE END" title replaced with freeze-frame of Thief on top of the tower.
- More overdone sound effects and music added.
- Deleted scenes under credits replaced with plain gold lettering on black
- Retitled Arabian Knight for theatrical release.


As for DVD stuff...

The longer "Princess" version is out of print in R4, where the DVD was only in pan & scan
The Miramax cut is letterboxed 2.35:1 on the OOP laserdisc.
An R2 Japanese DVD of the Miramax cut is OOP
The R1 2005 and 2006 versions of the Miramax/Weinstein cut are pan & scan from the composite VHS master.

Some stuff is available only as bootlegs... the letterboxed "Princess" version has turned up as a screener VHS (which was utilized for the new fan edit), the workprint's best quality version so far is an AVI file on eMule (supposedly from VHS), there's a workprint for the "Princess" version that's 2nd gen VHS, but has some stuff no other versions have, and there's several tapes of rare pencil tests floating around.

So, the bootleg is the only way to go. No guilt in it since a studio doesn't deserve profits or copyright respecting when they release a P&S DVD in 2006. Fuck the Weinsteins and download it.
Old 11-19-06, 05:05 PM
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Originally Posted by PatrickMcCart
Fuck the Weinsteins and download it.
I understand why you feel the way you do, but links to pirated material are verboten on DVD Talk.

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