Get Back visual grain/noise removal*

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by ognirats, Oct 19, 2021.

  1. Dinosaur

    Dinosaur Well-Known Member

    Location:
    London
    Like many others, I've been alarmed at the severity of the cleanup job done in the Peter Jackson restoration of this material. The trailer and clips that have been shared so far seem to have lost a lot of the authenticity that the original footage would have had with its film grain intact.

    It reminds me of similar issues I've come against in audio de-noising in my work making radio programmes at the BBC. A lot of the recordings we've had to work with since the pandemic are interviews recorded through dodgy Skype/Zoom lines, or iPhone recordings done by guests at home.

    There's a lot of material with either acoustic background noise (aircon normally) or various flavours of line hiss. It can be tempting to use the iZotope de-noising plugins over-zealously. Some hiss can be completely removed, but in the process you also end up losing much of the high frequency information in the actual voice as well which makes it less intelligible. It's better to keep a modest amount of hiss and retain a little more of the dynamics and HF elements of the recording. The analog for this would be keeping more of the original film grain as it carries some of the sharpness details as well.

    Some sound engineers go to extremes, sometimes even losing the beginnings and endings of words with soft consonant sounds like F's and S's as the noise reduction algorithm eats into them. This is also what you see when looking up close at the Beatles footage where fine detail and skin texture have been swallowed up by the DNR processes.

    I would be fascinated to see an interview with Peter Jackson where he at least gets a chance to explain what they did and the reasons for the decision. It's easy for us all here to speculate, but there may be other factors (such as pressure from the film's distributor Disney+ and the higher-ups there) than just his personal taste ...
     
  2. BeatleJWOL

    BeatleJWOL Senior Member

    Jackson has also taken heat from the Blu-ray/UHD community recently for oversmoothing on the recent 4K releases of the Lord Of The Rings trilogy too, so I wouldn't be so quick to discount personal taste. That after adding the baffling green tint to the Blu-ray of Fellowship Of The Ring have raised questions about his approach to remastering.
     
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  3. lukpac

    lukpac Senior Member

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    "...we restored it through our World War 1 pipeline. Even though it was 1960s film, it was shot on 16mm, it was pretty grainy and it was, you know and it's been sitting around for 50 years. So we put it through this pipeline and it's come out, my god, it's come out...looks incredible. It looks unbelievable. You'd think it was shot now. It looks like contemporary Beatles film."
     
  4. Dinosaur

    Dinosaur Well-Known Member

    Location:
    London
    Very good points! I guess we're also in this inbetween phase with technology in that it can do so much, but some of the processes haven't had time to mature enough to the point where they can do things like de-noising and not drastically alter the character and feel of the material as a side effect. It brings to mind that Jeff Goldblum quote from Jurassic Park: 'Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether they could, they didn't stop to think if they should.'
     
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  5. BeatleJWOL

    BeatleJWOL Senior Member

    I mean, you can, you just have to not set it to 11 :p
     
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  6. ognirats

    ognirats information superhighway user Thread Starter

    Location:
    Serbia
    Peter forgot its 2021 and we don't use Digital8/DV camcorders anymore
     
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  7. Strat-Mangler

    Strat-Mangler Personal Survival Daily Record-Breaker

    Location:
    Toronto
    For very good reason. A travesty. Just like Get Back will be too.
     
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  8. BeatleJWOL

    BeatleJWOL Senior Member

    Could be worse, imagine this iteration of Get Back in 4K :)
     
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  9. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Location:
    Hollywood, USA
    Guaranteed, 100%, this was all mastered in 4K. I'll find out later on tonight if Disney is airing it in 4K Dolby Vision.

    There is a trend to go for maximum color contrast, and that's where the whole orange/teal thing came from: both colors have the opposite hue to each other, so that's about as intense and eye-catching a look as you can get. I'm not a fan of that look and will usually push back at the director to try to limit that kind of look to only certain scenes (if I can). But some really want a bold, "cranked to 11," intense look, and it's hard to coax them back to anything resembling normal. I get it if it's a slasher film or a music video or some other in-your-face project, but not a fantasy film about ancient elves and hobbits, and certainly not a a 50-year-old music concert documentary.

    BTW, below is a 4-hour interview with Peter Jackson about the restoration on the Get Back documentary sound and picture:

     
  10. supermd

    supermd Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    For what it’s worth, the two trailers they’ve put up on Disney+ were in Dolby Vision.
     
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  11. CapitalQ

    CapitalQ Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2021 at 11:38 PM
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  12. Smash

    Smash Forum Resident

    Location:
    United States
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  13. Contact Lost

    Contact Lost Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ireland
    Younger generation has a better taste than Jackson.
     
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  14. Retro Music Man

    Retro Music Man Forum Resident

    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Fortunately, those involved in remastering old albums seem to have learnt their lesson.

    The low point for NR overuse in mastering was the 1990s, when NoNoise and CEDAR were both relatively new. The 1996 remaster of "Aqualung" by Jethro Tull comes to mind as a particularly bad example.

