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Kenneth Branagh Shakespeare films


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#1 George Ebersole

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Posted 10 June 2016 - 04:03 AM

Does anyone here "in the know" know if Kenneth Branagh's Shakespeare films are remastered for bluray, or if the current blurays are just dups of the older DVD versions?

 

Thanks much in advance.


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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 10 June 2016 - 09:09 AM

You can't just dump a 480P DVD copy onto a 1080P blu-ray, or at least, a home video distributor wouldn't do that. I think you're asking if the blu-rays are made from more recent transfers to HD video, or 2K or 4K restorations, versus an HD telecine transfer made over a decade ago. But either way, if they are on blu-ray, then they are from an HD master, not an SD master.

"Henry V" is a fairly recent HD transfer but looks like an IP from a vault was used and no effort was made to digitally clean it up, but it is a good representation of how it looked in 35mm prints back when it was released. "Hamlet" looks nice on HD, which makes sense since it was shot on 65mm film, though I don't know the path it took to get onto HD, could have just been a 35mm reduction IN transferred to HD. I'm sure the earlier released blu-rays used the same HD telecine done for the SD release.
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#3 George Ebersole

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Posted 10 June 2016 - 12:19 PM

David, as always you are a font of information and know when the person asking the question is confused as anything.  Yes, that is exactly what I meant to ask.  

 

I asked because as you commented some of the blurays I've seen look like they're taken from the print used for the SD DVDs.  It says 1080p on the table, but when you look at the movie it looks like a very clear image of the same print that was used for the earlier DVD release.

 

Anyway, thanks again for the answer and clarification.  I think I can splurge on some Branagh Shakespeare blurays now. 


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#4 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 10 June 2016 - 01:47 PM

Some older blu-rays are from the same HD master as was used to downconvert to an SD master for DVD, but the blu-ray version is still going to look better even if a newer transfer would be even better than that. Today the differences are often due to whether you are seeing an HD telecine of an old IP versus a 2K or 4K restoration from a scan, usually of the original negative, which often look better than they might have looked years ago in a release print, as good as the movie can look, assuming the color correcting is good (some new remasters can be too flat or too bright). But I don't mind some of the HD transfers of old IP's pulled from a vault, they remind me of 35mm prints, I feel like I'm watching the movie in some revival theater.
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#5 George Ebersole

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Posted 11 June 2016 - 11:32 AM

Yeah, I'm noticing that.  The Indiana Jones films were remastered and look stunning with the new level of detail.  But some other films don't look like as if they were remastered, but still look much better than when released on DVD.  It'll be interesting to see if older films (pre-1960s) get remastered and how that new level of detail will add to the viewing experience.


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