Hitchcock's Dial M for Murder in 3D

Discussion in 'DVD' started by JohnEF, Jul 17, 2005.

  1. JohnEF

    JohnEF Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2000
    Messages:
    90
    Likes Received:
    0
    I just finished watching Alfred Hitchcock's Dial M for Murder on my projection system and I discovered it was filmed in 3D. What is the possibility of selling a film like this on DVD in 3D (you could include a cheap pair of 3D glasses).

    I imagine on a CRT you could not do this but in a front projection system?

    Are there any DVD's out there in 3D and is it possible?

    John
     
  2. DavePattern

    DavePattern Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2005
    Messages:
    74
    Likes Received:
    0
    There's no official release of Dial M in 3D, but there is a bootleg (taken from a 1980's VHD released by Warners):

    Links deleted by moderator. NO BOOTLEG LINKS OR DISCUSSIONS, PLEASE. Our rules are explicit. - MR

    [edit] Many apologies MR - I thought the link would be useful in answering JohnEF's question, and there was no deliberate intention on my part to promote or condone bootleg material.
     
  3. Carlos Garcia

    Carlos Garcia Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2004
    Messages:
    1,065
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have never seen any 3D movie on DVD. Isn't there a new process with different types of glasses now available for 3D movies? I'd love to see Warner release an official 3D version of Dial M For Murder sometime in the future!
     
  4. Steve Phillips

    Steve Phillips Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2002
    Messages:
    1,526
    Likes Received:
    0
    Do a search on 3-D movies for all you need to know. It's all there.

    DIAL M FOR MURDER is better in 3-D, but it holds up better without it than most stereoscopic films do. The film plays in the original, polarized (clear glasses) dual projection version at revival houses from time to time. If you live in a larger city, keep *both* eyes open for a screening.

    The old "offical" VHD is pretty good and used the field sequential format for shutter glasses. It will have to do until Warner releases a new 3-D version.
     
  5. JohnEF

    JohnEF Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2000
    Messages:
    90
    Likes Received:
    0
    Perhaps this belongs in another section but is it possible from a technical point of view to see a 3D version at home on a projection system?

    John

    PS-I will do a search for 3D as suggested.
     
  6. TheLongshot

    TheLongshot Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2000
    Messages:
    4,118
    Likes Received:
    0
    At Universal Studios Florida, they do show a clip of Dial M For Murder in 3D as a part of their Hitchcock attraction. That's about it, as far as I know.

    Jason
     
  7. ChristopherDAC

    ChristopherDAC Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    3,729
    Likes Received:
    0
    Certainly.
    You have two choices, which actually both also work with direct-view TVs:
    (1) "Anaglyph" colour-separations. These work badly in the theatre, and even worse at home because the chroma bandwidth in video is restricted [film could be termed RGB 4:4:4, but video is YPrPb 4:2:2 at best]. On the other hand, it's cheap.
    (2) Field-sequential systems. These require the use of shutter glasses which darken one lens and then the other, alternating 60 times per second. The vertical resolution is half that of ordinary video, but the realism of the 3-D effect is supposed to make up for that. It's not cheap, but it works well.

    The old theatrical system of stereoscopic projection with polarised lenses cannot be made to work at home with any existing video sources. You would need a separate DVD for each of the two video tracks, not to mention a separate player, a separate projector, and some method of perfect synchronisation.
     
  8. Steve Phillips

    Steve Phillips Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2002
    Messages:
    1,526
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you've got lots of extra cash you want to spend to watch a handful of films, check out the Sensio 3D Processor. www.sensio.tv

    $3000 is a lot of money, but regular field sequential systems start at under $30....

    Watching field sequential on a PC set up gives full resolution, too. I was astonished at how much better it worked in comparison with viewing it on a TV.
     
  9. Martino

    Martino Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    May 5, 1999
    Messages:
    794
    Likes Received:
    36
    Location:
    Santa Clara, CA
    Real Name:
    Martin O.
    I was able to see the 3-D version of Dial M at a local Alfred Hitchcock festival. I have seen several 3-D movies, but this one was a little different. (I'll try to explain)...

    There was a very 2-D look to the 3-D...there were several definite flat planes, put together in 3 dimensions. It was like watching colorforms moving, instead of watching a true 3-D experience. A flat Table and chair would be in the foreground, the flat moving characters behind that, and the flat background scenery in a 3rd plane. It took a little to get used too...
     
