I tend to look at things in a logical fashion. So, we have three transfers that show green/yellow trees in that scene.. VHS, 1st Blu-ray and 35th Anniversary Blu-ray. Only the 1999 THX DVD shows golden/yellow trees in that scene.
Our experience also tells us that video tape and Laserdisc transfers back in the early 1980s had a LOT less monkeying around done to them. They simply didn't have the same level of tools back then. It wasn't until we entered the digital realm (DVD) that we started seeing an explosion in edge enhancement, color timing changes, etc.
I would disagree that there was less "monkeying around." It was pretty common for studios to crank up the brightness and color saturation of VHS transfers in an attempt to make the picture look "better" on the crappy TVs of the era. The notions of calibration or attempting to preverse the look of the theatrical presentation weren't given much thought at all until much later.
At the same time, the quality of film scanners and video transfer equipment was extremely primitive and often wildly inaccurate in those days.
A crummy old VHS tape cannot be used as a reference for what the original theatrical prints looked like. I feel like that should be self-evident and not need stating.
None of this is to say that I think the new Blu-ray is "wrong" or that the 1999 DVD was more accurate. I'm not close enough to the movie to make a judgment on that one way or the other.
Edited by JoshZ, September 25 2013 - 10:55 AM.