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Discussion in 'High Definition' started by zbinks, Aug 1, 2018.
Has anyone watched the restoration yet? My disc arrives today. I fear it's going to seem a lot cheesier without the low-fi fog of war. Regardless, I'm psyched to revisit it.
I got to watch this last night. The transfer isn't bad. From what I can glean, the film was shot on 16 mm--and many scenes were shot in extremely low light. This should lead to a smorgasbord of grain, but that's not the case here. You can definitely see film grain, but not as much as I'd expect given the shooting conditions. So I suspect some grain management has been done. Print damage crops up from time to time, but these issues are minimal and extremely sporadic. The blu-ray disc is a BD25, but there aren't any extras aside from the trailer, so the bitrate still averages a respectable 30 MBPS. It does seem to be authored with an unusual frame rate, 24.000 instead of 23.976. I suspect the downside to this could be artifacting on some displays, but I didn't see anything egregious.
Audio is 2-channel PCM (seems monophonic, but I didn't confirm), and MUCH better than expected. The cheesy songs are clearer and funnier than ever. His is nicely managed and fidelity is very good for a low-budget flick of this vintage.
Here's the REAL good news. I really feared that the higher resolution would destroy the faux documentary verisimilitude. But aside from the split-second close-ups of the monster's face when he's grabbing some poor schmuck in the dark, you never really see enough of the suit to ruin the illusion. I still had a great time with the movie.
Frame rate isn't unusual as 24 fps is the frame rate of film, which this was scanned from so it matches the source. 23.976 fps is the standard adopted for broadcasting because on NTSC monitors you could not display 24 fps because of the fields/interlacing involved in broadcast television, so this was the standard adopted for converting and exhibiting on those home and web formats (and still exists today with digital content being created in 23.976). With the arrival of HD in home though, most Blu-ray players and HD TVs can handle exact 24 fps content, however if you're viewing on cheaper or older models, or more specifically a computer monitor, the hard 24 fps may cause some issues but most should be fine as Blu-ray was developed to handle exact 24 fps to replicate cinema and handle films scanned in their native frame rate.
I completely agree with everything you said except the sentence above. It's not just unusual for a shot-on-film blu-ray transfer to be encoded at 24.000 instead of 23.976--it's EXCEEDINGLY unusual. Of the thousands of 35mm or 16 mm films in my blu-ray collection, I'd estimate less than 5 were encoded this way. I understand some of the reasons that films are normally encoded at 23.976, but not all--and not for lack of trying. It's a complex technical issue, and there seems to be a lot of misinformation floating around online.
It didn't cause any substantial artifacting for me, and we're 110% in agreement that it SHOULDN'T on most equipment. I felt compelled to point it out because it's a substantial deviation from the norm. My Oppo reports these two mathematically similar frame rates differently, so I'm presuming it outputs them differently. I just wanted everyone to be aware that it might cause unusual display issues.
Frame rate won't cause artifacting. Artifacting is a result of the compression settings used to create the output file for the final video. As to the 24fps vs 23.976 fps issue, you're really only going to see an issue during camera pans if you're monitor/display/player can't output the true 24 fps as you may notice a slight jutter during camera pans because of the 3:2 pull down created.
I've seen the original Boggy Creek several times on DVD and streaming and this new HD remaster is the best the film has ever looked to my eyes. Print damage is minimal and detail is enhanced so that I was able to see certain things for the first time. The creature can now be made out in some wide shots where previously he blended into the brown of the trees. You also now get a glimpse of the monster mask in the final sequence when the beast grabs onto the fella who runs through the front door. I noticed no issues with the sound on the disc.
Unfortunately, although the film has never looked better it doesn't mean that this is a great transfer. Colors appear semi-washed out throughout and there's a wobble that begins about 40 minutes into the film and doesn't let up. It's still watchable, but not a night and day difference like you might hope for for the first official release of a film that has a history of looking rough.
I hope that if we get a 50th anniversary release more time is spent finessing the transfer along with producing special features.
Haven't seen the new transfer but assume the wobble is either attributed to the elements used weren't in tip top shape (judging from fattyjoe37's description of the print fade throughout) and sections had bad sprocket damage, or since was filmed quite low budget the wobble could have originated during shooting or original assembly and was just never as noticeable on the shoddy VHS transfers we've been used to.