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The Hobbit 3D reviews of presentations (NO SPOILERS)

post #1 of 54
Thread Starter 
Please post a review of the presentation of The Hobbit in 3D but please do not review the film with spoilers. Please include where you saw it and if it was regular 3D, IMAX 3D, HFR 3d 48fps, Dolby Atoms or whatever.
post #2 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by curtishd View Post

Please post a review of the presentation of The Hobbit in 3D but please do not review the film with spoilers. Please include where you saw it and if it was regular 3D, IMAX 3D, HFR 3d 48fps, Dolby Atoms or whatever.

I am seeing the midnight showing at the grand opening of Bellinham,WA new Barkley regal 16 IMAX and RPX. I am seeing the RPX reald 3d version. The following week I am traveling a few hours to see it on an 80 ft screen, dolby 3d, dolby atmos, and hfr. I will give both my impressions. One thing that I just found out that Im worried about is that the master wont be released in 4k. Ive Been looking everywhere for an answer to this.Not sure if this has been discussed here but Im wondering if anyone knows what resolution the hobbit master will be released to the theaters in-2k or 4k. I know it was filmed in 5k but I dont believe its possible to release a 4k master of the hfr 3d version. I saw this post from another thread-dont know if its true or not, if it is its a real bummer, still doesnt answer if it can or will be released in 2d 4k master: "An IMB (integrated media block) is also required for 4K 3D or HFR 2D (the hobbit is not being released in HFR 2D), a projector without an IMB can play 4k or 2K 3D but for presentations beyond that will need an IMB. Right now 4K HFR 3D is beyond the capacity of an IMB and the file size of a 3 hr feature in 4K HFR 3D would exceed the capacity of harddrives certified with the IMB system, so a solution is not in the immediate offing."
post #3 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by curtishd View Post

Please post a review of the presentation of The Hobbit in 3D but please do not review the film with spoilers. Please include where you saw it and if it was regular 3D, IMAX 3D, HFR 3d 48fps, Dolby Atoms or whatever.

finally found my answer. the only theatres that will play the theater in 4k reasolution are imax 3d and imax hfr 3d. there are only 58 theatres in the US that are playing it in IMAX HFR 3d, meaning also only 58 theatres playing the hobbit with a 4k master. Im pretty sure no thestres are playing IMax HFR 3d with a 4k master and dolby atmos, I dont think the atmos theatres use dolby atmos but I could be wrong on that part. so the only theater in Wa state that is playing it in 4k imax hfr 3d is in bellvue at the lincoln square cinemas. the only theater in WA state playing it in Dolby atmos which is in 2k on an 80ft screen in dolby 3d with hfr on 4k christie projectors is at the cinetopia in vancouver wa.
post #4 of 54
I'm not sure if my local theater is playing it in Atmos or not. Will there be a way to tell at the viewing? Some fancy logo in front of the film or some such? I am seeing it in HFR 3D on Sunday, already got tickets.
post #5 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeydrunk View Post

finally found my answer. the only theatres that will play the theater in 4k reasolution are imax 3d and imax hfr 3d. there are only 58 theatres in the US that are playing it in IMAX HFR 3d, meaning also only 58 theatres playing the hobbit with a 4k master. Im pretty sure no thestres are playing IMax HFR 3d with a 4k master and dolby atmos, I dont think the atmos theatres use dolby atmos but I could be wrong on that part. so the only theater in Wa state that is playing it in 4k imax hfr 3d is in bellvue at the lincoln square cinemas. the only theater in WA state playing it in Dolby atmos which is in 2k on an 80ft screen in dolby 3d with hfr on 4k christie projectors is at the cinetopia in vancouver wa.


