Originally Posted by Strevlac
What are the BDs you've watched that you think looked great?
For fans of SF, Alien
, Forbidden Planet
, Logan's Run
, and Star Wars 4-6
all look pretty good to me on Blu-ray. These were all made around the same time as Close Encounters
(except Forbidden Planet
which was made in 1956), and they all have a pretty filmic look. And they generally look much better to me on BD than Close Encounters
just seems to get better with age. There's been some add'l color and contrast enhancement for the BD edition to give it a slightly more modern look. IMO these adjustments are mostly for the best. The blacks look extremely
deep on my HD CRT, and the images have a tremendous sense of "3D-ness", even without wearing any funny glasses.
All of the money-shots of the planets and ships look outstanding
in this. It's really a testament to the quality of the original filmmaking and FX work that this holds up as well as it does some 30+ years after it was made.
FWIW, I've already posted a few basic impressions of Forbidden Planet here
. This xfer is also pretty remarkable when you consider the film was made in the early era of color. There is some noticeable grain in the background images in some scenes, and the detail gets a bit softer during dissolves and some FX shots, but aside from those occasional issues, the picture looks very detailed, and has very nice color and contrast in most scenes. And it's got a great score.Logan's Run
also looks pretty damn good for a film made in 1976. There are some signs of degradation/dirt here and there, but this xfer is probably the least "tweaked" in appearance of the bunch, and has the most natural look to it. And the contrast, detail and color (which is quite rich and varied thanks to some nice art direction) have all held up really well. The exterior and matte shots also look great, and have a very natural film quality to them. I'll backpeddle a little on the soundtrack though. The audio is quite clean on this film for the most part, but it's a little top/treble-heavy and there is some distortion apparent during some of the louder music and FX sequences. (Be advised that the audio ranges from quite soft to quite loud at times on this film.)Star Wars 4-6
also look quite good on BD. These three films have obviously gotten a digital scrubbing-up, but most of the original model and matte shots are still intact, and look quite good. And generally speaking, the new CG material is integrated pretty well with the older FX shots.
Many of the scenes on Tatooine are heavy on browns. And I can't quite articulate why most of those scenes in A New Hope
look good to me, but the ones in Close Encounters
do not, except that there's a depth, luster and nuance to the colors in ANH
that seems lacking in the more degraded appearance of the color on Close Encounters
, especially in some of the exterior shots towards the end of CE
There's alot of eye-candy to enjoy in these films, particularly in the snow battle and cloud city sequences in Empire Strikes Back
and during the space battles in all three films.
I'm tempted to suggest T2
, because it has a pretty filmic look to it as well, and the CG FX are seamlessly blended into the live-action film footage, which is pretty amazing to watch. The level of detail in the T2
BD is not as good as the other films above though. So it doesn't really take advantage of the additional resolution in the HD format, which is a shortcoming IMO.
I have not seen 2001
, Blade Runner
or The Abyss
on BD yet, so I can't really recommend any of these yet. I've heard some good things about the 2001
xfer though. And I'll be curious to check all of these out as well.
I've only seen a few dozen BDs so far. And the movies listed above are not
the best BD xfers I've seen up to this point (though they're among the better ones). The two best-looking BDs I've seen so far for color are probably Sleeping Beauty
(1959) and Carlito's Way
There are some brief occasions where the image gets a little out of focus on Sleeping Beauty
. But that is simply an astonishing xfer in most other respects. In most scenes, the detail, color and contrast is absolutely exquisite.
The xfer on Carlito
is also close to perfect IMHO. There is maybe a bit of horizontal edge-enhancement visible in the darker scenes, but there's little or no evidence of color filtration/artificial enhancement on this, and the sense of depth, dimension, detail and richness in the color is striking. If you want to see an example of how good a "straight" color film xfer can look without major tweaking, I can't really think of a much better example than this.
The two most recent Bond films, Casino Royale
and Quantum of Solace
also look fantastic, though there is some color filtration apparent on these, and QOS
starts to look very monochromatic in the 2nd half of the film. The same probably goes for LOTR
. I've only watched Fellowship of the Ring
(non-extended) so far, but it looked really good. And my guess is the others will probably also follow suit. (Return of the King
was the best-looking to me on DVD, so I'm lookin forward to checkin that out on BD.)
There are a few other recent films I can suggest as well...
- Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian - There is some slight filtration on this, but the color still has a pretty natural filmic feel to it overall. I suspect this may have been a slight disappointment to fans of the other two films, because there aren't as many dazzling FX in this. The film is basically 2 hours of nice landscape photography with some dwarves and centaurs thrown in here and there, and a few medievalish battles to liven things up. The color and detail in this are beautiful to watch though.
- Babylon A.D. - Like Prince Caspian, this also has some subtle filtration. But the color still has a pretty natural feel to it, and there's a nice variation in the look of the film from scene to scene (rather than the sense of "sameness" you get on other films with heavier color filtration). I have not seen this on BD yet though, so my recommendation is based primarily on the DVD.
- From Dusk Till Dawn - The image on this is noticeably contrast- & color-enhanced, esp. to bring out reddish tones. But it still retains alot of it's good film qualities and a high level of detail.
- The Corpse Bride - This was shot using digital cameras, so it's not really a fair comparison to Close Encounters. But the picture has very nice depth, dimension, detail and color.
- Twister - Also has good color and contrast and a very filmic look. It's maybe a tad on the darker side though (perhaps because of the setting/subject matter), so it can maybe handle a bit more contrast than some of the others.
- The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy - Also has a very nice color palette for a newer film. (Another one I've only seen on DVD.)
A few more DVD color suggestions here
. (Top 5 on that list are particularly good IMO.)