Ghostbusters comparison *PIX* - Page 4 - AVS Forum
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post #91 of 208 Old 06-24-2009, 11:08 AM
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Please stay on topic discussing this title only. When you bring up other films comparisons to support your position, it goes too far off topic. Some posts were deleted as a "whole"...too many to disect the specific paragraphs that may or may not be on topic....sorry

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post #92 of 208 Old 06-24-2009, 11:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FoxyMulder View Post

Oh so now this board knows better than the director or director of photography who both supervised this new transfer.

Why don't people focus their efforts on transfers which really got screwed up rather than ones which have actually been approved by the makers.

Reitman was not involved, only Kovacs was reportedly in the room during the transfer process.

There are also two prints of the film available. One used directly for the 1999 DVD, which Reitman personally oversaw and approved to his liking after being disappointing with the boosted-contrast of the laserdisc.

The other print is what Sony considered a "remaster" for the 2005 box set. In an effort to do what many here argue is a picture that's "too dark", techs boosted contrast and brightness to create a brighter image with more pop in the colors, which if memory serves me correctly, is similar to the laserdisc presentation.

The second print is the one Kovacs obviously oversaw and approved -- probably never even given the choice over the original print. Depending on how you wish to look at it, the director has the final say on how HIS film should look. Having Kovacs approve a transfer based on a faulty print does not make this Blu-ray's presentation exactly as the filmmakers intended.
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post #93 of 208 Old 06-24-2009, 11:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paulidan View Post

by the standard of 1984 filmmaking?
Looking at the last capture of the three men, the DVD CS cap show a far more natural looking gamma curve for a 1984 film. The Blu-ray is clearly jacked around and manipulated to provide more pop and reveal more detail.

This is why in other threads I would argue the point that grain is not the be all/end all for what constitutes a film like transfer/end product image.
Based on these caps- the Bd provides clearly superior resolution and looks more like film in some aspects, such as less ringing- but it also doesn't maintain much fidelity to the original, natural look of this particular film. It looks like too many Bds which have been processed to appeal to the Fast And Furious generation in regards to contrast levels and color balances/timings.

This is actually correct. It was a trend of early eighties comedies to use certain photographic filters that kept contrast in check, often times appearing toned down without affecting primary colors or the overall palette in general.

Examples of this trend are 'Airplane!', 'Mr. Mom', and 'Risky Business' the years prior to 'Ghostbusters'. That same year saw 'Gremlins', 'Splash', and 'This is Spinal Tap'. The year after, we see 'Back to the Future' and 'The Goonies'. All these films show similar photographic techniques used by Kovacs in 'Ghostbusters' --- a combination of color correction and diffusion filters (something with a warmer reddish hue) to manipulate contrast and polarizing filters to maintain natural color saturation.

It wasn't until 'Pee-Wee's Big Adventure' in the latter half of '85 that cinematographers gave colors a brighter, more vivid pop while still using similar techniques. Even looking at Kovacs' other films of the same period ('The Toy' and 'Mask'), he still displays the same style of photography, although in 'Mask', he obviously uses heavier diffusion filters to intentionally soften the image.

Best comparison is to watch other films of the period released on HD DVD and Blu-ray. You wanna go back as far as 'Animal House' you can, but I'd rather stick to films released closer to the same time as 'Ghostbusters'. Films like 'Caddyshack', 'Trading Places', and 'Risky Business' all demonstrate a photographic trend that show this Blu-ray edition of 'Ghostbusters' with a contrast level that's higher than normal.

Just my opinion, I suppose.
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post #94 of 208 Old 06-25-2009, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eNoize View Post

Reitman was not involved, only Kovacs was reportedly in the room during the transfer process.

Are we even certain that he was actually present for the transfer? Or did he just sign off on the print that was used, without actually witnessing the contrast boosting and other manipulations that the transfer techs imposed on it afterwards?

In any case, I think this thoroughly debunks the claims that the Blu-ray transfer was approved by Kovacs, and that Sony's been sitting on this DP-approved transfer for the past three years.

It's pretty clear to me that Sony electronically boosted the colors, contrast, and gamma for the 2005 DVD. The Blu-ray stems from that same transfer, but they've now performed some additional digital tweaking in an attempt to temper some of the damage. However, the detail that was crushed when the contrast was boosted the first time can't be restored just by dragging the contrast levels down again later. Likewise, oversaturating and then desaturating the colors won't return them to what they should have looked like in the first place. And the gamma curve is even more screwed up now than ever, if anything.

This disc just does not look right to me. Sony should have retransferred the movie from scratch.

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post #95 of 208 Old 06-25-2009, 10:18 AM
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/\\

Hopefully none of these problems will be present on Ghostbusters II whenever it's released. Broadcast HD versions looked superb.
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post #96 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 04:14 AM - Thread Starter
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post #97 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 04:19 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eNoize View Post

Reitman was not involved, only Kovacs was reportedly in the room during the transfer process.

