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The Aluminum Falcon

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Evil Dead II (Sam Raimi, 1987) - 35mm Scan opportunity!

I know this is a pretty popular title, so hope there are some Deadites around these parts! 😃

I have a source that would let us rent and scan a 35mm German print for only $450! The scan would be open matte (though a proper 1.85 video file could be made later), and the print is confirmed to have good color.

My source has preserved other films before, from Disney titles to Hitchcock movies in great quality.

Just to be transparent about how funds will be used:

$200 - Print Rental
$250 - Scanning and Shipping

If you want to get a feel of how Evil Dead 2 looks in 35mm, check out the trailer here:

The specific print we are using is in German but there are no subtitles. Unfortunate news is that it would be slightly censored. You can look up details here.

I’ve contacted a few people here by PM, and we’ve already got some pledges (including my own).

PLEDGES ($362/$450 - 80% FUNDED!)

The Aluminum Falcon - $50
Dek Rollins - $20
FunkySi - $20
SpookyDollhouse - $20
3Maters - $15
FilmD00d - $10
GryFun - $20
Lil Brutto - $25
NeonBible - $20
dvdmike - $20
bronan - $20
EPho3nix - $50
KillThad - $20
Venny - $10
TR2N - $22
exile81 - $20

Seeing as how the print is censored, if anyone wants to adjust their pledge, please just let me know by PM and I’ll adjust accordingly (no hard feelings).

PS. I understand there’s another initiative for Evil Dead II on This is a separate project. Funds for this project will be used exclusively for rental and scanning, so we don’t need to buy a print if we go for this option.

Possession (Andrzej Zulawski, 1981) - 35mm Scan opportunity

Hey everyone! Have a very exciting 35mm scanning opportunity - POSSESSION (1981). A film collector is liquidating his collection, so we can buy this for quite cheap.

As someone who’s seen the film on 35mm, I can personally attest to the fact that Possession has a very distinctive blue/glowy look theatrically. The existing BD transfers are pretty nice scans (albeit lower-contrast, coming from the OCN), but, as a massive fanboy of the movie, I can’t pass on this.

Happy to announce that this is the uncut European version of Possession. Specifically, it’s an Italian print, so we wouldn’t need to worry about the bizarre, truncated US cut.

To get this project to donators, we only need $460!

Buying Print - $90
Scanning - $300
Shipping - $60

I’m not 100% on shipping, but it might be cheaper. Off the bat, I’m willing to buy the print and pay (at least partially for shipping to the scanner), so I’ll put down a donation of $130 for now.

PLEDGES ($200/$460 - 44% funded)

The Aluminum Falcon - $130
SimonM99 - $20
Evit’s friend - $25
Evit - $20
pavemental- $5

PM me if you’re interested!

The Outsiders (1983) Servanov Theatrical HD Reconstruction (Released)

Hey Servanov, can confirm that the version from Amazon is indeed the theatrical cut. Played it side by side with your reconstruction from and was nearly identical, minus a few frame slips here or there.

Still, your preservation is definitely interesting since it uses the laserdisc audio, which is likelier higher quality.

The Amazon version is definitely a unique transfer. It’s genuinely HD and has different color timing with night scenes having more of an overall blue cast. I wondered if it was the same transfer as the DVD, but it’s got unique film damage.

Since the reconstruction largely uses the BD, it reflects that color timing.

Last web series/tv show seen

Finally watched Breaking Bad, only about a decade too late. Gonna drop a few spoilers, just so you know… Have a really weird opinion, which was that it more or less lost its way after Season 2. When Walt’s cancer went into remission, I more or less thought the show’s premise “man with cancer makes drugs to help his family” had run its course.

Crazy, right?

In a nutshell, I think my issue was that I thought Walter White’s transformation from “Mr. Chips” to “Scarface” was pretty much done by the end of Season 2. Him letting Jane die was pretty climactic. By the end of that season, his family had left him, and his cancer was no longer an issue… The fact that he stayed in the meth business pretty definitively concluded that he was now solely doing it for selfish, egotistical reasons. In other words, the central questions about Walter White’s motivations and morality were answered, essentially fulfilling the premise of the show to its inevitable end.

