The release of The Hobbit has prompted a debate about 48 frames per second. I asked Dave Norris - the UK's leading projectionist - for a definitive answer on whether it solves the problem of light loss in 3D...

Comments

This entry is now closed for comments.

  • Comment number 67. Posted by Kevin

    on 14 Jan 2013 14:50

    To those like MYWAC who are saying that the HiDef 46fps made it feel like you were on the set, you clearly have never been on a film set!!! The only reason you are saying this, other than to seem cool by jumping on the band wagon, is that YOUR BRAIN KNOWS ITS A FILM SET!!! But in reallity, if you look at the detailing ( 4 times I have viewed this now) it looks like a real place that bilbo lives, the level of detail in the set is amazing, of course its not real though, as our brain tells us its a movie set. But I am pretty confident if I was on the film set watching it, I would be distracted by the crew, green screens and Ian McKellen being on a different stage whilst the dwarves and hobbits were on this one. My only hope is Mr Jackson pays no attention to the naysayers and continues to bring us this unique magical view of this wonderful world.

    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of positive ratings for comment 67: 0
    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of negative ratings for comment 67: 0
    Loading…
  • Comment number 66. Posted by U14576049

    on 13 Jan 2013 11:57

    I can't believe that after posting about the look of 405 line TV theres a story about how there's 13000 b/w licenses still out there by which the BBC concludes there are still 13000 people watching in b/w. Apart from the obvious flaw in the reasoning (a b/w licence is £100 cheaper than colour, maybe just maybe at least some (all) of those license holders are just saying its b/w???) assuming these people ARE still using an old set, they'd need a digibox and an aerial probably more recent than came with the set!
    But I digress.
    MYWAC, '48 fps is rubbish'.
    No, The Hobbit may be rubbish. You're watching 48fps or more everytime you watch TV, as anyone who has bothered to read my posts (I doubt many, by the posts I read here) Hi def TV IS AT 50fps anyway, and is approaching the resolution you see at a HFR cinema. If you ever see a 4k TV that will be easily equal and in most cases better than a 35mm print. Remember, even if the specs of a negative and print emulsion claim better resolution than TV, the film you would see at a cinema is (obviously) not the neg, nor is it a print from the neg that went through the camera. It will at best be a print from an interneg, one of many made from an interpos, one of many made (possibly) from the original neg, more likely a dupe neg. So the cumulative degradation in image quality renders it well below ideal spec.

    Add into that wear and tear on the print and compared to modern digital theatrical projection, it cannot compete. It may look cute or nostalgic but it isn't better and more and more, is becoming an anachronism among the many ways we view moving pictures (TV computer, tablet, Smartphone etc) 48fps may demand more from the set builders and makeup artists, but arguably its comparable to watching Eastenders in HD. If you have watched any of the new Attenborough wildlife progs, Africa, for instance in HD on a modern large (60in or so) interpolating (meaning upressing to 100 or more fps) you cannot fail to be impressed.

    Everytime I have watch an Imax presentation, I am aware of the flicker and motion blur. Remember each blurred frame is shown to you twice, and because the whole point of Imax is to fill your peripheral vision to aid a sense of immersion, unfortunately our peripheral vision is more sensitive to flicker than our central vision, so the problem compounds.

    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of positive ratings for comment 66: 0
    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of negative ratings for comment 66: 0
    Loading…
  • Comment number 65. Posted by tadleytidal

    on 10 Jan 2013 09:04

    I know I am a bit late to the party here but.....
    I finally got round to watching The Hobbit. Not only that, I watch it in 3D. But the feather in my cap is I saw it at the IMAX in Soton. My first IMAX full feature movie.
    It was my most enjoyable 3D experience. The screen was bigger than normal. I flinch, jumped and ducked as the objects came flying toward me. However the fast scenes in the mines, etc were completely lost on me as I had to screw up my face and try and concentrate to work out what I was watching. Mainly it was just a blur. I think we should be able to get half price tickets as I only ever get to watch half a movie.
    I really wished I had been able to watch the IMAX in 2D. Then I could have enjoyed the whole movie, not just the slow action and conversation.
    Only other criticism posh and articulate Barry Humphries was a terrible casting for the Great Goblin. But otherwise a great kids adventure movie based on a average kids adventure book.

    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of positive ratings for comment 65: 0
    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of negative ratings for comment 65: 0
    Loading…
  • Comment number 64. Posted by Peter Cook

    on 8 Jan 2013 10:43

    I saw The Hobbit in 3D Imax and I'm pretty sure it was 24 rather than 48. During the fast moving scenes there is a lot of ghosting where the image seems to stutter. I enjoyed the 3D but I'm pretty sure it didn't make the film "better". It was fantastic. I didn't notice the first scenes dragging. I fact the whole film flew by. The scenes in Bilbo's house were useful in getting to know all those new characters.

    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of positive ratings for comment 64: 0
    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of negative ratings for comment 64: 0
    Loading…
  • Comment number 63. Posted by MYWAC

    on 7 Jan 2013 12:38

    48 Frames per second is rubbish! From my central England location, I was given the choice of only London or Manchester as my closest opportunity to see the first installment of Jackson’s new franchise in IMAX 3D projected in HFR (48 fps) – the big kahuna – surely the true form the director intended. I am no fan of 3D, but have always enjoyed my previous IMAX experiences – but it was HFR that really piqued my interest here – and whilst it is foolish to judge the merits of the format on the basis of one showing of one film – I am going to do that anyway. First impressions count!