  10. Steve Phillips

    Steve Phillips Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2002
    Messages:
    1,526
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree the film isn't nearly as stereoscopic as the rest of the 50s films were, but I didn't see flat planes. Everything looked rounded to me, but the effect is less pronounced because (if I understand correctly) Hitchcock shot the film with the lenses closer together than normal in most scenes, so that he could accentuate the shock effect of the murder sequence.

    In other words, most 3-D films spaced the cameras photographing the left and right images about 2.5 inches apart as this is the average distance betweeen people's eyes. If you move them closer together, you get less depth, if you move them farther apart the depth is exaggerated.

    Who knows what was in Hitch's mind....he wasn't keen on the process anyway and he knew full well when shooting that it would most likely go out as a flat film. He was right, but 30 years later the 3-D version was finally released. Most critics think the film works much better with the subtle depth effect. I agree, but as stated earlier it isn't as dramatic as most of the other 3-D films of the period. We also have to rememeber the film is basically a photographed stage play all done on the same indoor set, so you aren't going to see the amount of depth you get in outdoor epics and 3-D westerns of the time, which are really cool.
     
  11. Gary Palmer

    Gary Palmer Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    Messages:
    145
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you've got lots of extra cash you want to spend to watch a handful of films, check out the Sensio 3D Processor.

    From everything I've read about the Sensio processor, the system has a couple of major - and I mean major - drawbacks, quite apart from its ridiculous price.

    First off, the system only works with a projection TV system. You can't simply plug it into your TV and DVD player - you must have a projector system, too. That limits the potential audience right there.

    Secondly, because of Sensio's technical configuration (the left-right images are placed side by side, anamorphically squeezed, within a 4:3 frame), the projected image is 4:3 only. As I understand it, SPY KIDS 3-D GAME OVER was reformatted into 4:3 for its Sensio DVD release. Unless there's some way of squeezing imagery into a 16:9 frame, the only way Sensio will be able to present the various 2.35:1 3-D movies on their system is by cropping them to 4:3, which is simply unacceptable. And remember, it costs $3000 for this thing...

    Regular field sequential systems start at under $30....

    Exactly! There is no longer any excuse for not providing a field sequential version of the various 3-D movies currently languishing on DVD in flat versions only, especially since interest in 3-D is being rekindled by Imax and the new digital formats which are beginning to trickle into 'regular' theaters (beginning later this summer with CHICKEN LITTLE, formatted in Disney Digital 3-D), and are due to explode within a year or two as BATTLE ANGEL and several other high-profile entries hit theaters across the world.

    HONDO is due out on DVD very soon, I hear. No field sequential 3-D version alongside the flat print? Then there's no point. As Steve Phillips once said (on these very forums, I believe), watching a 'flat' version of a 3-D movie is like watching a pan-scan version of a CinemaScope epic, whether it's DIAL M FOR MURDER, HOUSE OF WAX or THE STEWARDESSES...

    I agree DIAL M FOR MURDER stands on its own two feet, regardless of how you see it, but the 3-D version is (quite literally) eye-opening. I could never go back to watching it in 'mere' 2-D once I'd seen it in all its dimensional glory.

    Oh, and THE STEWARDESSES is due out on DVD later this year, featuring both an anaglyphic and a field sequential version on the same disc. It'll be the first time I've seen a 'legitimate' field sequential DVD outside of those bloody awful home-movies-masquerading-as-genuine-films CAMP BLOOD, THE ZOMBIE CHRONICLES and HUNTING SEASON and a number of DVD-R bootlegs of major titles, derived from those Japanese VHD releases (even under those conditions, HOUSE OF WAX is truly sensational in 3-D!).
     
  12. MichaelSloan

    MichaelSloan Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2004
    Messages:
    116
    Likes Received:
    0
    At Universal Studios Florida, they do show a clip of Dial M For Murder in 3D as a part of their Hitchcock attraction. That's about it, as far as I know.

    Jason



    This is a little off topic, but I think the Hitchcock Atttraction in Florida is gone.
     
  13. Steve Phillips

    Steve Phillips Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2002
    Messages:
    1,526
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gary, while I agree about the high price of the Sensio machine, it can work with a standard HDTV, and in anamorphic 16X9 format. The SPY KIDS 3-D DVD from Sensio is not 4X3. I think some of the labeling on the packaging has caused some confusion. Check out a high end home theater store, they may have a display. They might even have it set up properly!

