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Hi, just saw this movie today. Unfortunately, projection was way soft, and I know it was the projection (and not the film itself), for the titles were quite soft, as well.

 

From what I could tell, the film was shot Super35 with a 2:35:1 extraction. I am curious as to what lenses and filmstock were used for this film. I saw no objectional grain, but of course, projector lens was not in focus, so I can't really fairly judge it.

 

Question: Is it possible that projection focus could change at a reel change? At one point in the film, at the start of a new reel, the movie became extremely soft. (And either it was fixed, or I just got used to it)

 

As for the film itself... it had its moments. :P

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Question: Is it possible that projection focus could change at a reel change? At one point in the film, at the start of a new reel, the movie became extremely soft. (And either it was fixed, or I just got used to it)

It can, if your theatre is using two projectors and needs to switch from one projector to the other during a reel change.

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I saw it yesterday, too. The image was pretty fined grained, indeed, so my guess is that Pratt used slow film stocks for the day exterior scenes (5245, maybe) and 5218 for night & interior scenes, though I know Pratt favors shooting everything on one film stock. Anyway, there's no doubt this film could have looked much better in anamorphic.

 

What was really strange for me is that some of the shots with CGI looked much sharper than the rest of the film. Maybe a combination of shooting the background plates in a large format like VistaVision and the DI caused the effect.

 

I liked most of the film and its cinematography, although some of the night interior scenes were too much flatly-lit for my taste. Or it was just Pratt trying to recreate the old-fashioned look of the 50's peplums?

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>>>Anyway, there's no doubt this film could have looked much better in

>>>anamorphic.

 

I agree; With a film such as this, with all of the locations they shot at, and the vast sets, I feel that anamorphic would've been more than just icing on the cake.

 

 

>>>What was really strange for me is that some of the shots with CGI looked

>>>much sharper than the rest of the film. Maybe a combination of shooting the

>>>background plates in a large format like VistaVision and the DI caused the

>>>effect.

 

I noticed this too (before the focus went out of whack), but didn't think much of it at the time. But now that you mention it, from what I can remember, I certainly understand what you're talking about.

 

 

>>>I liked most of the film and its cinematography, although some of the night

>>>interior scenes were too much flatly-lit for my taste.

 

I thought the night scenes were lit appropriately. With no other light sources besides the moon and some torches, I think the lighting was set up well. Of course, that "soft" moonlight could have easily been replaced with a hard source, but I think it looked good the way it was.

 

Also interesting was the use of zoom. I haven't really seen those zooms since much earlier, 70's films. I think there were only 2 or 3 in the film, but I felt them to be a bit out of place.

 

Maybe it's just a personal taste thing.

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Hello there!

I saw it yesterday, and was good, not realy good camera move.

to much zooming or a lot off zooming kind of Chinese old fashion. that didn't macht this story. and is not my kind of zoombasticlisiusss.(don't like zoom)/ (exept Kill Bill. kind)

Yes, I Think so too, about the anamorphics...

Soft, yes some of the shots.

I like the moon light shots, just before the sunrise attack.

Well.

Its a good action pack movie.

Ciao.

 

www.eduardofierro.com

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Hello There!

 

well

"I have had enough of "Lord of the Rings battle sequences".

Tell me about it.

From now on, every freeking battle is going to have a look donw for the gods view.

I am to you know.

Now how many ships where there?

Thats to much for that era.

I GUESS.

Well.

Ciao

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<Now how many ships where there?

<Thats to much for that era.

 

Well Helen was the face that launched a thousand ships. Plus its a made up story anyway.

 

I saw it at Manns Chinese Theater in Hollywood digitally projected. Actually this was the best digital projection I've ever seen, far better than Star Wars. I don't recall seeing any digital artifacts at all. On wide shots I could see the grid though especially in clear blue sky. And I was happy to actually see some dancing grain on flat contrasty areas. The blacks weren't that bad most of the time, I saw some grey if black was in large portions of the screen.

