The Hobbit, 48 fps, Thoughts?

I was lucky enought to see a screening of the Hobbit on Warner Bros. lot Monday evening. I won't go into details about the story, but I wanted to comment on the 48 fps.

When the film first opens I was taken back by how different it did look. It was shocking to say the least. It is so crystal clear. You can see the details of the characters and surroundings down to a single blade of grass. I will agree with Peter Jackson that it took sometime for me to get comfortable with the change. I wasn't until at least an hour into the movie that I started to forget about the new frame rate and was able to be in awww by how beautiful the film looked. I also think that with F/X heavy CGI films the 48 fps really made everything look real. It was much harder to notice a distiction between what was real and what was CGI, it all looked real, even the CG characters. As for people that say they are getting motion sickness, I call BS on that one. The actions scenes don't have the jerkiness or roughness that they have with 24 fps. Everything is very smooth and when the action gets quick there is no blurring or "what was that", you are able to see everything in very high clarity.

This process also helped the 3D as it didn't give that darkness that 24 fps 3D movies have. Everything was bright and looked amazing.
Overall, I like the new frame rate. I didn't notice any issues with it and as many have said it's like when you went from a standard TV to HDTV. The technology will grow and can only get better. I can't wait to see the film again in 48 fps.

I wanted to know if there are others who might have had a chance to see it thought about the 48 fps. Any one out there?

J` C.
12-5-2012 06:22 AM

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Hunter Gilbertson

Hunter Gilbertson

The HFR wasn't bad, but for as many scenes it made look incredible, it had almost as many it made look cheap. I really enjoyed the movie and have seen it in both IMAX and HFR formats, I preferred the IMAX format by a good amount. For the most part, I enjoyed the HFR, but really it made some segments look cringe-worthy cheap, especially while they were in the Shire, maybe they still have some kinks to work out with the technology. It gets better as the movie goes on, but there are still parts here and there that look incredibly awkward with the HFR.

I am by no means bashing it, because there were scenes that clearly looked better with the HFR than without it, but as a whole it just felt off and didn't look as good as the IMAX version. Both are worth a watch, but if you are only going with one or the other I would recommend not seeing it as HFR.

Edited and reposted to fix grammar.

Dec 19 - 05:55 AM

Hunter Gilbertson

Hunter Gilbertson

The HFR wasn't bad, but for as many scenes it made look incredible, it had almost as many it made look cheaper. I really enjoyed the movie and have seen it in IMAX and HFR formats, I preferred the IMAX format by a good amount. For the most part, I enjoyed the HFR but maybe they still have some kinks to work out, but really it made some segments look cringe-worthy cheap, especially while they were in the Shire. It gets better as the movie goes on, but there are still parts here and there that look incredibly awkward with the HFR.

I am by no means bashing it, because there were scenes that clearly looked better with the HFR than without it, but as a whole it just felt off and didn't look as good as the IMAX version. Both are worth a watch, but if you are only going with one or the other I would recommend not seeing it as HFR.

Dec 18 - 08:36 PM

Jane D.

Jane Doe

I didn't like it:( Sorry, it just felt like a soap opera on HDTV. I couldn't escape the feeling that I am on a set rather than in a 'fantasy' of the Middle Earth. This might work for Avatar but for the Hobbit, it just didn't do it for me:( Disappointed, will go see it in 2D tomorrow and see if I like it better;)

Dec 17 - 04:41 PM

Joshua Rennirt

Joshua Rennirt

For about 3 mins it look blurry or off, i couldnt put my finger on it then my eyes must have gotten used the the speed and it looked beautiful. i think all the critics are to old or somethings and maybe there eyes couldnt handle it.

Dec 15 - 11:31 PM

TheXman

Joshua Anderson

This was the clearest, most visually appealing movie I have ever seen! I think a lot of this had to do with the 48 FPS, but I also found the 3D to be clearer and more realistic than other 3D effects you often see.
Maybe it's not a fair comparison, but before the movie, there was a trailer for Man of Steel in 3D. These 3D effects were typical things like superman flying out at you from the screen, etc, but they didn't look very clean to me, they just didn't look "real". Then when the Hobbit movie started, I was blown away by the sheer clarity from the first minute of the movie. I also think it helped that they used more of the positive space (3D images in the background) than they did the negative space (3D images coming at you out of the screen). I think that's more in line with what we're used to seeing in real life.
In any case, my eyes didn't need any time to adjust to the high frame rate, it just looked so clear and real. It was truly breathtaking for me just to see Hobbiton so clearly, like I was almost there.

