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A few words about...™ Walt Disney's Alice in Wonderland -- in Blu-ray

A Few Words About

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#41 of 139 OFFLINE   FoxyMulder

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Posted January 28 2011 - 05:55 PM



Originally Posted by bigshot 

I'm going to go out on a limb here. I'll bet five dollars that the image of the White Rabbit on the home page is not a frame grab from the bluray. It is quite a way off from the proper color balance, but all of the colors are off in the same direction so the relationships between the colors remain. The Disney blurays I've seen are all over the place and the relative relationships of groups of colors are always muddled.

To the previous point, why is a film look and accurate color presentation important to Night of the Hunter or American in Paris, but it isn't here?


You may not have noticed this but then again maybe you have, film companies are screwing with the colours, brightness, film look and contrast of many films when making blu ray transfers, indeed take a look at the recent Lethal Weapon release or even Alien/Aliens, all seem to have the new fangled orange/teal colour scheme and other subtle changes, sometimes the director has approved them but at other times you have to wonder, so it's not only animation suffering from a re-imagining of the filmed look.


I see this situation getting worse as older film preservationists and fans die off and are replaced by the "younger" eighties/nineties technology buffs who think it's ok to change things, ok to take out film grain as surely people want a cleaner smooth look to their HD images. ( unfortunately i am coming to the conclusion that many do want that look )


The future of classic films does not look good to me, i'm talking for the average film now and not the "big name" classics which will maybe always get extra care and attention.


I always call feature length animated titles, animated films, some people just see them as cartoons, thats maybe an additional problem, i so wish film studio's would look after their heritage but it's just not happening, at least not on many blu ray transfers, alterations are now all the rage, not many people talk about sound remixing but how many times does an eighties or older film get a 5.1 remix and they don't bother giving us the original sound in lossless form, be that a 1.0 mono track or a 2.0 track, that's an annoying thing but it's been going on for some time now and started with DVD releases.


I honestly thought blu ray would be the ultimate format, i bought a projector and view on the largest screen i can fit in a dedicated room, i take the time to calibrate everything and that includes the audio side of things but the studio's push altered versions on us, 5.1 soundtracks with exaggerated bass response or "louder" soundtracks to fool us into thinking it's all better, all too common with blu ray, the future is supposed to be digital downloads, well that's going to see more compression, heavier DNR to make things smoother and thus encoding easier and worse quality, i hope digital downloads does not take off and we get a new 4K home format. ( 7 or 8 years from now )


It's good to see people speaking out against these things but my fear is that the younger generation who are going to be in charge of the studio's don't care and they are most certainly the future, therefore if you are a real film fan then the future is not looking good.


Universal catalog releases have been especially poor of late, in fact i don't bother with most of their releases anymore, maybe i should do the same with Disney animation but they put them in that damn vault for so many years so i always feel i need to grab them.


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#42 of 139 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted January 28 2011 - 11:27 PM



Originally Posted by snoopy28574 

This is great news. What I don't understand is why all studios do not go back to the earliest possible elements for their blue rays. Now I understand expense is a factor, but for the great ones, nothing less should be tolerated.

 



In many cases the studios are returning to original elements, and when they do, it generally shows.


RAH


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#43 of 139 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted January 29 2011 - 12:25 AM



Originally Posted by Jeffrey Nelson 

You say that you'd prefer artistically accurate transfers of these classics, but that you doubt it will ever happen.  You may well be right.  But unfortunately, a respected archivist/restorationist like yourself giving not only a free pass to the studio's wrongheaded attempts at artistic revisionism, but also a thumbs-up, five-star, can't-wait-to-buy-more-of-these review, while making excuses for their conduct that don't hold water upon closer examination, can't do much to help move things in the right direction, because it will only validate what they are doing.  I still can't believe you wrote what you did in the bit I quoted in my first response to your post.  If more film restorationists start taking this attitude to studio nonsense like this, we may as well all give up hope for any accurate transfers in the future.


