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The Fifth Element: Sony remaster vs Gaumont remaster Comparison - Page 5

post #121 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Filmmaker View Post

How can that not matter? You've nailed the key point here: two different Luc Besson films with the exact same "error" in both (namely, blown highlights). Does it not obviously stand to reason that this means LEON and the Gaumont version of THE FIFTH ELEMENT are exactly as Mr. Besson intends them to look? And how can a director's approval not matter? It should be the final confirmation of what is correct.

When it's an after the fact change to make a film look more "modern", I don't give a crap if the director approved it. It's a change for the worse.

This isn't remastering fixing an error like with The Godfather. This is more like Friedkin ruining The French Connection (though not nearly that bad, of course) by changing it to suit "his vision" twenty or thirty years later and not allowing people to see the movie the way it was originally filmed. I don't like the colors in The French Connection and I don't like the blown out contrast and colors in the Gaumont version of The Fifth Element. I'll stick with the original colors without the contrast blow out in the Sony release.
post #122 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deviation View Post

When it's an after the fact change to make a film look more "modern", I don't give a crap if the director approved it. It's a change for the worse.

This isn't remastering fixing an error like with The Godfather. This is more like Friedkin ruining The French Connection (though not nearly that bad, of course) by changing it to suit "his vision" twenty or thirty years later and not allowing people to see the movie the way it was originally filmed. I don't like the colors in The French Connection and I don't like the blown out contrast and colors in the Gaumont version of The Fifth Element. I'll stick with the original colors without the contrast blow out in the Sony release.

But with statements like "The contrast is obviously blown and thus the colors are obviously wrong", you posit this as a faulty transfer, not just one with a different aesthetic bent than you'd prefer. Gaumont's pressing isn't wrong in any way; it appears by all evidence to be as Luc Besson prefers and intends. You just don't like it. That's a world of difference from "wrong". I'm glad you have your option and I have mine.
post #123 of 232
Another problem is that the Sony Blu-Ray does not necessarily show the "original colors". The movie was shown in theaters ages ago, and I doubt anyone would be able today to recall exactly how the colors looked back then. I do remember it as a very colorful, over the top movie. But I have no idea if the colors in the movie theater were more like Sony's or more like Gaumont's. Furthermore, in theater we've seen copies of copies of the original master, with quite possibly not correctly calibrated theater projectors. So it's hard to say if the Gaumont colors are really a change from the "original" (= theatrical) colors or not. Could be that Luc Besson changed his mind, or could be that the Sony colors are actually too dull and Luc Besson *always* wanted the colors to look like the Gaumont Blu-Ray. I've no clue on this one. Which is why my judgement about which Blu-Ray is better is based solely on the grain behaviour and sharpening. And there the Gaumont Blu-Ray looks noticeably better to my eyes.

There is one scene, however, where the Sony Blu-Ray looks clearly better: It's where Milla and Bruce are hiding in the vertically hanging taxi. That scene is all "red in red", and it somehow looks noticeably better on the Sony Blu-Ray.
post #124 of 232
Before we all decide how the film was "supposed" to look, let's not forget that the Sony and Canal prints always looked different, even on DVD. Check HERE for proof that the European transfers have had a glowing yellow push dating back to, at least, 2003. If the Gaumont transfer is revisionism, it's certainly not something Besson decided on in the last few months!

I've long thought that Sony and Canal simply had different "looking" prints, not that they were intentionally screwing one of them up. I wouldn't doubt that Besson decided at some point - maybe when the film came out? - that he wanted a certain "look", and the new HD master replicates that faithfully at the cost of highlights. This isn't a French Connection or even a Dracula scenario - there's long been disparaging color timing for this film, and it so happens that the Besson approved transfer is the version American fans are less familiar with.

Looking over the Sony and Gaumont transfers I think they both have their strengths. Sony's transfer doesn't look blown out, but it also looks too dark and has sharpening artifacts as others have pointed out. I'm not totally blown away by either of them, but I don't think either is an eyesore either... Besson's clearly made his call, and the great thing about having multiple transfers available is we can beg to differ with him if we so choose.
post #125 of 232
Is the Sony re-release the newer release that was much improved over the very first release of this movie?

