Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

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All Darc

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Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostWed Feb 08, 2017 11:20 am

Cover Girl (1944) was restored from technicolor original camera negative. Check the review and HD screencaps on DVD Beaver:

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film6/blu-ray_ ... lu-ray.htm

I saw some reviews about other technicolor films on Blu Ray, many with problems of alignment of technicolor strips. Warner Ultra Resoltution technology was the only one able to correct shrinkage of technicolor film strips, but now a comertial film restoration software also have this ability with high quality, and it was used to restore Cover Girl.

The image it's sharp, with exception for some few scenes with soft focus style close ups, that was intentional of original film photography director. The grain extructure it's good, remambers film aspect, with even the chroma (color) of grain, instead of almost vanished like other technicolor films on Blu Ray.

About the restoration: http://postperspective.com/sony-gives-r ... over-girl/
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostWed Feb 08, 2017 2:21 pm

This restoration of Cover Girl was already released in the US as a limited edition. I have it and it looks beautiful.
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostWed Feb 08, 2017 3:37 pm

Gone With The Wind was very beautifull too, but they removed too much grain, maybe to please modern audiences. At least they managed to preserve details, similar to what Lowry Digital used to do, so I suspect Lowry Digital gave some help to Warner for grain management.
I remamber a guy who worked in the restoration said that technicolor itselt (dye transfer print) was a kind of "grain hidden process", but other restorewrs would disagree, Maybe original early technicolor prints had some softness that helped to smooth grain, but not eliminate.

Now that there is comertial technology to combine film strigs, align it, I think they could use to combine film's copies that survived in diferente qualities, when a print or máster have a quality that other do not have, while the other have some unic quality in some aspect. For example, a film with two copies in 35mm, but one have problems about overexposure and the other about undersposure.
Other example, a original camera negative and a good original print or old máster, when the câmera negative have deep tick scratches in many places, or water marks. By align and matching contrat of both sources, the defects in the negative that are dificult or exapansive to solve could be replaced with image of the good print, sellectinhg just the área of the defect.

Lang's Destiny (1921) have problems of shadows, due high contrast of old dup 35mm sources. But other copie, similar in lenght, have better shadow details, despite inferior sharpness (definition). In theory it's possible to combine both sources (the scenes common in both) to recover some shadow details. The combination would not be for the entire dynamics range, but just for the dark range, preserving the sharpness of the main print.

bigshot wrote:This restoration of Cover Girl was already released in the US as a limited edition. I have it and it looks beautiful.
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostThu Feb 09, 2017 11:50 am

Which Gone With The Wind? It seems that every time they restore it, they end up with different colors.

The best three strip Technicolor stuff I've seen are the Warner Bros cartoon blu-rays and Meet Me In St Louis. Warner seems to do the best job.
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostThu Feb 09, 2017 2:34 pm

The last two editions, both restored in 4K by warner.

The klast one have similar color balance, but the image was in such contrast to remamber a bit a vintage look.


But first DVD was completely wrong in color, like someone just turn off any color cast of intented photography.

bigshot wrote:Which Gone With The Wind? It seems that every time they restore it, they end up with different colors.

The best three strip Technicolor stuff I've seen are the Warner Bros cartoon blu-rays and Meet Me In St Louis. Warner seems to do the best job.
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostFri Feb 10, 2017 10:55 pm

bigshot wrote:This restoration of Cover Girl was already released in the US as a limited edition. I have it and it looks beautiful.


The Twilight Time edition (which I own) was released in 2012 and received a rating of 2 out of 5 by Robert Harris over at the Home Theatre Forum, who was pretty sure it was not derived from the original negatives, which were reportedly in poor shape.

The restoration article linked in the original post mentions a restoration premiere in 2015, which would suggest the Masters of Cinema is a substantially different transfer.
Last edited by Robert W on Sat Feb 11, 2017 7:47 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostSat Feb 11, 2017 1:13 am

I have the previous release. It looks very good.
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostSat Feb 11, 2017 7:51 am

There is one capture on DVD Beaver review, that looked a bit like a vintage interpositive or maybe internegative, and one capture that remambers a print (Rita Holding the Flowers). Yes, I presume the original camera negative had a lot of damage and even in this last high quality careful digital restoration could not be 100% used.