I do not condone what's occurring.  My position is very simple.  While the look of these films as they hit Blu-ray may not be what I'd personally like to see, the very act of getting them there accomplishes something extremely important.  The original, in many cases, nitrate, SE negatives are all being scanned at 4k and are being properly handled toward another layer of preservation on top of what already exists.  This is being forced by the parameters of available Blu-ray quality.  In the end, it's another major step toward making certain that these films survive well past their copyright periods.


"All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did." T.E. Lawrence


#44 of 139 OFFLINE   DarkAudioHorse

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Posted January 29 2011 - 12:50 AM

Wait a minute, how do any of us "know" how it's supposed to look? What are we using as references: VHS's, Laserdiscs, past DVD releases, TV broadcasts? How do we know that any of these are accurate representations of the color palate? With Beauty and the Beast, creators actually said what was shown in theaters and on home video releases up to the Blu-ray was NOT their chosen color palate. Just because we're used to seeing it one way doesn't mean that it is correct and any others are wrong.


#45 of 139 OFFLINE   Jeffrey Nelson

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Posted January 29 2011 - 03:25 AM



Originally Posted by Robert Harris 



Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffrey Nelson 

You say that you'd prefer artistically accurate transfers of these classics, but that you doubt it will ever happen.  You may well be right.  But unfortunately, a respected archivist/restorationist like yourself giving not only a free pass to the studio's wrongheaded attempts at artistic revisionism, but also a thumbs-up, five-star, can't-wait-to-buy-more-of-these review, while making excuses for their conduct that don't hold water upon closer examination, can't do much to help move things in the right direction, because it will only validate what they are doing.  I still can't believe you wrote what you did in the bit I quoted in my first response to your post.  If more film restorationists start taking this attitude to studio nonsense like this, we may as well all give up hope for any accurate transfers in the future.


I do not condone what's occurring.  My position is very simple.  While the look of these films as they hit Blu-ray may not be what I'd personally like to see, the very act of getting them there accomplishes something extremely important.  The original, in many cases, nitrate, SE negatives are all being scanned at 4k and are being properly handled toward another layer of preservation on top of what already exists.  This is being forced by the parameters of available Blu-ray quality.  In the end, it's another major step toward making certain that these films survive well past their copyright periods.


Your position may not be so simple after all, for it appears to be waffling.  From your first post in the thread, it sounds like you absolutely condone what's occurring.  To paraphrase: "Highly recommended, great job guys!  The colors may be different, but who cares?  It doesn't matter, because the results are so spectacularly wonderful, and if I want the original colors, I can always go hunt down a 35mm print!  I can't wait to buy all the rest of these, bring 'em on!"  I think you need to re-read your initial post because that's exactly the message it sends.  As for getting them on Blu-ray and preserving them, that's great, and I'm all for it, but the lamentably wrongheaded decisions they're making because they think that if these dusty old relics are slightly more colorful then Junior will instantly want to watch them just as much as TOY STORY 3 (I'm going to have to call BS on that - if you put one of these gems in, they'll be sucked in by it on its own terms or they won't) need to be called out by people like you.  Instead, incredibly, you gave them a pat on the back and a passionate (but we now know empty) defense of their messing with the colors.  Keep that up and it's even more likely we'll keep getting more of the same, and if you don't condone getting more of the same, why would you want it to happen?  Why did you clearly and enthusiastically validate what they are doing if you don't condone it?


Here's a nutty progressive idea for Disney: restore the films, release them on beautiful Blu-ray for ours and future generations, and LEAVE THE COLORS ALONE.  Think of it -- spectacular looking classic, without the added effort of dreaming up a new color scheme that in all actuality WON'T make Junior any more likely to watch it and WILL make (most) restorationists and animation buffs cringe at the reality of now having to view these Mona Lisas with digital moustaches painted on (to borrow Stephen's analogy).


Speaking of Ms. Lisa, I'm surprised the Louvre hasn't replaced her with a more brightly-colored day-glo print so as to make her more attractive to today's viewing audiences.  And who cares if the general public could no longer view the original; the option would still be on the menu.



