Frozen in 1996, Simon Phoenix, a convicted crime lord, is revived for a parole hearing well into the 21st century. Revived into a society free from crime, Phoenix resumes his murderous rampage, and no one can stop him. John Spartan, the police officer who captured Phoenix in 1996, has also been cryogenically frozen, this time for a crime he did not commit. In 2032, the former cities of Los Angeles, San Diego and Santa Barbara have merged into peaceful, utopian San Angeles. Unable to stop him with their non-violent solutions, the police release Spartan to help recapture Phoenix. Now after 36 years, Spartan has to adapt himself to the future society he has no knowledge about. Written by
Warner Bros. disliked the first cut of the movie so they brought editor Stuart Baird to do some re-editing. The same thing happened to another Sylvester Stallone movie Tango & Cash (1989) which was also heavily re-edited many times by Baird and other editors due to the behind the scenes problems and Warner Bros. disliking earlier cuts of the movie. Originally in Demolition Man, there were some more plot parts including Spartan meeting his grown up daughter in the sewers amongst Edgar Friendly's people. In the movie Spartan is shown protecting some girl during the shootout in sewers, this is his daughter and she is also seen later in the ending scene standing next to Friendly while he is talking with Spartan. Other scenes which were deleted include Phoenix killing Zachary Lamb before the car chase between him and Spartan begins, with Spartan and Huxley finding him before he dies (note that Phoenix has his gun out when he didn't in the previous scene), extra lines of dialogue (some of which can be seen in various trailers for the movie) and longer/additional action scenes (including infamous deleted fight scene between Sylvester Stallone and Jesse Ventura). In one deleted action scene during the battle in sewers, Spartan goes on the bridge from which Phoenix and his gang are shooting from and starts to fight with Phoenix but then bridge turns over. While both of them are hanging on it, Phoenix says to Spartan that bus passengers which he failed to save back in 1996 were already dead, meaning that Spartan was sent to CryoPrison for nothing. In the movie, Phoenix says this to Spartan during the car chase near the end of the movie but Phoenix is not shown speaking onscreen which probably means that the dialogue from the deleted scene was placed in this scene or was dubbed by the actor. Some other deleted and alternate scenes can be seen in several trailers, promotional photos and are also in the novelization of the movie. See more »
The rip on the front of Spartan's shirt after he crashes the police car changes shape and size for many scenes afterwards. See more »
I thought it was one of the greatest movies of all time. As a social commentary, it's extraordinarily on-target. I mean, come on, this is the movie where the joke was made that Schwarzenegger would be president and Taco Bell would win the franchise wars, and what do you know? Now people want the constitution amended so Arnold can run for president and Taco Bell is winning the franchise wars (they merged with Pizza Hut and KFC).
The story parallels Brave New World and there are numerous references to it. It's the best "Big Brother" film to ever be made. It's got great laughs, great action, and just great stuff. The basic plot is pretty mediocre when you get right down to it, but when you factor in all the detail and the very well-thought script, it's a must-see movie. It's like the anti-movie, it's great, but nobody likes it, apparently.
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