edit: theres only 30 in the us and in 19 states...58 in the world
post #6 of 54
Saw it at midnight at AMC Mercado in Santa Clara, CA. IMAX 3D HFR.
Got a seat about half way between back and front, but had to sit on the very side.
Really enjoyed and fascinated by the 48fps presentation. Some of the beginning shots did start to give me motion sickness, but this quickly subsided.
I would blame the camera movements rather than the high frame rate, the swooping zooming camera moves were more realistic in 48fps, it's something movie makers will have to be careful with.
I didn't see the high frame rate as a distraction, rather as a lubricant. No judder in pans and tracking shots.
3D wasn't distracting either, neither was it too flat. It was native 3d with every hair in depth. Some of the shots may have been converted, I'm not sure.
I did notice some elements with negative parallax (popout), which I mean in a good way.
By the way, the Hobbit showing was preceded by an extended 3D excerpt from Star Trek Into Darkness, which had lots of action and ok 3D but noticeably converted.
All In My Humble Opinion.
post #7 of 54
I'm pretty sure the Sony 4k rooms cannot do true 4k HFR 3D, by the way. They can accept the data, but cannot relay the info to your eye. The polarized glasses cut the res down or you can keep it in 2D. You can't do all three, even though technically they are 4k. As far as I can tell, unless someone has contrary technical information, Sony is using marketing mumbo jumbo to distort the facts on what their gear is capable of. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm fairly sure the physics are not on their side without going to either dual 4k HFR, 8k projectors, or 96hz and shutter glasses. IMAX 15/70 with synced shutter glasses is fully capable of doing all three, as would Maxivision... which is much cheaper than IMAX 15/70 equipment (let alone the prints or digital installs), by the way. It's like under 20 grand for the projector head, in comparison to the hundreds of thousands of bucks chains and indies have dumped into limited-capability already-outdated inferior digital projectors. I do not expect more IMAX 15/70 installs to occur, and the company’s increase in the number of Imax Digital installs is disturbing considering all it has going for it is a better sound system and maybe a more professional projectionist (though, that’s variable). MV is the one format that would rule them all. Hah! Those heads even make conventional 35mm prints look better, and is safer and cleaner, too. Less dust, scratches, frame shake, etc. And frame singling/doubling/tripling strobbing can be eliminated from mechanical shutter rotation, as the liquid crystal shutter can remain open as long as possible prior to going opaque and the digital registration and compressed air moving the print to the next frame briefly. And that's just the projection end. MV can capture the equivalent of >10k 48fps 3D if film is used, with no projection issues with relatively cheap MV heads on conventional ubiquitous 35mm projectors (many getting sadly junked, warehoused, or given over to film schools now)... and of course the vastly superior dynamic range film gives. Even as digital capture improves, film projection does not lock the chains and indies to one expensive install with limited upgrade potential. And MV gives them an edge over 3D bluray and 120hz 1080p HFR computer 3D.
Edited by Reticuli - 12/14/12 at 3:27pm
post #8 of 54
I'm convinced the first 15 minutes or so had something funny going on. Like they filmed at 30fps and sped it up to 48fps. After that it looked great. Some bad CG (e.g. chase scene) but that was mostly great too. Honestly at times I wished they would have done 60fps because it could have been even smoother, but 48 was probably chosen for easier projector upgrade.
post #9 of 54
I'm thinking they are not actually printing any of the dual stereo 15/70 for Hobbit in 48fps. There are IMAX HD venues capable of showing it, but comparing the master list of IMAX HFR 3D list with lists of known 15/70 installs, it appears the HFR is all digital installs, so it will be 2k digital like all the other digital HFR 3D venues. I suspect there are no 15/70 HFR 3D prints in existance, now.
post #10 of 54
I saw it this morning. RealD HFR version.

Just like acting changed when sound was implemented, and cinematography changed for 3D, a whole slew of things need to improve under the microscope of HFR.