If so, then why is there a new Gaumont remaster?


The way I remember it, "The Fifth Element" was one (if not the first) Blu-ray title to be released and it got blasted for being such poor quality.

People in the know went out and replaced their copy for the newer (at the time) re-release. And I would think that the quality is good enough to still hold up to today's standards.

Am I wrong? Has HD transfers improved so much that what was a good Blu-ray transfer a few years ago, totally not good anymore?
post #126 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thebarnman View Post

Is the Sony re-release the newer release that was much improved over the very first release of this movie?

If so, then why is there a new Gaumont remaster?


The way I remember it, "The Fifth Element" was one (if not the first) Blu-ray title to be released and it got blasted for being such poor quality.

People in the know went out and replaced their copy for the newer (at the time) re-release. And I would think that the quality is good enough to still hold up to today's standards.

Am I wrong? Has HD transfers improved so much that what was a good Blu-ray transfer a few years ago, totally not good anymore?

I very much doubt that the Sony re-release was from a new master. Judging by the combing artefacts, it came from a 1080i source, and I have a hard time believing that a non-progressive master would have been created in 2007 (at least I think that's when the re-release came out). My guess is that it was either the same master with less digital manipulation and better compression, or they managed to dig up a better but still outdated master.

The second Sony release was unquestionably an improvement on the first. On the whole, it was certainly an above average-looking disc, but it didn't look brilliant in 2007 and it doesn't look brilliant in 2010.

The facts as I see it are these: the new Gaumont release IS from a new master, IS approved by Besson, and DOES look significantly more film-like and pleasing to the eye in motion. I don't like the contrast boosting, but for me the other strengths outweigh it. It's basically a case of "pick your poison", but for me personally, I won't be going back to the Sony release now I have the Gaumont version.
post #127 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiggles View Post

The facts as I see it are these: the new Gaumont release IS from a new master, IS approved by Besson, and DOES look significantly more film-like and pleasing to the eye in motion. I don't like the contrast boosting, but for me the other strengths outweigh it. It's basically a case of "pick your poison", but for me personally, I won't be going back to the Sony release now I have the Gaumont version.

Ditto.
post #128 of 232
I've gone thru this whole thread & not found a link to be able to purchase the Gaumont version from the US. I looked at amazon.co.uk and they show only the "US Import".

So how does a North American acquire this disc?
post #129 of 232
I believe someone mentioned the French release is Region B locked, so you'll probably want the Region A JP version: http://www.amazon.co.jp/dp/B002P3CNAA/
post #130 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiggles View Post

I very much doubt that the Sony re-release was from a new master. Judging by the combing artefacts, it came from a 1080i source, and I have a hard time believing that a non-progressive master would have been created in 2007 (at least I think that's when the re-release came out). My guess is that it was either the same master with less digital manipulation and better compression, or they managed to dig up a better but still outdated master.

Take a look at the opening credits. The text has been a jaggie mess on every DVD edition and the original Blu-ray. On the Sony remaster, the text is rock solid. Where are these other alleged combing artifacts that plague the remaster?
post #131 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Z View Post

Take a look at the opening credits. The text has been a jaggie mess on every DVD edition and the original Blu-ray. On the Sony remaster, the text is rock solid. Where are these other alleged combing artifacts that plague the remaster?

Here, for example. It's relatively subtle and not something I would expect most people to notice during normal viewing (though my brother, to his credit, did... and posted about it at the time), so let's dispense with the "artifacts that plague the remaster" (your words, not mine) hyperbole. I'm not referencing them in order to damn the Sony remaster as some sort of video atrocity but rather to add credence to my theory that Sony simply dusted off an old master rather than creating a new one specifically for their re-release.

