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The Fifth Element: Sony remaster vs Gaumont remaster Comparison

post #1 of 232
Thread Starter 
The Sony version has the "look" of an oldish transfer; a slightly digital appearance, dull colors, some ringing (from sharpening?). Of course that infamous Sony insider claims that they did a new scan for the remastered release. Maybe Sony used an inferior print? Who knows.
Gaumont, the production company for a lot of Besson's films, created new transfers for the Blu-ray releases of his films (we got the new one for Leon). Like Leon the contrast is heavily boosted with a push towards the yellow tones.

The Gaumont screenshots here are from the Scandinavian release (Region B). The English audio track is DTS-MA 5.1 and the menus are in English. There is also a French release and a Japanese release utilizing this new transfer.

Sony US | Gaumont Scandinavia

























post #2 of 232
I have no idea about the yellowish tone and contrast of the Gaumont version, but the Sony version looks a bit more digital.
post #3 of 232
I don't know this film well enough to be definitive (I have seen it theatrically during original release and seen it countless times in DVD demos). The color balance of the Gaumont release does not, however, seem correct. Colors look much brighter but lack the richness of the Sony transfer.

Some shots of the Gaumont release (e.g.,the girl on the ledge, the three guys standing together) appear to be too smooth and grain-free.

I am skeptical about the Gaumont.
post #4 of 232
Looks like a fairly marginal improvement in resolution at the expense of slightly wacky colors, neither one has that "new movie" quality. Moot point for me though, I despiiiiise this movie
post #5 of 232
Shame about the contrast boosting. Apart from it, the Gaumont release looks noticeably better. I have a hard time believing the Sony re-release was from a new master, despite what the infamous "insider" claims. The Gaumont release, however, with its noticeable yellow tint and pushed contrasts, looks very similar to the various other recent retransfers of Besson films (e.g. LEON), so I have no trouble believing it was done at the same time/by the same people.
post #6 of 232
I think the Gaumont release looks like crap compared to the Sony release. Where is the detail in the Gaumont release? It looks like they took the old transfer and just jacked the brightness.
post #7 of 232
All Gaumont Besson movies look like this, makes you wonder if it was Besson's idea
post #8 of 232
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dvdmike007 View Post

All Gaumont Besson movies look like this now, makes you wonder if it was Besson's idea

Fixed
post #9 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by dvdmike007 View Post

All Gaumont Besson movies look like this, makes you wonder if it was Besson's idea

I seem to remember it being confirmed somewhere that Besson supervised (or at least approved) the new LEON master, which would certainly suggest that he is at least happy with that look, even if it wasn't his idea.
post #10 of 232
Sony looks far superior. Seems like the same master with some atrocious contrast boosting from Gaumont.
post #11 of 232
It's a shame Gaumont overshot the contrast and color, because lacking the EE of the Sony version is a nice improvement. Then again, some of the blown out areas in the Gaumont version may retain some detail in WTW region (although the curtains in shot #14 are probably done for even with WTW intact).
post #12 of 232
I'm on the Sony bandwagon here. The new master is too bright and loses a lot of shadows in the picture. Also, the Gaumont release looks degrained a bit. The Sony release looks far more faithful to the original film, "new master" or not.
post #13 of 232
Yea the contrast boosting on the presidents face on his side shot is quite noticeable, its blown out the details on his cheek & nose.

I agree with the previous poster, the Sony version does look more "digital" compared to the Gaumont release, but looks to be DNR scrubbed and has odd colours. I do however think the Sony master is a tad too dark, something in between the two would be nice.
post #14 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChuckZ View Post

Also, the Gaumont release looks degrained a bit.

Which capture? I've only looked at a few of them but they seem to look okay in that regard. Worth noting that sharpening will bring out the grain a lot.
post #15 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by eric.exe View Post

Fixed

Touché
post #16 of 232
It looks more to me like Sony's has some slight EE rather than Gaumont having DNR. It's pretty obvious that Sony's contrast is better, though.

And Gaumont shows more information vertically. Is this a new aspect ratio?
post #17 of 232
The Sony transfer just has a bit of that older scanned look to it.
post #18 of 232
Christ, Besson loves cranking that contrast dial to 11. I still wouldn't mind seeing this version in action though, as I loooooves this film.
post #19 of 232
I've ordered myself a copy from DVDoo.
post #20 of 232
I think I would have to see both in motion to judge which I like better. I think the Gaumont version looks newer with DI style grain. The Sony transfer shows it's age while the Gaumont one makes it look like a much newer film.. I don't like the blown out whites though.
post #21 of 232
Sod it, I've ordered the Dutch version from mediadis.
post #22 of 232
A lot of detail is lost from the Sony disc when its blown out, I am on the Sony side
post #23 of 232
I agree that the Sony transfer looks older, or at the very least looks to be from an inferior film element, the grain is not as fine.

How is the grain on the Gaumont disc, is it completely natural or is it smearing a bit? Cap 9 looks suspicious.

I am not sure which of these I prefer. I've already got the Sony disc though, and don't like the movie enough to buy it twice, so I guess it doesn't really matter to me.
post #24 of 232
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by paku View Post

How is the grain on the Gaumont disc, is it completely natural or is it smearing a bit? Cap 9 looks suspicious.

It looks nice in motion, nothing frozen or smeary. However, there are many scenes that have very, very, very light grain or are nearly void of it. Even in those scenes, I don't see any major DNR artifacts. So if they did degrain it, they used a very high quality, non-offensive filtering algorithm.
post #25 of 232
I think the EE is exaggerating the grain on the Sony encode, much as it does on everyone's favourite ****-up, Gladiator.
post #26 of 232
The Gaumont version definitely looks like a newer transfer but the yellow tint and blown out highlights kill it. The Sony rerelease will have to do until the inevitable ultimate edition is planned.
post #27 of 232
Oversharpened Sony = bad.

The only thing that bothers me about the Gaumont is in instances of clipping. Level boosting is essential when a movie looks drab otherwise, but they need to QA that for every scene.
post #28 of 232
IMO the Gaumont is slightly DNR'd

Looking at comparison No. 9:

The grain structure is not intact in the Gaumont and the pic is blurry and softened. Sony shows much more detail for example look at the hair of the guy. Same for comparison No. 11.

And I don't see any EE in the Sony pics which is not present in the Gaumont release. Can you point me to it please?
post #29 of 232
Sony looks the best to me. The Gaumont not only looks contrast boosted but It looks washed out. A lot of detail is lost. Looking at the closeup of pic of Bruce the sony version I can see the defined wrinkles and whiskers on his face and on the Gaumont they look to almost blend in maybe due to the dnr. Less grain on the Gaumont but I'm a grain junkie so I like the sony.
post #30 of 232
Also look at the 9th set of pics. there is a arm and shoulder on the right side of the pic. Towards the upper end of the are there is a band and the sony version it is detail and in the Gaumont it looks blurry.
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