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[Archived] A Blade In The Dark (1983) [Project: Celluloid]
So! It's been a while. I've been working on and off a number of projects in my minimal spare time nowadays that I haven't announced in the likely off-chance of raising people's hopes before stating that I gave up on it / shelved it / got tired of it. HOWEVER, I can say that thankfully, I've come across an interesting case of a movie needing a regrade that ended up being a rather quick project to get the desired results.


PROJECT CELLULOID: Lamberto Bava's A Blade In The Dark / La Casa Con La Scala Nel Buio

Now I'm not going to go talk about the movie, but just let it be known it's a charming low-budget example of the giallo genre with a more slasher / stalker sort feel to it than most other examples of the genre. What I am going to say though, is that I managed to recently see a 35mm screening of it up in Los Angeles as a part of a Giallo January Marathon. Out of curiosity, I decided to look into the 88 Films blu-ray afterward only to be shocked by not only how wrong the colors were, but also just how ugly it was as a result. As such, with some experimentation, I managed to get a look close to what I saw that afternoon in theater.

Unfortunately, I had limited sources to recreate the look: Primarily my memory as well as a few low-quality 35mm pics Cinematic Void uploaded to advertise / tease the event (which I wanna say were probably just taken by an iPhone). Problem was the movie doesn't look quite like those pictures at times nor the trailer posted above, so I had to sort of hybridize some regraded video tracks in Da Vinci Resolve to get the closest thing to what I could recall (wasn't paying too much attention to colors sadly since I didn't realize the blu-ray looked so dreadful, so I didn't bother trying to sneak a projection recording or anything).

The blu-ray source is also imperfect for having the wrong lighting level in some shots but I didn't want to do a shot-for-shot sort of grade since I don't remember everything to a T, so there are some shots that likely looked much colder and darker in-print (EG: The locked room) and probably looked warmer (EG: Outdoors maybe? It's a bit fuzzy...). What the movie really could use is a new restoration though given it just looks pretty bad as (I hope Blue Underground will give it a 4K update like they've been doing for the rest of their catalog recently, especially since it seems the screened print belongs to the company if this is anything to go by).

I hope you all can enjoy it nonetheless, and for those of you who've never seen or heard of this movie before, now's a good time to check it out I suppose. If you want a download, just shoot me a PM.

You can screencaps of the original master here and the regraded master here...
[Image: ivwz24G.jpg]
Thanks given by: bronan

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