 

I agree that anamorphic would have been the icing on the cake. I may go see a film print just to compare.

 

The zooms didn't bother me so much they were spare and used to accent the moment, I thought that was ok. Plus the focus snapped into place, if they'd zoomed into an out of focus shot that would've blown the whole effect.

 

As far as the Lord of The Ring battle shots. I sort of thought the same thing. But if the camera had only stayed level with the soldiers and the battle you wouldn't have gotten the perspective of how large the army's were. Plus the audience gets to a place of expectation and if you pull back and give less then it feels less. Why not show the god perspective of the armies.

 

Actually the moon shot was my favorite sequence in the movie as far as lighting. I'm tired of blue moon light and his was silvery, with a slight hint of pale blue. I'm curious as to if that was achieved through filters, digital color correction, or print timing.

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I saw it at the Lincoln Center IMAX theater where it was projected with DLP digital. It was really wierd. The lack of dust and the static rating screen was so still that it looked like a slide. And the ability to see individual pixels made me think I was in front of a gigantic computer monitor. I just wondered if movies were all going to be like this in the future.

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AFAIK, Mann's Chinese is the first theatre to have the new 2K DLP-Cinema projector. Most others still use the 1280 x 1024 pixel chips. It appears that 2K will be the minimum requirement, with 4K preferred for the future. So the existing hundred or so North American installations will eventually need new projectors. I've heard the projector cost alone is still over $100,000 US.

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Oh so I guess this is the first time I'm seeing 2K digital projection. Not bad, not that bad at all.

 

Theater's that bought 1K projectors wasted their money, those 1K's have to go.

 

In the future when I go see a digitally projected movie again I'll check if its 1K or 2K projection, their's no need to see 1K ever again.

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I saw it yesterday, too. The image was pretty fined grained, indeed, so my guess is that Pratt used slow film stocks for the day exterior scenes (5245, maybe) and 5218 for night & interior scenes, though I know Pratt favors shooting everything on one film stock. Anyway, there's no doubt this film could have looked much better in anamorphic.

I too thought it was a very nice Super35 blowup.

 

One thing needs to be said about Wolfgang Petersen though: Ridley Scott he ain't...

 

I found the battles very boring, especially the one which starts off the movie: it's shot in such a pedestrian way, it doesn't look exciting or imposing at all when these two armies face each other.

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The zooms didn't bother me so much they were spare and used to accent the moment, I thought that was ok. Plus the focus snapped into place, if they'd zoomed into an out of focus shot that would've blown the whole effect.

 

There's a zoom shot when Hector (Eric Bana) opens the doors of the city to face Achilles that I think is completely out of place. They could have achieve the same effect just travelling. That kind of shot is OK for a Sergio Leone Spaghetti-Western, but it doesn't make sense to me on a film like this.

 

Maybe they just shoot the movie in Super 35 because they have planned to use zoom shots, like Robert Richardson had to do in "Kill Bill".

 

Ignacio.

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It could be because Peterson used Super-35 for "Air Force One", but I sort of blame the Harry Potter movies!

 

Think of it: John Seale and Roger Pratt were both users of anamorphic until they did a Harry Potter movie in Super-35 and then started using Super-35 instead for their next projects... Both DP's have a penchant for high-speed film that was mitigated before by their use of anamorphic lenses, but now that they are using Super-35 instead, it starts to become a problem (at least, until they started using the Vision-2 stocks and D.I.'s...)

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It could be because Peterson used Super-35 for "Air Force One",

 

That film was shot by Michael Ballhaus, whose only anamorphic film I think it was Fassbinder's "Whity" in 1970. Later Petersen did "The Perfect Storm" with John Seale and they shoot it in anamorphic Panavision.

 

By the way, I have seen the trailer of the new "Harry Potter" film and it looks like Super 35 again. The cinematographer is Michael Seresin [bSC] ("Midnight Express", "Angel Heart", "Mercury Rising"), whose previous scope films were anamorphic. So there must be someone working on these films who pushes hard to shot Super 35.

