STARRING: Richard Dreyfuss, Francois Truffaut, Teri Garr, Melinda Dillon, Cary Guffey, Bob Balaban

1980, 132 Minutes, Directed by: Steven Spielberg

In 1980 Steven Spielberg re-edited his original Close Encounters of the Third Kind dropping several smaller scenes and adding other sequences.

The differences between the various versions are too numerous to go into in full detail - especially considering that for network screenings of the movie all existing footage was used!

In the end the film is tighter in the midsection, but longer towards the end. In fact, the final scenes reveal a lot more of the interior alien mother ship and while those new scenes are spectacular (the new effects were designed by the underground artist Ron Cobb - but no credit is given) they are redundant to a degree and tends to drag.

While this is the film that Spielberg originally wanted to release, the net sum of Close Encounters remain the same: this film is no huge departure from the previous version and remains, even 21 years later, a definite sci-fi classic.

Not even Spielberg makes them as they used to . . .


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