It never fails. You’ve got a stack of DVDs on a shelf collecting dust, and a lazy bad weather nothing happening Sunday afternoon shows up. So you browse through each title and think “Nah, I don’t want to watch that.” And you go back to the couch and watch 6 hours of Property Virgins with a couple Simpsons episodes scattered in between. But then it’s 10pm. And you’re ready for bed. And what comes on?
Why LOOK! It’s that movie you own! And you’ve seen it a MILLION times! And you’ve got to get to bed so you can get up early in the morning for work! But you don’t shut it off, do you? For some reason, even though you’ve got our own copy sitting 25 feet away, something about the pull of the magic box says “Watch this. You like it so much you own it. And you don’t even have to put it in, it’s just ON. WATCH THIS.” So you do.
Who knows, maybe it’s because it’s one of those “shared experiences”, knowing that other people are watching the same thing as you. Maybe it’s validation; you own it, and it’s on tv, so it’s GOT to be good, and since you own it, YOU’VE got to be good. You’ll watch it as a reward! But for whatever reason, you’ve just got to see it, which means your 2 hour and 3 minute movie is going to be cut up with commercials and dragged out until 1 in the morning. (When you KNOW another movie you like will come on.) But that’s not the worst part. The worst part is the editing.
Since the days of “Yippie kai yeah mother-sandwich” on Late Great Movies on CityTV I’ve wondered…why do we subject ourselves to these shadows of our favourite movies? Good scenes: taken out for time constraints. Gory/violent/sexual scenes: removed or heavily edited to the point that you wonder why they were left in at all. And of course the best are the sound edits. The swear words taken out one offending syllable at a time, or entire sentences completely re-imagined and reconstructed. Some are passable. Most are laughable. The latter will be enjoyed below.
Die Hard 2. I love this movie. One of the few sequels that deserves a place next to the original. Anything that includes an icicle as an eye weapon is alright with me. Of course, the language isn’t the cleanest, so TBS Superstation (the mother of all editing channels) decided to hack away. Enjoy.
Snakes on a Plane. Yes, I own it. Yes, it was $5. Yes, it was campy and bad, and not bad enough to make it enjoyable campy bad. But good enough for $5. But even that movie doesn’t deserve to have THE line taken out the way FX decided it should go down.
As much I enjoy monkey fighting snakes, I wouldn’t enjoy a plane that was in the air Monday to Friday. There has to be a layover in there somewhere.
This last one just boggles the mind. Why on earth would a tv executive say “You know what I’d like to show on VH1? Pulp Fiction. Ya, THAT Pulp Fiction. Can we do that? I don’t CARE what you have to do to it to make it alright for VH1, make it happen.” The person who sat in that editing bay must’ve had a wall of words and non sequiturs to put it together to somewhat resemble a movie. This is a clip of some of the best edits. I honestly think it’s all they were allowed to show. As in, it aired from 9:00pm to 9:09pm, and then they ran music videos. Ridiculous.
There are countless “great” edits, we’ve all seen a few, and we’ve all had one of our favourite movies cut short and hacked up. It’s one thing if we don’t own it and have to sit through it because we love it so much. But if it’s there on the shelf and we sit there and watch anyway? That’s just mother-plucking stupid. (Guilty.)