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Posts posted by helium

  1. When Steven Soderbergh could say of smartphones, in 2018, that "I think this is the future ... Anybody going to see this movie who has no idea of the backstory to the production will have no idea this was shot on the phone ...  I’ve seen it 40 feet tall. It looks like velvet. This is a gamechanger to me” it's probably safe to conclude that the consumers for these phones are even more oblivious and/or indifferent to what's traditionally been regarded as "image quality".

    This is the way of the world, the march of time, cheaper and worse.  And it makes sense, for most smartphone users.  People actually like that plastic processed look.  Or simply can't tell the difference.

  2. On 3/9/2021 at 5:23 PM, fuzzynormal said:



    Tail, dog, wag.  

    As for Netflix, you're basically complaining that Netflix understands it demographic analytics.


    If you really think the kumbaya diversity line sells -- meaning correct attitudes in white movies, as opposed to movies made for minorities or trans types -- examine the sales figures of Sundance Grand Prize winners of the last 30 years, Sundance being way ahead of its time in this respect, with rich white administrators and filmmakers pretending to be virtuous by doing their damndest to promote what they consider social justice, as long as it means they don't have to give up their positions in favor of POC.  You can also credit this administrative movement with creating a narrative trope:  the wise Black woman/minority.  This figure offers timeless advice to confused whites.

    Meanwhile, there are more black doctors on American TV than in most American communities, and it's unclear how network execs are improving the world by putting black actors in white coats....

    The tyranny of the social justice movement unfortunately exceeds the profit motive at this point.  A law school prof just got fired for lamenting that black students were routinely at the bottom of her class.  Nobody cared whether it was true or not, just the fact that she said it.  These attitudes are even more extreme among arts administrators.

  3. 9 hours ago, ntblowz said:

    And she is not rich, she also runs into funding problem too like most of us do.



    Get your facts straight.  There's a difference between losing somebody else's funding (for a whole year! terrible!) and not being rich.  She had six figures for her first feature.  Where do you think it came from?  Who paid for NYU film school?  Do you know how much that costs a year?  And what did she live on the rest of the time?  Prep?  Post-production?  The festival circuit?

    And Taika Waititi, to answer another here, is not comparable.  Completely different backgrounds/circumstances.  Are you saying all minorities are the same?  How racist!

    Success in the movie business will always require outsized luck, connections and (usually) money.  But if anyone really believes that "Chloe" was offered a $200 million movie on her pitch alone and in the absence of any relevant experience, he/she is in the wrong business.

  4. 5 hours ago, ntblowz said:

    This is actually hilarious.  "Chloe" comes from a rich, well-connected Beijing family; they sent her abroad, to London, for high school.  And the idea that recent film school grads with no credits can raise money as long as they're not Chinese and female, is too ridiculous for words.

    Even worse, this guy is bragging that she's doing a Marvel(!) movie.  This, from a director with zero action picture experience.  If not for racism, I guess they would have hired her right out of film school.  Life is so unfair! 


  5. It's Inevitable, given the expense of filmmaking, and the realities of distribution today (it costs a fortune).  Herzog and Fassbinder were state subsidized; in Fassbinder's case, the more movies he made, the more he could finance. So he was making 2-3 features a year, for years running.  Few actually made money.  That era is long dead.

    When "Marty" and "Francis" were young, there were producers like Roger Corman who would finance movies by unproven filmmakers, because the films didn't have to be blockbusters, to turn a profit.

    The American indie scene is unique in that the U.S. is the only major country without an art-house tradition; Robert Redford and a few New Yorkers murdered it.  One of them currently helps run Amazon Studios.  Today, what you see at Sundance is Hollywood movies with the commercial value removed.  They love it Park City, but nowhere else.

    Face it, guys:  moviemaking is for people who lack the talent to succeed at pre-industrial art-forms.  That doesn't mean art is impossible, but it takes a major miracle, and congenial conditions.

  6. A "depressingly cynical viewpoint" (see above) is exactly what reality demands.  Anything less is factually incorrect or wanton self-delusion.   For those who regard Robinhood -- at least in its idealized form -- as the great equalizer, think again.  Robinhood, you'll recall, doesn't charge brokerage fees.  How then does it make money?

    Well, it sells your data -- your purchases, sales, hedges -- to (you guessed it) hedge funds BEFORE your trades are executed. 

    "Given that Robinhood is playing a central role in retail investors pumping dark horse stocks, it’s worth examining once again how it makes money: namely, by selling users’ trades to other large firms before they’re actually executed. Those firms make money by effectively seeing what the retail investors on Robinhood are going to do before they actually do it, and acting accordingly. Those firms are basically buying information that then informs their own trades."



