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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Lord of the Rings: 4K vs Blu-ray differences & reviews: Edit Log


Aug 31 2021, 9:51am

Views: 2583
4K vs Blu-ray differences & reviews

There are a number of these comparison videos online showing the differences between the 4K and Blu-ray versions of the films. Do be aware that without a 4K HDR display the colours in these videos may not be accurate...

The Hobbit
AUJ - https://youtu.be/isU7TTgmwa4 DoS - https://youtu.be/TVtOr5n6IDg BotFA - https://youtu.be/yqjfE5sLpYg

The Lord of the Rings
FotR - https://youtu.be/kJ-sTKBmPwE TTT - https://youtu.be/7II4mqnfnlg RotK - https://youtu.be/Acu5DDE7WQs

Overall, the colours seem much more natural and less filtered, especially when compared to the awful green-tinted FotR EE. DoS seems to get the biggest adjustment, particularly the Smaug scenes, and there's a very strange choice to turn one sequence black-and-white in TTT, which is clearly a creative decision and will be personal preference.

But there's also some fairly bad news here. First, they have applied noise-reduction to remove the natural film-grain on LotR. This could be to create a consistency with The Hobbit's digital look, but I have a theory that it was actually done in order to better blend the green-screened and CGI elements to their environments.

Some might prefer the cleaner, grain-free look. But the removal process can soften the image and make things look less detailed and less textured or tactile, or less nostalgic.

What I really want to talk about

Here's the problem I really want to bring to people's attention -


It seems that due to the DNR, or some other process, the 4K versions have some strange artefacts and issues, such as Gandalf's staff disappearing for a few frames and Shadowfax's ear floating from his head.

This is concerning as it implies that the process was done somewhat automatically, rather than by eye (as a human wouldn't make these mistakes), and we don't know what other tiny problems like this might exist. They are strange occurrences that I've not seen before and would usually associate with motion-interpolation (creating fake frames to smooth out the 24fps) I don't see why they would do that here, though?

I wonder if the person responsible for there screen-grabs was using some sort of motion-interpolation and these issues don't actually exist on the discs? If anyone's able to confirm them that would be great.

Despite the issues, these are by far the best-looking versions available to date. No format is perfect, and the problems mentioned here are relatively minor. For those on the fence - the HDR alone is more than worth the upgrade and the many benefits of 4K do outweigh these little nit-picks by a significant amount.

(This post was edited by AshNazg on Aug 31 2021, 9:54am)

Edit Log:
Post edited by AshNazg (Gondor) on Aug 31 2021, 9:54am

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