Dec 15 - 10:45 PM

Jj Esteban

Jj Esteban

From everything I read, I thought that I'd HATE watching this in 48fps, but for the most part, I really liked it. Whenever the action, panning & movement of the camera was slow, it looked amazing. I really don't understand why some critics say it looked cheap. It didn't! There was this sense of hyper-reality at times, kinda felt you were on mushrooms or something, but NEVER did it feel cheap.

My ONLY complaint was with the fast action sequences, which often had this odd flickering effect at times. At first I didn't know what it was, but then I figured it was due to it being SO clear, there was a lot less motion-blur between frames because of the higher frame count. Perhaps had we been sitting farther away I wouldn't have noticed it as much. Otherwise, everything from the 3D to the individual pores in the make-up was there.

Brilliant.

Dec 15 - 07:33 PM

Matt Hastings

Matt Hastings

I've seen The Hobbit at 48 fps and in standard 24 fps and the 48fps was the better film, it looked so much better. As for adjusting to the framerate I didn't seem to have any problems and it only seemed off to me for the first few shots of the film.

Dec 15 - 12:56 PM

Dominic Corona

Dominic Corona

it's actually more likely to not give you motion sickness. Motion is smoother and less blurry. You could get motion sickness from it, but that would mean your motion sickness would be even worse had the movie been shot at 24fps.

I find the HFR to be absolutely the right choice in shooting this movie. It really helps with the immersion, and looks damn gorgeous too.

Dec 14 - 04:36 PM

Giorgos Stergiopoulos

Giorgos Stergiopoulos

By far the BEST 3D i ve ever seen. Took me about 4 5 minutes to get used the HFR. Its distracting , sure, but not a bad thing. I was looking all the detailes of each scene , the waterfalls, the scenery , such a beatiful experience. The film delivered more than i expected. I highly recommend watching this in HFR 3D, its a different experience that will make you change the way you want to watch movies!

Dec 14 - 04:25 AM

Charles Borner

Charles Borner

Okay I saw the HFR 3D version tonight. It has a visual quality that's different from what most are used to. It's a BIT distracting. But it doesn't really make the film look bad in any way. Well, unless you're only going to the film to look for each and every blemish and flaw.

I'll say this. I normally avoid 3D like the plague. Most 3D flicks tend to touch off blinding headaches for me, due to eyestrain.

The Hobbit didn't. I was pleasantly surprised because of this. Also, the 3D was EXCELLENT in this film. It wasn't like most films where you get a little beat and then "AND NOW! THREE DEEEEEEEEE!", pretty much ejecting you from immersion in the film, due to the jarring difference.

The 3D here was subtle and well done and almost utterly innocuous, likely due to the 48FPS process.

Also, Alex Alexander, you're wrong in your facts.

Your eyes don't see in "fps". And the threshold for "smooth movement" is different for everyone. Some people don't notice much above 30fps. Some people still notice it above 60fps. This is an old, OLD argument amongst the 3D gaming crowd.

Now, HFR DID cause some of the CGI to "pop" a bit. But I think that's merely due to the fact that the technology is still experimental. Greater use of the process, and familiarity with it should help ameliorate this problem in future releases.

Dec 14 - 04:09 AM

James Glover

James Glover

I saw The Hobbit last night in NZ. I delibrately saw the 2D version. I don't get the obsession with 3D. Most of what we think when we see 3D for object at a distance is made up in our heads. The 3D version isn't what we would see and it's why our brains feel it isn't right. This version has enough stunning spectacle without it.

Dec 12 - 10:41 AM

Dominic Corona

Dominic Corona

The HFR makes the 3D a lot smoother and less noticeable. Instead, it just lends to the realism of the film. And this is one of the first movies to really have the entire production design and preproduction done with 3D in mind, as in "how can 3D help us tell our story?" And they killed it. I honestly believe you're missing out on some of what this movie brings to the table by seeing it in 2D. I'm going again to see it in 2D just so I can compare, and really start to get a sense of what the 3D really brought to the table.

