Posted June 05 2011 - 03:38 AM
I'm certainly not an expert, but I often think theatrical prints are sometimes multiple-generations removed from negatives, so through a process of steadily-reduced resolution, some of the flaws we see on Blu-ray may not have been noticeable in a theater. Add to the mix the inevitable scratches and wear that happen with film and there would be a thousand other flaws vying for our attention in addition to a couple of wires.
That being said, I don't really have a horse in this race either way. I believe in preserving original presentations, but do make an exception for any correction that really doesn't interfere with the structure of the image. In other words, hiding wires with a computer isn't a big deal to me. It's still the same movie IMO. Also, Blu-ray often requires a bit of electronic tinkering to make the image palatable. Scratches and dirt are electronically scrubbed from film all the time. I don't see a lot of people complaining about that. The scratches were there at the source, so by the same argument isn't it wrong to remove them? Maybe they're a product of age and wear as opposed to technical limitations, but it's a pretty fine line. Since many wires may not indeed have been visible during a theatrical showing, why would it be wrong to stay in the same spirit of that showing? The resolution on our HDTVs is still only a fraction of that on film. It's a mistake to think that by not performing any changes to film whatsoever via a computer that we're honoring the spirit of film, because at the end of the day film and video are two different mediums. Blu-ray can come a lot closer to film via video than ever before, but we all need to keep in mind that many of these titles were designed to be projected on enormous screens via a bright bulb shining light through a piece of celluloid. If directors want wires removed, OK. If, ala Spielberg nothing will be removed (a change of tune on his part), then that's OK as well.
I would wager that there are changes made to titles each of us considers "reference" that we're not even aware of.
"There are two types of people in the world, my friend. Those with loaded guns and those who dig. You dig."