But I have a idea to improve the possibilities of digital restoration on technicolor movie. I remamber I sent a short description of the idea to the digital film restoration software company, and they found quite interesting but had no intention, at the time, to refurbish the technology with the new principles I propose to technicolor separation negative/masters.

Technicolor separations offer interesting new possibilities of digital restoration, in theory, that are not possible to single strip color negatives.
These principles perhaps could even improve somehow the grain reduction techniques.
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostSat Feb 11, 2017 10:52 am

bigshot wrote:Which Gone With The Wind? It seems that every time they restore it, they end up with different colors.

The best three strip Technicolor stuff I've seen are the Warner Bros cartoon blu-rays and Meet Me In St Louis. Warner seems to do the best job.

Yes I agree!!!! the last big screen viewing I saw of GWTW was the TCM Fantom event about 3 years ago now. IMO the negative is way over processed-I am pretty sure that it was NOT the intent of the cinematographer and especially David O Selznick to see every blemish on his actress' faces under their makeup and Gable's 5 o'clock shadow and the yellowish hues to Viv Leigh's close-ups due to the yellow spot light supposedly used to make her blue eyes appear green. IMO all shimmer and balance I am sure that the original makers worked hard to achieve have been scrubbed off ----
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostSat Feb 11, 2017 1:23 pm

Robert. A Harris, film restorer who restored Lawrence of Arabia, also said Gone With The Wind restoration was so clear in image details, that the sets and figurine started to appear too much crisp, like stating to look somewhat fake as it was. In his opinion audience in the late 30's wasn't suposed to see so much details on a technicolor print. That's a polemic discussion, where some agree and others not.

About colors there is no perfect data of a very accurate original color balance. They took the original negatives to restore the image, took original prints, tried to make interpetations of the artistry of color photography... and estimates what the right colors should be scene by scene.

Like Bob Rummel said, in the restoration short documentary, a original technicolor dye rtransfer never fades, preserves color, but even so this don't necessarily means the color of a original print represents preciselly the original work of the photography diretor. The labs has a difficult work and some prints get good, other got so so, and other turn not good. The good prints usually went to the big Market, NY, San Francisco, LA, and the poor prints went to smaller cities.

I presume the latest GWTW edition have some few differences in color balance due new reasearch or new investigation of references, like a update.
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostSat Feb 11, 2017 1:37 pm

Film conservation involves three totally separate goals...

PRESERVATION - Halting deterioration so the materials don't degrade any further (cleaning, storage, duplication to more stable formats, etc.)

RESTORATION - Replacing lost material with something exactly like what used to be there (scratch and dirt reduction, correcting for film shrinkage and fading, etc.)

RECREATION - Enhancing the work with improvements that might not have been technologically possible in the past (stabilization, grain reduction, color correction, recorded soundtracks, etc.)

All of these aims are just as valid, but deciding on a proper balance between them is where the disagreement sets in. Simply running a deteriorated print through a film scanner might go against Preservation. Deciding what missing material originally looked like is a judgement call for Restoration. And deciding what technical enhancements are acceptable and what aren't can create disagreements between even the best film archivists.

It's all a judgement call and we all have to make up our own mind by using our own eyes and experience. No one can do that for us.
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostSat Feb 11, 2017 4:32 pm

I believe they made no really good record of the official color balance for GWTW.
And given the technology back then, I bet most prints have significative variances between each other.

Even for movies fromm 80's and 90's, if you look comparisons on DVD Beaver, most haven quite different color balance from one edition to another, some much more variable than GWTG's latest 2 edition.
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Re: Cover Girl 1944 Example of technicolor dig restoration

PostSun Feb 12, 2017 1:23 am

They keep double thinking and trying to "improve". (BTW: I think the last two GWTHW versions are identical.)

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