In Variety, Peter Jackson said that in The Desolation he worked to address criticisms that Part 1 looked too much like high-def video:
By tweaking the picture digitally, he says, he was able to keep the advantages of HFR, he says, but tone down the hi-def-video look. “I was experimenting all the time and trying different things. It’s to do with diffusing the image a little but, using what’s called a Pro-Mist; it’s the saturation of the color. Scene by scene I’d make decisions and choices as to which way to go, so it wasn’t really one magic button to press.”
When I saw the picture last night (in 2D) some of the scenes, even though sharp, seemed on the higher side with regard to halation and flare; they looked almost milky, some of them.
Now, my question is this: Is it better to under-difuse a little because you know the downstream technology will multiply any effects you add? Or is it a case where the digital diffusion you see on your monitor is exactly what the audience will see?