    Though I had read a few articles about HFR and listened to Peter Jackson talk about the ‘look’ of it on screen, I still couldn’t quite picture it. It seemed to me that this was something other than High Definition. I remember seeing my first HD TV and my first Blu-Ray and almost finding the image too sharp at first. It was the difference between cassette and CD (or MP3) and is now the accepted standard. Following the ads, trailers and opening credits we are once more transported to Hobbiton, Middle Earth to experience another Hobbit adventure.

    YUK! It looked awful. It looked real...but not real in a good way...real like you were almost there...but not immersive...like you were actually there on set...because that is what it looked like. A set. You could see it was a set. And costumes. And make-up. In his documentary ‘The Story of Film: An Odyssey’, Mark Cousins comments that in filming the amazing opening scene to ‘Saving Private Ryan’, Stephen Spielberg has created “a lie to tell the truth.” 48 Frames per second seems to have exposed that lie. This is not the ‘true’ story of a hobbit and a wizard and a dozen dwarves. It is actors in costumes on a set pretending to be those things. HFR has taken away the sheen of cinema that allows us to believe what we are seeing is real. Now we can clearly see it is not. Let me elaborate so you can visualise for yourself.

    Pick one of your favourite films of the last 10 years – one you inevitably own the DVD or Blu Ray of; ‘Lord of the Rings’ perhaps. In the ‘extras’ section, watch some of the behind the scenes footage, the making of; where you can see camera operators and the edges of sets and lighting rigs. Perhaps you will see an actual scene being filmed as the main characters rush down an alleyway or through a door to a building. That is what HFR looked like to me. It looks like the behind the scenes footage. HFR has destroyed the production value of the film. It now looks like TV – and cheap TV at that. Hobbiton’s rolling green hills resembles Telly Tubby land. Christopher Lee’s beard looks like something he picked up at Party Mania on the way to the shoot. It is as if Elijah Wood (as Frodo) is appearing in a low budget BBC children’s drama on a Sunday afternoon, not a $250 million blockbuster. Go back to your DVD extras. After the scene of the actors running down the alleyway, they may now show the actual scene from the film – looks better doesn’t it? Not in 48 frames per second it doesn’t. It looks the same. It looks like sets and props and costumes. It looks rubbish.

    I write a lot more about this at my own MYWAC blog. Please feel free to drop by and comment. http://mywac.wordpress.com/

    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of positive ratings for comment 63: 0
    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of negative ratings for comment 63: 0
    Loading…
  • Comment number 62. Posted by Kevin

    on 7 Jan 2013 12:21

    I'm a little late to the debate here. But having seen the 3d HFR version I would have to disagree with most of the people here. Whilst this new technology does not add anything to the story of the movie, it is a good leap forward in technology. Providing a beautiful high resolution movie which makes the 3d easy to watch (no eye strain as previously ). It does make the film different, I'm sure those watching the first colour movies or 'talkies' thought much the same thing that is "Aaargh we hate it, its different". I for one loved it, it made the thing come alive in a way I didn't think possible.

    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of positive ratings for comment 62: 0
    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of negative ratings for comment 62: 0
    Loading…
  • Comment number 61. Posted by aidan

    on 6 Jan 2013 22:49

    Mark, I hear you have now that you've seen L'Hobbit in 24fps. The wife and I saw it just before new years in 24 fps and she found it almost unwatchable in parts. Particularly any panning shots were very difficult, with badd judder (?) that made it very difficult to focus.

    My wife is particularly sensitive to those effects, so she mostly shut her eyes, as it made her feel ill. I could watch it, but only by finding the "still point" in the pan and concentrating on that.

    Has Jackson made the pans too fast, as he was filming for 48 fps, and so made the movie worse in 24 fps?

    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of positive ratings for comment 61: 0
    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of negative ratings for comment 61: 0
    Loading…
  • Comment number 60. Posted by LSJShez

    on 6 Jan 2013 21:19

    Nice Jeremy Irons, in Narrow Margin, quote Mark.

    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of positive ratings for comment 60: 0
    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of negative ratings for comment 60: 0
    Loading…
  • Comment number 59. Posted by Stuart H

    on 5 Jan 2013 14:36

    I wasn't bothered so much by the frame speed as the length of the film. Should have been max 2 hours, arguably 20mins shorter than that even.

    If I see Gandalf come back and save the day once more I'm going to scream. Furthermore, if he can summon those big birds why doesn't he do it sooner and get them to carry the gang to where they need to go!? That would keep the film to a very manageable 1hr 30mins I reckon.

    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of positive ratings for comment 59: 0
    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of negative ratings for comment 59: 0
    Loading…
  • Comment number 58. Posted by dolfinack

    on 4 Jan 2013 22:53

    It seemed a LITTLE brighter (maybe the wee man in the cinema just turned it up a notch or two) but the whole thing looked like watching an episode of Brookside. Or Doctors. Choose your poison.

    Either way, it kind of suspends the suspension of disbelief when you think you're looking at real-life "through a hole in the cinema wall". Absolute rubbish.

    Oh and the film was crap too.

    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of positive ratings for comment 58: 0
    • This entry is now closed for comments. Number of negative ratings for comment 58: 0
    Loading…
More comments

More Posts

Previous

Next