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Old July 15th, 2004, 01:21 PM   #16
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"With proper presentation?" Not so sure I agree with you on
this, that this is necessary. And Ian, you're not the average
viewer that I think Glen was referring to. For one, Joe Blow
wouldn't be on these forums discussing this subject.
And you say you've watched a thousand movies!
But I am glad I ran across Glen's list here because I'm
constantly wrestling with these issues myself in my own work that I put out to the public. To be honest, I wish I really knew *for sure* how the average viewer reacts to the various items on Glen's list. I'm affiliated with an organization of professionals
in the video industry where some of them will submit their
latest works for "critique" before they are released to the
public. I, myself, don't submit for peer review because
the work I'm producing is not made *for* my peers but rather is
for the general public. I just don't trust that the things
video professionals would notice are the same things
the general public would notice.
Anyone else have any opinions on the items in Glen's list --
and not from your technically savvy position -- but what or what
not would Joe Blow notice?
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Old July 15th, 2004, 02:14 PM   #17
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Here's another thought to ponder. I'm sure many of you are familiar with the quote "The medium is the message" -Marshall Mcluhan. The idea that Mcluhan wrote extensively about is that it's not so much WHAT is said (content) but HOW it's said (appearance) and through what medium (ie tv, radio, film).

From this angle one could argue that content is LESS important than production value. Summer blockbusters are a good example of this. How many movies have you seen that use explosions and sex in place of an actual plot? Hollywood is putting visuals above content. What about advertising? Where is the content in that? Why, if you are selling toothpaste, would you show a half-naked girl draped over an elephant? Because! It's not WHAT is said, it's HOW it's said.

I used to work as an editor for a TV station. I can't tell you how many times I had to take some content-less video and dress it up so it looked like something.

I'm not trying to say forget all about content. Enlightened individuals like ourselves know content when we see it. In fact most of us probably prefer content over style. But keep in mind that video/film is a visual medium. You aren't just communicating "toothpaste" by showing a tube of toothpaste on the TV screen. Every thing about that picture communicates too. The color, the composition, the music, the lighting YES EVEN THE FRAMERATE!!

Today's audiences have grown up with television and movies. I think they are a lot more savvy about production value then we give them credit for. If it looks slick, they'll think it's slick. Even if the content is full of holes. If it's chalked full of content but doesn't visually stimulate them, they'll turn it off.

Not saying this is a good thing. It's just the way it is. IMO
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Old July 15th, 2004, 04:00 PM   #18
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According to psychology, people can only notice so many things at once. A quick proof of this is to visit the following website and see if you can spot the real penny out of 16 drawings.

http://www.dcity.org/braingames/pennies/

You probably can't pick out the real one since you never paid attention to all the details on the penny.

In the same way, I'm guessing that normal viewers don't notice all aspects of an image. They probably aren't paying attention to the stairstepping on the buildings in the background, inaccuracies of their TV set (excessive contrast, excessive saturation, inaccurate color, white balance that's off), continuity errors, etc.

If the majority of your audience don't notice minor technical flaws/differences (i.e. 24p vs 30p) then I wouldn't bother with them.

Quote:
From this angle one could argue that content is LESS important than production value. Summer blockbusters are a good example of this. How many movies have you seen that use explosions and sex in place of an actual plot? Hollywood is putting visuals above content. What about advertising? Where is the content in that? Why, if you are selling toothpaste, would you show a half-naked girl draped over an elephant? Because! It's not WHAT is said, it's HOW it's said.
I would consider sex appeal to fall under content.

As for explosions and special effects, usually those things do not make that significant a difference at the box office. Content plays a bigger factor than the production values of a movie. Movies like Gozilla and Final Fantasy may have good production values but their content was bad and those movies didn't do so well at the box office.
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Old July 15th, 2004, 05:30 PM   #19
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"According to psychology, people can only notice so many things at once. A quick proof of this is to visit the following website and see if you can spot the real penny out of 16 drawings."

Two points.

All the penny test proves is that most people don't commit the configuration of coin engravings to memory.

And, as for only being able to "notice so many things at once," I would argue that what people "notice" (i.e., consciously perceive) is not very much as significant as what they perceive subconsciously, and it hasn't been very well established whether frame rate is one of those things. Roger Ebert infamously posited at Cannes in 1999, on shaky scientific grounds, that the slower frame rate of film puts viewers of projected films into a different sort of trance than television and digital projection. While Ebert may not have had an evidential leg to stand on, the core of his argument might yet be elaborated by studies in progress: humans may indeed recognize and respond differently to different frame rates on some subconscious level.
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Old July 15th, 2004, 06:25 PM   #20
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Exactly Robert!

