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Author Topic: Bay of Blood / Reazione a catena (Mario Bava, 1971)  (Read 25651 times)

Jonny

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Re: Bay of Blood / Reazione a catena (Mario Bava, 1971)
« Reply #60 on: 04 Dec 2010 - 13:07 »


The theatrical version cannot be a valid reference. It's a totally different medium. When you see a movie in a theater the color balance, contrast, tint and sharpness are affected by many parameters: dirty lens, used reel, different screen texture, room diffuse illumination, projector light intensity, etc...


Thanks again for a great, insightful, reply. I fully understand now what you're saying as regards tinkering with colours in the digital mastering stage.

I don't understand why a theatrical print can't be a valid reference to how a film should look though. I've been a projectionist for the last 15 years and can't for the life of me get my head around what it is you are saying.

I saw a vintage 35mm print of SUSPIRIA and despite it being quite beaten up I could fully appreciate the colours, contrast etc and still use that experience as a reference when looking at home video versions. Are you saying that the theatrical experience I had shouldn't be counted as a true reference to how SUSPIRIA's colours should look?
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bdc

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Re: Bay of Blood / Reazione a catena (Mario Bava, 1971)
« Reply #61 on: 04 Dec 2010 - 18:04 »

I will be watching the AB version later,it's been a long time since I watched it but I remember I wasn't that satisfied with it and decided to get the Raro (which proved to be even worse but did have the alternate Italian version).


I got those 2 versions as well and felt the same way, I thought in both versions the outdoor scenes seemed too glarey and washed out.

Compared to the Carlotta caps, the Arrow adds a blue tint to this cap (which doesn't really make sense since it is still dusk): (Carlotta left/ Arrow right/AB bottom left /Raro bottom right)


more caps (same arrangement)





Thanks for the comparison ECC.
I think I'm totally confused now...how should this really look?  :-*
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Jonny

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Re: Bay of Blood / Reazione a catena (Mario Bava, 1971)
« Reply #62 on: 04 Dec 2010 - 18:06 »


Thanks for the comparison ECC.
I think I'm totally confused now...how should this really look?

 :-\ Yep, it's certainly not conclusive as to which one is correct is it?

Best leave it to personal judgement which in my case certainly isn't the Arrow release.
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ecc

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Re: Bay of Blood / Reazione a catena (Mario Bava, 1971)
« Reply #63 on: 04 Dec 2010 - 22:51 »

Once again, I think the definition of the new transfer is stunning but I don't think the colors are right.

Arrow's transfer certainly features some added tinting in that shot of the guy with the bill-hook in his face and the dusky tinting on the shot of Brigitte Skay also looks added.

While modern color grading can be extremely manipulative, the people licensing these titles don't necessarily - or at least, primarily - care about the film's true look (just as in DVD era - still now, no matter who tells you DVD is dead - rights holders do not always care about the original aspect ratio of their titles and would crop them to 1.78:1 for 16:9 DVDs - like several of Filmexport's 1.66:1 titles, even some American companies thought nothing of cropping 4:3 TV shows for 16:9).  They are interested in profiting from the HD medium (including TV) with their catalog, so they are sometimes more concerned with making their product look "stunning."  The argument that some viewers won't be satisfied unless you could go back in time and shoot some of these old movies with HD cameras extends to some rights holders.  We already know some rights holders have extremely unrealistic expectations about how well their titles will do on DVD, so why should BluRay be any less?

BAY was designed for theatrical viewing on 35mm film, not video or TV (in SD or HD), and film's colorspace is still superior to that of HD.  Some color and contrast levels on film can still clip HD resolutions.  It is possible that BAY's colors were toned down so as not to clip, and then some tints were then slapped over some scenes.

The grading on the Arrow version is inconsistent and it is perhaps my failing to demonstrate that in the review caps choice that started some of this.  I said that the blood in one major set-piece looks like rust but that is not the case for all of the murders.  It is not even the case from shot to shot.  The two blood-spurting shots from Brigitte Skay's murder are effected by the dusk tinting on the Arrow version and they are inserts, not what was shot on-location.  As mentioned above, the bill-hook to the face has been tinted compared to the other releases.  The blood in the double-spearing is lighter in the close-up insert but darker in the medium shots (I'm assuming this bit was all shot on set but the inserts still would have been shot separately).  The wound in Frank's thigh from the scissors looks suitably red despite the fact that the blood is on his dark pants.  In the decapitation of Laura Betti's character, the blood spurting is darker than before.  Looking at it again, it looks okay but it definitely does not leap out at you like the shot in earlier versions.

If the rights holders went back to the original camera negative for this transfer, then it is not a valid reference either.  The Raro transfer may have been consulted but, that, of course has faded over time.

bdc

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Re: Bay of Blood / Reazione a catena (Mario Bava, 1971)
« Reply #64 on: 05 Dec 2010 - 08:40 »

A very interesting read ECC,just shows how complicated things have become these days and it's really no wonder people (myself included) get confused by all this.

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BodyElectric

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Re: Bay of Blood / Reazione a catena (Mario Bava, 1971)
« Reply #65 on: 11 Jan 2011 - 18:29 »

A very interesting read ECC,just shows how complicated things have become these days and it's really no wonder people (myself included) get confused by all this.


Very true, and sometimes the glut of information can be overwhelming (and somewhat disheartening). Trying to determine if you're seeing the definitive version of a film often seems an impossible task. It takes the fun out of it for me to sit there and constantly wonder "does this look right?" instead of just enjoying the film. In a way, it makes me long for the days of VHS, when the only question was whether or not you had the uncut version of the film!
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