I no longer have the original Sony release so I can't directly compare the opening credits, but I'll take your word that they are indeed a jaggy mess on the original. I'm not sure this is conclusive proof that a different master was used as opposed to simply the same master with differing levels of digital processing, but I'm not going to split hairs over it as it seems rather beside the point anyway when we now have a release (the Gaumont one) that we know IS from a brand new master.
post #132 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiggles View Post

I very much doubt that the Sony re-release was from a new master. Judging by the combing artefacts, it came from a 1080i source, and I have a hard time believing that a non-progressive master would have been created in 2007 (at least I think that's when the re-release came out). My guess is that it was either the same master with less digital manipulation and better compression, or they managed to dig up a better but still outdated master.

The second Sony release was unquestionably an improvement on the first. On the whole, it was certainly an above average-looking disc, but it didn't look brilliant in 2007 and it doesn't look brilliant in 2010.

The facts as I see it are these: the new Gaumont release IS from a new master, IS approved by Besson, and DOES look significantly more film-like and pleasing to the eye in motion. I don't like the contrast boosting, but for me the other strengths outweigh it. It's basically a case of "pick your poison", but for me personally, I won't be going back to the Sony release now I have the Gaumont version.

Was the Sony "remaster" also approved by Besson?
post #133 of 232
Besson was certainly never mentioned by Sony, so no, probably not.
post #134 of 232
There is one possibility for how those combing artefacts have gotten into a new 24p master, something I've personally seen when in "24p" masters myself. If you'll notice the combing artefacts in the screen grabs, they're all on the edges of highlights or black areas. I saw the same issue in a 24p master that had been run through a DVNR pass for dirt and scratch removal. Unfortunately, the input to the DVNR hardware, for whatever reason, had been 60i, and inverse 3:2 had been done after that stage: meaning that you'd occasionally get flecks of dirt (and other things like highlights that the stupid machine was mistaking for dirt) with only every second line removed.

So, yes it could be a 24p master. But that doesn't mean it was 24p all the way through the chain (putting aside technicalities like Progressive Segmented Frame).

In any case, the frame rate it was (or was not) done at isn't really that important given the other differences. Neither of these is perfect, but even with the lessened dynamic range, I personally prefer the new European version for the better resolution.
post #135 of 232
There are a few different shots that I took and posted here. Also compared with two other versions:

The Fifth Element Blu-ray Comparison
post #136 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by themike5000 View Post

There are a few different shots that I took and posted here. Also compared with two other versions:

The Fifth Element Blu-ray Comparison

Nice link. My take on this question is that the best version is the one that you prefer!

I can see that there are a couple of places (maybe the streetscape for example) where the darker Sony version is to be preferred, and the Gaumont is nicest if you like "clean & bright" vs. "filmlike" perhaps.

I'm gonna check the rental store to see if they have the Sony remaster, then depending on my response to it I can decide if I want to bother importing the Gaumont for big bucks.
post #137 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Laserfan View Post

I can see that there are a couple of places (maybe the streetscape for example) where the darker Sony version is to be preferred, and the Gaumont is nicest if you like "clean & bright" vs. "filmlike" perhaps.

Having seen both in motion, the Gaumont version is unquestionably the more filmlike of the two.
post #138 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by whiggles View Post

having seen both in motion, the gaumont version is unquestionably the more filmlike of the two.

+1
post #139 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiggles View Post

Having seen both in motion, the Gaumont version is unquestionably the more filmlike of the two.

YES, must agree as to film like, but as to the colors and contrast, no, I prefer the sony second edition much better. Just do not care for high contrast that makes me want to put on my sunglasses. Same issues pop up with his "approved version" of the Professional.

Further, could care less if that is how the director decided he now wanted it, or if that was the way it was when presented in the theater---it is no different than poor editing or having the wrong actor play a certain role, with the justification being the director is a great artist and that is the way he wanted it...

Indeed, for you grain lovers, imagine the director--and not some techie-- insisted on a max dose of DNR and EE, so not one little bit of the original grain was left and everyone was the receipent of a really smooth wax job....
would you be happy because the director intended it to be like that now on BD, instead of some Techie????

It would not matter to me who dunnit, I would just not like the result at all


l


(I doubt that the original film had so much contrast boost, given the sony version does not have it, as contrast is very difficult to "fix" if in the original, it is over blown.....)



