Love Don’t Pay No Bills

Fritz Lang’s 1927 Metropolis depicts a futuristic city of employees and an elite group of managers that controls and exploits them. The industrialist machine literally feeds on disposable workers — much to the horror of a privileged son who follows his working-class crush underground. As we’re still allowing CEOs to step on our backs to reach their penthouse offices in the sky, perhaps the original Metropolis — at 18 frames per second and with an orchestral score — was too easy to ignore. But in 1984, the film was recut and rescored by Giorgio Moroder, the man who wrote “Flashdance... What a Feeling” for Flashdance and “Take My Breath Away” for Top Gun. For Metropolis, he corralled superstars such as Freddie Mercury, Pat Benatar, and Bonnie Tyler to give the German expressionist film a synthy, pop-rock soundtrack. Watch privileged Freder make exaggerated adoring expressions at worker Maria as Mercury sings, “Love don’t give no compensation/Love don’t pay no bills.” To keep pace with the rocking score, Moroder presents this Metropolis at a frantic 24 frames per second. This faster, rock version was stifled in its original release by licensing issues. Will the MTV generation heed Lang’s warning about capitalism now? Find out when the Florida digital HD premiere screens at the Miami Beach Cinematheque.
Wed., Nov. 2, 9 p.m., 2011

 
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