I've mentioned before about collecting all the movies featured on Mystery Science Theater 3000. I already have all the episodes that were released on DVD and on VHS, which covers almost every one that was broadcast. I also have copies of the others, recorded off-air (except one from the KTMA season, which is a lost episode, as far as anyone knows.
But I'm talking about the movies themselves. The original uncut versions of the films. Or at least the version that they riffed. And I say that because some of the movies they viewed were alternate, edited for TV versions.
All five of the Gamera films they did had multiple versions. Some of those films were redubbed into English, some had additional scenes with American actors added, and were often released under different names. And then, there were still other redubs and releases by Sandy Frank Enterprises.
There were three different versions of the first Gamera film:
- Gamera, the Giant Monster - The original film, in Japanese, with English subtitles.
- Gammera, the Invincible - The original film had some scenes edited and additional scenes with U.S. actors added. The Japanese scenes were dubbed into English. Oh, and some new music.
- Gamera - The version that MST3K did was a Sandy Frank redub of the original Japanese film. And new music.
I have all three versions because of course I do. And I chose to tell you about this because it's a good example of how I'm counting whether or not I own a copy.
First, I'm after the version that MST3K did. If I have that, I count it.
If I can't find that one, I go after the original release. If the film isn't in English, and if there is a dubbed version, I go with that, if that's the only edit. And, if I don't already have the version MST3K riffed, I count this version.
Failing that, I go with whatever version I can find. And I only count it, if I can't find one of the other.
Sane thing with Humanoid Woman, a film from the KTMA season. I have the Humanoid Woman cut, but I also have "To The Stars By Hard Ways," the original film. Well, not exactly the original. It's a remaster of the original, with a lot of the Soviet propaganda edited out. I count the "Humanoid Woman" version because that's what they riffed. However, I only recently acquired that. I located "To The Stars By Hard Ways" some time ago, and was counting that one as part of my MST3K collection. After I found "Humanoid Woman," it replaced "To The Stars By Hard Ways" in the MST3K collection and playlists, and "To The Stars By Hard Ways" because just another film in my collection.
So, you got the idea of what I'm doing, right? I mean, I drove the point into the ground, so yeah, you got it.
Anyway, to the point of this post, I'm now down to two movies until I complete the collection.
That's the movies riffed by the classic series (Comedy Channel, Comedy Central, Sci Fi Channel), the Netflix series, the KTMA series, MST3K: The Movie, and the "pilot"/demo film.
That's 210 different films that the crew riffed in some form or other. And I have 208. So, what am I missing? Two movies that were featured in Season 6 of the classic series:
- The Dead Talk Back
- The Starfighters
I can't find them anywhere. I mentioned earlier that some of the movies I was lacking (at the time) had really expensive versions available. Well, I didn't give in, and eventually found what I was looking for at a better price. These two films, though, I can't find at all. If you have any ideas, I'd love to hear them.