HFR is so natural looking, but it exposes how artificial everything else about movies is.
post #11 of 54
I felt the set design and makeup was fine. Only a bit of the CG was bad, and that would probably look bad at any frame rate. There may have been a few shots that were too ambitious for what still is a frame rate that is not fully smooth. But I'm sure cinematographers will adjust.
post #12 of 54
Saw the 48fps 3D version yesterday at the Alamo Drafthouse. I did get a little motion sick at the beginning of the movie where the high frame rate seems to be more pronounced, but was good after that. Some of those camera panning scenes made me feel like I was being spun around in circles with out moving.
Edited by DenisG - 12/19/12 at 10:30am
post #13 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by DenisG View Post

Saw the 48fps 3D version yesterday at the Alamo Drafthouse. I did get a little motion sick at the beginning of the movie where the high frame rate seems to be more pronounced, but was good after that.
I felt motion sickness for the first half hour too, then it simply went away.
post #14 of 54
i saw it yesterday in aliso viejo at the stadium imax, 3d hfr. you can tell right away the difference in frame rate, but i quickly adjusted with no issues and thoroughly enjoyed the movie.
post #15 of 54
I didn't get any motion sickness at all but was surprised how much smoother and more detailed the image was compared to 24 frame. I can see why "some" don't like it, but definitely the way forward in my opinion. 24 frame is old hat and has problems that 48 frame solves.
post #16 of 54
I dont think 48fps added anything at all. It didnt make 3D look better, I wouldnt put the Hobbit in my top 10 best 3D effects. it didnt make the action look better imo. It did make everything looks like props and it makes all CG look terrible.
I honestly dont see how it looks better than motion interpolation on tvs(when its working) which I think ups the frame rate to 60/120fps.
post #17 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssjLancer View Post

I dont think 48fps added anything at all. It didnt make 3D look better, I wouldnt put the Hobbit in my top 10 best 3D effects. it didnt make the action look better imo. It did make everything looks like props and it makes all CG look terrible.
I honestly dont see how it looks better than motion interpolation on tvs(when its working) which I think ups the frame rate to 60/120fps.
While I don't think the Hobbit used HFR very well either, it did have its moments. Fill up 2 hours with those moments, and you have an effective HFR movie. It's totally possible.

P.S. Motion interpolation can't remove motion blur. And it sometimes looks like the image is playing at both 24fps and 60fps simultaneously, depending on how well the system is able to track movement. This is an annoying artifact to some including myself.
post #18 of 54
I never thought of that cakefoo. That's probably why I can't watch motion interpolation for more than a minute without being annoyed.
post #19 of 54
Saw "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" today in HFR 3D at the Metreon in San Francisco. Wow, I really enjoyed returning to the world of Middle Earth. I was realy impressed with the clarity of the High Frame Rate (HFR) projection and was blown away with the, also new, Dolby Atmos sound system. It was like wearing really great headphones. I felt that the HFR solved all the eyestrain problems sometimes caused by 3-D. A friend I was with who doesn't like 3-D because they said it bothers their eyes had no complaints after viewing this film. So, bottom line I suggest everyone see this film and to enjoy it best, see it in 3D HFR projection with Dolby Atmos sound. I think we may be seeing the future of cinema.
post #20 of 54
Saw this on Sun morning in Manchester CT, RealD HFR 3D. Great price $8.50 a ticket (+ $1 for online ) so for 2 tickets @ $19.00 and $15 for one Popcorn and drink with a total of $34.00. The HFR was great and made everything very smooth, but in all other aspects it fell short. The 3D was only moderate,picture was bright but soft, audio very poor (the closest Atmos is in NYC three hours away) and evey production flaw was very clear. The seats were so uncomfortable and cramped that almost 3hrs was to much to take. I will wait for 5years and buy the 3 films on BR and watch them in my home theater (maybe in 4k by then) with better picture, audio and 3D on my HD33
post #21 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakefoo View Post

And it sometimes looks like the image is playing at both 24fps and 60fps simultaneously, depending on how well the system is able to track movement.
That's a huge downside that I'm surprised more people don't notice. I see it instantly in the in-store displays at Best Buy, where fact action scenes basically revert to 24p because the system can't track fast movement across hundreds of pixels from frame to frame. That's a big advantage for The Hobbit, in that it's shot that way from the beginning.. the HFR is consistent throughout and never drops even for a moment.

It's basically the same argument about 3D.. native 3D is better than converted 3D, because there's no guesswork involved, it's all right there in the negative (metaphorically speaking, since 3D is shot digitally, but you catch my meaning). HFR is the same way, it works when it's native.
post #22 of 54
Thread Starter 
I saw it yesterday in Fremont, CA in 3D HFR Dolby Atmos in Cinemarks XD theater and I have to say it could be the best theatrical presentation I have ever seen.