BTW love the movie and now I have the first sony edition, the second sony edition, and now the Gaumont. Wished they had not boosted the contrast of the Gaumont, as it would be the clear winner in all areas....but alas....
post #140 of 232
I agree, the dynamic range is not so great. I can understand that it'd be a tough call for some people.

It really is a choice between resolution and dynamic range.
post #141 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiggles View Post

Having seen both in motion, the Gaumont version is unquestionably the more filmlike of the two.

Serious question - assuming you viewed the film in a dark room, was the contrast of the Gaumont version hard on the eyes?
post #142 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by HVisone View Post

Indeed, for you grain lovers, imagine the director--and not some techie-- insisted on a max dose of DNR and EE, so not one little bit of the original grain was left and everyone was the receipent of a really smooth wax job....
would you be happy because the director intended it to be like that now on BD, instead of some Techie????

It would not matter to me who dunnit, I would just not like the result at all

EXAMPLE: Skip ahead to around 5:40. Cameron's intention is/was to completely degrain Aliens.
http://www.comingsoon.net/news/movienews.php?id=68820
post #143 of 232
If someone can tell me how to take .png's, I can snap some shots of my German copy. VC-1, DTS-HR 6.1.
post #144 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by themike5000 View Post

EXAMPLE: Skip ahead to around 5:40. Cameron's intention is/was to completely degrain Aliens.
http://www.comingsoon.net/news/movienews.php?id=68820

Ahaha.. Love it.

"It's totally degrained, denoised - it's beautiful, it looks better than it did in theaters"
post #145 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidHir View Post

Serious question - assuming you viewed the film in a dark room, was the contrast of the Gaumont version hard on the eyes?

I wouldn't say it's hard on the eyes - certainly no more so than most modern action movies, where they like to pump the contrast to extremes.

The remaster of SUSPIRIA - now THAT's hard on the eyes.
post #146 of 232
Afterbreading this topic, I put in my SuperBit version dvd of the Element & upconverted (1080p) it produces a picture on my plasma that removes any desire for me to buy any bluray version...
Also the DTS soundtrack is marvelous!

I wonder how they would compare screenshot wise?
post #147 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dougofthenorth View Post

Afterbreading this topic, I put in my SuperBit version dvd of the Element & upconverted (1080p) it produces a picture on my plasma that removes any desire for me to buy any bluray version...
Also the DTS soundtrack is marvelous!

I wonder how they would compare screenshot wise?

Seriously? Both the Sony remaster and the Gaumont release obliterate the Superbit PQ-wise.
post #148 of 232
Whiggles

No - The Element as displayed on my system cannot be "obliterated" by another format being dicussed here. Perhaps there is a slight improvement.

BR movies on my system or any others I have seen, in some cases show marked improvement in PQ - however the average DVD that I buy is fairly close to any same BR title. I would say the same for watching a movie in a cinema vs at my home - I like my home PQ better.

To clarify - the SuperBit DVD is of such quality as displayed on my system, that I am not moved to run out & replace it with either of the 2 BR flavours of this movie, especially as they are being discussed & critiqued here.
post #149 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dougofthenorth View Post

Whiggles

No - The Element as displayed on my system cannot be "obliterated" by another format being dicussed here. Perhaps there is a slight improvement.

Have you seen either Blu-ray release? If not, then I fail to see how you are in any position to say that. I on the other hand HAVE seen the Superbit DVD, the Sony remastered BD and the Gaumont BD, and therefore am in a position to state that yes, boths BDs DO obliterate the Superbit.
post #150 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiggles View Post

Have you seen either Blu-ray release? If not, then I fail to see how you are in any position to say that. I on the other hand HAVE seen the Superbit DVD, the Sony remastered BD and the Gaumont BD, and therefore am in a position to state that yes, boths BDs DO obliterate the Superbit.

++

The Fifth Element was one of the best looking DVDs that I owned but the BD easily surpasses it - by a substantial margin. Well worth the upgrade.
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