There are also two prints of the film available. One used directly for the 1999 DVD, which Reitman personally oversaw and approved to his liking after being disappointing with the boosted-contrast of the laserdisc.

The other print is what Sony considered a "remaster" for the 2005 box set. In an effort to do what many here argue is a picture that's "too dark", techs boosted contrast and brightness to create a brighter image with more pop in the colors, which if memory serves me correctly, is similar to the laserdisc presentation.

The second print is the one Kovacs obviously oversaw and approved -- probably never even given the choice over the original print. Depending on how you wish to look at it, the director has the final say on how HIS film should look. Having Kovacs approve a transfer based on a faulty print does not make this Blu-ray's presentation exactly as the filmmakers intended.

How do you know Reitman wasn't present ?

Do you have proof or is this rumor ?


I'm going to watch the film later today then post back.
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post #98 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 04:33 AM - Thread Starter
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post #99 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 08:20 AM
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You can almost read the label on the wine bottle in the foreground.

Sachel..?
Sichel...?

This picture shows the increased resolution best..i think.
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post #100 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 11:48 AM
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sichel

also you can read the palmolive bottle on the left by the sink... and also that the bottle has 10% more free
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post #101 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 11:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AmishFury View Post

sichel

also you can read the palmolive bottle on the left by the sink... and also that the bottle has 10% more free

Look at the difference in the strainer!

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post #102 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 11:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FoxyMulder View Post

How do you know Reitman wasn't present ?

Do you have proof or is this rumor ?


I'm going to watch the film later today then post back.



Do you realize that I can ask the same of you?

You yourself have no proof and actually base your assurance on rumors. I base my statement on the fact that Sony has never acknowledged Reitman's involvement. We can only assume that the director approves because he promoted the Blu-ray. But that was also at the same time of promoting the video game. Reitman has gone on record to approve of the darker tone from the 1999 DVD, not what we have on this BD.

But before anyone goes off and start claiming that Bill Hunt said this and said that, did anyone even notice that he changed his little post twice? First to mention that Kovacs was involved according to "his sources", then a couple of days later, he adds Reitman was involved. People really need stop using him as if he were the Word of God. I have never once seen Hunt show a decent knowledge of film or its proper presentation.

For anyone who understands the sort of damage digital manipulation (changing gamma and contrast/brightness) can cause to the beauty of physical 35mm film, this BD does not look as good as it should. Granted, 'Ghostbusters' has never looked this good, but I have to wonder just how terrific it would have appeared had the techs not manipulated so much.


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post #103 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 12:03 PM
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watched this the other night. overall looks pretty good but the contrast definitely looks cranked almost as if they were really trying to more match the look of today's films.
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post #104 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 12:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eNoize View Post

Do you realize that I can ask the same of you?

But before you go off and start claiming that Bill Hunt said this and said that, did anyone even notice that he changed his little post twice? First to mention that Kovacs was involved according to "his sources", then a couple of days later, he adds Reitman was involved. People really need stop using him as if he were the Word of God. I have never once seen Hunt show a decent knowledge of film or its proper presentation.

Don't worry, many of us quickly stopped listening to him long ago, like during the early phases of the format war. He showed his true colors even back then.

It's clear no one here has the real fact regarding Reitman's involvement. Lots of name-dropping seems to go on around here to prove or disprove the creative intent of what gets delivered on BD visually. It's almost as funny as people claiming they remember the exact grain structure of a movie they saw 30 years ago in the cinema, but hey, what would the internet be without baseless and anonymous bragging?

I can safely say, that I don't remember the exact grain, contrast, nor gamma levels from my movie-going experience as a teenager way back in the mid 80's regarding this movie, and I haven't seen the DVD in ages, but I do think the BD looks decent. I think a lot of us agree that techniques used during specific decades are what can help and hinder any output, regardless of the great capabilities of any format. If someone had told me five years ago that movies like Casablanca and How The West Was Won would look better in a new high def fromat than movies like this (or The Sting and Three Days of the Condor from the 70s) I probably would have laughed.

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post #105 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 12:53 PM
 
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Well eNoize i can say i certainly do not listen to The Digital Bits and the only information at that site i enjoy reading is written by Robert Harris.

On that subject he is a film restoration expert and says this looks good.

Is he wrong ? Maybe he is but i would think he knows a damn sight more about film than you or i put together. He has been wrong in the past when he used to have a smaller monitor but i believe he views using a projection setup these days as do i.

I watched this tonight and indeed just finished watching it not that long ago.