Video:
The image was bright and flawless and HFR was unusual but in a good way. Crisp clear and bright. With the HFR I did not see smearing, judder and the picture was so realistic. I know with 3D its supposed to be like looking out a window but for most movies it's not and there is the feeling that something is just not quite right. Well with the HFR it looks realistic with smooth motion, backgrounds having focus and clarity. Also, no eye strain, it felt natural like looking at a play or out a window.
I feel like at some point (and we might be close) the resolution of film be it digital or actual film might max out because of seating and screen size verses what the eyes can actually resolve and that's were HFR comes in. Now I have no idea what it cost to film at 48fps or more verses 24fps be it actual film or digital but I believe it is the future.

Audio:
Dolby Atmos was extremely clear, discrete and used just right. I found the audio was so clear I could hear every part of the audio track without having to struggle to either make out the dialog between all the action noises and talking. With Atoms I could look up and see the speakers in the ceiling and I have worried they would be overused just because they were there but they were used appropriately with very intended discrete use.

I thoroughly enjoyed the movie and the presentation.
post #23 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by rekbones View Post

Saw this on Sun morning in Manchester CT, RealD HFR 3D. Great price $8.50 a ticket (+ $1 for online ) so for 2 tickets @ $19.00 and $15 for one Popcorn and drink with a total of $34.00.
Wow, I didn't realize how much regular theaters charge for soda and popcorn. I paid about that for two good pints of beer and a nice size plate of queso and chips.
post #24 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by DenisG View Post

Wow, I didn't realize how much regular theaters charge for soda and popcorn. I paid about that for two good pints of beer and a nice size plate of queso and chips.

That was for the large of each with unlimited refills but who is going to go get a refill and miss 10min of the movie. I had to checkout the HFR but I won't be going to a theater again for a long time.
post #25 of 54
Saw an Ultra AVX HFR presentation at the Scotiabank Theater in West Edmonton Mall, Alberta. I thought it looked fantastic. I was fairly skeptical as I generally don't like 120hz frame interpolation on HDTV's, and while the effect was similar, it was without the artifacts. The image was crisp and highly detailed, and the 3D was probably the best I've seen. Very easy to watch. The problems I usually have with 24fps 3D (ghosting, blurry motion), were almost nonexistent here. I actually think they should have gone for an even higher frame rate, 72 or 96hz.. I mean if you're going to do this, you might as well go all out and completely eliminate motion artifacts, and I did still see some judder on occasion on extremely fast movements. I also saw the film in 2D prior to this, and I truly don't agree with those who say the sets and the make-up look more fake in HFR. They looked the same to me. If anything, the CGI characters looked more believable in 3D HFR than they did in the 2D version, less videogame-like. Anyway, that's my two cents. I was truly skeptical, but I think for 3D presentations, high frame rate is the way to go for sure.
post #26 of 54


The lighting in Rivendell was awful. I suppose it gets a pass in 24p because, well, it's Rivendell, but in HFR it looks really unnatural. HFR will be a real challenge for cinematographers and set designers.
post #27 of 54
I just saw The Hobbit at the only Denver HFR presentation, an AMC LieMAX. The picture completely blew away the preview of next summer's 3D Star Trek movie which was shown right before the feature. The biggest problem now is the 2K resolution of the dual Christie projectors. When those get upgraded to 4K and HFR, we'll have something. It's still not as good as Showscan (60fps on 65mm film) but a giant step in the right direction.
post #28 of 54
I saw it in 48fps today. It was my second time seeing the movie; the first was in 24fps 3D.

Fantastic! I have only good things to say about HFR. It's very easy to follow the action and every sword swipe in action scenes. In dialog scenes, it aids realism. HRF and 3D are excellent together, they both provide realism and clarity in their own way. Before the movie I explained about 24 vs 48 fps to the 3 other people who I saw the movie with. At the end, they said they didn't really notice anything particular about the frame rate (which they didn't have a good grasp of in the first place). No complaints that it didn't look right or lacked some cinematic quality. Rather, they just felt it was an exceptionally clear and beautiful image. I think that bodes well for how HFR will be perceived among the movie-going laypeople.

