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Tenolian Bell

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  1. No I don't understand how its more unpredictable. The objects you are working with don't exist. They are a collection of binary code written by a programmer. The rules under which CG objects operate were created by a person. These rules can be changed simply by manipulating variables in the code There is nothing wrong with that. The whole purpose and advantage of computer generated imagery is that the artist is not limited by the laws of the physical world. That is an incredible advantage. Yeah that was just reference material, it was not directly vital to the telling of the story. With the "March of the Penguins" filmmakers, what they shot is what they got. They had to stay out there shooting until they had a complete story. Seems you keep trying to veer the conversation into one vs the other. That's not my point at all. My point is that they are different and should be judged as so. An actor doesn't win a Tony for acting in a motion picture, nor does an actor win an Oscar for acting in theater. These two awards recognize the aesthetics of both mediums.
  2. One pretty good way to tell. Movie theaters with true IMAX screens were originally designed and built for IMAX. Any theater that has been around for years and suddenly has a new IMAX screen is very likely an IMAX Experience. A few movie theaters in New York have suddenly added IMAX screens, I wondered how they were totally redesigning the theater to suddenly add such a big screen. But of course its not a true IMAX screen. I still go to the Lincoln Center Loews in Manhattan which has a true IMAX theater.
  3. I'm not sure if anyone claimed that cinematography in the physical world is more pure. My argument is that the two are different and should not be judged together in the same award category. I would imagine their are some type of rules set up for how light reacts the different surfaes in CGI, the same way it acts in real life. The difference being the CGI surfaces don't actually exist so you are free to adjust how the surface reacts to light so you end up with the result that you want. While the options are much more limited for changing how a real surface reacts to light. It is possible to diffuse shiny surfaces or you could change a fabric or carpeting if its not reacting to light the way you want. I think if you look at the difference between the filmmakers who had to live in Antarctica to film "March of the Penguins" vs the filmmakers who were working in a production office Santa Monica to make "Happy Feet". There is a clear difference in challenges between the way those two movies were made. I'm not saying one way is more valid than the other. My point is that they are too different to be judged equally.
  4. Yes in the long run streaming and downloading are going to win. I agree at this point it isn't practical to download a movie with the quality of Blu-ray. But there was actually another option I was talking about. Its possible at this point to store Blu-ray quality content on solid state ROM cards. They could build SD card slots into all televisions and computers. The problem with that is that it destroys the stand alone player market and its profits. Which is only inevitable, but they are trying to hold it off as long as possible.
  5. I've found SnapzPro X the best app for screen capture on the Mac. There's also Handbreak for converting DVD video TS files into h.264 quicktime movies. Ah, you know it comes down to money, licensing, digital rights management, and lawyers. I think a part of it too is that Apple philosophically wants to push past distributing media on silver discs. Technologically we are actually past media on silver discs. Studios and the consumer electronic industry are protecting an aging business model. But that's certainly a whole different discussion.
  6. An actor can perform in a live action film, live on stage, or voice over in an animated film. They all require acting talent and skill. But all require different acting techniques that are not considered the same simply because its acting.
  7. If you are looking at my post. I'm not deriding the skill needed to create computer generated imagery. I'm not saying one is necessarily better than the other. But from a practical sense they are different. When photographing a live scene you have to work in the blistering sun, rain, snow or whatever conditions exist. You have a limited amount of time to martial and organize a large group of people into getting the shots needed to tell the story. Creating computer imagery is an entirely different experience. I don't believe the two should be mixed and judged the same. The nature of creating computer imagery, a lot of it comes down to the money and resources available. It would be much more difficult for a production with less money and fewer resources to compete with a production that has nearly unlimited money and resources. I feel with live photography a $2 million movie has as much opportunity to be acclaimed for its cinematography as a $200 million movie.
