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Standard 16mm aspect ratio obsolete?


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#1 Jon R Williams

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Posted 16 June 2015 - 11:39 PM

I would like to hear your comments as to whether the Standard 16mm film aspect ratio retains any potential value for documentary production.
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#2 Jeff L'Heureux

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Posted 17 June 2015 - 12:02 AM

If there's a choice between standard 16mm and super16, of course super16 is the way to go, but if you're asking whether or not you'll get good footage using standard 16mm, absolutely you can.  You could scan it at high resolution in 1.37:1 and extract a 16:9 portion with the ability to reposition the frame and have plenty of visible resolution and sharpness.  Granted, the grain will be larger and it really depends on your final distribution format, but it's certainly an option.  Or, instead embrace the 1.37:1 ratio and overscan the edges of the frameline to really show that it's 16mm you're shooting on, similar to what's done now for many super8 videos.


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#3 Carl Looper

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Posted 17 June 2015 - 12:34 AM

Standard 16mm is not obsolete.

 

Nor is it's aspect ratio.

 

As long as there are Standard 16mm cameras, 16mm film and processing, and 16mm projectors (or digital scanning of the film), it's not obsolete.

 

Choice of aspect ratio is just that. A choice.

 

C


Edited by Carl Looper, 17 June 2015 - 12:35 AM.

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#4 Simon Wyss

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Posted 17 June 2015 - 02:31 AM

The three-to-four aspect ratio is very dynamic due to the smallest whole-number right triangle comprised, 3-4-5 sides. It supports motion and perception of depth.

 

Look: https://youtu.be/KdD49N5OmtE?t=95


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#5 aapo lettinen

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Posted 17 June 2015 - 04:14 AM

I shoot almost always standard 16 for small documentaries but it is mainly because I can then have much more lens and camera choices than otherwise. 

I mainly shoot F64D for 16mm however, sometimes 7207 when practical. the 16:9 crop shows quite a lot of grain so for me it is easiest to stick with EI 64 mainly and shoot any low light footage either with video cameras or on 35mm.


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#6 Bill DiPietra

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Posted 17 June 2015 - 08:28 AM

I would like to hear your comments as to whether the Standard 16mm film aspect ratio retains any potential value for documentary production.

 

I think Carl said it best.  It's a matter of what you feel is appropriate for your project.  I still shoot regular 16mm with a final aspect ratio of 1.37:1 (that is, picture image.)  I still feel it's a viable and refreshing aspect ratio for storytelling and I like the fact that some filmmakers still recognize this.  The most recent example would probably be Ida

 

It's nice to see a change from 2.35:1 now and then.  Especially when it's not called for.


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#7 Kenny N Suleimanagich

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Posted 17 June 2015 - 10:22 AM

 

'The Royal Road' premiered at Sundance this year to many accolades, shot on Regular 16mm.


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