Okay, first of all 'The Outsiders' was never a good movie. The performances in it are mixed. Macchio and Esteves are good. Matt Dillon not so much. Coppola's original run of great films was coming to an end in 1983. After the giant coke fuelled disaster that was 'One From the Heart', 'The Outsiders' was kind of his spin out. When I saw it in high school I thought it left out a lot from the novel, and was kind of a mess, but that it had it's moments. Now I see there are two versions of the film in circulation: the original cut from '83 and a longer 'director's cut' under the title 'The Complete Novel'. This version has a new score made up of source music of the period that the novel is set in (mid-60's). Unfortunately a lot of the added stuff works better as deleted scenes IMO. As written it may have paced well (I haven't picked up the book since high school) but most of it stops the movie dead. Further the added period music upsets the balance of many of the scenes. The murder sequence for instance is scored at the beginning by wind effects in the 83 version while the 'Complete Novel' version plugs in the rather bland surf tune 'Out of Limits'. The original score by Camine Coppola is completely absent in the newer version and many scenes are poorer for it. Some scenes have their music removed altogether. It's weird. It occurred to me watching the original cut that 'The Outsiders' was really Frances Coppola's stab at something like 'East of Eden' or 'Giant'. Not realistic but a sentimentalized Hollywood version of street toughs. The visual set-ups from 'Gone With The Wind' further hint that 'The Outsiders' film is, to a degree, about artifice. So the over-the-top symphonic score is actually more appropriate. If you must see this film I'd seek out the earlier or both versions. And do it soon because it's my guess the 1983 cut may vanish altogether: replaced, much as the original cut of Walter Hill's 'The Warriors' has, by a messier 'approved' version.

CountAlucard's rating:
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