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Old 09-28-2006, 01:32 PM   #1
Chris Beveridge Chris Beveridge is offline
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Default [HDD] Lake House Review

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The lasting impression of this transfer is that it is rather soft. The source material is in good shape -- whistle-clean with no blemishes or other defects -- but it rarely looks three-dimensional. The sense of depth and detail can vary from sequence to sequence, with some shots looking quite good and others bland. Oddly, this variance doesn't really seem to be an aesthetic choice as it seems to happen arbitrarily. Close-ups fare better than long and medium shots, which often appear ill-defined. Otherwise, color reproduction is good, with fairly vivid hues and no instances of smearing or chroma noise. Blacks are also solid, and contrast consistent across the entire spectrum. And I noticed no issues with compression artifacts and the like.
I'm starting to wonder if I need to come back in a year and see how reviewers are doing since so many transfers seem to be "not bad" but "not three dimensional". Does anyone remember a promise that ALL HD would be three dimensional looking? Anyone whose watched broadcast/satellite HD over the last few years has seen some great stuff but also the realization that a lot of movies will look better and far more detailed (as well as reduced compression issues) but they're not all going to look like you're looking out a window.

It's something I keep seeing in a number of reviews. Even when you have the compressionist saying things like "It's not perfect, but I'm a perfectionist, but what's on the disc is the great." I'm not losing faith in the releases since I'm seeing some gorgeous releases but I'm losing faith in the review community in general.
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Old 09-28-2006, 01:49 PM   #2
bferr1 bferr1 is offline
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Originally Posted by Chris Beveridge View Post
I'm not losing faith in the releases since I'm seeing some gorgeous releases but I'm losing faith in the review community in general.
Yeah, I hear you. It seems like if a movie doesn't have that crisp CGI sheen like Chronicles of Riddick, then it's all of a sudden not good enough. There's a very lengthy thread over at AVS about problems with Corpse Bride, including some-- -- posterization in the grey clouds over the Warner Bros. logo at the start of the movie. I got the BD and skipped through some chapters. I think it looks fantastic. Maybe I'm easier to please, but what are people looking for? What will they be satisfied with?

It's like we're being given beautiful pieces of art and we're complaining about the brushstrokes!
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Old 09-28-2006, 01:56 PM   #3
Chris Beveridge Chris Beveridge is offline
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See, I do reviews myself so I know about how with some releases you feel like you have to nitpick to find something to complain about, particularly when you do get a lot of really good things in succession. You feel like you're not being critical enough anymore (and there is always someone who will be more critical than you as well and will complain that you didn't notice). But what's getting me with the reviews lately is that it feels like reviewers are expecting every film to "pop" with color and have that window feel. Look at HDD's review of End of Days that was posted today; the flames feel too saturated and lose detail because of the "pop". So it's inconsistent as well. I try not to view everything as directors intent but knowing that many go through things closely and make sure elements like that are in the master print, I'm more likely to believe it was intentional or just how it was filmed rather than an error in authoring.
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Old 09-28-2006, 02:37 PM   #4
ProvenFlipper ProvenFlipper is offline
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I stopped paying attention to the reviews months ago. Not only are they way to inconsistant and picky, but often the opinions are all over the place. Now, I buy movies that I like, enjoy them, and read reviews to see what others think. There's only a few BD that I thought looked rather bad, and those were pretty much in the first batch of LG and Sony titles. Ever since Stealh, RV, The Benchwarmers, the discs started looking a whole lot better, with minor issues, and every week new titles come out that are getting rid of the issues.
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Old 09-28-2006, 07:01 PM   #5
phloyd phloyd is offline
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Originally Posted by bferr1 View Post
There's a very lengthy thread over at AVS about problems with Corpse Bride, including some-- -- posterization in the grey clouds over the Warner Bros. logo at the start of the movie.
Heh

I caused some constenation there by saying I didn't believe that any of the discs were 'perfect' with the VC-1 codec.

The are two issues at hand - one is the M$ evangelists like Amir who are trying to sell us VC-1 as solid, 100% transparent to the original and the other is realistic expectations.

With 'the look and sound of perfect' up there for all to see (remind anyone of Compact Disc advertising?) they have set the bar and in my opinion they do not meet it. Bluray's 'Beyond High Definition' is even more humourous!

I will still buy discs and watch them, because in reality these formats are 'the look and sound of the best you can get right now' and 'at high definition'.

I think that the discs meet my expectations, but my expectations are not 'perfect' but 'acceptable'. All I really wanted was 'at least as good as DTheater'
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Old 09-28-2006, 07:47 PM   #6
bferr1 bferr1 is offline
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Well, I did notice posterization during the fade up on the WB logo, one scene of Victor running in the dark forest (clouds in the background), and the fade out before the end credits. Other than that, I didn't notice anything. The OP on that thread specifically mentioned looking for obvious noise at 8:45-9:00, but I really couldn't see any. Chalk it up to the differences in displays, I guess.

At which point did we stop watching movies for entertainment and started watching for flaws?
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Old 09-29-2006, 12:04 AM   #7
phloyd phloyd is offline
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Originally Posted by bferr1 View Post
At which point did we stop watching movies for entertainment and started watching for flaws?
For me it is an occuaptional hazard (I would with displays).

For others perhaps it was when they told us it was perfect...?
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