    Since then, mastering engineers have realised that listeners don't care about a bit of tape hiss. I hope that, someday, film restoration teams will acknowledge that viewers feel the same way about film grain :D
     
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  15. Gnome de Plume

    Gnome de Plume Working on mysteries without any clues.

    Location:
    Yountville, CA
    Thank you for posting that. Here's the audio podcast version:

    Google Podcasts
    or
    Apple Podcasts
     
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  16. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Location:
    Hollywood, USA
    Yeah, and there was an industry agreement that the only Dolby Vision on streaming is 4K. Technically they "could" do HD Dolby Vision, but it's generally frowned upon. I think there isn't 4K of information in 16mm negative (especially from 1969-1970), but I'm positive all the recent interviews done in the last few years were done in 4K. And there could well be 35mm archival footage that has 4K of resolution. I've seen clips from the Anthology 1994-1995 show redone in 4K (for the George Harrison documentary), and it all held up very well.
     
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  17. BeatleJWOL

    BeatleJWOL Senior Member

    I should point out that although this is a fantastic podcast that everyone must listen to if they're drooling over Get Back, there's no discussion of the actual film restoration and post-processing. Just in case anybody was looking for answers; you'll get plenty, but not about this.
     
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  18. Prince John

    Prince John Active Member

    Location:
    USA
    I take it your friend of a friend never watched a Pixar film before.

    It’ll be as “screwed up” as you want it to be. Stop being pessimistic and negative and just enjoy it for what it is.
     
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  19. Strat-Mangler

    Strat-Mangler Personal Survival Daily Record-Breaker

    Location:
    Toronto
    A Madame Toussaut Production? I'll be as pessimistic about this missed opportunity as it deserves.
     
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  20. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Location:
    Hollywood, USA
    OK, I'm 17 minutes into the 4K Dolby Vision of Part 1... and I see grain in it. It's not grain-free. My take is that they took about 60-70% of the grain out, but they deliberately left some in. It's not that soft, it's not that smooth, and I -- at least this far into the film -- I think it looks fine. No motion artifacts, no obvious problems, I think the color choices are fine. I don't have a problem with it.

    Could they have left more grain in? Sure. I suspect this was a back-and-forth discussion, and this was the ultimate decision of the Park Road Post technicians and Peter Jackson. It's not the gigantic mess I had feared. For half-century old 16mm negative, the miracle is that it doesn't look awful.

    I was astonished by how much Peter Jackson talked. Good god, this guy talks a lot! It's a shame they didn't ask him about framing choices, color choices, speed-altering problems, and grain reduction. They did talk quite a bit about the spectral extraction to pull dialogue out of messy acoustical problems, but Jackson is apparently unaware that this has been going on around the world for at least 10 years -- it's not a new thing the New Zealand police invented.
     
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  21. Prince John

    Prince John Active Member

    Location:
    USA
    A 7 hour documentary on the making of the last released album by arguably the most famous band in the world has been made and you are being so pessimistic and negative over trivial BS such as this that you call it a missed opportunity? What a bunch of crap and an embarrassment to Beatles fans.
     
  22. Strat-Mangler

    Strat-Mangler Personal Survival Daily Record-Breaker

    Location:
    Toronto
    When you're given the keys to the archives and, according to PJ, given carte blanche to do whatever you want, but a moving wax museum is the result, yes, I'll complain 'til the day is long about it... and rightfully so. The reason this thread is 14-pages long should be an indication that it isn't something new, strange, or out of left field. It isn't trivial to me and many many people but nice of you to decide for all of us that it is.

    This is a site for discussion, junior. You've been here 2 months; considering your posting history shows little else than antagonizing others for holding different opinions, perhaps echo chambers like Facebook are better suited for your special brand of intolerance.
     
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  23. ognirats

    ognirats information superhighway user Thread Starter

    Location:
    Serbia
    A good film is good film, no matter if it's on 4kbluray or NTSC dvd, no matter if it has amazing clarity, or compressed noise paired with chroma dots. We are complaining about video quality, not the film. If this film turns out to be good, I will rate it 10/10 on IMDb. You don't judge book by its printing quality..
     
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  24. Prince John

    Prince John Active Member

    Location:
    USA
    Yes, this is a site for discussion but like any such platform, including in person, I’ll call out ignorance when I see it. If you or anyone in this thread choose to be the old man who shouts at the cloud and be pessimistic and hate it just to have a reason to, go ahead. It’s all of you who are losing out.
     
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  25. Oatsdad

    Oatsdad Oat, Biscuits and Abbie: Best Dogs Ever

    Location:
    Alexandria VA
    Exactly. Will I feel disappointed if "Get Back" looks as un-film-like as we expect?

    Sure.

    Will this disappointment override my interest in the project itself?

    No.

    Honestly, I care more about audio quality since this is a project about a band.

    But I'd still prefer a version that looks like film, not like digital video! :shrug:
     

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