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Predator (1987)

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It happens I have both versions (MPEG2 and AVC "remastered") BDs, but I bought them when I had no HDTV, so they remained unseen - until today!

So, which I should watch first?

MPEG2 BD was the winner... what I can say? IT... IS... GORGEOUS!!! To anyone who says the contrary, or that MPEG2 is simply not capable to deliver stunning picture at medium (20mbps) bitrate, just watch it (again, if necessary)!

This version of the movie is wonderful; no sign of compression artifacts, natural colors, grain was never excessive (apart in few instances, four or five shots, for a total of maybe a dozen second, where it was really excessive, like if 16mm - or even 8mm - film was used for those shots...

Is it perfect? Well, apart those shots, yes...

So, what's about AVC version? I started to watch it just the moment I finished the other, and I was disappointed... not because the AVC was really really bad - it is not - but in comparison, it's really REALLY waxy, less detailed, lacks a sort of tridimensionality that was present in the MPEG2... maybe because it lacks grain, or it's DNRed to death, or both... even those brief shots with excessive grain were better than the waxy AVC versions... I must admit I haven't watched it all, but I played all the first part until the helicopter scene, then I started to skip scenes here and there.

At the end, I'm happy to have both, just because the AVC has the bonus material and more audio options, and *maybe* the AVC color grading is the *right* one - according to something I read on some forums months ago, so *at least* it could be useful to be used as color reference for a restoration project... probably it's also due to the fact I paid them €4 each! Big Grin
Sadly my projects are lost due to an HDD crash... Sad
Fundamental Collection | Vimeo channel | My blog
Could you post some comparison shots?
No the mpeg2 is not bad at all, but they had a chance to deliver an even better looking picture, but they blew it big time. The AVC is a wax fest that needs to be melted away and never watched again.
I have watched it using my PS3 as BD player, so I have not them in my PC now; but there are many comparisons around; the fact is, many opinions posted about those two versions are based only on screenshots... while I know screenshots are really useful, sometimes could lead to wrong assumptions...

For example, the AVC looks waxy, it's true, but according to screenshots, it seems almost unwatchable - in particular when you see the MPEG2 in direct comparison - where it is not THAT bad... I mean, it's bad, really bad, in comparison to MPEG2, but watched "alone", with no other comparison in front of your eyes (and fresh in your memory), it could be considered "almost watchable" by me, but could be good enough for the average Joe - poor Joe, it is guilty of so many sins... Big Grin Big Grin Big Grin

Also, the AVC fans state that MPEG2 is bad, blocky, too grainy, but in motion is simply wonderful... in particular if you think it's a "mere" 20GB (and something) disc - including one DTS-HD MA and two DTS audio tracks, and few trailers.

Waiting for opinions from other members!

Edit: posted after DoomBot comment! Wink
Sadly my projects are lost due to an HDD crash... Sad
Fundamental Collection | Vimeo channel | My blog
They released a 3D Blu of this film recently... Is it possible that in order to complete a decent-looking 2D to 3D conversion, that grain must be cleaned up? (Much like the waxy SW Episode 1 Blu... since that was released in 3D in cinemas a few years back).
(This post was last modified: 2015-07-10, 06:27 AM by nafroe.)
I'm not sure about that. Recently, a 2D to 3D conversion happened for "Top Gun" and it's the sharpest and grainiest release to-date. Unfortunately they f'ed up the color-timingSad

I have seen a couple of other 2D to 3D conversions that are decent and think that it really depends on the film and the studio working on it. It amazes me that in today's "era" of fullHD, 2k, and 4k, that "wax-o-vision"/"smear-o-vision" is still "acceptable" for a release.
The grain was cleaned for the Ultimate Hunter edition - here not called as is, but it's the same encoding AFAIK - so before the 2D->3D conversion; that adds also insult to injury, because several objects are moved/modified, like Jurassic Park 2D->3D...
Sadly my projects are lost due to an HDD crash... Sad
Fundamental Collection | Vimeo channel | My blog
UH with grain should be the best version ever
Really? I haven't pulled out the UHE in a long time. Does it have more detail than the MPEG-2 version?

Sure, they supposedly did the whole degrain-regrain thing with Aliens and The Terminator, but I assumed the degrain technology used there was more nuanced and based off of a higher resolution scan.
it's so simple:
get the negative -> scan it -> clean it -> get mctiernan and his dp for input on proper color correction -> encode to high bitrate avc and don't touch dnr knobs -> release -> predator fans finally happy Smile
as for the available blu-rays: old mpeg2 release wins. period!

comparison: hunter edition (3d) vs mpeg2
(This post was last modified: 2015-07-11, 03:41 PM by bendermac.)

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