#46 of 139 OFFLINE   Jeffrey Nelson

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Posted January 29 2011 - 03:32 AM



Originally Posted by DarkAudioHorse 

Wait a minute, how do any of us "know" how it's supposed to look? What are we using as references: VHS's, Laserdiscs, past DVD releases, TV broadcasts? How do we know that any of these are accurate representations of the color palate? With Beauty and the Beast, creators actually said what was shown in theaters and on home video releases up to the Blu-ray was NOT their chosen color palate. Just because we're used to seeing it one way doesn't mean that it is correct and any others are wrong.



It has already been clearly established by Stephen Worth in this thread that the colors of ALICE IN WONDERLAND as represented in the Blu-ray are not correct, but could have been.  And Stephen clearly knows his onions:


http://en.wikipedia....tephen_W._Worth 



#47 of 139 OFFLINE   Craig Beam

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Posted January 29 2011 - 06:13 AM

Has anybody actually seen the damn thing?  My opinion on the matter is nil until I've properly viewed the blu-ray with my own eyes (I stopped relying on internet screen captures a long time ago).




#48 of 139 OFFLINE   Phoebus

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Posted January 29 2011 - 06:45 AM

[On a completely unrelated matter, thanks for the upload of a decent print of Tin Pan Alley Cats onto You Tube a few months ago, Mr S, Worth!]






#49 of 139 OFFLINE   ahollis

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Posted January 29 2011 - 07:08 AM



Originally Posted by Craig Beam 

Has anybody actually seen the damn thing?  My opinion on the matter is nil until I've properly viewed the blu-ray with my own eyes (I stopped relying on internet screen captures a long time ago).




I would imagine that Mr. Harris and Mr. Worth have seen it.


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#50 of 139 OFFLINE   Douglas Monce

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Posted January 29 2011 - 07:42 AM



Originally Posted by Jeffrey Nelson 





 



Here's a nutty progressive idea for Disney: restore the films, release them on beautiful Blu-ray for ours and future generations, and LEAVE THE COLORS ALONE.  Think of it -- spectacular looking classic, without the added effort of dreaming up a new color scheme that in all actuality WON'T make Junior any more likely to watch it and WILL make (most) restorationists and animation buffs cringe at the reality of now having to view these Mona Lisas with digital moustaches painted on (to borrow Stephen's analogy).


Thats not where the money is. Changing the colors or making them brighter, makes people think they are getting something they didn't get before. Like a new paint job on a car or new carpet. Sorry but that is the reality of the market.


Doug


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#51 of 139 OFFLINE   JohnMor

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Posted January 29 2011 - 07:51 AM

Putting aside the ethical/moral questions of altering the original, and simply from an aesthetic point of view (and based solely on unrealiable screen captures for the time being), I find the colors quite pleasing EXCEPT for Alice's hair.  It's way too distracting now and pulls my focus.  It's the one thing that is glaringly bad to me.  Her dress is a little more distant second.  Sigh. I may still buy this.


#52 of 139 OFFLINE   FoxyMulder

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Posted January 29 2011 - 08:08 AM



Originally Posted by JohnMor 

Putting aside the ethical/moral questions of altering the original, and simply from an aesthetic point of view (and based solely on unrealiable screen captures for the time being), I find the colors quite pleasing EXCEPT for Alice's hair.  It's way too distracting now and pulls my focus.  It's the one thing that is glaringly bad to me.  Her dress is a little more distant second.  Sigh. I may still buy this.



You cannot simply put aside the ethical/moral questions of altering the original.


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#53 of 139 OFFLINE   Douglas Monce

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Posted January 29 2011 - 09:24 AM



Originally Posted by FoxyMulder 



Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnMor 

Putting aside the ethical/moral questions of altering the original, and simply from an aesthetic point of view (and based solely on unrealiable screen captures for the time being), I find the colors quite pleasing EXCEPT for Alice's hair.  It's way too distracting now and pulls my focus.  It's the one thing that is glaringly bad to me.  Her dress is a little more distant second.  Sigh. I may still buy this.



You cannot simply put aside the ethical/moral questions of altering the original.



They aren't altering the original, they are altering the copy.