    Granted, this didn't work out so well for Melvin Capital -- you can't instantly correct a huge short position -- but others did profit.

  7. AMC is owned by a huge Chinese conglomerate; it's not a beleaguered cineaste endeavor run by idealistic capitalists....  And while Melvin Capital can eat shit, there are other hedge funds benefiting enormously from the reddit activity; meanwhile, the retail investors who bought high will almost certainly lose money in the end.

    Whether short-selling is in itself evil (selling stock is evil, but buying stock isn't?) is another question, though it is true that Gamestop was shorted something like 140%, another indicator of the "financialization" of the economy, where the rentier classes perform no productive activities, beyond manipulating markets and exploiting differentials.

  8. With all due respect to Ben, Scorsese likely doesn't give notes because 1) there's no time for it, 2) he knows it's pointless anyway, either an actor knows how to do a scene or he doesn't, the matter of performance was settled when the actor was cast, and 3) with no background in theater, Scorsese's probably not all that good at directing actors in, say, the Kazan tradition.

    The fact that nobody takes Leo diCaprio for anyone but Leo DiCaprio in a Scorsese movie is one measure of the limitation of either notes or the lack of them.

  9. We may be fucked, but we've always been fucked.  The movie industry is fucked because it's full of people who love money and have no literary imagination.  The same is true of most of the indie film world.  Try finding someone who could pass World Literature 101, Film Studies 101 and Art History 101.

    And we're all surfeited on fictions, to the point where fiction, and language itself, can no longer convey information.  That leaves instruction manuals  and people pointing out that the lady who's staring into the fishbowl has clipped skintones.  And by now it's an undergraduate commonplace, but no less true, that art is not possible in a culture where everything is aesthetisized. Ads on buses, music in elevators, every sales pitch a vile story.  There will be no 9th symphonies in a world drowning in jingles.

    So forget your unmade and unmakeable movies and party on.  Nobody cares anyway.

  10. 20 hours ago, pixelpreaching said:

    there is undeniably a democratization happening with streaming.

    First of all, I don't think Amazon (or other streaming services) are actually financing the smaller movies you're citing....  Unless you have access to sums of money far beyond anyone's personal resources, it's a life of fund-raising, not filmmaking.  The U.S. in particular lacks what could be reasonably described as an "art house tradition" (the typical Sundance movie is a Hollywood movie with commercial value removed.  "Quirky", indeed!) and there's no tradition of funding it philanthropically.

    As for "democratization", it's more a freedom to disappear and starve.  Netflix has long been known as the graveyard of independent film.   It's not a viable production model, unless you persuade them to finance you.

  11. Oh, come on.  The empty and grandiose filmmaking of Nolan and Tarantino helped bury cinema long before streaming.    Essential human drama?  Please.

    VHS cassettes, unsocialized audience members and multiplexes killed the "theatrical experience" for most thoughtful adults, years ago.  The Hitchcock ideal of 2000 people coming to the Church of Cinema once or twice a month was dead before he was.  

    There are people now who see more drama in a day than most of humanity did in a lifetime.  No form of art or entertainment can survive that much accessibility.  These days, everything is a passing diversion.  King Lear or reruns of Two and A Half Men, it's all the same.

  12. 1 hour ago, Jonesy Jones said:

    Someone once said of Trump. The right takes Trump seriously, but not literally. The left takes Trump literally, but not seriously. 

    Add to that the fact that it doesn’t matter at all what he says. The liberal media takes everything he says and spins and distorts it. Ironically, the liberal media is behaving just like Trump. Maybe we should take them seriously but not literally. :)

    Bro, if what Trump says can't be taken literally, than nothing he says can be believed.  See the problem, for the so-called leader of the free world?  What's fine for talk-show hosts, TV personalities and wrestling  buffoons doesn't work so well in the White House.

    And "liberal media"?  Grow up!  You really think Comcast and Disney are funding pinko-liberalism or a Marxist revolution?  Even the explicit "liberal" advocacy found in places like MSNBC represents the corporate wing of the Democratic party.  If Rachel Madow started advocating a Bernie Sanders program, she'd be fired in a day.

  13. 16 minutes ago, Andrew Reid said:

    If he's impeached and no longer President, can he be charged then (in criminal courts)?

    Yes.  He's fair game, and could end up in jail, though there's a statute of limitations which he can run out on at least some charges if he's in office long enough. 

