Deliverance day for night

(hey, Warner Bros… I do not claim ownership of the pictures presented here. I present them as part of an analysis/review of a particular scene and I recommend that readers buy the blu-ray because it’s a terrific film!)

Ok. This one’s a bit unusual for me as I usually don’t put stuff like this on the site.

But… So I put my bluray of Deliverance into the home cinema system and everything was fine and dandy (as fine and dandy as a film with like this can be) …

then holy moly…

When Jon Voigt does his treck up the mountain I was treated with probably The Worst digital day-for-night treatment I have ever seen in a Hollywood picture! Goddamn this was rough on the eyes…

Have you seen that weird Godzilla film where some Italians put colored filters over the first Godzilla film and called it colorized? (click this underlined text to see a great video about that weird piece of film history) That is basically what happened to Deliverance for a few minutes. In the interest of fairness, the images are pulled straight out of the bluray captured using the only freeware bluray player.

Oh, and on a side-note, I figured out why the lightbox didn’t work… it was the Gutenberg plugin that was acting up. So now you can click on the images for a better view of the visual atrocities.

(The apparent inspiration for the colorist who worked on the Deliverance remaster…)

It starts off with water… with weird black specular highlights:

I understand the thinking behind most of these things. You want it darker but the highlights betrays the illusion. So you pull a simple luma-key and and just pull those pixels down to the darker values. But doing it like this makes it really obvious

Next example isn’t as much of an eye-sore. But the effect is kind of obvious. a simple luma-key here like the last shot and trying to regain some of the branches you fudge around and get this shot. Which makes it look… ok. I’m not saying decent but it could be worse, I think. It just has that embossed solarized feel. Like an old film simulating a nuclear blast or trying to be psychedelic. But I doubt that was the goal.

Then we have this one where Jon Voigts face seem to be afflicted with a weird symbiot disease. Again. It’s the specular highlights throwing things off. and it’s infinitely weirder-looking in motion.

Now here we have a weird mushing of the colors of the water below. Again. it looks almost psychedelic. But mostly just low-contrast muddy.

Then we have stuff where Jon is sticking his hand out into the power-window. Nothing about this looks natural.

And… wow… uhm… I was talking about psychedelic earlier… now his hair looks like he smeared it with substances that would raise eyebrows at MK-Ultra studies.

And this is probably my favourite. Jon Voigt practically dissapearing into the mucky darkened sky. No details preserved. No nothing.

And here we are presented with a vista from a lost Planet of the Apes – film for some reason?

And in these three he once again leans in and out of the obvious power-window that is supposed to darken the background.

And finally my other favorite… John Voigts face just straight up disappears as he leans over… just disappears…

For those that saw this back in the day… was it a simple old timey blue-filter? Because I doubt that would look as bad as what’s on the bluray…

I mean. it doesn’t have to look as great as in Mad Max: Fury Road. But I do expect a little bit more care to be put into a day-for-night sequence for a classic like Deliverance.

Anyways…

be seeing you!

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