    Me, I'm sticking with the far cheaper field sequential format for now.

    Meanwhile, MONSTER HOUSE (Robert Zemeckis) was announced as the second big CGI feature to get a digital 3-D treatment. It will open in polarized 3-D next summer in selected theatres, following CHICKEN LITTLE's lead.

    How about a DIAL M re-issue in digital 3-D?
     
  14. TheLongshot

    TheLongshot Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2000
    Messages:
    4,118
    Likes Received:
    0


    Is it? I'm sorry to hear that. It was a nice thing as a tribute to one of the greatest directors out there.

    Jason
     
  15. Gary Palmer

    Gary Palmer Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    Messages:
    145
    Likes Received:
    0
    While I agree about the high price of the Sensio machine, it can work with a standard HDTV, and in anamorphic 16X9 format. The SPY KIDS 3-D DVD from Sensio is not 4X3. I think some of the labeling on the packaging has caused some confusion.

    Steve, this is a genuine surprise to me, and I'm happy to be proven wrong. But there's nothing at Sensio's website (or anywhere else, for that matter) which suggests the format can support anything other than 4:3. The technical specs for the 'Sensio 3D input' (as per the website) says: "Aspect ratio: 4:3 (progressive scan DVD players must be set on interlaced for 3DVD playback". And, as you say, the Spy Kids 3-D DVD describes the disc as 'full-frame'.

    Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find a single review of the Sensio DVD version of SPY KIDS 3-D GAME OVER. Have you seen a copy of the disc, Steve? Even in part? It would be nice to nail this little mystery once and for all. [​IMG]

    If it is true, then the frame sequential 3-D format represented by Sensio is truly the way forward for best-quality 3-D in home theater. But I still don't see how they're going to recreate 2.35:1 movies entirely successfully, unless they squeeze 'em (letterboxed) side by side on the 16:9 frame. Would that not lead to visual compromises, I wonder?

    For now, however, I'm also sticking with field sequential, until Sensio comes to its senses and lowers that price...
     
  16. GregK

    GregK Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2000
    Messages:
    1,016
    Likes Received:
    227
    While the Sensio anamorphic squeeze used for the left & right images is optimized for the 4:3 format, the Sensio release of SPY KIDS 3-D is presented letterboxed. In an interview with Widescreen Review the Sensio founders said they would strive to present all 3-D features in their original aspect ratio. I just wish Sensio also had an alternate over and under encoding format, to also optimally encode scope ratio features in 3-D. Perhaps the next HD Sensio format will offer such variable encoding options, as the current Sensio format is locked in at 640x480.

    Gary, I can PM you a raw L/R squeezed still from the original Sensio DVD if you're interested.

    The aspect ratio on the Sensio 3-D DVD version of BUGS! is modified, but that's a very long story that would further deviate from the original topic of this thread.
     
  17. DavidBC

    DavidBC Second Unit

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2005
    Messages:
    401
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'd love to see this in 3D. Dial M For Murder's compositions sometimes strike me as funny. There's a lot of tables and furniture in the foreground, and the actors walking and talking behind them. It sometimes resembles a Muppet movie to me[​IMG]
     
  18. Steve Phillips

    Steve Phillips Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2002
    Messages:
    1,526
    Likes Received:
    0
    That makes sense Greg. I was under the impression the Sensio SPY KIDS 3-D demo I was shown in a local store was anamorphic, but I guess it was letterboxed. It was a projector. It still looked 1000% better than the anaglyph version!
     
  19. Gary Palmer

    Gary Palmer Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    Messages:
    145
    Likes Received:
    0
    I just wish Sensio also had an alternate over and under encoding format, to also optimally encode scope ratio features in 3-D. Perhaps the next HD Sensio format will offer such variable encoding options, as the current Sensio format is locked in at 640x480.

    I was just thinking: What would the AR be for an over-under/16:9 format? For example, if the L/R images of a 2.35:1 3-D movie were stacked above-below on a 16:9-enhanced frame, and 'recomposed' as a single image during playback? That would be close to 2.35, right? If so, it would allow the retention of optimum quality for individual frames, rather than the loss incurred in merely 'letterboxing' the image. As Greg suggests, perhaps the specs will change once the HD version of Sensio rolls around?

    PS. Unfortunately, the price would still be too high...
     

Share This Page