Dec 14 - 04:39 PM

Thom Stone

Thom Stone

i saw some 48 fps clips online. i was amazed by how clear things looked. it almost felt like there was more depth just because of it, giving this sensation that i could reach out and touch what i was watching (this was without 3d). i'm not sure exactly why i felt that way, but it was nice. :)

Dec 10 - 10:55 PM

Roman Lembersky

Roman Lembersky

I was there with you man, same theater too, it was fantastic.

Dec 10 - 10:18 PM

billfaces

h h

Unless there is a 48fps 2D print, I will likely not be seeing it in that format. I guess I'll have to wait.

Dec 5 - 06:35 PM

Kevin Richardson

Kevin Richardson

48FPS will never look right. Here's why: Your monitor has a refresh rate which is independent of the "frame rate." That's how you can watch a film shot at 24FPS on a monitor with a refresh rate of 120. Even physical (non digital) film in a film projector is flashed or refreshed several times before advancing the frame - same principal in analog form. On why people are getting sick: Blurs are what create the illusion of motion when you project a bunch of still images quickly (film - nothing really moving), they exist when you look at anything moving fast past you with your eyes - the brain itself has a sample rate, that's why fast action does not appear stroboscopic to us. In film, or digital cinema blurs have to be captured with an exposure long enough to capture the blur, otherwise it no longer feels or looks natural, as we don;t perceive action that way. A series of sharp images played quickly does not create a blur, because there is no true motion - its just a bunch of still images projected quickly. 24 is better. A better use of time and effort would be to improve sound quality.

Dec 5 - 10:08 AM

Jack Gaydon

Jack Gaydon

Um, mate, these days we can record sound at ridiculous sample rates and bit depths that the vast majority of people could not tell the difference between. Even professionals would find it hard to differentiate between the same thing recorded and played back at say 96 kHz and then again at any rate above that. Until we evolve to hear far more acutely than we currently do, sound quality is just fine, thanks (and in case you missed it, "The Hobbit" also made use of Dolby's latest tech). And as for your perception of what looks "right" or not, please learn to differentiate between your subjective views and absolute truths. The OP and many others clearly enjoyed the high frame rate once they got use to it. Just because it's unconventional and a lot of people will dislike it does not mean it is "wrong". It is simply another way of shooting and viewing motion pictures.

Dec 5 - 11:54 AM

Alex Alexander

Alex Alexander

Monitor and movie are different things.
Many videos and programs for TV are been shot at 30 or 60fps and any HDTV right now can play those different speed.
HDTV and Blu-ray like PS3 can play 24fps movie when movie is recorded to that speed.
HDTV and monitors have a base frame rate but it can be modified with a heavy process, but to the end all of those thing to HFR in a HDTV from today are not natural.
This movie is completely different, this is an original 48fps recorded that could be play in any HDTV with just an software update.
That is not unnatural and this the way than we see movement, the blurs has nothing to do with the motion feeling this is an artifact or limitation from 1927 that we consider normal.
Our eyes can see almost to 55fps, 24fps was chose because less film would be used and the projector noise wouldn't be to loud when the movie be playing. Tomas Edison proposed 46fps in the 20's.
The people can feel sick not because the HFR, but for the stereoscopic way that the movie was recorded. It is a real 3D movie and not just post processed, it is the stereoscopic way that can has the dizzy and sick effect in some people, like a migraine's trigger for few people.

Dec 12 - 10:19 AM

scifimark

scifi mark

Personally i think doing 48 with 3d is a little much. 48 fps is a pretty big gamble in itself but combine that with 3d was probably not the greatest idea.

Dec 5 - 09:34 AM

Dominic Corona

Dominic Corona

The 3D is what justifies the 48fps. There's a reason there are no HFR 2D screenings. The reason they chose to shoot at 48fps is because it helps to alleviate some of the primary complaints about 3D

Dec 14 - 04:41 PM

Jack Gaydon

Jack Gaydon

Not yet. Will get back to you in 9 days! XD
But this is nice to hear. And yes, I agree, the supposed 'sickness', if true, if probably the typical nausea that 3D gives some people, and likely has very little to do with frame rate.

Dec 5 - 09:08 AM

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