That's what I mean by presentation, the creation of subtle image clues that elicate a subconcious response. I also guess it depends on the audience you make your projects for. Since this discussion is about 24p then your audience is a film audience (again, this is the point for 24p existing). The human mind is constantly picking up subtle cues from the environment that get processed on many different subconcious levels and all these cues cause subtle responses. In turn movies can do much the same. If not then every movie should be made on a hundred dollar handycam and it wouldn't matter.

Reiterating I think the movie going audience is far more savy than anyone's giving them credit for. i go with friends that don't care about film art but they notice when there's a slip up in imagery, if something doesn't look real, if a mic drops into the frame, if the sound sucks... it's all part of the experience of watching movies.

People might not now why a movie made them feel good or disturbed them but content and image can't totally be seperated in fictional work. Imagine "Ghost World" shot like a noir, it wouldn't work, or "Fight Club" shot in comic book primaries. Actually that strangely might work for "Fight Club" but it would be a very different movie if it was shot scene for scene but with a bright happy color pallet.

I guess what I'm saying is if the same image in an A/B comparison can look more clear, better get across what you want to say and is more enjoyable to watch then it's not a waste of time. If it is then we, and anyone who ever picked up a camera, have wasted a whole crap-load of time.
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Old July 15th, 2004, 09:23 PM   #21
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Jesse--very good post but I think I am going to disagree on your statement that at one time the major 3rd sounded harsh to the Monks ears--In fact the major 3rd probably would probaby have sounded very nice to them--but remember their milleau and the purpose of chant. I vaguely remember reading recently that some scientist had done some study that showed why atonal music had never attracted a large audience---It had something to do with the way we are hard wired---Anyway, interesting discussion--only in DV Info Net.
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Old July 15th, 2004, 09:57 PM   #22
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"Enlightened individuals like ourselves know content when we see it. In fact most of us probably prefer content over style"

Jesse, I agree with most of what you said, but this leads to a slippery slope.

(excuse me if I derail the conversation for one second)

I think that it's exactly that mentality that has led us to the vapid
summer blockbusters you mention. This idea that "most of us"
prefer content over style, but it is the uneducated and
unelightened masses that demand the explosions and the
spectacle. This leads to two things, it makes directors lazy, and it
makes them feel superior to their audience. Neither is going to
lead to a good film.

I firmly believe that given the choice between spectacle and
genuine content, most audiences will flock to genuine content.
If that's what I prefer, I have to believe that is what the audience
will prefer... and the audience is always smarter than we are.
(at least I know they are smarter than me).

To say that we are simply giving people what they want is just
a way for directors to wash their hands of halfhearted films that
never should have been made. I know that isn't what you were
getting at in your post, and I"m not trying to put words in your
mouth at all. I just felt it was worth discussing a little bit seeing
as I agreed with most of what you wrote.... then realized where
it led me.

I know this was a bit of an off topic rambling...sorry about that.

For what it's worth, 24p makes a huge difference to me.
:)

-Luis
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Old July 15th, 2004, 10:27 PM   #23
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Anyone want to go see that big hit movie "Dodge Ball"?
I heard it's doing quite well at the theaters.
The advertising slogan, if I'm not mistaken, is: "If you
can throw a wrench, you can throw a ball".
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Old July 15th, 2004, 10:48 PM   #24
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I haven't seen the movie, so I can't comment on it specifically,
but I'll just point out that no one said 'content' meant that a
movie had to be serious.

-Luis

PS.
actually the tag line is:

Grab Life by the Ball.
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Old July 15th, 2004, 11:51 PM   #25
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David-

Well, I couldn't find any info to back up my "major 3rd" argument on the Net, and I don't want to fish through old text books. So take that argument with a grain of salt :)

Yes, there is a scientific reason why we like the major third scale degree. It is a natural harmonic. If you play any low note on the piano and listen carefully, you can hear different "harmonics" which is the note vibrating 2x as fast/3x as fast/ etc. The major 3rd is one of these notes.

Along the same lines... I wonder if there is a scientific/natural reason why we might prefer one frame rate over another? I've heard that 60i is more like how our vision actually works. Perhaps this is why video has "real" feel to it. Anyone have any scientific/physiological info on this?

To all: I'm not dogmatic at all about this subject. Just trying to stimulate different thoughts and perspectives.

- jes
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Old July 16th, 2004, 08:14 AM   #26
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Here's a quote I found:

"'Between 6:30 and 7 p.m. on December 16, 1997, as if struck down by a biblical plague, at least 600 Japanese children
simultaneously became ill. Some vomited, others had seizures; a
few stopped breathing for a while. All had been watching an
episode of the animated series Pokémon, and all had seen a bomb
explode on the screen, followed by a succession of colors that
pulsed on and off at about 12 flashes a second. '

the above is a partial quote from the current issue of Discover
magazine, book reviews section, available on the web at
http://discover.com/search/index.html.