 

Ignacio

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I agree, the zoom shots made the movie look like Kill Bill :(

I guess this really is a matter of taste but I don't get why everyone is so much on the zoom shots. Kill Bill used them to mimick the campy feel of 70's martial arts films. I guess it was accepted because we are used to campy zooms in martial arts films.

 

Sergio Leone used zooms to accent serious moments in the movie the same as Troy. So it is more acceptable just because he's Sergio Leone and the reputation he holds today? I bet back then someone wrote a review saying they hated those zooms and could tell the dialogue was out of sync.

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I caught this flick a couple of days ago at a local multiplex, and I noticed a number of problems with the projection.

 

Although I understand how projectors work, I'm not experienced enough to know immediately what caused the problems.

 

The first one I noticed was there seemed to be a pin-resistration problem of some kind; the opening titles did a little bit of jumping around, and were not smooth.

 

The second, and most annoying, was a very noticible flicker, which was especially visible in exteriors and any bright scenes. At first I thought the projector might be running at a slightly lower frame-rate, but there wasn't any audio-sync issues or any noticible change in pitch (the theater runs dolby digital FYI). What could be the cause of this?

 

I also noticed that the movie appeared soft at times. It wasn't very consistent though, and I know this particular theater uses platters.

 

The last two problems I just chalk up to poor projection staff. One was a thin black line on the right hand side of the frame, which was not opaque, and the film was visible beneath it. (I just realised that this very-well could have been the movie being projected onto the black mask... hmm).

 

And the final problem was the top-left corner of the screen was noticably darker than the rest of the frame. The theater does have slightly curved screens, which I thought was to avoid problems like this at the sides and corners...

 

Any thoughts you guys might have on these issues would be great; I'm trying to soak up as much info about as many things as I can.

 

As I said, I'm still just learning, and this forum has been an invaluble resource so far. Thanks guys!

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The second, and most annoying, was a very noticible flicker, which was especially visible in exteriors and any bright scenes.

Happened during my projection, too. At first I thought the reels may be dirty, but I saw it opening day. Must be a bulb problem?

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I agree, the zoom shots made the movie look like Kill Bill :(

I guess this really is a matter of taste but I don't get why everyone is so much on the zoom shots. Kill Bill used them to mimick the campy feel of 70's martial arts films. I guess it was accepted because we are used to campy zooms in martial arts films.

 

Sergio Leone used zooms to accent serious moments in the movie the same as Troy. So it is more acceptable just because he's Sergio Leone and the reputation he holds today? I bet back then someone wrote a review saying they hated those zooms and could tell the dialogue was out of sync.

What I'm trying to say is that the zoom shots in Troy looked kind of cheap to me after almost being beaten to death by the zooms in Kill Bill 2.

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Happened during my projection, too. At first I thought the reels may be dirty, but I saw it opening day. Must be a bulb problem?

I talked to a friend of mine who used to be a projectionist, and he said chances were that the projector bulb was about to go. The xenon bulbs they use there start to flicker in their dying days before they explode.

 

He also told me that the company who runs the theater (Famous Players for any Canadians out there...) prefers that due to the cost of replacing bulbs, that staff squeezes out every last bit of life out of them, which means letting them explode. This is apparently cheaper than the cost of all the free movie passes they have to give out as a result of the failed bulb, and repairing any damage to the projector...

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Actually it is much more expensive to run a bulb until it blows up, because when a xenon lamp explodes, it will destroy the expensive mirror system and the interior of the lamp housing.

Usually, either the flickering gets really bad or the lamp goes so dark that even penny-pinchers have to change it, or the lamp simply does not ignite any more.

 

But indeed this is very bad presentation as it affects all the work the filmmakers and (hopefully) the lab did put into the release print. Many lamps are wrongly aligned so the image gets either a "hot spot" and dark edges or will look brighter on one side of the screen. You can make it foolproof, but you can't make it damn foolproof... :(

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