7. Das Boot - Character Development And More Drawn-Out Tension
When Wolfgang Peterson's jaw-dropping WWII feature about the crew of a German submarine during the height of the war hit cinema screens in 1981, the resulting 149-minute cut that graced those theatres was met with a sea of acclaim.
However, that initial release in the U.S. and Germany was far from the whole masterpiece. By the time the BBC decided to bring the rest of the footage shot for this titanic epic to the small screen in 1984, the end result ran at a whopping 300 minutes overall. 2004 would then see this version trimmed down to 293 minutes, with episode-recaps left on the cutting room floor.
Both of these massive alternate versions to the earlier theatrical release saw an increased focus on character development for those spending their time patrolling the treacherous Atlantic ocean, and also drew out the action and tension to increase the all round claustrophobia and anxiety felt throughout this period in time.
For those who wished for a happy medium between the more action-orientated 149-minute cut and monstrous/detailed 300-minute series, 1997 saw Peterson release a Director's Cut which boasted that same action but with more of the aforementioned TV show character development laced into the flick.