Season 3-Season 5 did have a lot of colorful supporting characters like the Terminator twins. But, to me, the show became less about engaging character arcs and more about shock imagery, from a parking lot shoot out to a man with his face completely blown off to a machine gun in a car to a pool of poisoned cartel leaders in Mexico to a supporting character getting shot in the face.

Now, don’t get me wrong: a lot of that imagery was genuinely memorable/cool/iconic/awesome, but the show lost that black comedic edge married with intricate character work, descending head first instead into its more violent aspects. That said, totally understand that pretty much everyone will disagree here: every best of Breaking Bad list that I can find seems to think that the finest episodes came in the last season, during which I was frankly pretty bored.

Still, Bryan Cranston, as Walter White, is one of the great performances, and he sells every second, even after Walter White has already concluded his transformation into Heisenberg. But, Skyler, I thought, was pretty insufferable, and I’m not the biggest Hank or Marie fan either. Now, don’t get me wrong: I really loved Gus, Mike, and Saul Goodman, but they don’t really change all that much. They’re put to much better use elsewhere, which leads me to…

Better Call Saul is a perfect show. Cinematography, directing, writing, acting, everything. No complaints.

Look forward to the remaining seasons.

Doctor Who

^Same Handman. He’s a really stellar performer, and I’m afraid that the writing has never matched the calibre of his talents.

Personally, I didn’t like this year’s Christmas special at all.

spoilers ahead

It was full of the types of bizarre, convoluted choices that Moffat seems to indulge in… (1) What was the purpose of having “fake” versions of the companions come back through Testimony? It just seemed dramatically unsatisfying, especially considering Bill didn’t actually die! (2) Furthermore, the First Doctor was more or less just used for jokes about how the show has progressed but not much more… (3) Returning to Rusty, that Dalek from that all right episode at the beginning of Capaldi’s run seems like a weird detour. (4) What was the purpose of connecting The Captain to the Brigadier? I understand fan service, but really, this comes out of nowhere… and the character hasn’t been regularly on-air since the 70s. (5) Lastly, the ending for the WW1 soldier seemed to come out of absolutely nowhere; I don’t recall them even acknowledging that it was Christmastime beforehand.

That being said, I really liked the first two seasons of Moffat’s run (Series 5 and 6). They felt fresh with a whimsy, fairy tale aspect that the previous seasons lacked. They were also grounded with a set of characters: Rory, Amy, and River that we actually gave a damn about.

But it seems like after that, he dabbled far too much into fan service and convoluted time travel shenanigans. Doctor Who seems to have gotten so muddled in its own continuity that I don’t dare think what it might be like for a first time viewer to try the series out now. What, for example, would a new viewer think about the Brigadier reference in this episode? It’s just a weird, unnecessary callback. More crucially, ll the fake-out regenerations in the past few seasons just undermine dramatic tension; we don’t want to be hyper-aware of the fact that the Doctor can always regenerate himself out of trouble. This, of course, doesn’t mean there aren’t occasional gems… Heaven Sent is extraordinary, but, for every one of those, you have a Robin Hood episode.

Overall, these problems would have been more acceptable if you had better characters to latch onto. Bill was great, but Clara certainly was not. Say what you want (I think Jenna Coleman is a fine performer), but her character has a different personality each season! It’s hard to get emotionally involved, and, indeed I didn’t when she showed up (ala Amy Pond) in Capaldi’s swansong.

I think The End of Time, The Time of the Doctor, and, certainly, The Parting of the Ways were all superior to this.

Last movie seen

Wonder Woman (2017)- Who would have suspected that DC would finally get it right with their fourth movie? Great stuff here - a charismatic leading lady, a colorful supporting cast, a touching love story, and a well-developed screenplay with gasp clear structure and actual set-ups and pay-offs despite the occasional cringey dialogue.