I am not convinced contrast boosting has gone on and indeed i feel it's more likely we are seeing Ghostbusters close to how it originally looked but even if some contrast boosting has gone on i didn't personally find the image objectionable and felt the image had a lot of detail in it. I didn't feel the grain structure stood out like a sore thumb. I felt the grain looked very acceptable and film like and not too heavy at all. Maybe 30seconds in the library scene after the Ghostbusters go to investigate reports of the old lady but that was it and other than that i felt the film was good to very good detail levels.

You say Ivan Reitman signed off on this release just to promote the Blu Ray. Well hey who's to say he didn't sign off on the 1999 release to promote the DVD and remember technology was inferior in 1999 so it's likely that transfer is the botched one and not this one.

It's also possible that both the 1999 and 2009 releases are not what we saw at the cinema back in 1984. It's possible no home version has yet presented what was seen back in 1984. Neither you or i know for sure but we can both express an opinion on detail levels and whether we liked the image or not.

What i will say is i found this image to be on the whole good and detailed.

The picture you provide eNoize above does not prove a thing because what i see with this Blu Ray release is natural film grain and at no point did i feel like i was watching digital noise. Maybe thats what you felt but i didn't feel that way at all and indeed i cannot understand Josh Z when he says this looks like crap because that is truly going overboard.

Indeed Josh Z mentions the sound being all bass and mid end and no higher frequencies. Well hey thats so true of most eighties film soundtracks. I would have liked to have had the option though of choosing the original 2.0 track in lossless PCM.

Until we hear from Ivan Reitman on the matter then i don't think this argument regarding contrast boosting or how the film should look will go away. All i can say is to me i enjoyed the film and felt the disc image quality was good to very good and the sound quality was just average but that's probably due to it being an eighties mix unless they screwed it up when doing the 5.1 remix ( thats possible )
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post #106 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 02:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FoxyMulder View Post


On that subject he is a film restoration expert and says this looks good.

Is he wrong ? Maybe he is but i would think he knows a damn sight more about film than you or i put together.

You assume too much, but that's fine, this is not the issue at hand.

As for the rest of your post: you're correct, this argument will remain unsettled until we hear from Reitman himself. It's actually one of the smarter posts I've read in this discussion. So, we'll leave it as it stands.

If you don't see how the second picture makes the grain look digitized, then our definition of what constitutes as proper film grain is obviously different. And again, we'll leave it at that. But frankly, I'd much rather trust my eyes and the ten years of experience backing it up than listen to Harris (another person who's done little to impress with his assessments).

But one minor nitpick; this line of logic, "if the filmmakers approve, then it must be right", implies that Friedkin did a superb job on 'French Connection' and that Lucas did everything right to the original 'Star Wars' trilogy. After all, both filmmakers defend their "restorations" as always being the intended look. I know that the work done on those films is quite drastic, and some may not even see the connection. But the point is in the fact that these films were approved by the original makers and according to the prescribed logic, we, as fans, are forced to accept it with no say in its appreciation. Arguing in defense of the alterations done to 'Ghostbusters', but reject the work done to 'French Connection' and the 'Star Wars' trilogy (all three of which have been approved by their creators) is illogical, ineffective, wishy-washy, want to have their cake and eat it too, or whatever aphorism that comes to mind.

Yes, 'Ghostbusters' has never been looked so good and detailed, but it will always come down to "what if, given the proper restoration". I'd like to quote the comments from steel_breeze, as it's a well-written impression similar to my own, and call it quits in the argument on my part:

Quote:
Originally Posted by steel_breeze View Post

Let me preface all my following comments by saying that I'm a professional cinematographer who has shot 17 feature films; I've gone thru the photochemical color-timing process, as well as the Digital Intermediate process (at top houses like Efilm and Modern VideoFilm); I'm watching on a 92-inch 2.35:1 Carada BW screen, projected from a Panasonic PT-AE1000U which I've calibrated myself to be just about perfect...

Having finally watched GHOSTBUSTERS in its entirety, I don't think the overall contrast level is terribly objectionable, although it is definitively more "crunchy" than you could get in the photo-chemical realm. The main sequence that stands out as being "overly-cooked", however, is the much-talked-of Gozer showdown on the top of the building.

The simple face is: if you were watching a photo-chemical print, there would be detail in the white smoke that's billowing down the staircase. On this BD, it is completely blown-out and devoid of any detail. The other shots that are completely un-filmlike are the closeups of Dan Aykroyd when he's being asked "Are you a god". You'll see that the bright spots on his face have "clipped" in a way that only video can. Again, on straight film, this bright area would "roll off" in a much more natural way and not be "white holes" of no detail.

I'm a major MAJOR supporter of grain-preservation on BD, but I must admit that even I was surprised by some of the heavy grain levels in this release. At times, it looked more like electronic noise left over from the scanning process than organic film grain (to my eyes, anyway). I'm sure it wasn't helped by the boosted contrast levels.