I also don't think HFR impacts the sets or blend of live actors and CG in any way. It shouldn't, I think, as HFR only applies to motion. But I was prepared to find it as I had heard that was a thing, but didn't see one bit of it. The movie has it's rough spots, but they were no rougher in 48fps.
post #29 of 54
Just have to disagree with you on pretty much all points, airon.
post #30 of 54
I saw it in Real3D HFR and in the first 30 seconds had the stomach drop realization I had made a big mistake...

The opening scene threw me back to the first time I saw trumotion... looked unaturally fast and unpleasantly sharp and absolutely hated it.

With Trumotion interpolation at least things look normal on low/no motion scenes... with HFR the unatural sharpness prevails throughout which I find really odd. An oddly prominent level of sway in the camera immediately gave taste of what I was in for.

Motion sickness kicked in somewhat for me reminicent of the first few times I played Doom on a hardware accelerated system. By the end of the movie it had subsided and I am sure will be a thing of the past for me after a few more hours exposure to HFR.

By 30 minutes in I had become adjusted to the high frame rate and it ranged from unobtrusive at the best of times to not painfully weird looking. Especially when they started locking the camera down... I found the most distracting issue being a floating camera where HFR made even the slightest mostion very noticeable and distracting.

I look at HFR/120hz etc technologies like the other progressions we have made... it's pretty much the way of the future but it needs some serious polishing before it's really good for us.

2D cinematography has really reached some great heights... lighting and makeup are astonishing in a lot of films, greenscreens are ubitquitous and very well done when only a few years ago they were painfully obvious when used. CGI is even at the point where the resolution and lighting is fairly believeable.

Just looking back at movies as little as 10 years old it's amazing how far we have come... with odd harsh lighting and shiny, pasty makeup.

Watching the Hobbit in HFR reminds me of the first time I watched HD TV... I was wathing a 1080i feed of the Tonight Show on my 36 inch CRT.. it was amazing... and at the same time horrifying...

You saw how cheap Jay's suit looked, the material texture and stitching... the makeup was caked on and obvious and I remember noticing how horrible his hands looked! All the blemishes everywhere jumped out of the screen all at once.

These issues have all largely been addressed and now HDTV tends to look about as good as old SDTV did in it's hayday in respect to these issues.

I see higher frame rates as the future one way or another, but there is some serious work to be done so it can be used properly to improve the experience. In the Hobbit I really didn't feel it did...

Even in the action scenes the increased clarity struck me as really odd... like when you see a crazy water scene and it is clearly a miniature wave being blown up to look like a tidal wave (think the aquaduct scene in Die Hard 3). Something about the level of detail in the fast action scenes made it look like miniature models fighting just zoomed in really close.

Also the increased clarity (again even outside high motion scenes) made a lot of the stage props appear very fake... the rocks during the mountain edge scene looked totally wrong amongst many other issues.

I think my biggest problem with high frame rate stuff is the lack of motion blur... it just feels so wrong. Somehow in my head I feel like it would be great if they could keep the exposure time of 24fps but run 48fps of film... somehow have 2 24fps cameras doing the same shot (for each 2D field) with staggered shutters and then interleave the results... I don't know but that's what went through my head anyway.

That and maybe mix in high frame rate stuff with standard low framerate depending on the scene so it helps where it's valuable but isn't distracting where it's not? Then again I remember in Batman being jarred when they switched formats between scenes so maybe that wouldn't work...

None of this was helped by the fact I felt the movie was fairly week for the series anyway...

Anyhow, my review overall was that I did not enjoy the HFR and would have probably enjoyed the whole thing at 24fps judder and all.

I hope like HD, greenscreen and CGI, high framerate is a tool that can be mastered to make our movies more enjoyable but as of yet I think it has failed to do so...
Edited by Devedander - 12/27/12 at 10:52pm
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