It was also not to see a superhero film, which isn’t Disney-fied (read: everyone joking all the time, faceless bad guys, endless actions, no real developed dialogue scenes, and characters with love interests but no sexuality). Here’s a movie instead in the tradition of Raimi’s first two Spider-Man films, Iron Man, Batman Begins, Logan, and, perhaps most pertinently, Superman '78.

I think it’s the best superhero film in recent memory and keep in mind, I walked in expecting that I’d probably hate it. Go check it out (for the record, my critique of this being an excellent movie has nothing to do with it ALSO being the first female superhero film, directed by a female).

Ranking the Alien films

My cents, in terms of different cuts of the Alien films:

Alien (1979) - Theatrical cut, hands down. Even Ridley Scott prefers it.

Aliens (1986) - Theatrical cut is better paced but is missing crucial scene of Ripley finding out about her daughter. Special Edition severely suffers in pacing because it throws in material that Fox cut for time, as well as additional deleted scenes. The Fox TV cut, which has some but not all special edition material (thankfully omitting the shake-and-bake colony scene), likely resembles the cut that Cameron originally wanted to release in 1986.

This cut can be assembled by playing with the seamless branching on the BD. Also, I believe a preservation of it might be coming eventually.

Alien 3 (1992) - Assembly Cut almost feels like a different movie from the theatrical cut with far more character beats and an intriguing subplot. Ideally, however, the perfect cut would resemble the workprint more (no mysterious egg on the Sulaco, theatrical crash, no basement scene, etc.).

Alien: Resurrection (1997) - Theatrical cut wins again. Special Edition is just an oddity created by the studio.

Prometheus (2012) - The theatrical cut is so deeply flawed that I prefer to watch fan edits of this one. Prometheus Unbound is the best iteration I’ve found of all the ones available, wonderfully tight with the characters of Vickers coming across as far less 2D. For a “Special Edition,” which throws in all available material, I would recommend Agent9’s Prometheus: Special Edition.


In terms of Alien Covenant, I figure an ideal cut would just remove the 3rd act Alien throwback stuff on the spaceship near the finale, and better edit the Walter/David fight so the “twist” wasn’t so obvious. Hopefully, there’ll be deleted footage to play with here.

TFA: A Gentle Restructure (Released)

Sir Ridley said:

So here’s my take on Finn’s line “They’ve done it”, redubbing it as “They’ve found us”, including animation on the mouth to make it bite together a bit on the “us” rather than the original open mouth “it”.

What do you think?

Really good results actually! That was the one slightly off part of the edit. If HAL 9000 agrees, could there be a V2 audio track with this little tweak?

Star Wars saga - Extra Extended Edition (1080p) (* unfinished project / WIP *)

^…^ said:
4) a “trick” like the one used by TMBTM in his War of the Stars II - where the frames have big shades of one or two colors - of which the following is the best one - I can see the point of his choice, and it worked pretty well in a way; still prefer less-than-perfect recolors, though!

To be honest, I strongly prefer the 4th option. Moreso than the other options, it comes across as a “deliberate creative” stylistic decision. 😉

3 inescapably looks like B&W footage that was computer colorized, and I have suspicions that 2 would as well to a lesser extent. 4 is so radical that you can almost buy the filmmakers intended it to be that way. Grade the hues just a tad more subtly, and I think you’ve got yourself a scene!

Not only that… even Han’s “girlfriend” and Chewie “nice muzzle” is a nice shot. I think this is the only piece worth of recolor in the whole cantina scene - not that because the rest in uninmportant, but because it will take SO LONG and SO MUCH WORK to restore colors, and result will be always not so good 😦

Glad to hear that part of the cantina scene will be restored. Should be cool.

Again, choosing your battles wisely, those seem like good sections to colorize. I might also advocate for using a colorized original arm shot instead of Adywan’s for authenticity, but this comes down to your judgment.