Jump to content


Photo

HFR Cinematography


  • Please log in to reply
6 replies to this topic

#1 James Malamatinas

James Malamatinas
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 128 posts
  • 2nd Assistant Camera
  • London

Posted 13 December 2013 - 03:31 PM

I'm beginning to look into HFR cinematography as a possibility for use in a future project but also out of personal curiosity . Apart from watching the The Hobbit last year, which left quite an impact (not all good, but definitely intriguing and some very unique experiences), I have no knowledge or experience of HFR others than the pure basics. I will be doing the usual Google and forum searches but I was wondering if anyone had particular resources they would recommend, for example;

 

-  research papers and audience feedback  on how it is perceived by audiences themselves

- historical information on how HFR been used in the past

- information on the current state of HFR technologies right now e.g. Douglas Trumbull's new tech, other new films in production now at HFR

- discussions or articles on the impact of HFR on cinematic style

- HFR samples at different frame rates e.g. 48, 96, 120

- I'd also like to look into the difference HFR make to 2D compared to 3D.

- HFR distribution and projection (what % of theatres can project HFR, are there known issues etc)

 

Additionally information on the practical side from anyone who has shot it would be useful. I imagine the impact here is mainly from a post point of view since the biggest difference is surely the additional data?

 

And yes, I am off to see the Hobbit: TDOS tonight in HFR, so that's my most immediate port of call!

 

Thanks.


  • 0

#2 Carl Looper

Carl Looper
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1425 posts
  • Digital Image Technician
  • Melbourne, Australia

Posted 14 December 2013 - 02:28 AM

Trumbull has apparently done the most definitive tests on frame rates. He is of the opinion that higher rates are necessary to capture fast moving objects - ie. that we can still appreciate something different in the results of higher rates, up to something like 120 fps, if not more.

 

While such rates are perceivable that doesn't make them necessarily any better than lower rates, or necessarily desireable in any way.

 

In the same way that while we can appreciate the fine detail in a Renaissance painting we can also appreciate the exact opposite in Impressionist painting.

 

Trumbull's work has gone off at a tangent to the cinema, where the emphasis has become increasingly about a sensory experience at the expense of what else might be done in conjunction with that. Arguably a lot of cinema is also about that as well, but I'd suggest that where the cinema is unable to match Trumbull's sensory extravaganzas, it can make up for that in ways that Trumbull's otherwise brilliant systems simply can't.

 

To put it another way - Trumbull's work might need higher frame rates to become more effective, but that doesn't mean other work does. Of course, it needn't hurt.

 

C


  • 0

#3 James Malamatinas

James Malamatinas
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 128 posts
  • 2nd Assistant Camera
  • London

Posted 16 December 2013 - 04:55 AM

Thanks Carl, I'm very interested in his work, he's been pushing this particular aspect of filmmaking as much as anyone.  Like you say though, to date and from what little I know, it feels like they have remained technical achievements and haven't yet found their place as part of the craft of cinematography.

 

I caught the Hobbit and again was completely fascinated by the effect of HFR. I still don't believe it looks "better" than 24fps, in fact in many cases it looked worse in my opinion, however it definitely felt different and more real. I know the 'more real' description has been used lots in talk about HFR and it is difficult to describe exactly why but for the first time in years (much more so than with 3D) watching the film felt like a completely new experience.

 

If I was to try and put a finger on some of the things that contribute it would be; the additional sharpness of the image which made the image feel higher resolution and gave it a texture I haven't experienced with traditional cinematography. The depth of field in the shots also  felt deeper than at the standard frame rate, even in shots that were clearly shot wide open.

 

In terms of where the image seem to fall down; I thought that the HFR made the lighting of a lot of the interiors feel a lot more obvious and more akin to stage lighting. Also there were strange motion artifacts in the showing I saw with quick pans, and faster camera movements - something I was surprised at since I thought the format was meant to make these better. Possibly it could be related to the 3D rather than the HFR?

 

All in all I'm extremely keen to keep an eye where this will go (hence my original post), I can really see cinematic styles developing which take advantage of format. I think an interesting comparison would be to see a 2D HFR showing next to one in 3D unfortunately there don't appear to be any 2D HFR showing where I am  (London).