Doug


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#54 of 139 OFFLINE   Scott Calvert

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Posted January 29 2011 - 10:36 AM



Originally Posted by DarkAudioHorse 

Wait a minute, how do any of us "know" how it's supposed to look? What are we using as references: VHS's, Laserdiscs, past DVD releases, TV broadcasts? How do we know that any of these are accurate representations of the color palate? With Beauty and the Beast, creators actually said what was shown in theaters and on home video releases up to the Blu-ray was NOT their chosen color palate. Just because we're used to seeing it one way doesn't mean that it is correct and any others are wrong.


Nice try at obfuscation but there is no question that Disney is radically altering the look of their classic animated films. Some of here are actually older than 20 and have actually 'gasp' seen projected film and even IB tech prints (WHICH DO NOT FADE) of these old movies. What were are getting on Bluray is in no way representative of that.



#55 of 139 OFFLINE   DarkAudioHorse

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Posted January 29 2011 - 10:47 AM



Originally Posted by Jeffrey Nelson 



Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkAudioHorse 

Wait a minute, how do any of us "know" how it's supposed to look? What are we using as references: VHS's, Laserdiscs, past DVD releases, TV broadcasts? How do we know that any of these are accurate representations of the color palate? With Beauty and the Beast, creators actually said what was shown in theaters and on home video releases up to the Blu-ray was NOT their chosen color palate. Just because we're used to seeing it one way doesn't mean that it is correct and any others are wrong.



It has already been clearly established by Stephen Worth in this thread that the colors of ALICE IN WONDERLAND as represented in the Blu-ray are not correct, but could have been.  And Stephen clearly knows his onions:


http://en.wikipedia....tephen_W._Worth 


Has he actually seen the film cells? Otherwise...



#56 of 139 OFFLINE   DarkAudioHorse

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Posted January 29 2011 - 10:59 AM



Originally Posted by Scott Calvert 



Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkAudioHorse 

Wait a minute, how do any of us "know" how it's supposed to look? What are we using as references: VHS's, Laserdiscs, past DVD releases, TV broadcasts? How do we know that any of these are accurate representations of the color palate? With Beauty and the Beast, creators actually said what was shown in theaters and on home video releases up to the Blu-ray was NOT their chosen color palate. Just because we're used to seeing it one way doesn't mean that it is correct and any others are wrong.


Nice try at obfuscation but there is no question that Disney is radically altering the look of their classic animated films. Some of here are actually older than 20 and have actually 'gasp' seen projected film and even IB tech prints (WHICH DO NOT FADE) of these old movies. What were are getting on Bluray is in no way representative of that.



How is there "no question"? Proof of that? Have any of us actually seen the film projected in 1951 and not the re-releases? Anyone remember exactly how the colors were then? (Remember how it looked exactly 60 years ago) Know that what was projected was actually the correct color palate? Actual film cells and not mere prints? Seeing as Beauty and the Beast's creators have actually said they the color palate that was initially shown was incorrect, who's to say that in the past 60 years, what was seen in subsequent releases was incorrect?




#57 of 139 OFFLINE   DarkAudioHorse

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Posted January 29 2011 - 11:01 AM



Originally Posted by Jeffrey Nelson 



Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkAudioHorse 

Wait a minute, how do any of us "know" how it's supposed to look? What are we using as references: VHS's, Laserdiscs, past DVD releases, TV broadcasts? How do we know that any of these are accurate representations of the color palate? With Beauty and the Beast, creators actually said what was shown in theaters and on home video releases up to the Blu-ray was NOT their chosen color palate. Just because we're used to seeing it one way doesn't mean that it is correct and any others are wrong.



It has already been clearly established by Stephen Worth in this thread that the colors of ALICE IN WONDERLAND as represented in the Blu-ray are not correct, but could have been.  And Stephen clearly knows his onions:


http://en.wikipedia....tephen_W._Worth 



Has he seen the actual original cells? Any proof to back this claim they they certainly are incorrect? I'm sorry but simply being different from what we've seen isn't enough to say that it was altered from the original. Beauty in the Beast is proof of that.