The article also describes that 12fps is identical to the brain's
alpha-wave frequency.

It's interesting that 6fps, which has enjoyed a vogue for
presentation of several years, is a subharmonic of the alpha
frequency. And that 24fps is a first harmonic"

Unfortunately the links outdated but obviously the article exists somwhere.
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Old July 16th, 2004, 08:59 AM   #27
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"To all: I'm not dogmatic at all about this subject. Just trying to stimulate different thoughts and perspectives."

Same goes for me.
:)


Ian, that's a fascinating connection.
Although, I'm not exactly sure how fascinating it is seeing as I don't really know what the brain's "alpha waves" are.

Could someone explain 'alpha waves'?

Right now it sounds like some sort of pseudo science buzzword
they would have tossed around on Star Trek.

:)

-Luis


ps.
no offense to any Star Trek fans out there.
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Old July 16th, 2004, 11:06 AM   #28
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Here's an explanation from crossroads institute:

"Alpha (8-12 Hz)

Alpha waves are those between 7.5 and 13(Hz). Alpha waves will peak around 10Hz. Good healthy alpha production promotes mental resourcefulness, aids in the ability to mentally coordinate, enhances overall sense of relaxation and fatigue. In this state you can move quickly and efficiently to accomplish whatever task is at hand. When Alpha predominates most people feel at ease and calm. Alpha appears to bridge the conscious to the subconscious.

It is the major rhythm seen in normal relaxed adults - it is present during most of life especially beyond the thirteenth year when it dominates the resting tracing.

Alpha rhythms are reported to be derived from the white matter of the brain. The white matter can be considered the part of the brain that connects all parts with each other.

Alpha is a common state for the brain and occurs whenever a person is alert (it is a marker for alertness and sleep), but not actively processing information. They are strongest over the occipital (back of the head) cortex and also over frontal cortex.

Alpha has been linked to extroversion (introverts show less), creativity (creative subjects show alpha when listening and coming to a solution for creative problems), and mental work.

When your alpha is with in normal ranges we tend to also experience good moods, see the world truthfully, and have a sense of calmness. Alpha is one of the brain's most important frequency to learn and use information taught in the classroom and on the job.

You can increase alpha by closing your eyes or deep breathing or decrease alpha by thinking or calculating.

Alpha-Theta training can create an increase in sensation, abstract thinking and self-control."

Also another from EMedicine.com:

"Most waves range from 0.5-500 Hz, but most clinical EEGs are performed on paper-writing machines with upper ranges of 20-40 Hz.


Alpha waves - 8-13 Hz

Beta waves - Greater than 13 Hz

Theta waves - 3.5-7.5 Hz

Delta waves - 3 Hz or less
Alpha waves (see Picture 1)


Alpha waves generally are seen in all age groups but are most common in adults.

They occur rhythmically on both sides of the head but are often slightly higher in amplitude on the nondominant side, especially in right-handed individuals.

They tend to be present posteriorly more than anteriorly and are especially prominent with closed eyes and with relaxation.

Alpha activity disappears normally with attention (eg, mental arithmetic, stress, opening eyes). In most instances, it is regarded as a normal waveform.

An abnormal exception is alpha coma, most often caused by hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy of destructive processes in the pons (eg, intracerebral hemorrhage). In alpha coma, alpha waves are distributed uniformly both anteriorly and posteriorly in these patients, who are unresponsive to stimuli."

Hope that helps. Seeing as I'm at work I can't research it to much more at the moment.
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Old July 16th, 2004, 11:25 AM   #29
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"Alpha appears to bridge the conscious to the subconscious."

Well, that's an interesting angle from which to see the rhythm of 24 frames per second.

Of course, we may be reading too much into this seeing as as far as I understood it, 24fps was arrived at by virtue of being the slowest frame rate that can still effectively be used for sync sound.

Interesting none the less.

Thanks for the insights Ian.

-Luis
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Old July 16th, 2004, 11:53 AM   #30
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It's my understanding that 24fps also came from the fact that it takes 50 images a second so as to not notice a flicker from a shutter. Silents used 16fps with a three-bladed shutter achieving in effect 48 images flashed at the eye per second. Later 24fps with a two-blade shutter was decided upon to achieve the same 48 flashes. I don't know for sure, just read that somewhere. The same article concludes that persistence of vision (coined by a movie guy) doesn't exist as is normally described and isn't the mechanism behind why we see continuity in film. I'll try to find that article.
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