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A Few Words About A few words about...™ Baraka -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, Oct 22, 2008.

  1. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    What a strange place for Baraka to land for Blu-ray distribution. The company previously best known for DVDs documenting the Kennedy assassination in all its frame by frame gruesome nature, as well as that death series, has given us one of the most hauntingly beautiful creations to ever hit the silver screen.

    And while it may be a strange, no... very strange bedfellow, possibly this is a new MPI, turning over a new leaf.

    MPI stands behind an extremely high quality job of harvesting an image from a 65mm IP of Baraka, and supporting the process as it made its way from 8k data files down to the high definition image playable via one's Blu-ray.

    Chris Reyna, one of the most knowledgeable players in the large format field has acted as producer for all of the technical work behind this release, and we are most fortunate that he did, as this magnificent monument of modern cinema has made its way to Blu-ray with much of the original cinematic magnificence intact. And that is not an easy accomplishment.

    Is this a perfect Blu-ray? Probably not. Is there such a thing? If not, the final result is quite close to what one may wish.

    My single problem with this release is the "eco-friendly" packaging. Thin cardboard with an area into which the disc will slip. While I'm as green as anyone, the packaging seems to neither protect nor befit the quality that lies within. This is a disc that deserves protection commensurate with the quality of the film. While stainless steel would be nice, Blu-ray plastic to keep out dirt and aid in protection would seem proper. If we wish to go "eco-friendly," I'd prefer to come up with a list of a hundred discs for storage in newsprint, if necessary, while leaving proper protection for Baraka.

    Desirous of showing off your newest hardware to your friends?

    Let them see one the great documentaries of all time concurrent with the feeding of your ego. Baraka is the new reference disc for the thinking videophile, a nice representation of the original cinematic Event on Blu-ray, and the most important documentary / Event film to make its way to Blu-ray since the system was born.

    Blu-ray and Baraka via Reyna and Foto-Kem were made for each other.

    Kudos to all involved!

    Simply gorgeous!

    Baraka on Blu-ray is Highly Recommended!

    RAH
     
  2. MatS

    MatS Well-Known Member

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    never heard of this release before today .......sold
     
  3. Douglas Monce

    Douglas Monce Well-Known Member

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    I believe that MPI also released the Jeremy Brett, Sherlock Holmes TV show, so they have being involved in some quality entertainment.

    Doug
     
  4. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Well-Known Member
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    MPI is also responsible for the recent DVD of "Becket", but I believe the point being made was that the majority of their releases are not of this ilk.

    Regards,
     
  5. Michel_Hafner

    Michel_Hafner Well-Known Member

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    It's one of my favourite films. Guess I need to buy it despite some 'disturbing' instances of EE on stills on the net. I hope this is very limited.
    What's also rather puzzling is the fact that they scanned at 8K for a 1080p master and that's all there is. No 4K, no data archived. Should they ever want to go beyond HD they can start all over.
     
  6. OliverK

    OliverK Well-Known Member

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    Patton was scanned in 4k and only the 1080p master was preserved - seems to be common practice to discard the higher resolution masters due to the costs involved in preserving them.
     
  7. MatS

    MatS Well-Known Member

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    I was able to pick this up today at a certain b&m retailer that had 3 copies out early.

    Price matched their online listing (which was actually a pre-order price) 29.99 to 21.99 and used a certain $10 coupon they are giving away for visiting their high end demo rooms

    12.95 out the door
     
  8. MatS

    MatS Well-Known Member

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    delete
     
  9. Felix Martinez

    Felix Martinez Well-Known Member

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    I'm horrified to hear that. That's like if the stereo mix of a classic album was transferred @ 192kHz/24-bit or DSD equivalent, but only the 48kHz 16-bit downconversion for the "superior resolution" option of a (Sony) DualDisc is archived. That just boggles the mind.

    Is that true? Are the 4K and 8K scans discarded? I find that so hard to fathom...
     
  10. OliverK

    OliverK Well-Known Member

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    This was straight from those who worked on the projects for both movies.

    To be fair there are still good 70mm prints around for Patton and Baraka so 4k would not exactly be needed for theatrical exhibition and I guess for HT use the studios don't see the point to store the data for close to a decade, probably not deemed to be cost effective and it seems data loss is still a problem with digital masters despite all the talk about it being the future. Problem with Patton is that this one came out wrong so it might have been possible to redo it - with the 4k raw data erased this is not possible without doing another 4k scan.

    BTW: You analogy to audio is not quite correct. With regard to delivery to and usability in existing playback and display solutions and also to storage 192kHz/24-bit audio is far less problematic than raw and uncompressed 4k or even 8k data of a whole movie, these are hefty double digit terabytes we're talking here even for 4, let alone 8k and you cannot just throw them on a few off the shelf harddrives and be done with them.

    Makes you think also about the claims that digital is far less problematic than film - surely not true with regard to keeping 4k and 8k data of movies, being able to keep 4k data should be the absolute minimum requirement for digital backups of films 35mm and larger.
     
  11. OliverK

    OliverK Well-Known Member

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  12. Sanjay Gupta

    Sanjay Gupta Well-Known Member

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    BestBuy seems to have the best price for this on BD: $21.99

    EDIT: In less than a couple of hours of my posting this, Amazon reduced it's price to $21.95. I wonder if this is just a co-incidence or they actually watch these forums.
     
  13. Dave Mack

    Dave Mack Well-Known Member

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    I don't think they watch the forums, rather they watch other retailers websites.

    [​IMG]
     
  14. MatthewA

    MatthewA Well-Known Member

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    Why would a movie less than 20 years old need to be restored?
     
  15. Felix Martinez

    Felix Martinez Well-Known Member

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    True, but I've got 5 TB RAID at home, archiving all my HD footage. My understanding is that the 8K Baraka scan was a 30 TB project. I mean, if you're gonna spend the money and do the scan...
     
  16. ChristopherDAC

    ChristopherDAC Well-Known Member

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    What I see is this.

    Firstly, there isn't really a delivery medium out there which can use more than HD resolution. For the home, BD is it & probably will be for a long time ; & D-cinema has been very slow to get off the ground, & isn't really a delivery medium for repertory films at this point. The kind of house which is going to run a revivial of Baraka is going to be, on balance of probabilities, the kind of house which is going to run it in 70mm, or from a 35mm reduction print.

    Secondly, the quality of large-format transfers has been something of a problem for a while, & in 3 years or so it may be that today's 65mmm 8K scans will be seen as decidedly sub-par. In this way, not keeping the high-rez scans may be something of a blessing, since it means the "next version" has much less potential of the kinds of problems which showed up, e.g., on early Sony BDs taken from old HD masters.
     
  17. OliverK

    OliverK Well-Known Member

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    I do know a few enthusiasts who have double digit storage and who would have been glad to take the 8k data from Baraka [​IMG] Backed up on two sets of LTO tapes this should not have been that expensive to preserve but apparently they did not see the use of that.
    As I have pointed out before there are not many applications that would or maybe should profit from it.
     
  18. Michel_Hafner

    Michel_Hafner Well-Known Member

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    - outworn negative from overprinting
    - color fading problems
    - loss of negative and/or other archival elements due to fire, flood, misplacement, deliberate destruction...
     
  19. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    There should be no dye fade on this negative, and I believe that all was intact. It appears that some wear and tear was dealt with digitally, which is a good thing.

    RAH
     
  20. OliverK

    OliverK Well-Known Member

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    Robert,

    do you know if the IP was contact printed from the negative or did Fotokem use another process ?

    Oliver
     

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