EDIT: For excessive "noise" that doesn't look like grain, check out the scene when Bill Murray reacts to the hearse that Dan Aykroyd just drove up in. Weird textures goin' on.

Overall... it is the best it's ever looked on home video, but it definitely could have been better. Since "could've's" are useless, I'll enjoy this release 'til the next one comes along.

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post #107 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 03:06 PM
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My apologies, I know I wrote I was done discussing this, but I did have one final thought to end with.

Same pictures. But since my line of argument and the evidence I keep using to defend it still proves nothing, then I suppose I need to find another line of work because I really suck at it.


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post #108 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 03:14 PM
 
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Ok i can see your point of view better now that you pointed out the clouds. ( i missed that )

I still think the image is detailed but now you point that out it does seem wrong and is making me think a little more about the last opinion i wrote.

I still think Josh Z though is going way overboard with his comments about this looking like crap.
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post #109 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 03:55 PM
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I can certainly agree with the points he is making. I generally agree with most everything Josh Z ever has to say about transfers on certain products, and I do agree with the increased contrast and color tweak statements but... man. Ghostbusters still looks pretty damn good. Unnatural grain caused by this boost in contrast at times, yes, but I've never seen the movie look this damn good!
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post #110 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 04:36 PM
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Such an uneven transfer. The scene with Sigourney in the kitchen looks great and filmlike. The scene with Bill and Dan looks like harsh poorly exposed video.
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post #111 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 06:40 PM
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I will say it is inconsistent. If you look at the cloud detail that eNoize pointed out it would be easy to come to one conclusion. However when you look at the jacket Sigourney is wearing in the kitchen it would be possible to come to the exact opposite conclusion. For a second I thought she had done a costume change between the DVD and the Blu-ray.
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post #112 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 06:42 PM
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Finally watched all of it. Overall it looks pretty good but there are some issues, specifically with the contrast tweaking. The worst of it causes clipping on anything that reaches a certain point, or light level; bright highlights, proton streams, lightening, various shots with skyline.

For the sake of those who haven't seen the problems and wish to remain blissfully ignorant I have hidden my comments on specific shots/scenes.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

The Gozer stuff is the greatest offender, especially when seeing the contrast of other shots that do not suffer as much or at all from the clipping. This typing of blooming comes from the digital realm, analog is not going to do what is seen here. Besides the 99 DVDs show detail there.

One interesting shot, when Peck is approaching the firehouse, low level angle, you can clearly see the clouds to the left of the building but to right it is completely blown out.

Right after the librarian gets spooked the Ghostbusters logo fluctuates in a rather odd fashion, as though some of the highlights clip.

Another oddity during Lewis's party, the tracking shot with him and the coats, you can see in the white plates something curious as well in the highlights.


I also think that grain may look more intrusive due to the contrast adjustments, at least a possible theory, although I'm ok with the color timing and find that it looks fine.

Factoring all this in I am pretty satisfied and believe most folks will as well but it is a few steps from perfection.
At least it isn't a DNR waxfest with mucked up color timing.

Best Regards
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Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

PS Check Xylons #96 post, you can see the clouds and more of Vankmens hair in the 99 DVD than in the BR. Top middle of the frame you can barely see the remnants of the clouds, very digital vibe.
I agree with eNoize.

Dana scene in the firehouse, bloomed clipping extravaganza.

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post #113 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 07:42 PM
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yeah the first thing i noticed about those specific shots was the lack of clouds in the BR shots...

the second thing i noticed was the water towers (anyone who has played [protoype] knows what i mean)
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post #114 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 08:16 PM
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What would make the clouds disappear in the BD? Is the contrast level so high that data is being clipped?

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post #115 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 09:07 PM
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Yep. Remember Run Lola Run?

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post #116 of 208 Old 06-27-2009, 09:44 PM
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and that's the new trend. ridiculously blown out looking films. Even in comedies...
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post #117 of 208 Old 06-28-2009, 01:19 AM
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It might be interesting to compare the previous broadcast HD version that used the older transfer to the BD.
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post #118 of 208 Old 06-28-2009, 05:13 AM - Thread Starter
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post #119 of 208 Old 06-28-2009, 10:02 AM
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Just finished watching the Blu-Ray and I thought it looked great, like a really great condition film print. The sound was quite good as well for a quarter century old movie.
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post #120 of 208 Old 06-28-2009, 11:19 AM
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I would STILL like to see a screenshot of the scene where Venkman enters Dana's kitchen, just after he goes through the door. It's a dark scene, and I would like someone to explain to me what the red speckles are. They overwhelm the shot. It looks like a swarm of red fireflies in the darkness, especially in the lower left part of the image. I can't imagine this was in the original print.
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