[Tig] HDCAM for 2.35 (again!)

Dick Hobbs dick
Fri Nov 2 09:18:02 GMT 2001

I recently went to a screening of a movie shot on a professional digital
format. The only reason I went was because I was told that, according to the
(highly experienced) director, "no-one can believe it was not shot on 35mm
film". In a subsequent interview with the director he outlined his use of
the lighting principles developed by Ansel Adams, and he reiterated that he
believed he was achieving 35mm quality for a fraction of the price.

And it looked absolutely dreadful. There was absolutely no contrast in the
picture, with anything above midlights burnt out and hair becoming a
featureless black blob. Perversely, for the movie had never seen any silver
halide, the pictures were very grainy, but I guess that was just noise. Even
more perversely, at the screening I saw the pictures flickered distractingly

This, remember, is not some college kid making experimental movies in a
garage. This was an experienced director, making a full-length love story
movie, and ending up with something that looked awful.

Which brings us back to the same old question. If the content is compelling
enough will we put up with technical deficiencies? Or do we need the quality
of film to draw us in to the movie experience?

Don't ask me. I'm just a writer.

Dick Hobbs

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