 

 

 


 


  • 0

#4 Ravi Kiran

Ravi Kiran
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 139 posts
  • Other
  • Los Angeles

Posted 18 December 2013 - 02:11 PM

All in all I'm extremely keen to keep an eye where this will go (hence my original post), I can really see cinematic styles developing which take advantage of format. I think an interesting comparison would be to see a 2D HFR showing next to one in 3D unfortunately there don't appear to be any 2D HFR showing where I am  (London).

 

Is that an option anywhere? I thought the only options were 2D 24fps, 3D 24fps, and 3D HFR.


  • 0

#5 Jock Blakley

Jock Blakley
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 73 posts
  • Other
  • Melbourne, VIC

Posted 18 December 2013 - 05:25 PM

2D HFR is technically possible - after all, it's the same data rate as 3D at 24 fps - but due to the extraordinarily-bad press about HFR during the first release Warner Brothers cut the HFR release right back and are not permitting 2D HFR screenings.

 

Which probably tells you something about how it looks.


  • 0

#6 David Mullen ASC

David Mullen ASC
  • Sustaining Members
  • 19765 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 18 December 2013 - 08:30 PM

The 48 fps rate was mainly chosen to improve the 3D projection experience, which can suffer from ghosting during movement.  So I'm not surprised that they didn't want to do a 2D 48 fps version.


  • 0

#7 Nicholas Bedford

Nicholas Bedford
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 28 posts
  • Other
  • Brisbane, Australia

Posted 07 January 2014 - 10:02 PM

I've always had an open mind to HFR and 3D, yet my experiences in viewing both versions of the same films (The Hobbit 1/2) don't back up the findings and hype of the filmmakers.

 

The (sometimes quite excessive) colour grading, CGI and set production became much less obvious when viewing them a second time in 2D at the normal frame rate. Here's some of the things I noticed a big improvement in when viewing either of the films in 2D.

 

Image Colour & Grading

 

The colour of the image returned to one reminiscent of the original Lord Of The Rings trilogy. More organic and less digital. The image felt like it was exhibiting much more "digital" and unnatural colours and the lens misting/bloom, probably done in the grade, was more obvious in 3D HFR.

 

Camera & Subject Movements

 

While 24fps was originally a technical/cost saving decision, it actually lends itself to cinema in that it removes information allowing us to subtly fill in the blanks with our minds. Someone else described this a while ago on a forum and it immediately struck me. I'd never considered this before. One of the biggest things about filmmaking is the ability to remove us from where are and take us on a journey.

 

When your frame rate is super smooth, you feel like you're on a set. The lighting becomes obvious, the acting becomes obvious and the set production becomes obvious. There are no blanks, and there's no mystery.

 

3D & Perception

 

The 3D actually made it a little more difficult to perceive the image being presented, instead reducing my focus to areas "in" the frame and not the frame itself. Even though we only see a moderate portion of the image on the fovea, you can perceive a 2D film much more completely whilst viewing it because you're only dealing with a flat image and two eyes taking in the entire thing. When the frame extends in the Z direction, it takes more time to absorb everything on the screen.

 

This has been my general experience in watching films in 3D, not just The Hobbit.

 

Conclusion
 

Like I said, I have an open mind, but I just can't back up the expectation with the results. I find myself enjoying films much more in 2D at normal frame rate and I usually do try and see films in 3D if they are shot that way.


  • 0


CineTape

Opal

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Willys Widgets

Rig Wheels Passport

Technodolly

Visual Products

Metropolis Post

Tai Audio

Broadcast Solutions Inc

The Slider

Aerial Filmworks

Abel Cine

Glidecam

Paralinx LLC

CineLab

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Ritter Battery

Wooden Camera

FJS International, LLC

rebotnix Technologies

Abel Cine

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Visual Products

Technodolly

Willys Widgets

rebotnix Technologies

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Opal

Paralinx LLC

CineTape

CineLab

Ritter Battery

Metropolis Post

Glidecam

Aerial Filmworks

Broadcast Solutions Inc

The Slider

Tai Audio

Wooden Camera

Rig Wheels Passport

FJS International, LLC