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Blu-ray Review Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? Blu-ray Review (Twilight Time)

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Josh Steinberg, Mar 24, 2019.

  1. haineshisway

    haineshisway Producer

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    Oh come on now. If there was a blue "tinge" throughout why isn't that "tinge" reflected in the yellow and red of the cab on the street - those colors are perfect. No "tinge" in the skin tones, which are perfect. But I agree completely that the transfer looks great :)
     
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  2. ThadK

    ThadK Second Unit

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    Without getting into the color timing—which is completely wrong when the whites of everyone’s eyes is blue; clearly a faded element poorly color corrected is the issue here—ROCK HUNTER also has heavy digital manipulation and the grain structure looks like a screen door was placed on top of the image. I made the mistake of buying LET’S MAKE LOVE, too, and it has the same issues so yeah, TT is getting stuck with bad masters from Fox. But ROCK HUNTER is one of my very favorite movies and this may be one of the worst presentations I’ve seen of any classic movie in years. Sorry not sorry. Dick, Bob, etc.: thanks for bearing the brunt of being the killjoys and pointing out the obvious on this p.o.s. release. Sometimes a spade is just a spade, but I sure wish I didn’t spend close to $40 to find out.
     
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  3. Jack Theakston

    Jack Theakston Supporting Actor

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    There is a threshold that flesh-tones can survive an overall cyan push. Thats’s why in modern grading, it’s so popular.

    Cyan is a subtractive from red in grading, which is likely why most of the shadow details have been crushed here compared to previous transfers.

    Bob is quite correct that this is a grading error to the lab that Fox farmed this out to. Other studios also use this country and I’ve heard the fellow has had a few slaps on the wrists by QC for taking this approach.
     
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  4. haineshisway

    haineshisway Producer

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    Well, half of the people on this thread are clearly insane and have no ability to judge color. And the other half do. But I still want to be clear here, Jack and Bob: You are saying Mr. Belston at Fox just accepts this work from whatever this purported lab they're farming to? Is that correct? Or do you think Mr. Belston doesn't care? Or that he's not in charge over there? (He may well not be anymore, after the recent events of Disney.) I'm just trying to comprehend why a well-respected film person would just accept work that was so blatantly wrong. Unless, of course, and I know this is radical - he thought they weren't wrong. Awaiting responses.
     
  5. haineshisway

    haineshisway Producer

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    Okay, so I'd love to know your history with this film. It's one of my favorites, too. When did you see it for the first time? I saw it three days after it opened and several times thereafter. I'm just curious to know when you first saw it and under what circumstances. Thanks.
     
  6. Jack Theakston

    Jack Theakston Supporting Actor

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    Hey Bruce, if you want my reply (or Bob’s, for that matter), how about you dial the rhetoric back a few stops here? Neither of us like to be publicly called out as “clearly insane.”
     
  7. haineshisway

    haineshisway Producer

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    Oh, Jack, there's no rhetoric at all. I think the point of my sentence was clear - half find this a lovely transfer and half don't. Which half is right and which isn't? And to those who think they are right the other half clearly doesn't know what they're talking about. What else can that mean? BTW, have either of you seen this transfer? I honestly want to know more about who these are being farmed out to and if Mr. Belston is simply allowing this seemingly shoddy work to come into the marketplace. Because that is not my experience in what Mr. Belston is about.

    You both know that I have taken your side and supported you here and elsewhere repeatedly. I simply cannot take your side here without more information.
     
  8. Nick*Z

    Nick*Z Screenwriter

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    If you look carefully, most of these remasters were done between 2011 and 2016, as was Rock Hunter and the upcoming Three Coins in the Fountain. The fact that they are just coming to disc now is a moot point. The digital files were all prepped at the same time.
     
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  9. Nick*Z

    Nick*Z Screenwriter

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    The proof is in the audio commentaries that were oft recorded a decade earlier for the DVD releases of these movies. Listen to the commentary for Rock Hunter; Dan Polan, commenting on Tashlin's extraordinary use of the color gray to exaggerate the advertising offices, right down to the drab business suits worn by John Williams and his cronies. Problem: the colors in this transfer are a muddy deep teal - not gray! Similarly, when Rona Jaffe comments on Suzy Parker's stunning auburn tresses in TT's release of The Best of Everything, what we instead see are muddy brown strands of uninspiring hair with blue-leaning spectral highlights.

    And consider this too. Most of the Fox titles being discussed herein have an homogenized color palette from film to film, despite being directed by different directors and shot by different cinematographers; all of whom had disparate stylization techniques that set them apart from their competition. So, no - there should be no conformity with the way a lot of Fox's 'scope' movies look today.

    Not casting aspersions on Mr. Belston. He may not have been aware until the damage was already done and the discs were already out. Or he might not have even been consulted herein. Either way, the Fox 'scope' product - a lot of it - is sincerely flawed on Blu-ray at present: the list including 'Rock Hunter', The Best of Everything, The Blue Max, The King and I, River of No Return, Wild River, From the Terrace, Carousel, 23 Paces to Baker Street, Desk Set, and on and on.
     
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  10. Jack Theakston

    Jack Theakston Supporting Actor

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    Not going to speak for Schawn (whose quality track record at Fox speaks for itself) or his workflow, but I'll speak from experience on Bob and my behalf that on some projects, there simply isn't enough time to go back and fix problems, and if your problem happens to be someone mistimed a whole feature, sometimes you just have to let it go.