#58 of 139 OFFLINE   Scott Calvert

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Posted January 29 2011 - 11:09 AM



Originally Posted by DarkAudioHorse 



Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Calvert 



Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkAudioHorse 

Wait a minute, how do any of us "know" how it's supposed to look? What are we using as references: VHS's, Laserdiscs, past DVD releases, TV broadcasts? How do we know that any of these are accurate representations of the color palate? With Beauty and the Beast, creators actually said what was shown in theaters and on home video releases up to the Blu-ray was NOT their chosen color palate. Just because we're used to seeing it one way doesn't mean that it is correct and any others are wrong.


Nice try at obfuscation but there is no question that Disney is radically altering the look of their classic animated films. Some of here are actually older than 20 and have actually 'gasp' seen projected film and even IB tech prints (WHICH DO NOT FADE) of these old movies. What were are getting on Bluray is in no way representative of that.



How is there "no question"? Proof of that? Have any of us actually seen the film projected in 1951 and not the re-releases? Anyone remember exactly how the colors were then? (Remember how it looked exactly 60 years ago) Know that what was projected was actually the correct color palate? Actual film cells and not mere prints? Seeing as Beauty and the Beast's creators have actually said they the color palate that was initially shown was incorrect, who's to say that in the past 60 years, what was seen in subsequent releases was incorrect?



Because IB tech prints don't fade? I mentioned that in all caps of my last post in case you didn't notice. The color in those prints today is exactly the same as the day they were printed. You also don't have to be a genius of observation to know what projected film looks like vs squeaky-clean razor sharp sterile HD video.


So again, please stop trying to obfuscate the issue. There is no question these films have been altered. Even residient Disney booster Robert Harris said so, as if we needed further evidence.



#59 of 139 OFFLINE   bigshot

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Posted January 29 2011 - 11:10 AM



Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnMor ), I find the colors quite pleasing EXCEPT for Alice's hair.  It's way too distracting now and pulls my focus.  It's the one thing that is glaringly bad to me.  Her dress is a little more distant second.  Sigh. I may still buy this. 

Look carefully at the grabs from DVD Beaver. There is a shot of Alice with flowers and bread and butterflies above her. Look at the yellowish elements of the scene. Notice how in one of the older transfers those three yellowish things... Hair, flower, butterfly... are all three quite different hues of yellow? Then look at the bluray grab. All three have moved together into almost the same sort of yellow. This is evidence of major color manipulation. The further you push colors, the more they move towards being the same primary color. If you strike the proper balance all of the hues spread out into the subtle color harmonies that the artist originally created. Now look at the grab of Alice and the Queen of Hearts. Notice how every color seems really bright and burning hot? Bright colors next to other bright colors tend to vibrate. Brighter colors also seem to jump out in front of other colors if the area is large. I don't know about you, but when I look at this image, it's a visual cacophony. The original worked subtle colors against brighter ones to direct the eye and model the characters in space and light. These colors are so bright and so competing it breaks up into blocks like a stained glass window. It doesn't hold together any more. These may be things that the average person isn't consciously aware of. TheDVD Beaver review seems to think brighter is better. But the truth is, just like in food where a little salt and pepper is great and a ton of salt and pepper doesn't make it better, more color is not automatically better. I haven't seen the Alice bluray yet. I see it when it comes out just like everyone else. I'm reacting to the frame grabs. Maybe the disk will look better than that, but I've found DVD Beaver's grabs to be pretty representative in the past.

#60 of 139 OFFLINE   bigshot

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Posted January 29 2011 - 11:16 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkAudioHorse 
How is there "no question"? Proof of that? Have any of us actually seen the film projected in 1951 and not the re-releases? Anyone remember exactly how the colors were then? (Remember how it looked exactly 60 years ago) Know that what was projected was actually the correct color palate? Actual film cells and not mere prints?
I have seen original IB Tech prints and production artwork on just about all of Disney's features. I know how the colors should look. I know a lot of other people who have as well. For animation fans over 40, it isn't all that rare, particularly in Los Angeles where we regularly have screenings of films at UCLA and The L A County Museum of Art.


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