Before last night I had watched David Fincher‘s Zodiac seven or eight times, give or take. Two press screenings of the shorter theatrical version (157 minutes), and the Bluray director’s cut (162 minutes) five or six times.

But last night’s viewing was different. For the first time I watched it with subtitles start to finish, and it seemed to make a profound difference. It felt more granular, more “police blotter” on some level. I know each and every scene of the 162-minute version backwards and forwards, and yet I found it spellbinding, especially the last 45 minutes or so.

The Zodiac Wiki page says “an early version of Zodiac ran three hours and eight minutes.” 26 minutes longer than the directors cut! It breaks my heart that the Director’s Cut Bluray didn’t present this version as an option.

HE to Fincher: Given that Zodiac‘s rep has grown exponentially since it opened 15 years ago, I would think that you might want to offer the 188-minute version (if in fact it exists) as a streamer. Have you ever considered this?

I’m still annoyed that research-screening audiences said they didn’t like (a) the two-minute news + music blackout montage that suggests the passage of four years, and (b) especially the scene in which three cops — Mark Ruffalo‘s Dave Toschi, Anthony Edwards‘ Bill Armstrong and Dermot Mulroney‘s Captain Marty Lee — report their findings about Arthur Leigh Allen (John Carroll Lynch) over a speaker phone in order to obtain a search warrant.