    Civil charges are almost certain, New York State is already working on it, but whether he ends up facing criminal charges in state or Federal courts remains to be seen.  It comes down to whether they'll have the cojones to do it, for an ex-president and his age.  This is one reason he'll do anything to get re-elected.

  14. 44 minutes ago, Video Hummus said:

    It’s not a judicial setting and why I think impeachment, as laid out in the constitution, is fundamentally broken.

    And to add, for the non-Americans, and poorly informed Americans, the Trump administration is withholding evidence and preventing key officials from testifying.  The House could, in theory, imprison Trump administration officials who don't show up, but that would precipitate a crisis, which they're not willing to test, for the simple  reason that nobody knows what will happen when Trump flat out refuses to obey the law or leave office.

    The actual "trial" takes place in the Senate, should the House vote to impeach, but it's not a trial in the usual sense.  None of this is.  It's a political process, because according to some in the Justice Department (it's not settled law) the president can't be charged criminally while in office.  Otherwise, Trump would  likely already have been charged with bribery, extortion, tax fraud, perjury, obstruction of justice and violation of election laws.  There's also a distinct possibility he could be charged with treason, though it's unlikely such charges would be brought, for political reasons.

  15. 34 minutes ago, Jonesy Jones said:

    I don’t need the aggravation. See how easy that is? I’m gonna have a great day. If libs could just do that with Trump it would work wonders.

    I know it's hard to understand, but good government and the difference between reality and make believe is actually still important to some people.  Not to Trumpers, as you've made clear, but you really do need to make more allowances for people who still read and think.

  16. Guys, you don't understand what's required.  Here's the painting which was purchased by Trump's charity(!), for one of Trump's golf resorts.  You know, the charity which raised money to support veterans.  But bought portraits of Donald instead.  To hang on the walls of Trump resorts.  Now *that's* world-class color correction:







  17. 2 hours ago, Jonesy Jones said:

    Trump plays liberals like a fiddle. Both sad and hilarious at the same time.

    You might want to read "The Paranoid Style in American Politics", for a useful description of Trump's style of politics, and that of the Republican party.  Or for a more modern update, consider the views of two "fellows" of the American Enterprise Institute -- a right-wing think tank -- who explained what the Republicans were as of 2012:

    "The GOP has become an insurgent outlier in American politics. It is ideologically extreme; scornful of compromise; unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition."

    But I know that's music to you!  Just the chattering of libtards, right?  What global warming?  It's cold outside!  And so what if the poorest and most backward areas of country -- the ones which receive far more Federal dollars than they put in, thanks to the much richer liberal states -- are the big Trump supporters?  That just proves they're virtuous!   

    Thing is, while we don't mind paying your bills (there's nothing wrong with "welfare"), it's galling to be told that we're the ones who love the nanny state, when it's the American south, Trump country, which is on the government tit.  Then again, if you believe Obama was born in Kenya and the famous server is in Ukraine, you may have difficulty distinguishing credits from debits.  Or maintaining any notion of "good government" or a decent civil society.  Ah, Jonesy....  This fantasy world of yours.  You might want to try Guatemala  or Nigeria, if you hate big government.  And take your camera!  They love log footage in hot libertarian paradises.  

  18. Do you guys really propose to assess a camera's "color science" by referencing one highly stylized and heavily color corrected beauty shot, at a complete remove from the naturalistic norms of modern-day dramatic cinematography?

    And what's the ideal?  Accurate color or stylized color?

     By tomorrow morning, the forums will be full of people insisting that the S1H is as good as the Red Dragon and the skin tones on the BMPCC 4K are crap.  I read it on the internet.....

  19. On 11/2/2019 at 11:10 AM, deezid said:

    That was my Lut for the Pocket 4K which for some reason is quite close to a V709 conversion which I used on the S1 clip. 

    AlexaX-2, IPP2 Rec709, V709 and probably other Rec709 compatible conversions have many things in common:

    • Great color definition
    • Great tonality
    • No or a very light color cast
    • Smooth roll-off
    • Even colorful lights are rolled off properly

    The standard BMD V4 Extended conversion on the Pocket 4K at least looks entirely different. And inside ACES the camera performs even worse.
    Tried to make P4K samples (around 100) look like corrected using my Lut but can only come relatively close. Can't really match it entirely, since there are too many hurdles to begin with.

    Maybe if I invest more time into developing it...