    This happened on one of our early 3DFA projects at another lab where we just had to let it go, which is why after that one project, we decided to take all the color grading in-house (most recently, SANGAREE, which Greg did, and JIVARO, which Greg and I both worked on.) I've got to judge it based on what I see, and that's why, for the most part, we get good reviews in regards to color and levels.

    Bob and I also have the inside scoop on the lab that's been handing Fox's work, and without being professionally uncouth and naming them publicly here, there have been a number of QC complaints of the same symptoms there by other studios.

    Looking at SUCCESS with the same critical eye as any of our own projects, I would have rejected this timing immediately. I think TT should have done the same, or at least brought someone in to try to undo some of the messy choices this person made.
     
  11. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    This was an enormously difficult title to review as the high quality of the movie itself didn’t seem to be completely matched by the quality of the transfer.

    If I had to make an educated guess for what exactly went wrong, and this is purely conjecture, is that the film naturally has a lot of blue in it, due to things like costume design (Rock’s shifts) and blue gels being used for a lot of indoor and nighttime scenes. But it also seems that perhaps the colorist took this to mean that the entire film should be consistently blue, and it seems like parts of it might have been made to match that look when that wasn’t the intent for the entire picture.

    It’s tough when something sends off a little “this doesn’t seem entirely right” flare and when you don’t have access to original prints, and when previous home video releases can’t be used as evidence as anything other than that they looked different.

    I’ll say this about color comments on the commentary track - the commentary track was from the older disc, which used an older master from what appears to be a faded element, and the commentator was almost certainly basing his comments on that older transfer. It doesn’t mean he’s wrong, but it doesn’t automatically make him right. Film professors aren’t infalliable. I once had a professor show a film and then give a lecture on how the director’s choice to pan between two actors rather than using two shots and/or cuts was a stylistic choice that symbolized a certain theme and intent. The problem was, it was a pan and scan copy of a widescreen film, and in the original film, the scene was an unbroken two-shot! So my professor delivered an entire lecture on artistic intent, based on observations that had nothing to do with anything the original filmmakers actually did. I’m not saying that’s what happened on this commentary, but simply trying to make the point that reflections on an older video master may not be the end all, be all in the discussion.

    The trailer on the disc, at first glance, seems warmer, but upon closer inspection appears faded and whites have started to take on a yellowish-brown look.

    It’s a great movie. If you’ve never seen it before, you’ll probably be okay with the disc. If you have seen it and are intimately familiar with it, there might be some stuff that makes you scratch your head. As someone less familiar with the film, I’ve tried to do as much research as possible with the limited resources at my disposal and I hope I’ve been able to convey what I’ve been seeing on the disc without anyone feeling misled.

    But I can honestly say that this was the hardest review I’ve had to write.
     
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  12. Message #32 of 98 Mar 29, 2019
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    haineshisway

    haineshisway Producer

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    Just to play devil's advocate, and then I'm stepping away from this because each side thinks they're correct and as I've said before, no one will change anyone's mind: Perhaps TT and Mr. Belston didn't find the choices messy? Because had they, knowing both sets of people, I believe they would have indeed rejected it. I'd like to hear from Mr. Belston that he accepted a transfer that was wrong and that time and money precluded him from getting it right. I'm not sure what time has to do with it, anyway. They don't license to TT until they have the master in house.
     
  13. Jack Theakston

    Jack Theakston Supporting Actor

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    Again, if you have no time or extra money, “good enough” is good enough, but that doesn’t always mean it’s correct.
     
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  14. haineshisway

    haineshisway Producer

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    The older home video transfers of Rock Hunter are on the brown side - brown, not gray. Then I'm assuming you absolutely LOVE the Desk Set transfer, yes? Because let me tell you the grays are as GRAY as can be in that one, and people criticized it because the grays leaned brown in all the previous home video transfers. The office sets in Fox films were recycled constantly. And the walls were never gray in Rock Hunter. Filing cabinets and stuff like that, sure. And Tashlin loved BOLD colors and the reds, greens, and yellows on display in this transfer are perfect. How do you account for that? And again with the "muddy deep teal" - there is not an ounce of "teal" in this transfer anywhere. You can say there's too much blue - because there is a lot of blue - but there is no teal. If you are seeing teal then your machinery is off. I sometimes wonder if people think "teal" is blue. Blue is blue and teal is teal. They are very different animals.

    Over and out. :)
     
  15. Message #35 of 98 Mar 29, 2019
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    Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    I'm not here to ridicule anybody as I don't have a clue whether these color schemes are correct or not. I'm just wondering if there is a major issue with the color timing then how come Fox hasn't fix it after all these years. I profess my ignorance, but I will tell you that these Fox discs look beautiful on my OLED display.
     
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  16. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    A matter of opinion so to each his own.
     
  17. Bryan^H

    Bryan^H Lead Actor

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    I thought a lot of "Bus Stop" watching WSSRH. I remember that having a blue tinge throughout also. But again the transfer was fantastic.

    [​IMG]
     
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  18. Message #38 of 98 Mar 29, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2019
    Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Bob,

    Even if I'm wrong about this issue was the LOL necessary?
     
  19. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Let's stop such rhetoric as I think we can discuss this subject matter without such dialogue.
     
  20. Message #40 of 98 Mar 29, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2019
    Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Let's all of us dial back the personal rhetoric a little bit. There is absolutely no reason for anybody to be disrespectful towards other posters.
     

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