The new DVD version of Metropolis is fantastic. Kino International has taken the bits and pieces that they can find of the original epic length film and produced a remade classic worth a look by everyone. The anti-machine message is so vividly clear. The impact of it all is powerful.
One of the most striking images is that of the animated downtown scene. The artistic quality of the images given the age of the production is glorious. The view of the future is both quaint and visionary. The elevated bridges for earthly travel contrast with the 1920's look of the airplane flying right downtown between the sky scrapers. Even in its visionary view, it does make one think of how the actual form of tomorrow [as with the plane] misses the innovations of modern engineering and art.
The anti-machine message is brought home by the waste of our lives given by God in the endless drudgery of routine work. What are the workers even doing with the clocks as valves that they slave over. The workers openly being sacrificed into the machine is a turning point for the hero. He wants nothing of it. It is horrible, even if his life and his father's benefit to the maximum from it.
Do not miss this great remake of our age. Good in the 1920s; good in 2004.