    I don't count myself either sufficiently skilled or so incapable as to want or to need to invent my own color grading workflow.  I figure that the BMD engineers, camera and Resolve, probably have it over on me there.  Namely, that the LUTs and transforms specific to the camera will take the footage into the correct color space, and the rest is up to me.  I don't expect the transform to make the image look good or balanced, or to roll-off highlights in some specific or pleasing way.  That would be up to the colorist. You know, lift gamma gain.   If there is no supplied camera transform, as is the case currently with ACEs/BMPCC 4K/6k, the obvious choice would be, don't use ACEs.  Or substitute another transform and take your chances.

    Which brings us back to your claims about the poor "color science" of the BMPCC 4k/6K and the vastly superior "color science" of the S1H.  Using a common workflow, in this case RCM, I didn''t see that great divide in the two clips previously supplied, and you haven't provided any samples of your own to persuade anyone otherwise.  

    So do we see it, or don't we?

  20. On 10/29/2019 at 3:33 PM, Mike Mgee said:

    @deezid Ill pay some good $$ if you make a comparison video of your lord and savior S1H vs the doooki train bmpcc4k. I wanna believe the hype.

    Here's Mr. Deezid's grade -- or something or other, no idea why he offered the shot here as he does  -- of an S1 v. BMPCC 4K shot, kindly provided by another participant.  See that brown potato quality of the BMPCC 4K  and the wonderfully "organic" quality of the S1?




    You can find my own basic adjustment (not grade!) of these two shots a few post down in that S1 thread.  Still no sign of  brown potatoes v. organic wonders, but maybe that's because, unlike some here, I'm not a professional colorist?

  21. 12 minutes ago, deezid said:

    A very specific one: The make @helium mad game, duh.

    You have made *one* valuable contribution here:  reminding everyone, once again, how silly it is to take seriously the "technical" arguments of people who don't know what they're talking about.

    Then again, you're all over the web, spreading disinformation wherever you go, so it's kinda hard to ignore, duh.  But I'll certainly try, from this point out.

  22. 22 hours ago, deezid said:

    Film can resolve more detail than modern 4K cameras are able to, especially native 4K sensors. But keep going...

    When shooting Braw and cDNG on the Pocket 4K, 6K, UMP, URSA G2 etc... Davinci Resolve applies its own transformation (IDT) for BMD Film V4. Even worse BMD doesn't provide any documentation nor any proper IDT so it can be integrated into Baselight, OCIO, Nuke etc. don't you think? 

    Color science is another factor. It's just not good. It's quite bad actually and horrible to deal with. I'm a colorist myself and even prefer the GH5 over it - which has many other flaws and reasons why it hasn't been considered by Netflix. 

    Only the Ursa Mini Pro and G2 provide good color science in case you prefer shooting with BMD cameras. Great tonality and definition but are still plagued by the infamous red channel clipping issue.

    Premiere can be forced to higher bitdepth decoding but still crawls and shifts color around and doesn't have any color management. But maybe you like that. Idk?


    1) who said a word about the resolution of film negative?  The issue is, the resolution available in film release prints with typical theatrical exhibition.   Do you not listen or is this some sort of baiting attempt? 

    And, really, you don't need any measurements to know how little actual resolution is present in release prints.    Nobody, and I mean nobody, sees as much detail in a movie theater with a 35mm release print, as she does watching a bluray at home.  Maybe you've never actually seen a film print?

    2) yes, BMD converts braw/cndg to log or other color space format, inside Resolve.  And how else?  If the system doesn't debayer and convert to a color space, there won't be anything to look at.  The issue with ACEs is, the lack of an input color space transform for the BMPCC 4K/6k, which is supplied (for example) with Resolve Color Management.  Whether this is decisive in your case, accounting for your strange preferences (GH5??), nobody can say.   Your fling out these charges, which change from week to week, and who knows what it's all based on?  Whether BMD provides documentation is beside the point.  And with its supposedly "potato" color science, who cares?  Why do you even want it?

    3) okay, so now there are *new* charges against Premiere, your original one having been discredited above.  I don't care -- no Premiere user here -- but does this never stop?  Every week, something else to dismiss as crap?  Is this some sort of game?

  23. How about we just cut to the bone?  Let's see the terrible color science of the BMPPC 4k/6K, versus the sterling results you're getting from the S1H.  And, maybe post your best grade of the S1H material -- something for BMPCC 4K/6k loyalists here, if any, to try to equal,

    All that's needed is two identical log shots, both exposed more or less equivalently, at their nominal native ISOs.  It sounds like you've got access to both cameras, and it can't be any more time consuming than contributing to this forum.  And might actually lead to something useful.

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