  8. I say no. The James Cameron interview with Charlie Rose. He told of how he had to spend three or four days attempting to shoot a sunset. Now he would not bother with shooting a real sunset he would just shoot green screen. I think when it comes to awards for cinematography, you get a cinematography award for shooting a beautiful sunset, not for drawing a beautiful sunset. When you spend three or four days attempting to shoot the beautiful sunset you have that one moment to earn that beautiful sunset. A CG sunset you can draw, erase, and tweak as much as you want until you have it the way you want it. Its a triumph of money over impatience, I don't believe you should earn a cinematography award for that. I agree there needs to be another category for computer generated imagery.
  9. Sure, even though Blu-ray sales have tripled year over year, they are still only 3% of DVD's sales. At the same time DVD sales are going down every year. As much as the studios hope it, Blu-ray will not replace DVD. Netflix announced that far more people stream its movies than request Blu-ray.
  10. I doubt there is a mad dash for all production to go 3D, Avatar budget is being estimated at $200-$300 million, with an additional $200 million for marketing and distribution. I'm sure most of the studio heads are keeping all of this in context and not jumping to hyperbole. Yeah, 3D Blu-ray will be as big a hit as DVD Audio...............
  11. At this point what gag is original? I'd never heard of Unobtanium and looked it up to see if it was real. Once I'd discovered where it came from I thought it was a great gag, and a great theme for the movie. He's essentially making the social statement that continuing to drill and dig for finite sources of fuel is futile and unsustainable.
  12. I allowed myself to get engrossed in the story and enjoy it. But I can see it from both standpoints. Those who are well studied in cinema storytelling can clearly see through the plot tricks that James Cameron likes to use. The various basic character archetypes that Cameron has used for years were mostly all in the film. In Avatar he used a lot of foreshadowing. So much so to the point that it telegraphed a lot of the important plot turns, that took away from any surprise. If watching the movie through the eyes of a cinema study you can easily see the man behind the curtain pulling all the levers. I went to see it with a group of people who know nothing about the mechanics of cinema story structure and theory and they thoroughly enjoyed. So I just allowed myself to enjoy it the way they did. I also really feel the theme of man attempting to dominate nature and place profit over everything else is an extremely important topic to explore today. As a world society we are literally at a cross roads where we could easily choose to be the humans that were depicted in the film. As far as the 3D, I have to agree it is the best 3D I have ever seen. Cameron wasn't so concerned with making objects jump out at you, as it was precise control of extremely shallow depth of field. That in essence is what separated the subject from the background. It was nice but I still did not hear the collective gasp of astonishment the way I'd heard when I saw The Dark Knight in IMAX. That first shot of the Chicago skyline, the entire audience literally gasped as though we were floating above the building.
  13. From a filmmaker standpoint, whether the move to NYC is right or not depends on what type of filmmaker you want to be. NYC is much more of a DIY independent scene. Its not directly connected to Hollywood. In many respects the mentality of NY filmmaker is vastly different from the mentality of Hollywood filmmaking. If you are happy to make interesting artistic works without a great deal of expectation for becoming a Hollywood filmmaker, then NY is a good move. If your goal is to be a studio filmmaker, then the Hollywood environment is likely more suited towards that expectation.
  14. That is a performance beast. It also would be a beast to carry around. It weighs nearly 9 pounds and is nearly an inch and a half thick. The battery life at best is probably 3 hours.
  15. Its a notebook. By its very nature its hardware and abilities are a trade off for its size and weight. So at some point you are going to exhaust its resources. Too many demanding processes running at the same time will slow it down. The Core 2 Duo processors and NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT graphics card used in the MacBook Pro are as powerful as a desktop from a couple of years ago. But it still has its limits. I'm not sure why your video is freezing, the iPhone can handle 1Mbps. As far as the sync and motion artifacts that sounds like its from the compression software. With the motion artifacts its a balance between file size and data rate. The best compression software will apply the most compression to scenes with the least amount of transition in an attempt to keep the file at its designated size. MPEG-4 is the only video codec the iPhone will play. Quickime is the media framework the iPhone uses to play MPEG-4.
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